All posts by Rajkumar Kanagaraj

Chennai based Digital Marketer

Top Famous Temples in TamilNadu – Must Visit Temples

top famous temples in tamilnadu list

Famous Temples in Tamilnadu  – Spiritual Tourist Places in Tamil Nadu – Must Visit Temples

Tamilnadu is the state known for its admirable culture and heritage. The best feature to say about Tamil Nadu is the Temple. Temple is the holy place which we step into to acquire peace. In that case, Tamil Nadu is very rich in temples which account to more than thousand. Even though there are numerous temples to visit in Tamilnadu, some temples are note-worthy to visit and pray. Herewith, I am listing the very famous temples in Tamilnadu that stands to be the must-visit places of South India.

Madurai’s Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple

Madurai’s Meenakshi Sundareswarar Temple is one of the Famous temples in Tamil Nadu, India. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (Sundareswarar) and Goddess Parvati (Meenakshi). The world famous Madurai Meenakshi temple has large and most complex structures in Tamil Nadu. The Temple is surrounded by 14 tall gopurams (Gateway towers). Goddess Meenakshi’s image is said to be carved out of a single emerald and this is the major specialty of the temple.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 05:00 AM – 12.30 PM
Evening: 04:00 PM – 10:00 PM
Since Madurai is a famous city, you can reach Madurai from Chennai by taking the train, bus as well as flight routes.

Brihadeeswarar Temple, Thanjavur

Brihadeeswarar Temple is one of the famous temples in Tamil Nadu. The main deity is Lord Shiva who is shown off in the form of a huge idol. The temple is situated on the banks of River Cauvery and holds the status of a UNESCO World Heritage Site in India under the list of ‘Great Living Chola Temples’. The Temple has the best Dravidian architecture and is always said to be the best tourist attractions of Tamil Nadu.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 06:00 AM – 12.30 PM
Evening: 04:00 PM – 08:30 PM
From Chennai, the best way to reach this famous temple is by railways and you could also go by bus.

Ramanathaswamy Temple, Rameswaram

Ramanathaswamy Temple is one of the famous temples in Tamil Nadu located at Rameswaram. This temple comes under the twelve Jyotirlinga temples and also known for having the longest corridor amongst all the Hindu temples in India. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva (Ramanathaswamy) and this temple stands to be one of the best pilgrimage sites in India. The temple is composed of Dravidian architecture with beautiful sculptures.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 04:30 AM – 01:00 PM
Evening: 03:00 PM – 08:30 PM
From Chennai, the best locomotive way which I would suggest is through the air. You can start from Chennai and land at either Trichy or Madurai. Then, the train is the best successive way.

Kailasanathar Temple, Kanchipuram

Kanchipuram Kailasanathar temple is a Hindu Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is of Dravidian architecture and is built by the Pallavas. The temple is situated on the banks of the River Vegavathy. Maha Shivaratri is one of the famous festivals celebrated in this temple. The temple is believed to have the secret tunnel which is used as an escape route for the kings of that time.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 05:30 AM – 12.00 PM
Evening: 04:00 PM – 09:00 PM
From Chennai, you can travel to this temple by bus, train or through cab also since the temple is pretty close to Chennai city.

Ranganathaswamy temple, Trichy (Tiruchirapalli)

Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple also Thiruvarangam is one of the very famous temples in Tamil Nadu. This Hindu temple has the main deity to be Lord Vishnu (Ranganathaswamy) along with other usual god idols. The temple has the most significant mentions in Thiviya Pirabandam and Silapadikaram of Tamil Literature. The most important features are the shrines and the 21 big gateway towers. Jyestabisheka, Brahmotsavam, Rathothsavam, and vasanthothsavam are the major festival celebrated in this famous temple of Tamilnadu.
General Darshan Timings
09:00 AM – 12:00 PM
01:15 PM – 06:00 PM
06:45 PM – 09:00 PM
From Chennai, the best ways to travel are via Train and Flight. You can also travel by bus but it takes a long time to reach.

Ramaswamy Temple, Kumbakonam

Ramaswamy temple of Kumbakonam is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Rama. It is one of the famous temples in Tamilnadu and especially in Kumbakonam (Land of Temples). The whole story of Ramayana is depicted as pictures on the walls of the temple.
Temple Timings
07.00 AM – 12.15 PM
04.00 PM – 09.00 PM
The best way to reach the temple is by train. You can also avail the bus service or cab service to end at the temple from Chennai.

