Updated May 30, 2023
Top Temples in Kerala
With its diverse culture and traditions, Kerala has a place of worship in every corner, each more beautiful than the last. The architectural heritage of these temples will awe you with their exquisite towers and intricate carvings. Kerala shrines are famous for their unique rituals, vibrant festivities, and beauty.
Temples To Visit in Kerala
The following are some of the most important temples in Kerala:-
#1 Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, Thiruvananthapuram
The Padmanabhaswamy Temple, located in Trivandrum, Kerala’s capital, is one of the most revered abodes of the Hindu Deity Mahavishnu and the wealthiest temple in the world. This temple, built in Dravidian style architecture, dates back to the 8th century and is one of the country’s oldest Vishnu temples. The shrine houses an 18-foot-tall idol of Lord Mahavishnu, which provides an awe-inspiring sight for devotees who visit the temple. The idol is of the eight-hooded serpent God Anantha. The people named Thiruvananthapuram after the temple’s presiding deity (Anantha). The beautiful temple stone carvings, structure, and murals draw tourists year-round. Still, most devotees come during the Alpashy festival in October and November and the Panguni festival in March and April.
- Opening hours: 3:30 am-4:45 am (Nirmalya Darshanam); 6:30 am- 7: Am; 8:30 am- 10 am; 10:30 am – 11:10 am; 11:45 am- 12 noon; 5:00 pm -6:15 pm; 6:45 pm- 7:20 pm
- Best Time to Visit: Panguni festival (March/April) & The Alpashi festival (October/November)
#2 Attukal Bhagavathy Temple, Thiruvananthapuram
Attukal Bhagavathy Temple is another popular place of worship in Kerala, located only 2 kilometers from Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple. Kannaki, a Parvati incarnation known as the Supreme Mother and the creator of all living beings on Earth, is the temple’s deity. This temple is well-known for the Attukal Pongala Festival, held annually in February or March. Women from India attend this 10-day festival and prepare Pongala, an authentic sweet dish made of coconut, rice, and jaggery for the Goddess. The Guinness Book of World Records lists the Attukal Pongala Festival as the largest gathering of women for a single religious event, which makes it one of Kerala’s top ten most famous temples. Visitors to Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple should visit this other sacred place of worship in Thiruvananthapuram.
- Opening hours: 4:30 am to 8:30 pm, 5 am (Nirmalyadarsanam puja), 6:30 am (Usha Puja), 12 noon ( Ucha Puja), and 7:30 pm (Athazha puja)
- Best Time to Visit: Attukal Pongala (Feb/March)
#3 Chottanikkara Devi Temple, Ernakulam
Chottanikkara Devi Temple, located atop a hill, is one of Kerala’s most famous devi temples dedicated to Goddess Bhagawati. This temple is well-known for its idol. People believe the golden idol, which stands 4 to 5 feet tall, can heal all ailments. Moreover, worshipers venerate the idol in three distinct ways at different times: in the morning, as Saraswati; at noon, as Lakshmi draped in crimson; and in the evening, as Durga. In this temple, Lord Shiva is also worshiped.
- Opening hours: 4 am to 12 noon and 4 pm to 8:45 pm. The temple opens at 3:30 am on Fridays and Mandalam occasions,
- Best Time to Visit: Navratri Aghosham (October), The Vrischika Mandala mahotsavam, The temple’s annual festival.
#4 Sivagiri Temple, Varkala
Sivagiri Temple, a sacred pilgrimage site, is one of the best Temples in Kerala. This religious Kerala temple in Varkala is the final resting place of the legendary leader, saint, and social reformer Sree Narayana Guru. People perform an annual pilgrimage between December 30 and January 1 due to the significant importance of the Samadhi. During the pilgrimage days, pilgrims dressed in yellow attire visit the temple.
- Opening hours: 5: 30 Am to 12 noon and 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm
- Best Time to Visit: Sri Narayana Jayanthi & Samadhi day (Aug/Sep)
#5 Ettumanoor Mahadeva Temple, Kottayam
Lord Shiva is the deity to whom Ettumanoor Mahadeva Temple, one of Kerala’s most prominent temples, is dedicated. This holy place is one of the few Temples in Kerala with rich Dravidian architecture. During the Arattu festival in February and March, this temple sees the most significant number of pilgrims. Mural paintings both inside and outside the temple are excellent, and the fresco of Dancing Shiva on the temple walls is one of the finest artworks in South India. Many people believe that Adi Shankaracharya wrote ‘Soundarya Lahari’ while staying in the temple. It is widely believed that those who visit the temple will have their desires fulfilled, and their inner soul will become pristine and pure.
- Opening hours: 4 am to 8:30 pm. The temple closes from 12 noon to 5 pm.
- Best Time to Visit: Arattu Festival (Feb/March)
#6 Sabarimala Sastha Temple, Pathanamthitta
Sabarimala is one of South India’s most famous temples in the Periyar Tiger Reserve in Kerala’s Pathanamthitta district. People believe that Lord Ayyappa, the son of Lord Shiva and Mohini (Lord Vishnu’s feminine incarnation), is the deity to whom the temple is dedicated. Lord Dharma Shastha is an incarnation of Lord Ayyappa. The temple is on a hilltop approximately 3000 feet above sea level. People trek up the mountains from Pulapalli, wearing blue and black dresses, smearing Chandan on their forehead, and remaining unshaven until darshan. The temple is open on the first five days of each Malayalam month, with the busiest times being Mandalapooja, Makaravilakku, and Makar Sankranti. Follow several rituals and restrictions when visiting this temple. The temple only permits male devotees and prohibits women under ten and over 50 from entering.
- Opening hours: Between 3 am to 11:40 Pm-the temple is open for darshan and puja. The temple closes for a few hours between 1 pm and 3 pm.
- Best Time to Visit: November to February and April to September, ideally making it the best time to visit the sacred shrine.
Are you planning a trip to Kerala soon? If so, take advantage of the chance to experience the serenity and essence of spirituality each of these Temples in Kerala offers. The architecture of these wonders is undoubtedly worth photographing to make your Instagram more visually appealing. What are your thoughts?
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