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Sri Surya Narayana temple Arasavalli

” Harshavilli purivasam , Chayosha Padminiyutham Suryanarayanam Devam Nowmi Sarvartha Dayakam “

A sloka on Lord Surya narayana

The Ancient Hindu Temple of Sun God  – “Lord Suryanaryana Swamy Temple” located at Arasavalli in Srikakulam Town, Andhra Pradesh, India. This is one of unique and most visited Pilgrimage Temples in India. The Original name is Harshavalli which means Abode of Joy.

As we went on 3rd week of Maasi maasam (mid February) month being it a Sunday the temple was overcrowded . Some said jathra, a temple official told us as the Lord gave dharshan at this place on that auspicious day .We took Rs. 500 ticket per couple for quick dharshan .

Legend says that one day Indra, celestial Lord , came to worship  Lord Shiva in the ancient Uma Rudra Koteswara Swamy Temple near Srikakulam, a sub Temple of the famous Srikurmam Shrine. He came in very late and Since it was in- approppriate to seek Darshan after the closure of the Temple, he was refused to get an entry by Nandeeswara, guarding the Shiva Temple. Filled with Arrogance and being ignorant of  the supreme Power of Lord Shiva, Indra began arguing with Nandeeswara for an entry , resulting in a scuffle. Angered at this, Nandeeswara pricked up Indra in his horns and threw him away.

Indra fell unconscious at a distance of 2 yojanas to the east of Uma Rudra Koteswara Temple . After awakening, Indra realized the Supreme Power of Lord Shiva . To get relief from his Sins, He consulted the Sages and was told about possible Planetary related Evil influences behind the Wrong doing. So, to get  relieved, he prayed the Chief  Planet of Nava Grahaas, The sun God – Another Hindu Mythological Demi God, for relieving him of the sins. Sun God appeared before him and advised Indra to construct a Temple for him , by digging at the place where he fell. He did the same and found an Idol of Sun God, which he installed in the Temple at Arasavalli . Later Indra performed all the Rituals related to relief from Planet related Evil  Effects (Graha Shanthi) and thereafter went to the Temple of  Uma Rudra Koteswara Swamy to have the Darshan of  Lord Shiva and attained Peace Of Mind.  This Temple is now the famous Sun God Temple at Arasavalli (Previously known as Harshavalli, meaning Pleasure) . The Pond which was formed at this area,  eventually came to be known as Indra Pushkarini .

In this temple the main diety is Lord Surya Narayana along with His consorts Usha chaya and Padmini . Mathara and Pingala the Dwarapalakas in sitting posture on the each side little downwards to the main diety and high up are the two divine saints , sanaka and sanadana holding ‘Chamaram'( manual fan ). The Sun God is depicted as riding over a chariot with 7 horses , drawn by Anura, the Radhasarathy . All these figures are exquisitely carved out of a single black finely polished granite stone.

There is also Lord Shiva with his consort Goddess Parvathi with one side Lord Vinayagar and other side Goddess Mahisasuramardini within and Navagrahas in the outer pragharam .

The pillars of the temple are being painted pink . The entrance Gopuram is like more of a Buddhist temple.

In front of the main entrance
This is the exit and being the entrance of the pink corridor
On the way to our bus
The pink corridor of the temple

Simmachalam Varagha Narasimhar

We stayed in Vizag in Lakshmi residency near railway station . Simmachalam is about 10 kms from this Hotel .

Simhachalam : Simhachalam is called “Hill of Lion “ . ( simha means lion , achala means hill ) , It is near Vishakhapatnam in present Andhra Pradesh Its presiding deity is Lord Varaha Lakshmi Narasimha combining the features of Varaha and Narasimha .

As the idol is ferocious , it is covered with sandalwood (chandanam ) to look like Shivalinga and once in year on akshaya thrithai day the sandalpaste is removed (chandana visarjana ) . Pilgrims visit the temple mostly on that day .

The temple was built by Kalinga kings , which has orissan and chalukyan features .
As we went on a Swathi Nakshatram day as well as it was a Saturday the temple was crowded .There is a temple pond near by and people take holy dip in that pond and come to have the dharshan of the Lord .

We took Rs.20 ticket per person this is for entrance, free dharshan is available as it will take time , we opted this and there is rs.100 tickets too , we have to climb about 50 steps while climbing the steps one side is fully covered with dense forest and other side beautiful and colourfull carvings of Narasimhar in standing sitting postures .

Once we enter inside we can see the lotus feet of Krishna chaitanyas small mantapa it is closed in glass and we can look through the glass .When we enter inside the temple we could see 6 × 10 beautifully carved pillared mandapam were Gods thirukalyanam are being done . The Vahanas of the Lord such as naga vahanam gaja vahanam and horse are being kept in this mantapa and palanquin made out of wood with Garudan was also kept . As it was a auspicious day , some function was being held in this mantapa . Opposite to this is the main sanctum pragharam. Then on the entrance of the main sanctum we paid rs .200 this is for archana and we are allowed inside the main sanctum.
The main sanctum is fully made of gold pillars and silver gopuram is a divine sight with Sudarshana chakra on top of it .We can come around it . In the center is kept the main deity Varagha Narasimhar with sandal paste applied on it and a ornamental thirunamam on it .

The main deity is Lord Varagha Narasimhar applied with sandal paste and looks round like a Saligrahma Namam which Vaishnavaites keep on their forehead has been placed on Lord as an ornament in gold .
The outer pragharam of the main deity is fully carved with the idols of Varaghar on one side Narasimhar on one side and Thiruvikraman on the other side .

There is a pillar when we come out of the main sanctum called Kappasthambam it is believed that it has a miraculous power because of the yantra kept beneath it and those who hugs and worships it vil get their desires fullfilled .They collect rs. 25 per person to hug this pillar .

Behind this pillar is the shrine of the Thayar named Simhavalli .

There are seperate shrines for Lakshmi Narayanan and Goddess Andal .

When we come out side the pragharam they give free prasadham as well as laddu for those who did archanai we have to hand over the rs. 200 tickets for entry to main sanctum .

Opposite to it is a hall where Gods ornaments jewels are kept .
Those who want can see by buying the tickets alloted to it .
We took pics only outside the temple as photography is prohibited inside the temple.

At the entrance of the Simmachalam temple
At Simmachalam
Our tour group at Simmachalam
Amidst of dense forest Simmachalam temple view
Image from Facebook Temple Connect page
Picture of Varagha Narasimhar without sandal paste

Puri Jaganath temple

The holy land of Odisha is divided into four kshetras. These kshetras are named after the four names of weapons of Lord Vishnu such as sankha (conch shell), chakra (disc), gada (mace) and padma (lotus). Puri Dham is known as SankhaKshetra.

This temple is one among the chardham kshethram. This temple is in Odisha .
Others being Rameswaram , Badrinath and Dwaraka .This temple is being referred as Bhojan dham (food) .

There’s is a dwajasthambam at the entrance of the temple which was in Konark before, it is said King Chatrapathi Shivaji brought it from Konark and installed here .

The main dwara consists of 22 steps which represents 18 puranas and 4 vedas . Here the main deity is Lord Jaganath along with Subhatra His sister and Balarama His brother .

This temple has 4 entrance simham dwar elephant dwar, horse dwar and tiger dwar named also named as dharma artha kama moksha dwaram through dharma dwar general peoples are allowed , through artha dwar King and his officials are allowed , through kama saints Maharishi are allowed and through moksha God himself enters this temple .

Similarly there are 4 gopurams bhoja geetha nata and the main sanctum . When we enter the main entrance there is a dwajasthambam named Garuda sthamba , people touch this sthamba and offer their prayers .

It is believed the main diety sanctum was built by Viswakarma himself ( the God of architects) and there is a seperate shrine for him in the pragharam.

The main deities are Subhatra in the centre painted yellow, Balaramar to Her right painted white and Jaganath painted black these deities are made up of neem tree (margosa), once in 12 years . The Ratha yatra (chariot festival) is very famous in this temple and people from all over will come to watch it as in other temples urtsavar will go on the procession here the main deities themselves are taken during the Ratha yatra procession.
The back side of the main sanctum itself is a shrine of Lord Narasimhar to have the dharshan one has to climb a few steps . The inner pragharam consists of Goddess Vimala mandir it’s one of the sakthi peedams . Next to it is Sakshi Gopal shrine , the God of witness , which means those who go to Puri Jaganath must have the dharshan of him as he is the witness of our visit to Puri .

Then seperate shrines of Goddesses Saraswathi Gayathri Sasti Mansi Bhuvaneswari and Lakshmi . There is seperate shrines for Lord Anjineyar at the entrance of this temple .
There is a seperate shrine for Lord Surya Narayanan which was before worshipped in Konark sun temple as it’s under renovation now it has been installed inside this temple .

This temple has a magnanimous kitchen where its cooked for lakhs and lakhs of people daily . For cooking they use only mud utensils and pots , the mud pots once used are not used again for the next day they use a new sets of mud pots and utensils . Instead of stove they use wood for fire and water is dragged from a well named Ganges inside the temple . Though Puri is surrounded by sea the water inside the temple is sweet not salty the other side well is known as Yamuna . No modern equipments for grinding masalas are used and rice is powdered by manual pounding . It’s a vast area with cooking pounding with both the wells rice sacks and mud pots all over .Daily about 56 dishes are cooked here and offered as Prasadham to the Lord Jaganath. The offered Prasadhams are distributed to devotees as annadhan .

The chakra on the top of the main sanctum is called Neel chakra and the chakra looks facing us from wherever we see it . A flag is hoisted everyday by 4pm the flag floats in the opposite direction of the air as this temple is near Puri beach .

Astapadi is a sacred hymn was written by Jayadevar in this place only .

There is a kalpavristcham where people tie a thread and make their desire and its believed to become true .

Once in 12 years the idols of Lord Jaganath ,Subhatra and Balaramar are burried and new one are made and the soul of the Lord is installed in it by the priests . The burried place are within the temple complex and they collect Rs. 5 to visit it and flowers are offered daily to the burried place . This signifies that once born death is definite even if its God .

It is said Sri Ramanujar had visited this temple .On reaching Puri, Sri Ramanujacharya began to interact with the local priests and scholars. His natural brilliance attracted people and soon he found a crowd of devotees following in his foot steps. He decided to establish a monastery to be headed by Sri Govinda (his cousin). Govinda was also fondly called Embar by Emperumaanar, hence the mutt came to be known as ‘Embar mutt’.

Today the monastery is known simply as ‘Embar mutt’. The Embar mutt is located right outside the Puri Jagannath temple.

Photography and non Hindus are prohibited no cameras allowed inside.

Entrance of Puri Jaganath temple
Main diety picture

Gundicha Mandir Odisha

Gundicha Temple has some interesting legends related to it. One legend says that Gundicha was the queen of the King Indradyumna, the legendary founder of the 1st great Jagannath temple. It is because of the deep devotion of the queen Gundicha, Lord Jagannath prefers to pay a visit to her house for nine days during Car Festival. Another Legend says Gundicha Ghar is the house of Lord Krishna’s adoring aunt Gundicha. It is believed that their aunt gives a welcome to the three siblings with a special delicacy made of rice called ‘padoapitha’. This rice cake is also known as ‘Podapitha’ or ‘Porapitha’. This temple is regarded as equally holy as Jagannath temple as Lord Jagannth stays here for nine days during the annual car festival.