Adi Kumbeswarar Temple Kumbakonam - top famous temples in tamilnadu -Dravidian
Adi Kumbeswarar Temple Kumbakonam – top famous temples in tamilnadu -Dravidian

Amritaghateswarar – Abirami Temple, Thirukkadaiyur

This is the Hindu temple of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati located in Thirukkadaiyur, Tamil Nadu. Abirami Temple is famous for 60th Marriage (Sadhabishegam) occasions in Tamil Nadu.  This temple is also called as Paadal Petra Sthalam because of its mention in Tevaram. The temple is one of the best tourist attractions and famous temples in Tamil Nadu.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 06:00 AM – 01.00 PM
Evening: 04:00 PM – 09:00 PM
From Chennai, you need to take either bus or train to reach Sirkali. From there, you can go by bus or cab to the temple.

Jambukeswarar Akilandeswari Temple, Thiruvanaikaval

Jambukeswarar temple is one of the best famous temples in Tamil Nadu dedicated to Lord Shiva. Also, the temple is a renowned Pancha Bootha stalam of Tamil Nadu located in Trichy (Tiruchirapalli). Here, Lord Shiva is in the form of Appu Lingam which signifies water. Altogether, this Jambukeswarar temple is a must-visit temple as well as a famous pilgrimage site in India.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 06:30 AM – 12.00 PM
Evening: 05:00 PM – 09:00 PM
Travelling is quite easy to this temple since it is located in Trichy. You can either take roadways or railways. As it possesses an airport, you can even take a flight to Trichy.

Ekambareswarar Temple, Kanchipuram

This Hindu temple is a famous temple of Tamil Nadu located at Kanchipuram. The main deity of the temple is Lord Shiva (as Ekambareswarar). The temple is one of the Pancha Bootha Stalams specifically signifying the ‘Land’ (One of the five elements of nature). Hence, the Lord Shiva here exists in the form of Prithivi Lingam. Ekambareswarar temple is the best tourist attraction nearby Chennai.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 06:00 AM – 11.00 AM
Evening: 05:00 PM – 08:00 PM

Kapaleeshwarar Temple, Chennai

Kapaleeshwarar temple is a very famous temple of Tamil Nadu located in Mylapore, Chennai. The temple possesses the Dravidian architecture and was believed to have constructed in the 7th century. The Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and it also contains a separate shrine for his consort Goddess Parvati (Karpagambal). Panguni Peruvizha, Tirukkalyanam, and Arupathimoovar are the famous temples that will be conducted in this temple every year.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 05:00 AM – 12.00 PM
Evening: 04:00 PM – 09:00 PM

Kumari Amman Temple, Kanyakumari

Kumari Amman is the 3000-year-old Kumari Amman temple of Virgin Goddess Kanyakumari. It is one of the famous temples of Tamil Nadu located at the southern tip of India. It has the Goddess in the form of Young girl. There are many pilgrimage people visiting this temple every year and is considered as one of the finest tourist places in Tamil Nadu.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 06:00 AM – 01.00 PM
Evening: 04:00 PM – 09:00 PM
From Chennai, you can travel to this temple via roadways, railways as well through flight also. But, if you are taking a flight, then again you have to take a bus or train to reach the temple from the airport that you are landing.

Thillai Nataraja Temple, Chidambaram

The Natarajar temple is one of the famous temples in Tamil Nadu dedicated to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva will be in the form of Koothan (Dancer) and hence the temple is popular for the classical dance. The temple is made up of Dravidian architecture with beautiful classical dance postures sculpted on the pillars. Another significant feature of the temple is that it is one of the Pancha Bootha stalams representing ‘sky’. Definitely, this temple is a very beautiful place to visit and hence stands to be one of the best tourist places of Tamil Nadu.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 06:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Evening: 05:00 PM – 10:00 PM
From Chennai, You can travel by either bus or train to reach this place. Even a cab can do the best favor if your destination is this temple.

Annamalaiyar Temple, Thiruvannamalai

This is a Hindu temple of Lord Shiva located on the Annamalai Hills of Tiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu. In this temple, Lord Shiva is present in the form of Agni Lingam (representing ‘Fire’). Hence, Tiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar temple is also known as the Pancha Bootha Sthalam signifying the element ‘Fire’. Other than this, the temple is famous for the major festivals like Karthigai deepam and Brahmotsavam conducted on yearly basis. Thiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar temple is definitely a must see place in Tamil Nadu.
The temple Opening and closing timings are
Morning: 05:30 AM – 12:30 PM
Evening: 03:30 PM – 09:30 PM
From Chennai, You can take a bus or train to reach the temple at ease.

