Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Vaikom Mahadeva temple - Kerala

I happened to be in Kerala recently and had a wonderful opportunity to visit some ancient temples there.
Vaikom Mahadeva Kshetram ( temple) dedicated to  Lord Siva , is  very famous and one of the oldest  temples in Kerala. It is  in Kottayam district. This temple is fairly big one  and attracts pilgrims from all over the state and neighbouring ones too. There are 2 more famous temples situated at equi distance from Vaikom and it is considered auspicious if one can visit all the 3 temples in one day before Uccha pooja (Noon worship). The other two temples are Ettumanoor and  Kadathuruthy, again in Kottayam district. These temples are also very big  and  one can enjoy  the simple arichitecture,  typical of Kerala.

Vaikom temple shot to fame during the period of Vaikom Satya Graha ( a movement to allow  all sections of Hindus inside the temple) was intitiated here. This temple attracts foreign tourists also but non- Hindus are not allowed into the inner most walls of the temple and near the sanctum.

The Lord here is known as Vaikkathappan and the festival, Vaikathashtami is very famous here. He is also referred to as  the Annadana Prabhu meaning provider of  feast or food  and many pilgrims are fed here everyday. The devotees rich and  poor sit side by side and partake in the feast and it is believed that it is  provided by the God himself and it  has curative powers for stomach ailments.

The temple premises are always kept spic and span and everybody makes it a point to maintain the sanctity of the temple. It is believed that the demon Khara, brother of Surpanakka (of Ramayana)  got  3 Sivalingams from Kailash in Treta Yuga, one was installed here and the remaining ones  were consecrated at Ettumanoor and Kadathuruthy.

  How to reach: Vaikom is  45 Kms from  Kochi and is connected by rail and road. The nearest airport is Nedumbassery is another 40 Kms. from Ernakulam. Excellent accomodation luxury, executive and  budget class are available at Kochi.


  1. Such a calm & peaceful place, i really wish to go there once...

  2. Thank you Chitra for the crisp write up and the beautiful pictures.It makes me want to go to these three places during my next visit. Is it you in the fourth picture?

  3. Kerala temples are really beautiful for their simplicity and huge spaces...... and of course, the cleanliness.... i visited this temple a few years back,,

  4. Kerala is a very beautiful and greenery state and the temples are very nice, calm and peaceful. I have been to this Mahadeva temple about 5 years before but feel like visiting again and again because of its peaceful atmosphere and cleanliness. Wonderful description.

  5. Sushma,
    You would certainly enjoy the Kerala temples . Make a visit and feel it. Thanks for the comment.

  6. Dear Partha Sarathi
    Happy to see your comment. Thanks for the encouraging words too. I like to give brief descrptions as there are enough temple sites to give the elaborate ones.
    I am not in the picture because I am always behind the camera.

  7. Anu,
    Those who make a list 'must visit' temples do not miss this great temple. Happy to know you have visited it.

  8. Babli,
    Thanks for the comment. I am yet to come across places of worship kept as neat and clean like Kerala temples. If I find such I would mention that in my blogs definitely.It seems you have visited quite a few temples in Kerala.

  9. The photos are clear and crisp. Thanks for sharing. I was in Kerala last weekend and visited Edakkal caves and Kannur fort :-)

  10. The idols are gleaming in the pictures. Kerala temples are brilliantly maintained. I've been to a few of them in Kannur & Trivandrum. I really like those long diya-like figures (picture6). Attractive:-)

  11. Great snaps. But it must be very hot now. The greenery in the pics give a pleasant feeling

  12. romba nala irukungo... kerala thats the speciality aint it? calm serene , gives the peace and ease to pray!...iniya tamil puthandu nal vazhthukal! :)

  13. Insignia
    I haven't visited Kannur though I have made trips to M'lore via Kannur. May be when I get an opportunity I would like to see the cave too.

  14. lost world,
    Thanks for the comment and what you said is hundred percent true- brilliantly maintained . The diyas are called deepasthambham which would be lit during the festivals.

  15. Fairly big? It looks huge. Some impressive photos, I especially like the ones of the golden calf.

  16. Subu
    Welcome back. Kerala is pretty hot now a days but ocassionally there are sharp showers, but I visited the temples early in the morning and we were back before the heat.
    Long time no see?