The temple built in typical Kalingan style . The temple is sorrounded by a wall and stands in the middle of a garden. The height of the wall is 20 feet and width is 5 feet. The length of the temple is 430 feet. The height of this temple is 75 feet. The temple consists of four parts connected with kitchen rooms by a narrow passage. All the four structures (Vimana, Jagamohana, Natamandapa and Bhogamandapa) bear the traces of several plasterings and are carved in places with obscene figures in mortar. The whole temple is built of light gray sand stone. There is a plain raised seat, 4 feet high and 19 feet long, made of chlorite and this is called the ‘Ratnavedi’, the throne on which the images are placed when brought to the temple. This temple has two gates. The western gate is the main gate and the eastern side gate. The eastern gate is also known as Nakachana gate. The deities enter to this temple through the west gate and come out by the east gate. The temple is under the care and maintenance of Jagannath Temple Administration, Puri.

Gundicha mandir entrance
Gundicha mandir
Gundicha mandir


This temple is on east Godavari district of Andrapradesh. The main deity is Veera Satya Narayana .
It took 3 hours journey to reach this temple from the Hotel we stayed in Vizag .

The temple is on a small hillock named Ratnagiri . As we were on a spiritual tour to this temple as a member of 40 our bus were allowed only to a certain extent of the hill the rest we went by taking a share auto they collect rs.10 per person.

After reaching the main arch of the temple there is a set of steps nearly 20 .Then once again a set of steps to reach the main entrance . The temple is big with pragharas with carvings in the pillars.

As we reached by 7 pm we were informed for Rs.500 for a couple there is a pancha deeparadhanai (waving diyas in front of the Lord ) and we opted for it, we were allowed inside the main sanctum and allowed to see the naga deepam garuda deepam poorna kumba deepam and multiple step diyas deepa aradhanai followed by usual deeparadanai . It was a divine bliss and we were allowed inside the main sanctum .

The Lord Vishnu in the form of Veera Satya Narayana with mustache and Lord Shiva on one side and Goddess Lakshmi on the other . We said our name nakshatra n gothram and did archanai and then we were sent to see the paadham of the Lord as the main sanctum consists of only half of the Lord. The center part is like a sthamba (round pillar like structure)and it represents Lord Shiva and the paadham being Lord Brahma. To see the paadham we have get down a few steps.

Its said this temple is famous for Satya Narayana pooja people flock to this place to perform this pooja . As this God is said to be giving “anina”(what is said) “varam” (boons) .

Satya Narayana vratham a ritual done with fasting followed by a priest saying 6 stories of the people who were benefited by performing this pooja and vratham .

There is a koshala on the leftern side of the temple exit entrance. Lord Anjineyar is outside under a tree .

According to the Sthalapurana , sage Ratna son of Meru (mountain) and Menaka , (brother of sage Bhadra ) performed severe penance to have Lord Vishnu to recide on his head permanently as Lord Satya deva .

Here Lord blessed the devotees with anina ( wanted ) varam ( boon ) . Hence the place is called Annavaram . Here the temple is based on the shilpashastra , which reminds Prakriti –Universe .

The front side of the temple was constructed in the form of chariot with four wheels at each of the four corners , The Meru on the floor with the pillar at the centre and wheels depicting the sun and the moon , reminds the Juggernaut moves on the wheels of the time forever . The idol is 13ft high in the cylindrical form , the base being in the lower sanctorium representing Lord Brahma ( the feet of the idol ) , top of the idol is in the upper sanctorium and represents Lord Vishnu , the middle portion represents Lord Shiva ( the base of the upper sanctorium ) .The idol of Lord representing ‘TRIMURTHI’ is a unique attraction here ( Lord Brahma denied worship everywhere ) . Here Lord is prayed by this sloka ,

Entrance first 20 steps
Next entrance 20 steps
The main deity
Anjineyar at the entrance

Chakra Thirtha temple Odisha

The holy land of Odisha is divided into four kshetras. These kshetras are named after the four names of weapons of Lord Vishnu such as sankha (conch shell) chakra (disc) gada (mace) and padma (lotus). Puri Dham is known as Sankha Kshetra.

This is a small temple with the main diety as the same as Puri jaganath temple. Lord Balaramar Subhatra and Lord Jaganath .

Inside the main sanctum there is a chakra on the floor .
This place is considered as Jal dham .
The priest there said us that , this temple is older than Puri Jaganath temple.

Though this temple is near the sea the water inside is sweet .

This is a mukthi sthalam. We were asked to do abhishegam (ablution of water) to the Chakra . Those who visit Puri Jaganath temple visit this temple too .

Inside the chakra thirtha temple with our tour organizer Vijiyalakshmi Sundar

Anegudde Vinayagar temple Kumbakshi

Anegudde Sri Vinayaka Temple, Kumbashi is in Kundapur taluk, Udupi District, Karnataka.

From Gokarna Mahabaleshwar temple we reached this temple by 3 pm as there was a special pooja being performed the temple was opened.

Kumbashi is a small village situated in kundapur (32 km from Udupi). As per the legend when there was a drought in this place Sage Gowthama (some references say Agasthya) was doing varuna yagna to appease the rain Gods at that time a demon named Kumbasura used to trouble him. In the same time Pandavas were passing by this place. Sage asks for help from Pandavas. Yudhistira asks Bheema to kill the demon.

Bheema fights with demon but fails as the demon was very powerful. At that time a heavenly voice informs Bheema that Kumbasura can be killed only by asi (sword) obtained from Ganesha. Bheema worships lord Ganesha and Ganesha appears in the form of an Elephant and gives him the sword with which Bheema kills Kumbasura . Hence this place was called Kumbashi.

The temple is situated on a hill which was previously called as Nagachala. It is believed that lord Ganesha in the form of Elephant gave darshan to Bheema in this place. Hence it was later became popular as Anegudde (In kannada Aane means Elephant and Gudde means hill).

There is Mahalingeshwara temple at the base of Anegudde. Vinayaka temple shares a close connection with this temple. The water of Mahalingeshwara temple (believed to be Ganga) is used for the Abhisheka of Vinayka of Anegudde.

According to legend Ganesha was given a task by Parvathi to find a place for the flow of Ganga in south. He comes to this place in the form of a Novice with a cow. Sage Gowthamas ashram was here. The cow dies in front ashram.

Pained by the incidence Gowthama prays to lord Shiva to send holy Ganga from his matted hair. Shiva sends holy Ganga and Gowthama collects the Ganga in his Kamandal (A type of vessel carried by sages) Gowthama sprinkles holy water on the cow and gives life to it. Ganesha’s purpose is also served . A small kumba shaped well is found in Mahalingeshwara temple.

As per devotees the idol of Ganesha is the same one which was worshipped by Bheema. But the present temple is only around 150 years old. And there is a very interesting legend about the same.

A Brahmin named Vishweshwara Upadhyaya lived in Korgi village five miles away from Kumbashi. He used to visit Mahalingeshwara temple (Anegudde) every day and take holy dip in the temple pushkarni. One day a young boy appeared in his dream and told him that he is hungry. He led him to Anegudde (his regular path) and disappeared near a stone.

Next day when Vishweshwara Upadhyaya visited the temple he saw the same stone and saw that the flowers were falling on the stone and cows were emptying their udder on the stone. He started worshipping the stone by doing Abhisheka from the water of Mahalingeshwara temple pushkarni (which is still followed).

Seeing his devotion people of Kumbashi gave him a place to live and he constructed a small shrine made up of muli (hay) and installed the stone deity and continued his worship. The temple took the present form after the death of Vishweshwara Upadyaya. His decedents are the main Archakas (hereditary priests) of the temple.

The idol of the deity is Swayambu (appeared on its own) and neerakara (without any definite shape). According to some devotees the stone has the features of Ganesh’s trunk.

You can see this form only at dawn before Abhisheka and in noon around 11.30 before Mahapooja (I was lucky today to have seen this form of lord) .Usually we see Vinayaka in this temple with golden face and silver body parts .

There is one more interesting observation is that till 11 o clock in the morning the Gods idol is decorated and you see him in standing posture and after that throughout the day the deity is decorated and seen in a sitting posture

Vinayaka of Anegudde is considered as Sarva Siddhi Pradhayaka (provider of all boons). Devotees flock this temple. Ganahoma and Rangapooja are offered by the devotees to the God.

For more details do visit this link

The temple serves delicious Annaprasadam to the devotees every day. The doors of the temple are open from 6.00am to 9:00 pm.

Those who buy new vehicles perform pooja in this temple and we witnessed 2 to 3 poojas for vehicles done in front of the temple .

Anegudde Vinayagar temple

In front of the Anegudde Vinayagar temple

Swamimalai Murugan


Swamimalai Swaminathaswamy Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to god Murugan. It is located in Swamimalai, 5 km from Kumbakonam, on the banks of a tributary of river Cauvery, 250 km from Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu, India.

The temple is one of the six holy shrines of Murugan called Arupadaiveedu.

The shrine of the presiding deity, Swaminathaswamy is located at the top of 60 ft (18 m) hillock and the shrine of his mother Meenakshi (Parvathi) and father Shiva (Sundareswarar) is located downhill.

The deities of the Tamil years are praying to Lord Muruga in the form of steps.  Hence, the Padi Puja (puja for the steps) is conducted on Tamil and English New Year days with coconuts, fruits and singing hymns.The temple has three gopuram (gateway towers), three precincts and sixty steps and each one is named after the sixty Tamil years.

The temple has six daily rituals at various times from 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m, and three yearly festivals on its calendar. The annual Vaikasi Visagam festival is attended by thousands of devotees from far and near.

As per Hindu legend, Muruga, the son of Shiva, extolled the meaning of the Pranava Mantra (OM) to his father at this place and hence attained the name Swaminathaswamy. The temple is believed to be in existence from the Sangam period from 2nd century BC and was believed to have been modified by Parantaka Chola I

Swami malai is also called as “Kattu malai ” as it is a artificially made Hill .

As per Hindu legend, Brahma, the Hindu god of creation, disrespected Muruga (the son of Shiva) at the time of visiting Mount Kailash, the abode of Shiva. The child Muruga got angry with Brahma and asked him how he was creating living beings. Brahma said that he was creating living beings with the help of the Vedas (Hindu scriptures). On hearing the reply, Muruga asked Brahma to recite the texts from Vedas. Brahma started to recite the text with the holy word called Pranava Mantra, “Om”. At that time Muruga stopped Brahma and asked him to explain the meaning of the Pranava Mantra. Brahma could not reply and hence Muruga knocked Brahma on his forehead with his clenched fists and punished him with imprisonment.