Shore Temple, Mamallapuram

Mamallapuram is the best tourist place located in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Since the temple overlooks the shore of the Bay of Bengal, the temple is known by the name ‘Shore Temple’. The entire place is famous for the beautiful monuments and architectural sculptures of Pallava period. Shore temple of Mamallapuram is classified under the UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Shore Temple Mamallapuram - top famous temples in tamilnadu - Dravidian
Shore Temple Mamallapuram – top famous temples in tamilnadu – Dravidian

Thyagaraja Temple, Tiruvarur

Thyagaraja temple is the Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva who is present in the form of Maragatha Lingam. The temple also contains the idol of his consort Parvati as Kondi. The temple is basically famous for the temple Car on which the idol of Lord Thyagarajar is taken out during festivals.
The temple will be open between 5:30 AM to 10 PM and six rituals will be done during that period of time. The whole temple looks magnificently wonderful with best Indian Architecture. It is one of the famous temples in Tamilnadu with good sculpting.

The above listed are the best famous temples in Tamil Nadu when considering as a whole. Other than these temples, we have classification of temples according to the God

Famous temples in Tamil Nadu – According to Gods

In Hindu custom, Gods and Goddesses are large in number. Each one is named differently according to the place. When taking that into consideration, we have a list of famous temples in Tamil Nadu. They are

Six Abodes of Lord Murugan (Arupadai veedu)

Lord Murugan is believed to have six different faces according to Hindu Mythology. Each face has its significance portrayed in different locations. Each location is very famous and hence classified under the famous temples in Tamil Nadu. In each location, Lord Murugan is known by a different name. They are here for you.

  • Palani
  • Thiruthani
  • Thiruparankunram
  • Pazhamudhir Cholai
  • Thiruchendur
  • Swami Malai

All the six abodes are famous in a Special way and have the best significant features.

Navagraha Temples – Famous temples in Tamil Nadu

‘Navagraham’ – the name by itself signifies ‘nine planets’ in Tamil. Navagraha temples are the holy places dedicated to the nine planets of Hindu astronomy. Navagraha temples are one of the most famous temples in Tamilnadu. Navagraha temples are believed to be very powerful and one’s sins can be washed away by visiting these temples at one stretch. If you have any ‘dhosham’ as per your astrology, it can also be resolved by the temple visit. Navagrahas include

  • Suriyanar (Sun)
  • Chandra (Moon)
  • Angaraha (Mars)
  • Budhan ( Mercury)
  • Sukkiran (Venus)
  • Saneeswaran (Saturn)
  • Raghu (North Lunar Node)
  • Guru (Jupiter)
  • Kedhu (South Lunar Node)

All the navagraha temples are located in and around Kumbakonam of Tamil Nadu. They are also the best tourist attractions which are famous in Tamil Nadu. When you visit Tamil Nadu, don’t miss out to step into these temples.

Pancha Bootha Stalams (Five Shiva Temples representing the five elements of Nature)

“Pancha Bootham” literally means the five elements of Nature – Sky, Land, Water, Fire, and Air. In Tamil Nadu, all the five elements of nature are represented in the form of Lord Shiva’s Idol (Lingam). The respective names are Agasa Lingam., Prithivi Lingam, Appu Lingam, Agni Lingam, and Vaayu Lingam. Each lingam is located in several different places of Tamil Nadu. They are

  • Chidambareshwarar Temple, Chidambaram – Sky (Akasa)
  • Jambukeshwarar temple, Thiruvanaikaaval – Water (Jala)
  • Ekambareswarar temple, Kanchipuram – Earth (Prithvi)
  • Arunachaleswarar temple, Thiruvannamalai – Fire (Agni)
  • Kalahastishwar temple, Kalahasti – The Wind (Vaayu)

Top Famous Temples in TamilNadu – the Best Tourist Places of India

We just saw the famous temples in Tamil Nadu that have enormously significant features to look at. If you are planning to visit Tamil Nadu, don’t forget to visit these famous temples. Although you can’t see all the temples, don’t forget some temples are there like the navagraha temples and Pancha bootha stalams which should not be left unnoticed. Come into Tamil Nadu to explore the wonderful temples and its amazing Dravidian architectures within.

Tiruvannamalai Girivalam Dates and Time, Calendar 2017

Tiruvannamalai Girivalam Dates and Time Calendar 2017 - Thiruvannamalai Girivalam Calendar 2017

Tiruvannamalai Girivalam Dates – Arulmigu Arunachaleswarar Temple – Annamalaiyar Temple Thiruvannamalai – Tiruvannamalai Temple