  17. Hary
    Nandri.Ungalukum Puthandu Vazhthukkal.
    Nalla virundhu sapptingala?

  18. PW
    Compared to temples in TamilNadu Kerala temples are smaller. This is one amongst the bigger temples in Kerala.

    I am happy you have enjoyed the golden calf. Actually it is a bull, miniaturised version.You will understand what I am saying when you will see my post on Tanjore temple which will follow soon. Until then I keep you guessing...

  19. I would love to visit even if I wouldn't be allowed in the inner sanctum. I respect that they are keeping that special for those to whom it means the most. As always, I am inspired!
    Happy week, my friend.

  20. What a beautiful place and special architecture - so well captured in you're pics at Flickr - thanks for sharing!

    Just back from Bucharest - first post is up :-)

  21. Appreciable snaps. Kerala is really a 'God's own country' only

  22. Traci
    You would be able to enjoy the serene and clean atmosphere in this temple. We need to respect rules laid down by the temple too. I appreciate you for respecting such values.

  23. RennyBA's Terella
    Thanks for the comment. Hope you had a enjoyable trip . Shall be waiting for your post.

  24. women-wisdom.com
    Thank you so much for the encouragement. Looking forward for your visits.

  25. Yes I am less frequent in the blogosphere. Thanks to some travels (blogs are gonna come soon), health problems and a wedding at home, apart from the official chores!!
    Visiting a temple in the morning is something which gives you a lot of energy. This temple reminded me of the Aranmula temple. Infact lot of temples share the same architecture.

  26. Subu,
    I was also away for quite some time. I also took a break. I hope all is well and you find enough time for pursue your PASSION.
    I would like to visit the Parthasararthy temple at Aaranmulla too . When I am planning I would get in touch with you. I need to see where your road trips have taken you. See you there!!.

  27. u hav a beautiful blog nd I love it!! thanxs fr sharing!

  28. Ammara,
    Welcome to my blog and thanks for encouraging words. Shall visit yours too.
    Thanks once again

  29. Your post on Vaikkathappan temple is very interesting. Coming from God's own country must be beautiful, I guess! Very interesting!

  30. Gopalan, Welcome and thanks for the comment. Yes I take pride in belonging to this GOD'S OWN COUNTRY.
    Keep visiting.

  31. I have to tour South India. Never ever visited before but after the rains will be better I guess specially if I visit by motorbike.
    I have two blogs:
    Keep visiting if you wish.
    Keep writing if you wish.

  32. Dear Chitra,
    Good Morning!
    Very well written!Beautiful snaps!
    You are doing a great job,dear!Sharing the details and the wonderful snaps with the rest of the world is realy remarkable.
    Wishing you a lovely week ahead,

  33. Hobo
    I have added you in my Indiblogger network. I have commented on your blog. Hope you would enjoy your South Indian trip. If you need any information do get in touch with me. Shall be pleased to help.

  34. Anupama
    Welcome. I love your comment. I am sure you will be relate to my blog as you are also from Kerala. Keep visitng when you find time.Don't forget to mail me about the places of interest I have asked for.Thank you dear.

  35. Excellent narration. Beautiful pictures. Want to visit there sometime.

    I have a question. Is this the temple that is a pioneer in allowing "harijans" to enter the temple? I think this happned a long time ago. Read somewhere.

  36. You are right SG,
    The temple entry for 'harijans' was initiated here what is known as Vaikom Satyagraha,,which I have mentioned in the post.

    You would enjoy the serene and pure atmosphere in this temple.

  37. First, let me commend you on the beautiful pictures you have posted here. And when you say that the temple premises are neat, you really meant it! Amazing. It looks really beautiful.

    As I have always liked the auspices of the temple premises, I can only be repetitive about the calmness and divinity one can feel when within the temple premises.

    Please keep us enlightening us with more such wonderful travelogues. Love reading them and seeing the pictures.

  38. Hi Vittal,
    I was actually waiting to see your comment. I am really happy. Kerala temples have an entirely different kind of maintenance and upkeep. They give lot of importance to keep the atmosphere pure.

  39. Thanks, once again, for a great post with lots of info and great photos.

  40. Betty
    Thanks for the comment.

  41. Thanks for this post, Chitra. I have been to Cochin, but not to Kottayam. It's a good learning experience to read about this temple.

  42. Archana,
    You'll see all these temples before Kottayam itself. May be on your next trip you can plan one.


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