Mayiladuthurai is a hamlet situated in Nagapattinam district, in the state of Tamil Nadu. The town is located in the historic Thanjavur area on the banks of the River Cauvery. According to mythology, goddess Parvati was born as a peacock and worshipped Lord Shiva in the form of a peacock. Stories say that Parvati was cursed to take birth as a peacock. In Tamil a peacock is called Mayiladuthurai. The word is divided into three parts: Mayil (Peacock) Aadum (Dancing) Thurai (Place).

The surrounding village is called Sidharkaadu, or the forest of saints. Many saints lived in this place and attained Moksh through Samadhi. People say that it is a way of achieving pure divinity. Mayiladuthurai is famous for its gold jewellery business and its marriage halls. Majority of the business establishments are located in the central town. Other areas where people reside are Koorainaadu (Koranaad) and Thiru-Indaloor (Thirivizhandur).

Though famous for gold business, the main activity in the region is agriculture. The land is fertile and the rice and sugarcane are the two main crops grown here. The suburban areas of Mayiladuthurai, Koorainadu, is famous for the silk sarees which are weaved here and called kooraip pattu (koorai silks) and kooraip pudavai (sari) in Tamil.

Mayiladuthurai also hosts the famous Natyanjali festival. On the similar lines of Chidambaran Nataraja temple's Natiyanjali, there is another Natyanjali, Mayura Natyanjali, which is held each year during Maha Shivratri. Various Bharat Natyam dancers participate in the festival, which is organised by a welfare trust named Sapthasvarangal Trust.

The best months to visit Mayiladuthurai are from October to March.The place is well connected with a railway junction for Chennai (via Chidambaram, Villupuram), Trichy (Via Kumbakonam, Tanjore) and Tiruvarur.