Tiruvannamalai Temple – Tiruvannamalai Girivalam Dates and Time, Calendar 2017

MonthDayGirivalam Start TimeGirivalam End Time
12-01-2017Thu11-01 07.58 PM12-01 06:11 PM
10-02-2017Fri10-02 08:02 AM11-02 06:58 AM
12-03-2017Sun11-03 08.56 PM12-03 08.50 PM
11-04-2017Tue10-04 10.53 AM11-04 11.47 AM
10-05-2017Wed10-05 01.46 AM11-05 03.27 AM
09-06-2017Fri08-06 05.24 PM09-06 07.31 PM
09-07-2017Sun08-07 08.45 AM09-07 10.26 AM
07-08-2017Mon06-08 11.32 PM07-08 11.55 PM
06-09-2017Wed05-09 01.01 AM06-09 01.03 AM
05-10-2017Thu04-10 01.35 AM05-10 12.40 AM
04-11-2017Sat03-11 01.20 AM04-11 11.40 AM
03-12-2017Sun02-12 11.45 AM03-12 10.23 PM

Tiruvannamalai Girivalam Calendar 2017 – Pournami Date – Thiruvannamalai Girivalam timings 2017 – Chitra pournami Girivalam 2017

Thiruvannamalai Temple is one of the best famous temples in India with Annamalaiyar or Arunachaleswarar (Lord Shiva) as the main deity. The temple is located in Tiruvannamalai at the foot of the Annamalai hills which is named after the Lord. The Arunachalam Temple of Tiruvannamalai is believed to have emerged thousands of years ago and has a Dravidian architecture with beautiful sculptures engraved on it. Lord Annamalaiyar had sincere devotees including the great poets like Appar, Manickavasagar, Sambandar, Arunagirinathar, and Sundarar. It is believed that many of the Siddhas still living at the Annamalai hills where they do meditation. Annamalaiyar temple is famous for two main festivals of Tamil Calendar namely Thiruvannamalai Girivalam 2017 and Tiruvannamalai Karthigai Deepam 2017. Pournami (Full Moon day (Pournami)) is very special and considered to be an auspicious day for Chitra pournami Girivalam 2017 at Thiruvannamalai Temple. Tiruvannamalai temple Girivalam 2017 dates differ every month since Pournami falls on a unique day each month. Tiruvannamalai temple is considered as the most sacred place to visit by every Hindu devotee. In the forthcoming lines, you will be finding out Tiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar temple’s Architecture, Legend, History of the Temple, Tiruvannamalai Temple Girivalam, rituals, Girvalam Calendar 2017 in which Pournami occurs and also the Pournami Pooja.

Tiruvannamalai Arunchaleswarar Temple – Architecture, History, Legend and Festivals

Thiruvannamalai Temple is a renowned and one of the biggest temples in India located in Tiruvannamalai district with Annamalaiyar (Lord Shiva) and Goddess Parvati as Unnamalai Amman as the primary Gods of worship. In the temple, Lord Annamalaiyar is represented in the form of Lingam and the Lingam is called as Agni Lingam (according to the Legend). Due to the appearance of Lord Shiva in the form of fire, the temple is considered to be one of the Panchabootha Stalams signifying Agni or fire. The temple is one of the sacred holy sites in India and a must visit tourist place. Each and every feature of the Arunachalam Temple is unique and filled with holiness. Once you go to Thiruvannamalai Girivalam you can discern visually.

Architecture of Arunachalam or Annamalaiyar Temple

Tiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar Temple is one of the biggest temples in the world covering about 10 Hectares with four gateway towers (Gopurams) and 11 storeys. The Lord Arunachaleswarar temple stands for about 270 Feet and has a unique architecture. The temple was built during the Chola Period with lots of shrines for each God. The most significant and sturdy feature about Tiruvannamalai temple’s architecture is the hall with 1000 Pillars. The greatness of Lord Annamalaiyar temple architecture and the inscribed sculptures is well appreciated by the Tamil poets like Appar, Sundarar, Manickavasagar and Sambandar and was mentioned in the ancient works of literature. Lord Annamalaiyar temple was mentioned in Thirupugal, an admirable work in Tamil literature. The total temple plan consists of five Prakarams (Shrines). Each Prakaram contains a Nandhi statue to be placed in front facing the Lord Arunachalam Temple.

Rituals at Thiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar temple & Timings Karthigai deepam

At Thiruvannamalai Arunachalam Temple, special Pooja will be conducted every day. The daily temple opening timing will be 5.00 AM and the closing timing is 9.30 PM. Here is a table of rituals which are being practiced at Thiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar temple from Morning till evening.
Girivalam timings 2017 – MORNING
5.00 AM Temple Opens
5.30 AM Gomatha Pooja
6.00 AM Oudshakala Pooja
8.30 AM Early Sathi Pooja
Girivalam timings 2017 – AFTERNOON
11.00 AM Midnoon Pooja
12.30 PM Temple closes
Girivalam timings 2017 – EVENING
03.30 PM Temple Opens
06.00 PM Sayara Chai Pooja
7.30 PM 2nd kalam Pooja
09.00 PM Arthajama Pooja
09.30 PM Temple Closes