Muruga took up the role of the creator. The Devas (celestial deities) were surprised by the absence of Brahma and they requested Vishnu to negotiate with Muruga to release Brahma. Vishnu could not help and as the last resort, Shiva went to the rescue of Brahma. Shiva came to Muruga and asked him to release Brahma from imprisonment. Muruga refused to release him stating Brahma was unaware of the meaning of the Pranava Mantra (Om). Shiva asked Muruga to explain the meaning and Muruga extolled to Shiva the meaning of the Pranava Mantra. Shiva behaved like a student to a teacher, listening with rapt attention from his son, giving Muruga the name “Thagappan Swami”. The meaning of this name is “The Teacher of His Father Lord Shiva”. Following the legend, the shrine of the son Muruga is atop the hillock, while the father Shiva’s shrine is located at the basement.

Palamudhir Cholai Murugar

Located 25 km away from Madurai, Pazhamudhircholai is one among the 6 prominent abodes of Lord Muruga, called as Arupadaiveedu. Others important abodes of Lord Muruga are Thiruparankundram Subramanya Swamy Temple, Palani Dandayudhapani Swami Temple, Swamimalai Swaminatha Swami Temple, Tiruchendur Senthil Andavar Temple and Tiruttani Subramanya Swamy Temple. Its admist the dense forest very near to Kallazhaghar temple one of the Pandiyanadu divyadeshams of Lord Vishnu .

Lord Muruga is seen here with his two divine consorts Goddesses Valli and Deivayanai. Devotees visit here to seek lord’s blessings. Many devotees come here for wedding, child and even academic blessings. The scenic beauty of the place also attracts many visitors here.

A natural spring named Nupura Gangai flows at a walkable distance from this temple many people flock to this places to take bath and fill the water it in containers as it said to be a natural remedy for skin diseases .

There are lots of monkeys so must be carefull . We can spend a whole day here by seeing Padinettam padi karupanaswamy temple the guardian diety of Azhaghar koil , Azhaghar koil , Palamudhir cholai then to Nupura Gangai.

Legend of Pazhamudhir Solai near Madurai

According to a popular legend associated with this temple, a great Tamil poet Avvaiyar, who was also an ardent devotee of Lord Muruga was tested by Lord here under a tree near the temple. This tree is still being worshipped with the devotees who come to visit the temple.

As per the legend, Avvaiyar, while travelling under hot sun had taken refuge under a fruit tree. She didn’t have anything to eat or drink while she rested under this tree. It is then Lord Muruga, in the guise of a young boy, appeared in front of her and asked her if she wanted roasted or unroasted fruits (sutta pazham venduma sudatha pazham venduma). Being highly well-informed herself, Avvaiyar sneered at the idea of roasted fruits and asked the boy to just pick unroasted fruits for her. Later she picked up the fruits fallen out of the tree. As she was blowing off the dust from the fruits, young boy asked if she was cooling down her roasted fruits. Hearing such as intelligent play of words and poetic knowledge by a small village boy left her astonished. She when realising it is not something common, asked the boy to let her know his true identity. After her fervent pleading, Lord Muruga appeared and blessed her.

Inside the temple
The temple corridor

Sri Durga Parameshwari Kateel

Sri Durga Parameshwari temple Kateel .The temple is around 25Km away from Mangalore . You can visit Nellithirtha and this temple together.

This temple does not close from morning to evening. You can still have the dharshan of the Goddess Durga Parameshwari in the afternoon.

We had visited this temple during my mangalore spiritual trip.The deity is very powerful and believed to full-fill your wishes. This temple is a great source of positive energy.

Kateel (Kati) means in the middle, as it is situated in the middle of Kanakagiri and Pavanje .

The river Nandini flows below the temple. It is also called as boat shaped temple. If you visit the temple in rainy season you will feel as if the temple is like a boat floating in the river Nandini .

As per legends demon Arunasura got the boon that he cannot be killed by man, Women, Trimurthi or any living being with two or four legs. He got this boon because he got upadesha of Gayathri mantra from Jabali Maharishi , since then he was constantly reciting Gayathri mantra, he became very powerful that no one could not touch him .

Jabali Maharishi asked Narada to find a solution to kill this demon . He did penance in Nellithirtha. Due to the boon even Lord Shiva was helpless . Lord Shiva suggested Jabali Maharishi to impress Goddess Parvathi as she can only solve the problem .

Jabali Maharishi does penance but Goddess Parvathi does not get impressed . Later, Jabali Maharishi on the advice of the gods conducts a Vishwachandika yaga .

Arunasura comes to know about it and comes to spoil the yaga , but fails. The Chandika yaga pleases Goddess Parvathi, she assures Jabali she will indeed end the life of the demon but, Arunasura has to stop chanting Gayathri mantra .

Deva guru Brahaspathi visits demon Arunasura and suggests him that he is too great to recite Gayathri mantra . Arunasura falls in the trap and stops chanting Gayathri mantra.

In the mean time Goddess Parvathi comes in the form of Mohini and entices Arunasura. When Arunasura follows her she runs and disappears inside a rock . Arunasura hits the rock and the rock opens and a sparm of bees come and chase him. Thus Goddess Parvathi takes the form of Brahmara (Bee) and kills the demon . Hence she is also called Brahmarambika .

After the end of Arunasura, all the gods ask goddess to take shantha Roopa and stay in this place to bless the devotees, She agrees and takes the shape of Durga parameshwari.

It is believed that Jabali Maharshi had cursed Nandini (The sacred cow) daughter of Kamadhenu to flow as a river, when she refused to come to earth with Jabali . When she repents , Jabali blessed her that Goddess Parvathi will come and stay at her shore and her curse will be cleared.

The Durga Parameshwari idol is made up of gold, it is very small in size and only oil lamps light the sanctum. There is no light in the sanctum. Having her divine darshan only in the light of lamps is magical moment.

When you enter the temple, on the left side you can see the rock from where Devi came as Brahmara . There is Naga deva and Ganapathi inside the temple premise.

Devi is considered to be very fond of mallige (jasmine) so devotees offer it with prayers.

This temple does not close from morning to evening. You can have the dharshan of the Goddess in the afternoon section too though we went in the morning.

This temple is a great source of positive energy. Visit the same to feel it.

Many devotees offer black bangles to the deity. The same are distributed to the other devotees as it keep negative energies away don’t forget to collect them. You can get it from priests who distribute Theertha and Prasada in the temple.

Please visit the official website of the temple for more details

Entrance of the temple backside are taps to wash our feet
Entrance of the temple
Main sanctum
Durga Parameshwari


Thiruparankundram Murugan Temple or Subramanya Swamy Temple is one of the Six Abodes of Murugan, located at Thiruparankundram, Madurai , Tamil Nadu in India . The main deity being Lord Murugar with both his wives Valli and Deivayanai .The temple is built in rock-cut architecture and believed to have been built by the Pandyas during the 6th century. According to the legend it is where Murugan slayed the demon Surapadman and married Deivayanai, the divine daughter of the king of heaven , Indra, and he is said to have worshipped Lord Shiva here as Parangirinathar . Goddess Parvathi is named as Aavudai nayaki.

This temple, with its shrine carved out of a rock, has separate shrines for Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu, Goddess Durga, Lord Vinayaka and of other prominent Hindu deities. This temple, which is also historically important, is known for a special feature. In this temple, idols of Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu face each other, which is a unique aspect in a Hindu temple. From this temple, sun and moon can be seen together, which is a major attraction among devotees.

When visiting Tiruparankundram temple, if times permits devotees can also visit to other theerthams which are located nearby such as Sanyasi Kinaru, Saravana Poigai, Kasi Sunai, Sathiya Koopam and Lakshmi Theertham on their Madurai Tour.

In front of the temple
Backside of the temple

Kollur Mookambigai

After having dharshan at Hosanadu Annapurneswari went to Kollur Mookambika Temple – source of all powers .

Shri Mookambika is one of the most legendary shrines for Hindus in India. It is the only temple that is dedicated to Goddess Parvathi in the form of Mookambiga (as she slayed down demon Mookasura) and is believed to be created by Parashurama.

Goddess Mookambiga temple is located exactly on the banks of the perennial river Souparnika, that runs close to the foot hills of the Western Ghats. River Sauparnika has its attribute to the eagle called Suparna, that did penance in this bank and attained salvation.

The history of Kollur Mookambika temple states that, there lived a demon named Kaumasura who was unleashing a reign of terror upon all the gods with his special power given by Lord Shiva. When all the gods were trying their best to stay away from his vicinity, Guru Shukracharya brought good news to the gods, that this demon would face death by a woman, that is Goddess Parvathi Devi. Knowing this, Kaumasura undertook severe penance worshipping LordShiva , and Lord Shiva asked this demon for the boon, sensing grave danger that, if he offered the boon, this Goddess of speech (Saraswathi) would make Kaumasura dumb.

Hence this Kaumasura came to be known as Mookasura (mooka means to be dumb). Thereafter Devi mobilised all the powers of the gods and then this demon was killed by Kollur Devi Parvathi. She was hence called Mookambikai. This place where Devi killed Mookasura is known as Marana Katte.

The Kollur Devi thereafter became the deity of this place, offering her blessings to all who sought her. She poses with all her radiance along with the shank (conch)and chakra in both her hands sitting in the padmahasana posture.

Significance of Swayambhulinga

The Suyambulinga (self evolved Linga) at Shri Mookambika temple, is said to have come into existence when Parameshwara drew the chakra with his toe. This chakra is believed to be the Udhbava Linga, which has drawn its strength due to its proximity to all divine beings. It is also very sacred, since Kollur Devi is supposed to be merged with this Suyambulinga and that has made her acquire great power.

Here she is said to have formed, as a part of Linga along with Lakshmi and Saraswathi on one side and Lord Brahma, Vishnu and Parameshwara on the other side. Apart from this, there is also a carved image of Shiva believed to be injured, during the clash with Arjuna known as Kiratharjuna and this is on the right side of this Suyambulinga.

The history of idol installation at Kollur Mookambika temple is nearly 1200 years old. When Acharya Shri Sankara first came to this place, there was a Swaymabu Linga worshipped by Kola Maharshi. On close observation, Acharya Shri Sankara found that Ambica too was in the Linga invisibly. He mediated upon the Goddess sitting at a place close by. Mother Shri Mookambika appeared before Acharya and blessed. Mother Mookambika’s idol was made based on the picture that appeared in Shri Sankara’s mind. No abishek is performed to Mother but to Linga only. Other alankaras(decorations) are done to the Goddess. There is a golden line in the middle of the Linga, visible to the devotees only during abishek. With such divine features, the Shiva Linga grants huge benefits to the devotees, equivalent to worshipping millions of deities. The temple has also the Shri Chakra installed by Shri Adi Sankara. As Kola Maharshi worshipped here, the place came to be known as Kollur.

As a tradition, the doors of the temples are kept closed during the
eclipse period, but this temple is an exception. Poojas continue even during eclipse times. Brahmmacharis are not allowed to perform poojas in the temple. As Mookambika is but mother Saraswathi, prayers are submitted by devotees for gaining knowledge, wisdom and excellence in educational pursuits.

