Kumbakonam, is a town and a special grade municipality in the Thanjavur district of Tamil Nadu in India. It is located 40 km (25 mi) from Thanjavur and 273 km (170 mi) from Chennai. Kumbakonam is known as a "temple city" due to the prevalence of a number of temples here and is noted for its Mahamaham festival which attracts people from all over the country.
Kumbakonam dates back to the Sangam period and was ruled by the Early Cholas, Pallavas, Medieval Cholas, Later Cholas, Pandyas, the Vijayanagara Empire, Madurai Nayaks, Thanjavur Nayaks and the Thanjavur Marathas. It rose to be a prominent town between the 7th and 9th centuries AD, when it served as a capital of the Medieval Cholas. The town reached the zenith of its prosperity during the British Raj when it was a prominent centre of European education and Hindu culture; and it acquired the cultural name, the "Cambridge of South India". In 1866, Kumbakonam was officially constituted as a municipality, which today comprises 45 wards, making it the largest municipality and second largest local civil body in Thanjavur district.