Tiruvannamalai Temple – Temple famous for Thiruvannamalai pournami Girivalam 2017 – History and Legend

The emergence of Lord Arunachalam Temple is described by two historical legends. They are as follows
a) Once, on top of the mountain Kailash, Goddess Parvati planned to play a game with Lord Shiva. Hence, she closed Lord Shiva’s eyes to have fun. But, unexpectedly the whole world went into darkness. Parvati got shocked and took a penance to resolve the issue. Lord Shiva’s heart melted and returned light to the earth in the form of fire at the top of Thiruvannamalai hills. This is one of the reasons why fire is lit on top of the hills on karthigai Deepam and Thiruvannamalai Girivalam 2017 dates
b) Once upon a time, there was a controversy between Lord Vishnu and Brahma on the topic “who is superior to whom”. To find a solution, both of them went to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva turned himself into a fire and created a line of flame between the Earth & the sky. He asked them to find out either the beginning or end point of the flame. Lord Vishnu transformed himself into a boar and traveled down to the Earth. On the other hand, Brahma changed into a swan and flew up high into the sky. Lord Vishnu accepted his failure but Brahma lied to Shiva that he has found out the end point. Lord Shiva cursed Brahma saying that he would not be worshiped by any human. This scenario also indicates a reason for the fire lit during Thiruvannamalai Girivalam and Karthigai Deepam.

Thiruvannamalai Girivalam Calendar – Tiruvannamalai temple Girivalam 2017 – Girivalam dates and timings – Rituals & Customs

Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleswarar temple is one of the very ancient temples in Tamil Nadu. The age of the temple is counted to be around thousand years. Being located in the feet of Annamalai Hills, the Arunachaleswarar temple has the greatest reputation among all Shiva devotees. In this temple, Lord Annamalaiyar showers his blessings in the form of Agni or Fire. Hence, as a custom, the fire will be lit on top of the Annamalai hills every month. The day on which the fire is being lit is called as Girivalam. Girivalam is the word originated from the Tamil language. “Giri” in Tamil means the hills and “Valam” means moving around for something. Together, Thiruvannamalai Girivalam is nothing but the movement around the Annamalai Hills. The full moon day (Pournami) which comes on every month is considered as an auspicious day to conduct Tiruvannamalai Girivalam. Thousands of people from young to old will gather to go on a move around the Annamalaiyar Hills which is about 14 kilometers in total. The rounds will take place at night. Thiruvannamalai Girivalam is one of the best-known festivals conducted at Tiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar temple. People believe that taking part in Girivalam bestows them with all the sacredness.
Here is the complete schedule of Girivalam including the Pooja, Thiruvannamalai Girivalam timings, Thiruvannamalai Girivalam Date 2017, Thiruvannamalai Girivalam Calendar 2017. Take part in the Girivalam at least once in a year to get bestowed with all the goodness of Health and wealth.

Thiruvannamalai Girivalam or Malaivalam – How to do Circumambulation around the Tiruvannamalai Hills the Siddha way during Girivalam dates 2017

The illumination of the moon on the Full moon day (Pournami) is so divine to carry out the Girivalam around the hill. If you plan to take a Girivalam or Malaivalam around Annamalai Hills, here is a set of procedure for you to follow:
• First and the foremost, the vicissitudes of the vesture has to be viewed.
• Following that, you need to see the heavenly peak starting from the ground.
• Then, start your walk around the Annamalai hills in barefeet around a distance of about 14 kilometers.
• While moving, you mean to see the ashtalingams, statues and all sorts of spiritual features. Just keep on saying “Om Arunachala” to experience the divinity
• The main condition is that you need to carry out Girivalam only during night amidst the cool Full moon.
The number of rounds depends on the person moving around in Girivalam. It may vary from individual to individual. How many ever the rounds you go doesn’t matter but only the faith in Lord Shiva that plays the major role.

Ashtalingams of Tiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar Temple circumambulated during Thiruvannamalai Girivalam dates 2017