Many of the local Kings have given lots of donations to this Temple. Prominent among them are the Kings of the “Keladi Dynasty”. They have been offering a variety of worships to the Goddess. Prominent Kings of the Keladi Dynasty, Sankanna Nayaka and Shivappa Nayaka had renovated the Temple and gave donations for the maintenance of the Temple. The Kings of keladi Nayak
Dynasty had believed that the Goddess is the symbol of victory. As such whenever they would win a war or drive away their enemies they were devoting the victory and celebrating it before the Goddess.

Utsava Moorthi is placed at the Saraswathi Mantapa, and naivedya with Beaten rice, coconut. After that , Mangalarathi and Ashtavadana Seve Vedaghosha, Sangeetha, Shruthivadya, Sarvavadya. Once it is over Shree Devi will be taken inside the Temple .

Also, for nature lovers, the Aanejhari Butterfly camp 5 Km from the temple sounds to be an interesting place!

Many private lodges are also available

The temple offers free food to everyone who visits the temple. Free food is served both during lunch and at night. The food is very tasty and a must have for everyone. Apart from the temple food, you can also find some small budget hotels which offer decent food

The nearest city is Mangalore, which is 140 Km away. Udupi is 80 Km away.

further information this temple

The temple chariot
Main entrance
Side entrance of the temple

Sri Boo varahaswamy Srimushnam

Located 35kms West of Chidambaram in the Kattu Mannar Koil Taluk is the historical Bhoo Varaha Swamy temple in Sri Mushnum. Unlike typical moolavar deities in Vishnu temples, the Lord here is in the form of a small vigraham signifying the Varaha Avataaram. A visit even once to this temple and sincere prayers to Lord Bhoo Varahaswamy is said to help attain moksham in this lifetime, such is the power of Bhoo Varahar.

Srimushnum is one of the 8 Swayambu Kshetrams in India. The others are Srirangam, Tirupathi and Vanamaamalai in South India and Saligramam, Naimisarinyam, Pushkaram and Badri in North India. Bhoo Varaha Perumal is a Saligrama moorthy and the speciality of the temple is that there is a Thirumanjanam every day for the Lord.

Hiranyaksha, the brother of Hiranyakashipu, wanted to be a dominant force. To achieve this, he rolled over the earth and took it into the nether world, from where he ruled. Bhoo Devi undertook penance seeking help from Lord Narayana to protect her from the Asura. Lord Vishnu took the form of Varaha (a boar), went into the sea and killed the asura. He brought back the earth on his Adhisesha and appeared here as a Swayambu vigraham. Legend has it that he created the Pushkarani with the sweat emanating from his body after his battle with Hiranyaksha.  On his death bed, Hiranyaksha prayed to the Lord and as his final wish wanted the Lord to turn to turn in his direction. Hence Bhoo Varahan’s face is seen turned in the direction of the asura towards the South. An interesting feature of the moolavar deity at this temple is that the face, in the form of a boar, is turned towards South, while the body bearing a human shape is facing West in the direction of the devotees

Goddess was worried that people may turn away from here because of the Lord’s pig face. Hence, she undertook penance and requested him to display his handsome stature. Answering her prayers, Lord’s Utsavamoorthy features as Yagya Varahaswamy with conch and chakra. This is a Prarthana Sthalam for childless couples. Ladies, who have bath in the Nithya Pushkarani, go around the Arasa tree 12times, offer milk and fruits to small kids and recite the Varaha Kavacham are said to be blessed with Children. This is also a prarthana sthalam for the unmarried.

There is a seperate shrine of saptha kannigai in this temple . It’s a prathana sthalam and those who does annadhanam is believed to be rescued from sins and will attain moksha .

In front of Srimushnam temple
Feeding the poor on birthdays wedding anniversaries in this place vil attain moksha


This temple is one among the 13 malainadu divyadeshams . The word “Thirumozhi” has been corrupted and called as Thirumoozhikalam .

Thirumoozhikkulam temple is located in between Angamaly in Ernakulam district and Mala in Thrissur district. Thirumoozhikkulam is one among the 32 Brahmin gramams in Kerala. This is the place where Hareetha muni the son of Vishwamithra worshipped Vishnu.

The mythology behind the name of this place goes like this. Hareetha Maharshi did penance and meditation on the banks of river Poorna(Periyar). Lord Mahavishnu got impressed by the dedication of the Maharshi and appeared before him on the beginning of the Kali yuga. Lord Vishnu gave some advices to Hareetha Maharshi to overcome the difficulties in Kali yuga. These advices are called “thiru mozhi” meaning sacred words. And there after this place got its name as “thirumozhi kalam” – kalam means place. Later Thirumozhikkalam became Thirumoozhikkulam.
This shrine is associated with legends from the Ramayanam. Legend has it that while Bharata the brother of Rama and Lakshmana, came to invite Rama, then in exile, to take over the reins of the kingdom, an angry Lakshmana suspecting Bharata’s intentions intended to kill him; however, Bharata’s innocence was very soon revealed, and then the two of them offered worship together at Thirumoozhikkalam. Worship is offered to Rama, Sita and Hanuman at this spot acknowledging their presence. No music is played during worship services here, unlike other temples. The annual festival which falls in the malayalam month of Makaram used to be an occasion of great festivity, with performances of koothu and Koodiyaattam for a 41 day period in the temple Koothambalam.

There are idols of Shiva as Dakshinamoorthi(south side) Ganapati, Sree Rama, Seetha, Hanuman Ayyappa, Sree Krishna (as goshala Krishnan) and Bhagavathy in this temple. There is an order in visiting the deities of this temple. Which is described below, enter through the eastern gate and first visit and pray to the main deity Lakshmana, after praying there then visit Ganapathy, Shiva and other deities then come back to Lakshmana to offer a second prayer after the pradikshana visit Ayyappa and Bhagavathy and then Krishna, and final visit to Lakshmana’s steps to offer prayers before returning.

Nammalwar and Thirumangai alwar has sung praising this Lord .

With these we ended our malainadu divyadeshams tour due to heavy rainfall and floods during last year(2019) August . Will update Thirunavaya and Thiruvidvacode after my visit , hoping to see within this year 2020 .



Thirukakara is one among the Malainadu divyadeshams it’s a Vamana Shethram .

This temple is Situated in Thrikkakara , Ernakulam district .
Thrikkakara Temple is one of the few temples in India dedicated to Lord Vamana . The temple is also listed as one of the 108 Divyadesams . The traditional festival of Kerala , Onam is closely related with this temple . This temple is the place of origin for the Onam festival of Kerala . The temple is mentioned in many of the hymns sung by the Tamil Vaishnavite Alwars, particularly by Nammalvar. The temple is believed to be around two millennia old . The temple is believed to have established by Sage Parasurama . The sanctum sanctorum of the temple has the idol of Maha Vishnu in the form of Lord Vamana preparing to place his foot on the Asura King Mahabali. Surrounding the inner complex walls is a series of thousands of lamps called Chuttuvilakku. There are two ponds associated with the temple. One is the Kapilatheertham located closer to the temple on the Northern side of the sanctum and is accessible only to priests. The other pond is located on the Northern side outside the temple walls, and is used regularly during the Aaraattu ceremonial bath of the idol during Onam celebrations. . Small but well maintained Temple . Adjacent to this temple is a Lord Shiva temple and it’s called Mahadev temple .
Thirumangai alwar has sung pasuram praising this Lord .

Thirukkakara Vamana Perumal
Thirukkakara Mahadev temple
Picture of the main deity

Brihadeeswarar temple Thanjavur

This temple in Thanjavur was built by Rajaraja Cholan . It’s called as Thanjai Periya koil (big temple) .

This temple is situated in Thanjavur 350kms south west of Chennai. It’s also called as Brihadeeswarar koil or Rajarajeswaram .

This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva .The lingam installed here is 12 feet height .

The Brihadeeswarar temple stands as a supreme example of Chola’s architecture .

The nandi here is huge carved out of a single stone and placed in front of the main diety .

There are seperate shrines for Lord Vinayagar Goddess Brahmambigai Durgai Dakshinamurthy Chandikeswarar and Bhairavar.

A widely held belief is that the shadow of the Vimana never falls on the ground . However, several photographs exist showing the shadow on the ground. 

Today being the Kudamuluku, a ritual done after renovating (5.2.2020) of this temple my memories went a decade back , yes it has been a decade we saw this temple during our Trichy Thanjavur Nammakal and Kolli hills trip .

I haven’t read Ponniyin selvan (a tamil story book written by author Kalki , based on arulmozhi Varman , later known as Rajaraja Cholan) at that time , just like any other temple I went worshipped and came out with a feeling , likewise name it is a big temple indeed . After reading Ponniyin selvan waiting for a chance to visit this temple .

In our visit a decade back we went to Brihadeeswarar temple and Tanjore Palace . Posted those pictures .

Brihadeeswarar temple
Side entrance of the temple
Brihadeeswarar temple Nandi
Tanjore palace
Tanjore palace

A trip to Karaikudi temples


Karaikudi is situated in Sivagangai district can be reached from Trichy by travelling 70 kms and from Madurai 80 kms . Karaikudi has a railway station within . Nagarathar (Chettiar) communities and their houses are very famous in this region as they have done trade and business worldwide .


This temple is of Lord Ganesha in Sivagangai district maintained by Nagarathar (Chettiar) . Lord Ganesha is also known as Pillayar , hence the name Pillayarpatti . This rock cut Pillayar idol is of 6 feet height with only two hands in padmasana posture and the trunk is turned towards right . Hence He is called as Valampuri Vinayagar . This Ganesha is also known as Karpaka Vinayagar .

Worshipping this Lord Ganesha relieves us from navagraha doshas .

There are deities in this temple such as Goddess Karthiyayini (who arrange marriages), Nagalingam (who gifts offspring), Pasupatheeswarar (who showers all wealth .

In front of the temple is a pond and mandapam opposite to it where they conduct 60th birthday (shastiupthapoorthi )and 80th (sadhabhishegam ) birthday of married couples .

In front of Pillayar patti Vinayagar temple
Picture of the main deity
Temple pond
Mandapam for 60th birthday and 80th birthday and wedding anniversary


Vairavanpatti temple’s reigning deities are Swayambu lingam known as Valarolinadhar and Goddess Vadivudai Ammai . Lord Shiva here assumes the form of Bhairavar .

This temple is also maintained by the Nagarathars ( chettiars ) .

Vairavanpatti’s history is quite interesting . Originally, Lord Brahma, the creator, had five heads equal to Lord Shiva . Brahma took great pride in this . One day , Goddess Parvathi mistook him for Lord Shiva and Brahma accepted all her courtesies and respect without pointing out the error . When Parvathi discerned her mistake she reported it to Lord Shiva . Shiva sent his deputy Bhairavar to pluck off a head of Brahma as a punishment . Lord Bhairavar blesses his devotees in this temple .

