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About Idukki

Temples In Idukki District

Mangaladevi temple, Idukki

Mangaladevi Temple

The Mangaladevi temples in Idukki district is an ancient shrine which is more than 2000-years-old. The temple is located 15 km from Kumily, a popular destination of Idukki. Built in the Pandya style of architecture, the temple remains closed for the entire year except for the annual Chithra Pournami festival, celebrated in the month of April- May. Hundreds of pilgrims reach the temple from Kerala and the nearby state of Tamil Nadu after making a painstaking journey through the forest. Mangaladevi temple has as its deity Kannaki, an epic character of the classical Tamil text Chilappadikaram written by Elankovadikal.

Shiva Temple

Shiva Temples

Shiva temples in Idukki district is 1800-year old has Chola style architecture. The deity is Shiva. The ancient structure in Shiva temple is intact despite modifications and renovations carried out later. A window with nine lattices representing Navagrahas (nine planets), and another widow with five lattices representing Pancha Bhoothas (five devil elements) deserve pointed attention. The idols and lamps are carved from stone and metal, dating back to 14th century. A stepwell always holding water (even in drought condition) is considered sacred. The temple once managed by a private trust is now under the control of Archaeological Survey of India for its historic importance. Important relics of the temple are kept in the museums of Thrissur and Kozhikode.

Ayyappa temple :

Ayyappa Temples

The Ayyappa temples in Idukki district, known as Saastha temple at Arakkulam has important offerings like katum-paayasam, koottu-paayasam, paal-paayasam and pushpaanjali and the deity is regarded as very poweful by ardent devotees. Among Ayyappa temple, the Saramkutthi kaavu (in Kudayathur village), also dedicated to Lord Ayyappa, is associated with the Arakkulam temple and offerings are similar. At the Sree Narasirilha temple, Manakkal, the important vazhipaats are paanakam to the deity and participating in kaavatiaattam. The Bhagavathi temples in Idukki district at Karikk5d (the ancient seat of Vatakkumkiir Rajas) is among famous temples Idukki and the Patahadi uthsavam of the temple on the Kumbha-Bharani day attracts a large number of devotees. The Kanjiramattam Siva temple and the Annamalai Siva temple (built in Chola style of architecture) deserve special mention. The main vazhipaat in these temples is dhaara. The Sree Krishna temples on the banks of Thodupuzha river, a tributary of Muvattupuzha river, are important places of worship. The main offering is paal-paayasam. The Meena-Bharani at Chandrappith kaavu at Kotikulam is important.

Thodupuzha Sriskrishna Swamy Temple

Located at Thodupuzha in the northern side of Thodupuzha river, this temple is among famous temples Idukki. The deity is Srikrishna. Sub-deities are Bhagawathy, Ganapathy, Shiva and Nagam. The temple is owned by the famous Nedumbilly Mana of Irinjalakuda in Thrissur district. This Mana (Namboodiri/Brahmin family) has the right for conducting Thantric rites in the famous Sri Padmanabha Swamy temple of Thiruvananthapuram.

There is an exciting legend behind the deity. A village named Lakshmi was very rich in Vedic scholars, artists and variety of eminent personalities. A boy with abundant Vedic knowledge from an eminent Brahmin family opted for Sanyasam (monkism).This was well before the time of Sri Sankaracharya. He reportedly travelled throughout India. During his travel he reached Thodupuzha and meditated upon Lord Krishna. It is at the meditated spot the temple stands. During the meditation he visioned Lord Krishna splitting the peck of an Owl when it attempted to swallow the Lord. He opened the eyes after finishing the meditation and to his utter surprise and excitement the Lord Krishna was standing before him. Soon, the Lord disappeared. The Sanyasi (monk) lit a lamp at the place where the Lord was standing and worshipped.

During this period Keezhmalanadu King visited the place and he came to know what had happened. The King soon constructed a temple.

There are striking contrasts in the ritual practiced here. In all the temples the first action after opening the sanctum sanctorum is the removal of flower garlands of previous day. The ceremonial bathing follows. Thereafter Abhishekam and Usha Pooja followed. Here Usha Pooja is done first and Abhishekam followed thereafter.

There is a Nilapaduthara (holy platform) in front of the temple. The Nilapaduthara has great importance in the temple because the idol was received by the monk standing on this platform. The idol without any ornaments or festivities is brought to the platform during the festivals and is taken back garlanded and with percussion musics and other festivities.