At Arunachaleswarar temple in Thiruvannamalai, Ashtalingam is one of the must-know features to be mentioned. “Ashtalingam” means eight lingams in Sanskrit. Lingam is the statue of Lord Shiva and it is the default form in which he exists. All the eight lingams are present in the Tiruvannamalai Temple but at the different position to show the variation of power. Each and every lingam represents the eight directions of the earth namely East, West, North, South, North-East, North-West, South-East and South-West. Thus the lingams are named as Indralingam, Agnilingam, Yamalingam, Niruthilingam, Varunalingam, Vayulingam, Kuberalingam and Esanyalingam. On the account of Girivalam, the blessings from these lingams will also be
Each lingam explains and acts as an image of various aspects of human’s life. These Lingams are believed to have the power of Navagrahams. While taking Girivalam (Circumambulation), it is natural that you tend to rotate around these lingams. Each lingam brings forth all the benefits of blessing which is similar to that which would be directly got by visiting the Navagraha lords. All the eight lingams are as follows
• Indra Lingam – The first and foremost lingam is Indra Lingam which is situated in the East direction and it symbolizes Lord Indran. Sun and Sukiran are the dominant navagrahas of this lingam. This lingam bestows the devotees a long life with prosperity.
• Agni Lingam – This is the second lingam which faces the southeast direction. This is the only lingam that is placed on the right side of the path of Tiruvannamalai Girivalam. Chandran is the dominant navagraha for this lingam. Agni lingam helps one to put an end to illness and offers a good health. It is located on top of Lotus tank.
• Yamalingam – This is the third lingam on the Girivalam passage. This lingam depicts the south direction and is installed on the death of Yama. Sevvai is the dominant Graham of this lingam. A holy tank called as Simma theertham is located nearby. Financial issues can be resolved by praying to this Lord.
• Niruthi Lingam – This is the fourth lingam of the Girivalam. The cardinal direction which niruthi lingam represents is South-East. Ragu dominates this lingam and is believed to be installed by Giant King. Ragu is the Graham which dominates this lingam. Sani Theertham is the holy tank present here. This God will help people get relieved from problems.
• Varuna Lingam – This is the fifth lingam and it signifies the west direction. This lingam is said to be installed by the rain God – Varunan. Sani is the dominant Graham of this lingam and Varuna Theertham is the holy tank present. Worshipping this Lord can help cure critical illness.
• Vayu Lingam – The sixth lingam on the Girivalam is this and characterizes the North-West direction. Vayu Lingam is installed by the god of air himself and is dominated by Kedhu. Heart, luing, and stomach problems can be corrected by this Lord.
• Kuperalingam – The seventh lingam of the Girivalam path and it signifies the Northern direction. Guru is the dominant Graham and this God helps the devotees to attain good wealth.
• Esanya Lingam – The last but not the least is the esanya lingam which is a part of the Girivalam. It faces the North-east direction and is dominated by the Graham called Budhan. Peace of mind and the good attitude are the offerings of this Lord.

How to reach Tiruvannamalai Arunachaleswarar Temple on Girivalam Dates – Travel Route, Hotels in Thiruvannamalai

Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleswarar temple is the world famous abode of Lord Shiva which is located in the prime location of Tamilnadu. There are various options available to reach the temple. Chennai to Tiruvannamalai is the closest air travel which accounts to about 185 kilometers away by road. People who come from major cities in India like Mumbai, Delhi, Calcutta, Bangalore, and Hyderabad can make use of the Air route to reach Tiruvannamalai. If you want to travel by road, then you can start from Chennai which will take about 3.5 hours to travel. Car or public transport for this cause is best comfortable. There are ample amount of buses available from Chennai, Tirupathi, Madurai, Salem of Tamil Nadu. Train service is also accessible in which Thiruvannamalai is located between Katpadi and Villupuram train route. Both the bus stop and the railway station of Tiruvannamalai district is within reach from Thiruvannamalai temple.

Thiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar Temple – A must-visit tourist place & Pilgrimage center of Tamil Nadu

Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleswarar temple is known all over the world for the festivals called Thiruvannamalai Girivalam and Karthigai Deepam. Tiruvannamalai temple is one of the best famous temples in India. Thiruvannamalai Girivalam or Malaivalam take place every month during Full moon day (Pournami). But, Karthigai Deepam happens only on the Full moon day (Pournami) of theTamil Calendar month Karthigai. Girivalam is the circumambulation of Annamalai hills and is called as Giri Pradakshina in Sanskrit. Performing pradakshina of Arunachala is very beneficial for all the devotees who suffer from some kind of problem in life. Devotees and pilgrims from around the Earth will land at Thiruvannamalai to get Lord Shiva’s Darshan. It’s been a custom that Girivalam needs to be conducted at night and any number of people can participate as there is no restriction for that case. From the above elucidation, hope so you must have got ample knowledge on the history of Thiruvannamalai, about Tiruvannamalai temple, Lord Shiva and the Ashtalingams (Eight lingams), Girivalam dates and timings 2017, Girivalam Calendar 2017, Procedures to take up Tiruvannamalai Girivalam and finally the routes through which you can reach Thiruvannamalai Annamalaiyar temple on Thiruvannamalai Girivalam 2017 dates. Do visit this Tiruvannamalai temple at least annually to get the showers of greatest blessings from Lord Shiva.
Tiruvannamalai Girivalam Calendar 2017, Thiruvannamalai Girivalam Dates 2017, Girivalam Today, Girivalam 2017 Date