The legend behind the temple goes like this – Kashyapa Munivar’s son Sooran did a severe penance towards Shiva and he was granted a wish that no one can destroy him other than Lord Shiva himself . Riding on the glory of his invincibility he was torturing and killing the Devas. Indiran went to their leader Brihaspati. Brihaspati said that only Lord Shiva can solve this . Indiran went to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva took the avathaar as Bhairavar (Vairavar in Tamil) and destroyed Sooran. He then appeared as a celestial light (Peroli). He is the one presiding here as ‘Valaroli Nathar’.

This temples roof is painted colourfull and is a visual treat so is the sculptures and carvings . At the entrance of this temple is a big pond .

This temple is very near to Pillayarpatti and we went to Kundrakudi Lord Murugar temple .

Paintings on the roof
Beautiful carvings
Bhairavar painting on roof
In front of the temple
Historic importance of Lord Vairavar
Temple pond
In front of the temple


This is a temple of Lord Murugar with his consorts valli and deivayanai sitting on his vehicle peacock with six face and twelve hands is on a small hillock and one has to climb 150 steps.

The place was originally called Kundrakudi as it was located in a hill (Kundram means hill in Tamil), which with the period of time became Kunnakudi. It is also called by other names like Mayuragiri, Mayilmalai, Arasavaram and Krishanagaram as the hill resembles the shape of a peacock . As per Hindu legend, sage Agasthya is believed to have worshipped Murugan at this place. As per another legend, Sooran , the demon king infuriated peacock , the sacred vehicle of Murugan . He told the bird Garuda the sacred vehicle of Lord  Vishnu, and Swan the sacred vehicle of Saraswati , could travel faster than it . The peacock swallowed Garuda and the swan in anger. Vishnu prayed to Muruga to retrieve his vehicle back from the peacock , who readily acceded to the request. The peacock , realising its mistake, prayed Muruga by doing penance at this place . (source wikipedia)

One has to climb 150 steps
Reached the temple
Mesmerizing idol of Lord Murugar with valli and deivayanai on peacock
Corridor of the temple

A trip to Rameswaram and nearby places . Ramanadeeswarar Rameswaram

This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva named Ramanadeeswarar . This is one among the 276 Paadal petra Shivalayam and one among the 12 Jyothirlingams . Appar Sundarar and Thirugnana Sambandar has sung about this Lord . This temple is just 1km from Rameswaram railway station . We stayed in Hotel Tamilnadu run by our Tamilnadu tourism board .

We reached Rameswaram by early morning and our rooms were near by the temple took a set of dress just brushed up our teeth and had coffee and left to the temple .

The first ritual of Rameswaram yatra is to take bath in ” agni theertham ” in the eastern side of the temple . Here the sea is calm and clear without waves . Pithru tharpanam ( a ritual done for our ancestors ) are being done with the help of priests daily . It’s an auspicious event on thai (mid January to mid February) amavasai ( new moon day ) and aadi (mid July to mid August) amavasai day . Some collect sand here for Kasi yatra .

We took holy dip in agni theertham and entered in to the temple .

There are 22 wells inside the temples, there are men appointed by the temple officials to drag the water from the well and pour on us .
The sacred wells are
Mahalakshmi followed by
Brahmahatya Vimochana
finally Kodi theertham.

After having sprinkled these sacred well waters , we changed our clothes in cloak room alloted inside the temple premises . Later we were allowed to see the main deity Lord Shiva in Lingam form named Ramanaadheswarar. Those who bring Ganges water they collect and use it for next day morning abhishegam for that they collect rs100 .

Legends behind this temple says Lord Rama was asked to install Lingam and worship to get relieved of his Brahmahathi dosham after killing Lanka King Ravana . Lord Rama asked Hanuman to bring a Lingam from Mount Kailash as it took time , Goddess Seetha made this Lingam out of sand and worshipped . Hence it’s called as Ramanadeeswarar.

There are shrines for Goddess Parvathavarthini ,Vinayagar , Murugar , Brahmavidyambigai , Sahasralinga .
Seperate sannidhi for Goddess Lakshmi , Saraswathy , Lord Perumal .

It’s a big temple with 1000 pillars . The famous Rameswaram corridor is a architectural marvel .

One who collects sand from Rameswaram dissolves it in Triveni sangamam of Allahabad and brings river Ganges water to do abishegam to Ramanadeeswarar of Rameswaram .

In front of Rameswaram temple

Kothandaramar temple Rameswaram

Located at a distance of 12 km from the main city, Kothandaramaswamy Temple is one of the popular places to visit in Rameshwaram. This temple is situated in the island, surrounded with sparkling waters of Bay of Bengal on one side and majestic Gulf of Munnar on another side. This temple is also said to be visited by the revered saint Swami Vivekananda before his tour to Chicago which was an important historic event .

Kothandaramaswamy Temple is believed to be more than 1000 years old. This ancient temple is also known for the fact that it withstood the massive cyclone of 1964 which had ruined the entire town of Dhanuskodi. This temple survived the cyclone when almost all the buildings in the town were affected turning this religious town into a ruin. Dedicated to Lord Rama, this temple is also a historical building when is worth visiting while you are on your  Rameshwaram tour.

Kothandaramar temple

Ramar Paadham Gandhamadana parvatham

Ramar Padham is a Temple for Ram’s Feet, it is  Situated in the sandy hillock named Gandha Madhana parvatham (The village where this temple is located is also called as Gandha Madhana Parvatham). The word Parvatham Literally meant Mountain, as per the reference  in the epic Ramayana, there was a  mount in this place in the ancient times.

The feet of Lord Rama is engraved in a stone chakra in this place. The Ramar padham is the highest point in the Rameswaram, one can see the full panoramic view of Rameswaram island by standing on the top of this Temple.

It is said that one can view sri lanka by standing on the top of Ramar padham. It is however a lie you cannot able to see Srilanka from here. The view of Pamban bridge, Dhoor dharsan Tower,  villoondi theertham, olaikkuda light house, Ramanatha swamy Temple, Rameswaram bus stand, Sea can be viewable  clearly.

Ramar Paadham temple
Top view from Gandhamana Parvatham

We saw Ramar theertham Lakshmana theertham and a Panchamukha Anjineyar temple . The floating stones used to build Ram Sethu are kept in this temple with ” RAM “written on it in Hindi .

We saw our former President and great scientist Dr. ABJ. Abdul kalam house too .

House of former President ABJ Abdul kalam

Pamban bridge another tourist attraction .

A 100-year-old railway bridge located in the southern state of Tamil Nadu, Pamban bridge connects Rameswaram island to the mainland. It is not just a railway bridge but a major tourist attraction in Tamil Nadu that leaves travellers awestruck with its scenic beauty.

Pamban bridge
The other side

Dhanushkodi, once a thriving town

Flanked by the Indian Ocean on one side and the Bay of Bengal on the other, Dhanushkodi was once a bustling and flourishing town – with houses, schools, church, temple, a post office and a railway station. Thousands of people resided in this tiny town, known as one of the richest fishing belts in the country. Also, it was the only land border between Sri Lanka and India, and served as a major port for several pilgrims and traders. The temple and the church in the town were visited by many devotees, making it a preferred tourist spot .

The town left in ruins by a cyclone, 1964

The town once bustling with locals and holidaymakers alike was emptied abruptly and completely. On December 22, 1964, a massive cyclone swirled across Dhanushkodi with winds gusting up to 170 mph and the entire town was in ruins and deserted in the aftermath, just as it has stayed to this day. Tragically nearly 1,800 people lost their lives, and all the houses in the town were razed to the ground. The Madras Government quickly labelled the town as ‘not fit for human habitation ’.  However , today only a small number of fisher families live here in their thatched huts.

Dhanushkodi beach
Floating stones

Pachai Amman temple Thirumulaivoyal

This is a Amman temple in the ambattur area near Thirumullaivoyal . Pachai Amman temple is anchored at Thirumullaivoyal . This place is 23 km away from Chennai .

We use to keep pongal (made out of rice n jaggery) in this temple aadi or thai (mid July to August) (mid January to mid February) month and pray to this Goddess to give us good health happiness and safe guard us from evils as it’s a traditional and ancestral belief of our community .

They have built stove in rows making it easy for those who comes and keeps Pongal there and are neatly maintained .

There are paintings on the roof the temples and the story of this Amman as paintings on the walls .

There is a seperate shrine for Kathyayini Amman and Durgai Amman and a peepal tree where childless couples pray and tie cradle and pray to god for child boon .

There is Lord Vinayagar in dancing posture and Lord Sarabeshwarar idol on the other side . Opposite to the main sanctum is Navagrahas , seperate Saniswarar shrine , Bhairavar and Lord Anjineyar

The main deity is a 5 feet tall Pachaiamman statue in green colour .There’s a story behind the green colour .

Huge idols of Saptharishis and Sapthakannigais with horses makes the temple more colourfull .

There is a small statue of this Amman made out of brass in a seperate shrine backside of the main sanctum .

Many century before, Lord Shiva and Parvathi lived in Kailasha , Shiva being the ruler of the world , always spent his time watching and guarding the world and the people . Parvathi was very upset , as Lord Shiva never spent time with her , so she playfully blindfolded the eyes of Lord Shiva , The very next moment, the whole world was encircled by darkness , nothing on the earth moved, and all were frozen and dead. The Rishis and Saints of heaven were stunned to see what had happened , so they hurried to the court of Lord Shiva. Suddenly Lord Shiva opened his third eye in the forehead (netrikan), and spread the light with the heat on the earth and brought the dead world to life .

Even though Parvathi blindfolded His eyes playfully, Lord Shiva was displeased and sentenced her to take a human form and to do penance until his anger subsides. Goddess Parvathy pleaded Shiva to forgive her, but once said can’t be modified, so Lord Shiva consoled her saying that during her endeavorus in the earth, she would be praised and will gain fame wherever she goes . Later Parvathi came to earth and went to Kasi the most sacred place , she went along the trails of Shiva temples . She visited Kanchi and did penance under a mango tree to please Lord Shiva , later she went to Tiruvannamalai , on her way to the temple, she took rest at Thirumalaivoyal, and made this place very sacred; She did deep penance standing on a needle . On her stay at Thirumalaivayal, seven Rishis ( sapta munivargal ) and Seven damsels ( Sapta Kannigal) accompanied her and guarded her as it was a dense forest those times . Hence why their statues are installed in the temple. Once Her sentenced period was over Lord Shiva accepted Parvathi as his other half known as Arthanareeswara (half Shivan and half Shakthi).

The reason behind the name Pachai Amman:
Pachai means green, which signifies that the Goddess is green. There are few legends of this name. One of the folklore is that a few centuries back, Gautama Maha Rishi performed a Yaga , to invite Goddess Shakthi , for this he had created a holy seat (prana sala) , with Dharbhai grass—a yellow-green grass used for auspicious poojas . When Goddess Shakti sat on this holy seat, the yellow grass transformed into lush green color. And thus the Goddess was named as Pachai Amman.

Yet another story states that, while the pursuit of Goddess Parvathi for enlightenment, she used to take rest on the deep green banana leaves and was fond of greeneries, so she was named as Pachai Amman.

Folklore of seven damsels and Rishis:

The legend is that when Goddess Parvathi did penance at Thirumalaivayal, due to her enormous energy the clouds started to group together above the village and engulf the village in darkness. Seeing this the King of this village was furious and sent his brothers to stop Parvathi from performing penance and throw her out of his village. His brothers returned to him and described how beautiful Parvathi was. This urged the king to marry her. So he went to the forest himself and compelled Parvathi to marry him. Parvathi got furious by his behavior and took the form of kali. Along with the help of Seven damsels and seven rishis she killed the king. This is why the statues of these damsels and Rishis are found inside the temple


Like all other Amman temples, people with marriage obstacles, childless couples, skin diseases, health problem, and planetary effects come to this temple to seek the blessing of the Goddess.

Once the most unique feature of this temple was its pure water bodies that flowed around it. As these water bodies come from the dense forest, it has many rare medicinal values, which can cure any kind of diseases.

Now no water bodies around this place it has been occupied by shops and houses all over and the road has become busy although the temple has 3 entrance , the entrance in the car parking area is used by most people.

Keeping pongal
Ganesha in dancing posture
In front of main sanctum
Lord Bhairavar
Lord Anjineyar
The entrance opposite to main diety
Hanging cradle
Goddess Katyayini
Goddess Durga

Sani Shignapur

Its about 160km from Pune  ( but we take Pune to Shirdi to Shani Shignapur  route always ) and we have visited this place 2 times already, every time we visit Shirdi we visit this temple too .

The way to Sani Shignapur is cultivated with sunflower and sugarcane fields on both sides of the roads , local people use bull to extract juice from the sugarcane, instead of machines and this type of juice extraction centres are known as  Rasavanthy . Additionally they add lemon and ginger to enhance the taste .

Beautifully decorated swings with balloons and chairs to sit are another set of attractions on the way to Shani Shignapur . You can relax and have fun remembering your childhood days .

This village has a unique significance, all houses even banks dont have doors as there is no robbery or theft happened in this place . If at all happened they will be punished by “Sani Mahadev “. We can offer sesame oil to this idol as constantly they do Tailabishegham ,(as sesame being the grain for sani graha).

The story of the swayambhu statue handed down from generations through word of mouth, goes something like this: When the Shepherd touched the stone with a pointed rod, the stone started bleeding. The shepherds were astounded. Soon the whole village gathered around to watch the miracle. On that night Lord Shanaishwara appeared in the dream of the most devoted and pious of the shepherds. He told the shepherd that he is “ Lord Shanishwara”. He also told that the unique looking black stone is His swayambhu form. The shepherd prayed and asked the Lord whether he should construct a temple for him. To this, Lord Shani Mahadev said there is no need for a roof as the whole sky is his roof and he preferred to be under open sky. He asked the shephered to do daily pooja and ‘Tailabhisheka’ every Saturday without fail. He also promised the whole hamlet will have no fear of dacoits or burglars or thieves. ( Source : Wikipedia )

Sani Mahadev
Sunflower cultivation
Preperation of sugarcane
This picture we took during our recent visit

Navapashanam Devipattinam

Navapashanam (Navagraha temple) at Devipattinam is 32 kms from Rameswaram . Navapashanam – Devipattinam , Ramanathapuram district

About the temple

Navapashanam at Devipattinam is a small coastal village about 15 kms from Ramanathapuram. It is said that Sri Ram had prayed to the Nava grahas here by placing nine stones prior to going to war at Lanka. It is popular among devotees who visit the nearby temples of Rameswaram and Thirupullani.

The nine stones representing the Nava grahas or nine planets can be seen few metres into the sea. However depending on the water levels one may get to see all or few of them.

Devotees perform pooja here with navadhanyam to please the nine planets.

We visited this temple during our Rameswaram visit .

Entrance of Navapashanam Devipattinam
Few seen others submerged in water
Sprinkled the holy water on our head

Thiru Uthirakosamangai

Thiru Uthirakosamangai is a Village located in the Ramanathapuram district , it is nearly 17 km away from the Ramanathapuram main bus stand .

The Sri Mangalanathar – Magaleshwari Temple in the Thiru Uthirakosamangai is the main attraction among the tourists and the pilgrims .

This temple is specially worshipped by devotees for marriage and child related problems . It is one of the rarest shiva temple possess the three forms of worshiping lord shiva ie Moorthi (Deity), Virutcham (Tree) and theertham (Sacred water) .

It’s an ancient temple and has been said worshipped even before Ramayana times .

There is a seperate sannidhi of emerald Natarajar its applied with sandal paste and only once in a year during the arudra of markazhi maasam (thiruvadurai star month of mid December to mid January) removed and do abhishegam (cleansing the idol with water milk curd sandal powder tender coconut water) and then alangaram ( decorate with clothes and flowers ) and do arathy (showing diyas) .

The poem Manickavasagar sung praising this Lord is the Palliarai pooja (ritual before they close the temple) song followed in all Lord Shiva temples till now .

Its believed that Lord Shiva comes here to rest at night being his favourite place .

Manickavasagar, the 9th century Tamil saivite saint poet has revered Mangalanathar and the temple in his verses in Thiruvasakam.

The antiquity of Sri Mangalanathar-Mangaleswari temple dates far back. Mandodhari (wife of Ravana) was very adamant that she would marry only a Shiva devotee and did not mind waiting for the choice. She prayed to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva, asked the sages in the Ashrams to take care of one of the Veda Script (Agamas) as He was going to grace Mandodhar and told them that He would take back from them then on His turning back. The Lord appeared before Mandodhari as a child. Ravana who came there touched the child knowing It was Lord Shiva. Lord tested Ravana by changing Himself as fire. All the places in the world were caught in the fire. The sages, unable to protect the book given by the Lord fell in the fire tank nearby (Agni theertham) and died.

But sage Manickavasagar courageously withstood the fire and saved the scripture. The Lord graced Mandodhari’s wish and helped her wedding with Ravana. The Lord graced Manickavasagar granting His Linga form. The sage is still in the temple in the Linga form. The Lord is a Swayambu Linga appearing from the Ilandha tree. This is the only temple having a Nataraja idol made of Emerald .

The Ilandha tree dated more than 3000 years old .

This temple we saw during our Rameswaram visit .

The Myths and Secrets of Uthirakosamangai Mangalanatha swamy temple.

Yali with stone ball inside its mouth

There exists a separate shrine for the Goddess Mangalanayaki. The facade of the temple is with a seven tiered gateway tower. Near the entrance, there exists a statue of the mythological creature called Yali. It is with the face of lion with human’s body. A huge stone ball rolls around inside this yali’s mouth, but no one can take the ball out which is an engineering mystery.

This temple is considered to be one of the very ancient Hindu temples which Tamil literature describes as “Mann Mundhiyo Mangai Mundhiyo?” meaning “Did the mud (mann) come first or is the Mangai (The Female Deity of the Temple)?”. This is the place where Siva transferred the secrets of Vedas to Parvati. Uthiram means (upadesam) kosam (secrets) Parvati (Mangai) hence this place is known as Uthira Kosa Mangai . Strangely, this temple is not a Paadal Petra Sthalam.

Entrance of the temple
Corridor of the temple
A ball in Yalis mouth
Ilanthai tree dated 3000 years

Natarajar idol made of emerald stone
Maragatha Natarajar after alangaram

Sri Vaishnava Nambi Thirukurunkudi

In Thirukurunkudi there are 5 Vaishanava Nambi temples . These 5 temples together make a Pandiyanadu divyadesham and it’s near Thirunelveli .

The adivaram temple consists of Lord Azhaghiya Nambi in standing sitting and sleeping postures . Thayar is named as Kunrunkudi valli .

Thiruparkadal Nambi temple is just 1kms from Thirukurunkudi temple is a small temple . Here the Lord is short diety with four hands hence it’s called as Vamana shethram .

Malai mel Nambi temple is in a dense forest up on a hill with Nambiyaru streaming in between about 9kms from adivaram temple . Forest department jeep service are provided to reach this Nambi temple from 9 am to 3 pm . It’s an adventurous trip visiting Malai mel nambi temple . Once reached you will realise how scenic this place is, with amazing breeze , the sounds of birds and water flowing .There are lots of monkeys so avoid keeping flowers , Other than that they dont harm you .Though we have visited this temple thrice were fortunate to visit Malai mel Nambi twice . During once due to floods we couldnot make it up .

Kaisika Puranam revolves around Nambaduvan, a low caste person belonging to the Baanar family, his unflinching faith in Lord Nambi and how he was instrumental in liberating a Rakshasha from a curse and helping him attaining Vaikunta Moksham. The Kaisika Puranam is also a perfect case study on the values of life and how it is important to keep up one’s promise at the cost of anything, including one’s own life.

Being a low caste person, Nambaduvan was embarrassed to enter the temple during the day . Every night, he would walk several miles to the Thiru Kurungudi Nambi temple, and for hours together would stand in front of the temple with a Veena in his hand and sing praise of Lord Nambi. And before dawn, he would leave the temple.

One night, as he was making his way to the temple, a Brahmma Rakshasha stopped him and wanted him for dinner. Undaunted by this sudden turn of events, Nambaduvan, who had the purest of devotion for Lord Nambi, requested the Rakshasha to allow him to go to the temple for a night, so he could keep up his Kaisika Ekadesi Vratha, with the assurance to come back the next morning after singing praise of Lord Nambi, one last time.

Unable to convince the Rakshasha, Nambaduvan talks about Sathya Sankalpam: “The world was created through ‘Promises’ and continues to exist as a result of trust in each other.”

Nambaduvan made 18 promises that night to the Rakshasha. Through these promises , narrated beautifully in the Kaisika Puranam as part of this lengthy discussion between Nambaduvan and Brahmma Rakshasha, one comes to know of the different sins we commit every day in our lives as a result of not adhering to some of the basic values in life .

17 promises later and not having got the nod from the Rakshasha , Nambaduvan requests the Rakshasha to let him go to the Nambi temple with this 18th promise

“If I do not return, I would have committed the biggest sin that exists – that of comparing and equating Lord Narayana with others. And I will become a sinner who will never get Moksham from this cycle of births.”

This extraordinary promise moved the Rakshasha and he let him go. After having spent the entire night (possibly for the last time) in front of Kurungkudi Nambi, he made his way back to the Rakshasha as promised.

On his way back , Lord Nambi , disguised as an old Brahmin , sought the reason for his rushing back much in contrast to his usually slow and thoughtful walk, and on hearing him out condemned Nambaduvan as a fool and offered protection from the Rakshasha .

Nambaduvan rejected this offer , as fulfilling the promise was more important to him than his own life. “I will even give up my life but I will never go back on my word. I have given him a promise and I have to fulfil it. Hence, I will have to go back to the Rakshasha and if he has to take me as his prey, so be it.”

On seeing Nambaduvan, the Rakshasha wondered as to how he could come back, despite being under the threat of being consumed. Even more to his surprise, Nambaduvan came close to the Rakshasha and offered himself as his prey .