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Sabarimala Temple Opening Dates 2017 to 2018

Sri Sabarimala Ayyappa Swamy Temple Opening and Closing Dates and Time 2017 – 2018

Sabarimala Temple Opening Dates

MonthPoojaOpening DateClosing DateOpening Time
JanuaryMakaravilakku Day14/01/2017
FebruaryMonthly Pooja – Kumbham12/02/201717/02/20175 PM - 10 PM
MarchMonthly Pooja – Meenam14/03/201719/03/20175 PM - 10 PM
Sabarimala Utsavam30/03/201709/04/20175 PM - 10 PM
Kodiyettu31/03/2017
Painkuni Uthram (Ayyappan Nakshatra Birth Date) & Arattu09/04/2017
AprilMeda Vishu Festival10/04/201718/04/20175 PM - 10 PM
Vishu14/04/2017
MayMonthly Pooja – Edavam14/05/201719/05/20175 PM - 10 PM
JuneIdol Installation Pooja03/06/201704/6/20175 PM - 10 PM
Idol Installation Day04/06/2017
Monthly Pooja – Midhunam14/06/201719/06/20175 PM - 10 PM
JulyMonthly Pooja – Karkkidakam16/07/201721/07/20175 PM - 10 PM
AugustMonthly Pooja – Chingam16/08/201721/08/20175 PM - 10 PM
SeptemberOnam Pooja02/09/201706/09/20175 PM - 10 PM
Onam Day04/09/2017
Monthly Pooja – Kanni16/09/201721/09/20175 PM - 10 PM
OctoberMonthly Pooja – Thulam16/10/201721/10/20175 PM - 10 PM
Sree Chithra Atta Thirunal18/10/201719/10/20175 PM - 10 PM
NovemberMandala Pooja Maholsavam15/11/201726/12/20175 PM - 10 PM
Madala Pooja26/12/2017
DecemberThirunada opens for Makaravilakku30/12/201720-01-20185 PM - 7 AM
January 2018Makaravilakku Day14/01/2018

Sabarimala Opening Dates 2017, Sabarimala Temple Opening Dates 2017, Sabarimala Temple Opening Dates 2017 to 2018, Sabarimala Temple Opening Dates 2017 – 2018

Sabarimala Lord Ayyapan Temple – Holy Place of Hariharan

Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sastha Temple of Kerala is the temple dedicated to Lord Ayyapan and is a renowned temple by its significance. The temple is located in Pathanamthitta district on top of the mountain which is about 3000 Feet above sea level. The major specialty of Sabarimala Ayyapan temple is that the temple is OPEN TO ALL who visits the temple during the opening dates and closing dates. Another fascinating fact of the temple is that the holy place will not be open throughout the year. It is open for worship and darshan which will be conducted during the opening days of Makaravilakku, Mandalapooja, and Chitra Vishu.

Every pilgrim who wants to worship Lord Ayyapa at Sabarimala needs to do a 41 Day fasting and cleanliness procedure. After 41 days, the pilgrim has to travel through the most tedious and difficult path of spines and stones to reach the temple. Want to know more amazing facts about Sabarimala Ayyapan temple? Just scroll down the cursor to find out the brief history of Lord Ayyapa, details of pooja like Makaravilakku pooja, Mandalapooja and Chitra Vishu, Sabarimala temple opening & closing Dates, distance, travel, and much more.

Legend & History of Lord Ayyapan – Son of Lord Vishnu & Lord Shiva

How was Lord Ayyapan born?

Lord Ayyapan is a graceful God who sits in the penance position in the temple and showers his incomparable blessings to everyone. Lord Ayyapan is known by several names such as Aiyappan
Ayyappan, Bhoolokanathan, Bhoothanathan, Dharmasastha, Erumelivasan, Harihar, Hariharaatmaja, Hariharan, Hariharaputra, Hariharasuthan, Kaliyugavaradhan, Karuna Sagar, Lakshmanapranadata, Lankapuravidahaka, Lokapujya, Manikantan, Pambavasan, Pandalavasan, Ponmala, Sabareesh, Sabareeshwara, Sabari, Sabari Girish, Shri Jagadeesh, and Veeramani. Lord Ayyapa is born by slaying a monstrous demon called Magishi. The deep history of Ayyapan is as follows: A Sovereign King called Rajashekara Pandian was ruling the Pandya Dynasty of Pandalam Nadu. He is a sincere devotee of Lord Shiva. The King had no heir to inherit his throne since he was displeased for being childless.