Brahmma Rakshasha attains Moksham
By now, the Rakshasha had changed his mind . He did not want Nambaduvan’s body anymore . He rather directed Nambaduvan to share the fruits of the entire songs that he had thus far sung in praise of Lord Nambi . After several exchanges , where Nambaduvan repeatedly offered himself as the prey and Rakshasha continued asking for the fruits of the songs , the Rakshasha explained the reason for his current Rakshasha status – He was a Brahmin by name Soma Sharma in his previous birth. His arrogance , as the all knowing , led him to miss a mantra in a Yagna and he was cursed to this current Rakshasha form by the Devas. And that only the purest of the Nambi devotees had the power to relieve him from his curse – and why he wanted to listen to Nambaduvan’s praise of Lord Nambi.

Nambaduvan shared with him the ‘Kaisika’ verses, which he had sung that very night in front of Lord Nambi. Just listening to these verses helped the Rakshasha attain Vaikunta Moksham.

Nammalwar Periyalwar Thirumangai alwar and Thirumazhisai alwar has sung praising this Lord .

The story of Thiruvattaparai is very engaging & interesting . It was a time when Sri Ramanuja was in Kerala region and his fame was spreading far and wide. Lot of people there became disciples of Sri Ramanuja (amongst whom VadugaNambhi was close to Ramanuja), which couldn’t be tolerated by the Nambhoodhiris there. So the Namboodhiris with their black magic, move Ramanuja to Thiruvattaparai overnight (just a hill separates this place from Kerala). The next day, the unsuspecting Ramanuja , thinking he is in Kerala , wakes up calling his disciple, “Vaduga.. Vaduga..“. The Nambhi (Lord Vishnu) of Thirukurungudi, immediately appears before Sri Ramanujar as Vaduga Nambhi and renders service to His favourite Acharya. Ramanujar had the habit of keeping Thirumaan to Vaduga Nambhi . On the eventful day too, Ramanujar keeps Thiruman , but for the Supreme Lord himself. Both then go to the main temple to worship the moolavar. The Perumal in the guise of Vaduga went past the dwajasthambam , entered the garbhagriham and vanished. Later when Ramanuja goes to temple, he sees the Thiruman on the deity’s still fresh and exactly as he had kept for Vaduga Nambhi . Sri Ramanuja begged His pardon , but the Lord told him that He was not satisfied with His own Avataras and that he wanted to take the form of a Sishya too , as a Sishya to a great Acharyan and to get upadesam from him . He requested the Acharyan to preach Him the Thirumanthiram or Mahamanthiram . Accordingly Ramanuja sat on a pedastal befitting his dignity and the Lord seated himself at a lower level in an obedient posture with his right ear just below the face or mouth of Sri Ramanuja. Even to-day we can see the great teacher and the Lord in this position in the Ramanujaa’s temple at Thiruvattapaarai .

Nammalwar Periyalwar Thirumangai alwar and Thirumazhisai alwar has sung praising this Lord .

Thirumangai alwar moksham petra sthalam . Thirumangai alwar and his wife Kumudhavalli attained moksha at Thirukkurungudi. After performing kainkaryam at Srirangam , reached Thirukkurungudi as directed by Lord Ranganathar . After reaching Thirukkurungudi, he rendered Thirumadhil (Castle) and pushpa kainkarya until he attained mosksha. Atlast Thirumangai alwar and Kumudhavalli on attaining moksha were burried at this place which later termed as Thirumangai alwar Thiruvarasu. It is situated about a kilometre from the main Nambi  temple surrounded by sugarcane and paddy fields that add a beauty to the Sannidhi .

The sculptures in the adivaram temples are mindblowing .

In front of Thirukurunkudi adivaram temple
Beautiful carvings in the pillars
Jeep travel to Malai mel Nambi temple
Reached the temple of Malai mel Nambi
Malai mel Nambi temple
Thiruparkadal Nambi
Thirumangai alwar Thiruvarasu
Thiruvattapaarai temple
At the entrance a few steps down is the rock where Sri Ramanujar was dropped on that rock is carved Sri Ramanujar keeps Thiruman to Vaduga Nambhi (being the Lord Vishnu himself)

Nava Thirupathi

1. Sri Vaikundam , Srivaikuntanathan Permual Temple
Sri Vaikundam Temple is located 29 Kms from Tirunelveli towards Tiruchendur.

Moolavar is named Vaikunthanathan in standing posture Thayar as Vaikuntavalli and Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord.

As per legends Lord Brahma worshipped His creator Lord Vishnu . Somukasura a demon, defeated Brahma , the Hindu god of creation and stole the four Vedas (sacred texts) from him . Brahma was helpless and he did severe penance in the banks of River Tamiraparani seeking favour from Lord Vishnu in the form of Vaikuntanathan. Pleased by the penance, Vishnu appeared to Brahma and promised to retrieved the Vedas. Taking form of a celestial ‘Matsya’ Lord Vishnu killed the demon Somuka and restored the Vedas to Brahma. He also wished to set his abode as Srivakuntam and resided there as Vaikuntanatha .

As per another legend , the image of Vaikunatha , over the period of several ages , had no patrons and was left submerged under the earth . A cow from a herd of the king , which used to graze at the place , did ablution at the place with its where Vaikuntanatha lay buried. The king was displeased to see that a particular cow alone was not yielding milk and thought it might have been the trick of the herdsman. He deployed his men to monitor the cow, who reported the events to the king. The king realised that the cow would lead him to divinity and he dug up the region around the place . He reinstated the image of Vaikuntanathar and expanded the temple . Since Vaikuntanathar was revealed by the cow, the presiding deity got the name Pal Pandian (pal in Tamil indicates milk) .

Kaladushana was a head of robbers in the region .The ruling Pandya king wanted to arrest him , but his attempts were futile. During one of the encounters , he could arrest everyone except Kaladushana . Kaladushana prayed to Srivaikuntanathar to save him and his troop from the king . Vaikuntanathar appeared as Kaldushana and surrendered before the king . Later , he appeared in the dreams of the king to narrate the events and also informed him that he wanted the king and the people to learn that large accumulation of ill-gotten wealth would be stolen and would reach the right hands .The king was enlightened and he released Kaladushana and his troop. Since Vaikuntanathar appeared for thieves (called kalla in Tamil) , he came to be known as Kallapiran .

The vedic practice is Pancharathram and Tradition followed is Thenkalai. The Urchavar sculpture should be observed carefully. The Lord has a pinch mark in his cheek ! The legend is that the sculptor broke the mould while working on the sculpture . As his heart leaped the Lord got a pinch mark . Remarkable murals are depicted in the corridors of the temple. This temple is considered as Suryan sthalam .
Time : 7 am – 12 pm, 5 – 8 pm

2. Thiruvaragunamangai temple, Vijayaasana Perumal Temple, Natham.
Thiruvaragunamangai temple is located 3 KMs east of Sri Vaikundam.

Moolavar is Vijayasana Perumal in sitting posture Thayar Varaguna mangai and Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord .

At this temple Vishnu appeared to Rishi called ‘Romesa’ who cured Brahma of his arrogance . He appeared to ‘Savitri’ who retrieved her husband alive with her truth and also to Lord Agni (fire) who would incinerate Adharma and atrocities . Vijayaasana here graces everyone as Lord Satya Narayana, sitting under the umbrella borne by Aadhiseshan . According to Romesa Rishi somebody dies at this temple won’t have birth again and attain the ultimate eternity of liberation. 

Another story goes that a fisherman, who had cast a net at this Theertham, was bitten by a snake and immediately attained moksham thus reaching the abode of the Lord. Romasa rishi narrated to his son the story of the fisherman attaining moksham referring to his previous life as a king, who had performed harsh acts and hence had to lead the current life as a fisherman . But sincerity in performing all his duties in this life led him to attaining the Lord’s feet . As he attained moksham here , the theertham at this temple is said to be sacred .

The vedic practice is Vaigasanam and tradition is Thenkalai. The gopuram is very majestic and has 9 tiers.  Recently a spring was discovered around the temple which has been renovated now .This temple is considered as Chandran sthalam .
Time : 8 am – 12 pm, 1 – 6 pm .

3. Thirupulinkudi, ThiruPulingudi Perumal Temple
Thirupulinkudi Temple is just half a KM towards east of Thiruvaragunamangai temple . Moolavar is named kaisinaventhan is sleeping posture Thayar is named poomagal nachiyar . Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord .
Once Vishnu spent the time with Lakshmi on the bank of river , Bhoomadevi became angry as she felt that the Lord disregarded her after his arrival to the earth . So she left the earth and went down to the underworld . As Bhoomadevi went to the Underworld , the earth became dark and dry . The devas went to Vishnu and prayed for restoration of light and life on the earth . Lord Vishnu accompanied by Lakshmi went to the underworld and pacified Bhoomadevi and appeared to everyone with both of the consorts . As the Lord saved the earth(Bhoomi)pacifying Bhoomadevi , He was called Bhoomi balagar.

Once at the Himalayas, a Rishi and his consort were playing in the guise of deer. Indra (deva chieftain), who came there killed the male deer with his Vajrayudha without knowing that the deer are actually a Sage and his wife. As he killed the Rishi he got into ‘Brahmahaththi Dosha’ . As per the advice of Jupiter (one of the navagrahas), Indira came here and prayed to Bhoomibalan and bathed in the Holy water here . He was relieved of the Brahmahaththi dosha . The elated Indira performed a big Pooja . Vishnu appeared and relieved the curse of Yagnasharma who was cursed to become a demon because he had not only failed to respect Vashishtar and his daughter but also used harsh words against them . Here Vishnu lies to twelve feet Aadhiseshan (Aadhiseshan – King of serpents where Lord Vishnu sits). The holy feet of Vishnu can be seen through a window while circumambulating the Moolasthanam . From the navel of Vishnu the lotus vine reaches the lotus on the wall Where Brahma is seated. For anointing Vishnu with oil , 250 liters of oil is used everyday. Lakshmi and Bhoomadevi sit at the feet in their bigger posture. Childless couples offers their prayers to this Lord .

The vedic practice is Vaikaasanam and tradition followed is Thenkalai . This temple is considered as Puthan sthalam .
Time : 8 am – 12 pm, 1 – 6 pm

4. Thirukulanthai, Srinivasa Perumal Temple,
Thirukulanthai Temple is located 5 KMs towards East of Thirupuliyankudi . Moolavar is Sri Soranatha Perumal or Srinivasa Perumal in standing posture Thayar Alarmel mangai .Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord . Urtsavar is Mayapiran . Lord Garudan is placed next to urtsavar in this place .
Legend has it that many years ago , The Lord had married a girl called Kamalavathy, daughter of Vedhasaran and Kumuthavalli. One day a demon named Achmasaran abducted Kumuthavalli while she was having a bath and hid her in the Himalayas. The Lord mounted Garuda and went to the Himalayas and rescued the lady. Unique feature about Thirukulanthai Temple Since the Lord went to Himalayas mounted on Garuda, it is Garuda who is the processional deity in this temple The vedic practice adopted in this divya desam temple is Vaigasanam while the  tradition followed is Thenkalai . In NavaThitupathi this temple is considered as Sani sthalam .
Time : 7:30 am – 12:30 pm, 4:30 – 7:30 pm

5. North & South Temple of Errattai Tirupathi , Aravindalochanar temple, Tholavillimangalam
The Erratai Tirupathi temples can be reached from Thirukulanthai temple via Mangalakurich .

The shrines are in a forest along a channel called Vadakaal .  
The vedic practice is Vaikaasanam and tradition followed is Thenkalai.

The puranic lore around South Temple is that a rishi called Athreyasubrabar selected this area for his Yagna. While cleaning the spot, he found a bow and a balance. As soon as he touched them the bow and balance became a man and a woman. They had been cursed into that existence by Kuber . Henceforth the place became known as Thoolaivillimangalam .

Lord Vishnu is named as Devapiran in kethu sthalam.

The highlight of North Temple is that Nammalvar has performed mangaalasasanam for the Thayar at this temple with the Lord . This temples are together known as erattai Thirupathi and are considered as Raghu , Kethu sthalams .
Time : 8 am – 1 pm, 2 – 6 pm

6. Thenthiruperai , Makara Nedunkuzhal Kathar Temple
Thenthiruperi temple is located 35 KMs away from Tirunelveli on the Tirunelveli- Triuchendur road, besides the southern banks of Thamirabharani river. Once Goddess Bhumidevi was cursed by Durvasa Maharishi and lost her beauty and became dark complexioned , when asked for remedy She was adviced to pray Lord Vishnu in a place called Haripadham . As per adviced She took bath daily and worshipped Lord Vishnu . One day while bathing She got a makara kundalam which She offered to Lord Vishnu and prayed to Lord asking him to wear those makara kundalam . Answering Her prayers the Lord Vishnu wore those earrings and relieved her from the curse and retained the beauty . Hence the Moolavar is named as Makara Nedunkukuzhal Kathar in sitting posture Thayar is named as kuzhaikathuvalli . Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord. The dwajasthambam of this temple is not straight to the Lord temple it is placed aside as this Lord loves to see the children playing outside .

King Sundara Pandiyan had brought 108 Jaimuni Samaveda Thalavakara from Cholas to perform a prayer in this temple . He was blessed with a child soon afterwards . The Vedic practice followed here is Pancharaathiram while the tradition is Thenkalai . This temple is considered to be Sukran sthalam .
Time : 7 am – 12 pm, 5 – 8:30 pm

7. Thirukolur, Vaithamanidhi Perumal Temple
Thirukolur is located 5 kms away from Thenthiruperi on the way towards Alwarthirunagari. This is the birth place of Madhurakavi Alvar. Moolavar is Vaithamanidhi Perumal in sleeping posture , Thayar is kollur valli . Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord . Though Madurakavi alwar is considered as a alwar he has sung only about Nammalwar . There is a legend once the wife of the King of wealth Sri Kuberan was cursed by Goddess Parvathi . She came to this place and prayed to this Lord and regained the lost wealth . It is said that anyone who has lost wealth can come here and pray with devotion. The Lord always returns the wealth of those who pray with devotion . The Vedic practice followed here is Vaikaasanam while the tradition is Thenkalai . Devotees having sevvai doshams come to offer their prayers to get rid of the negativities in their horoscope . As this place is considered as Angaarakan sthalam .
There is a famous phrase said regarding this temple when a lady who was leaving this place was asked by Sri Ramanujar “why are you leaving this place ” she gave 81 sentences which is famously known as “Thirukolur Penpillai rahasyam “.
Time : 7:30 am – 12 pm, 1 – 8 pm

8. Thirugurukoor, AlwarThirunagari Temple
Thirugurukoor is located in the famous village of Alwarthitunagari . As per legends Lord Brahma worshipped His creator Lord Vishnu , Lord Vishnu appeared before him and gave upadesam as a Guru so this place is called as Thirugurugoor . Moolavar is Aadhi Nathan in standing posture . Thayar name is Gurukoor valli . Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord .
Tamarind tree is the Sthala vritcham it is said the leaves dint sleep at night and the tamarind dint ripe in to frit here . Here Nammalvar was born to the royal couple Kaarimaaran and Vudaiya Nangiayaar . He didnot speak for 16 years. The worried parents took the child to this temple and cradled it to the tamarind tree near the shrine. Nammalvar spoke only when Madhurakavi Alwar met him during his wanderings under the tamarind tree. This tamarind tree is 5000 years old and can still be seen at the temple. It is here at Alwarthirunagari that Nadamuni wrote Divyaprabhandam. Nadamuni sought the Kanni Nunsiruthaambu from descendents of Madhurakavi Alwars. Pleased with his dedication Nammalvar appeared before Nadamuni and helped him with the Divyaprabhandam. The presiding deity of Nammalvar was sculpted by Madurakavi Alwar by a special formulation of boiled water from the River Thamirabharani . This place is considered as Gurus sthalam .
Time : 6 am – 12 pm, 5 – 8:45 pm

Mayakoothar temple or Sri Srinivasa Perumal temple sani sthalam
Sri Srinivasa Perumal temple Thirukulanthai
Sri kallapiran temple srivaikundam
Entrance of Urangapuli
Aravindalosanar temple
Route map of Nava Thirupathi temples

Srivilliputhur Andal

Srivilliputhur is a town in Virudhunagar district of Tamilnadu .

The famous Srivilliputhur Andal temple is one among the Pandiyanadu divyadeshams .

The Moolavar (main deity) is named Lord Rangamannar or Vadabhadrasayi and Thayar Goddess Andal .

Here the Lord is in sleeping posture . Periyalwar and Goddess Andal both has sung praising this Lord . This is the birthplace of Goddess Andal and Periyalwar.

As per mythological legend, the place was referred as Varaha Kshetra . It was a dense forest named Champaka where the sages Bhrigu and Markandeya were doing penance and had their hermitages in the place. A demon named Kalanerai was troubling the sages and they prayed to Lord Vishnu to relieve them from the demon . Lord Vishnu was pleased by their devotion and appeared in the place to slay the demon . He is believed to have taken the abode in the forest reclining on Adhisesha, his serpent bed, on the leaf of a banyan tree. The place thus came to be known as Vadaveshwarapuram and the Lord as Vadabhadrasayi .

Periyalvar (originally called Vishnuchitar) was an ardent devotee of Vishnu and he used to string garland to Vishnu every day . He was childless and he prayed to Lord Vishnu to save him from the longing. One day, he found a girl child under a Tulsi plant in a garden inside the temple. He and his wife named the child as Kothai, who grew up as a devotee of Krishan, an avatar of Lord Vishnu. She is believed to have worn the garland before dedicating it to the presiding deity of the temple. Periyalwar, who later found it, was highly upset and remonstrated her. Lord Vishnu appeared in his dream and asked him to dedicate only the garland worn by Andal to him. The girl Kothai was thus named Andal and was referred as Chudikodutha Sudarkodi (lady who gave her garland to Vishnu). The practise is followed during modern times when the garland of Andal is sent to Azhagar Koyil on Chitra Pournami day where the presiding deity Lord Kallazhagar entering into River Vaigai with the garland worn by Goddess Andal and Tirumala Venkateswara Temple during [Garudostavam during the Tamil month of Puratasi (September – October)] . It is also believed that  Lord Ranganathar of Srirangam Ranganathaswamy temple married Andal , who later merged with the idol . Andal was taken in a palanquin from Srivilliputhur to Srirangam before the marriage . Since Andal married Ranganatha , who came as a King (called Raja) , the presiding deity is called Rangamannar .

The parrot in the hands of the Goddess Andal is made up of fresh leaves daily and the old ones are given to devotees .

In this temple interchanging of garlands between the married couples is a sacred ritual and we were fortunate to do so , as it was our 37th wedding anniversary day .

Srivilliputhur is famous for its palkova too .

Srivilliputhur temple gopuram
Inside the temple
The corridor
Periyalwar sannidhi
A picture of Andal thirukalyanam
Our tour group
Goddess Andal with Lord Rangamannar
Pillars of the corridor
Paintings on the walls

Thothathri Perumal Vanamamalai Nanguneri

Vanamamalai Sri Thothatri temple is in nanguneri and very near to Thirukurunkudi another divyadeshams of Pandiyanadu .

A must visit for all Sri vaishnavas , the Thothathri temple is located in a small village called Nanguneri in Thirunelveli. This temple is one of the Pandiyanadu divyadeshams.

Moolavar Thothathri Perumal in sitting posture . Thayar named as Varamangai Sridevi Bhumidevi .

Nammalwar has sung praising this Lord .

The temple is around four thousand years old and it is a huge one with extensive carvings. The temple is stated to have been built in a place which was a huge lake.

The Sannidhi street in front of the temple is a indeed a big one. The main deity is given an oil bath every day and the gingerly oil that comes out with water goes through a tiny oil separator and the separated oil is pumped into the oil well. This oil is stated to be having curative effect and hence is sold as the Prasadam. The temple is under the administrative control , of Vanamamalai (Jeeyar Swamy) The Mutt is also located within the temple Vanamamalai Sri Thothathri temple .

The Uthsavamurthy is known by the name Deivanayagan.

This is one of the eight prime shrines of the Srivaishnavas where the presiding deity appeared swayambu and therefore is of great significance .

The sacred oil well is inside the temple . There are few steps to oil well , we can climb and see it .The oil is sold in the temple office and it is considered as a sacred medicine for arthritis and other skin diseases.

This is how the main deity is
The corridor opposite to ennai kinaru
Oil coming out from main sanctum
Ennai kinaru
At the entrance of the temple

Nindra Narayana Perumal Thiruthangal

This temple is one of the Pandiyanadu divyadeshams in Thiruthangal village , Virudhunagar district , Tamilnadu .

Here the Moolavar is named Nindra Narayana Perumal , Thayar Shenkamalam .The Lord here is in standing posture .

Thirumangai alwar and Boodathalwar has sung praising this Lord .

Sthalapuranam once there was an arguement between the Goddesses Sridevi Bhumidevi and Neeladevi on degree of their devotion towards Lord Vishnu . Goddess Sridevi came to this place getting angry and was in deep meditation . Seeing her devotion Lord Vishnu gave her dharshan . Here the Lord gives dharshan along with
Goddesses Sridevi, Bhumidevi , Neeladevi and Jambavidevi (daughter of Jambavan. (As per legends Lord Ramar had promised to Jambavan to marry Jambavidevi in His next avatar, hence he married her in this place in Krishna avatar)

As per another legend, Krishna’s grandson Anirudhha , got married at this place.

As per another legend , Ranganatha from Srirangam Ranganathaswamy temple was enamoured by the devotion of Andal. He started a journey to Srivilliputhur divya desam to seek her hand for marriage . While reaching the place , it became dark and he decided to spend the night in the place. Since he stayed at this place, it came to be known as Thiruthangal and the hillock came to be known as Thalagiri .

Based on the legend , there is a common belief that the temple provides relief to devotees suffering from mental weariness and physical fatigue .

Picture of the main deity