At the same time, the demon Magishi continuously persecuted the Rishis since their prayers are the reasons for her brother Magishasuran’s death. Magishi got the strong power and blessing from Brahma. Lord Vishnu switched his appearance into a girl called Mohini and saved the Rishis. Lord Shiva who heard about Mohini rushed to see her and fell in love with her instantly. As a result of their love, a baby boy was born. Lord Shiva thought of offering this baby to his profound devotee King Rajashekara Pandian. So, he kept his child with the gold bell around the neck nearby Pamba river.

King noticed the baby and at the same time a yogi came and said that the baby was named as “Manikandan”. As advised by the Yogi, he grew up him as his own child. As he was growing, Manikandan learned all the martial arts and excelled in sashtras which were unbelievable. In the Opening stage, Manikandan was the super smart child who seemed to possess the super special characteristics.

The Truth Revealed about Manikandan

King Rajashekar and his Queen both were happy & proud of their son Manikandan. After some years, the Queen gave birth to a boy called as Rajarajan. Diwan – a person who planned to acquire the throne hated Manikandan from the beginning itself. Diwan took several steps to kill Manikandan but failed in his every attempt. Finally, he plotted to brainwash the Queen and made her act like a patient. She became the prey for his trap and also, Diwan told the doctor to nod heads to his words. The physician, as instructed, said that the headache problem of the Queen can only be cured by a tigress’s milk.

He somewhat turned the situation favorable to his side and made Manikandan travel to the forest. King Rajashekar sent his boy along with some weapons and guards to the forest through the gate opening of the palace. On his way, he finds the demon Magishi (Mahisi) who ruins the life of people and the Yogis. He took off her life and danced on top of her chest on the banks of Azhutha River. This created a large impact amongst the Devas and was witness by Lord Shiva & Mahavishnu. Thereafter, he moved his way to the tigress for getting the milk (the medicine for the Queen). At that instance, Lord Shiva appeared before him and asked him to go to the palace with Lord Devendra in the form of the tiger. When he reached, everyone was shocked to see Manikandan’s ride on the tiger.

Just then, the Rishi who met before when he was a child appeared and the truth opening about Manikandan happened. King Rajashekar was shockingly surprised and fell to his feet as a sign of apologies. He asked Manikandan to tell a place where his temple needs to be built for an opening. Manikandan threw an arrow which struck at Sabari. After then, King built the temple in a grandeur manner with 18 holy steps as instructed by the Lord Ayyapan. Till now, people are worshipping Lord Ayyan during the opening dates & closing dates every year to get the blessings from the Lord.

Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sasta Temple – History, Facts, Legend, Opening & Closing Date

Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sasta Temple is one of the famous temples in India and is known for the Ayyapan worship. The temple will not be open for all time. The opening & Closing dates are clearly defined & only at that time you can really view the Lord Ayyapan. The important feature of this temple is that the blessing is common for everyone irrespective of all the differences in human. The basic legend that prevailed in Sabarimala Ayyapan Temple is that it was laid out in accordance with the instructions of the Lord Manikandan himself.

According to that, only a person who performs fasting and leads a life like a Bachelor leaving all the desires, family and tastes for 41 days will be blessed whole-heartedly by the Lord Ayyapan. As a custom, Only men are allowed to visit inside of the Ayyapan temple. Also, the small girls are allowed who have not undergone puberty stage. Ladies are usually not allowed to visit the temple since they cannot fast with cleanliness for the 41 days. Old Ladies who have crossed the menopause stage can enter the temple as they can abide by the principles of the Lord Aiyappan.

Kovil Sanidhanam & Holy 18 Steps of Sabarimala Ayyapan Temple, Kerala

In Kerala, the temple stands on an elevated plain of about 40 feet high thereby giving a beautiful picturesque of the mountains and the valleys below. Now, the entire square of Sabarimala temple comprises a sanctum sanctorium with four golden finials at the top, the Belikalpura housing, two mandapams, and the ‘kodimaram’ or the flag staff in the front of the sanidhanam. The idol of Lord Ayyapan is about one & half feet tall and lies within the Sannidhanam which is made out of Panchaloha (an amalgam of five metals). Lord Ayyapan can only be viewed and worshiped during the opening dates & closing dates. The one significant feature of Sabarimala temple is the Pathinettam Padi (18 Holy steps).

As per the tradition, the people who fasted for 41 days will finally carry the Irumudi on their head and will be allowed to use the steps to worship the lord. Each step has its special importance. The first five steps symbolize the five human senses (Panchendriyas) – vision, hearing, taste, touch and smell. The next eight steps represent the eight Ashtaragas – Love, Anger, Lust, Pride, Avarice, Jealousy, Unhealthy Competition, and Boastfulness. The following three steps symbolize the three Gunas – discernment, enjoyment, stupor. The final two steps symbolize knowledge and ignorance. The pilgrims can only worship the Lord after traveling through the 18 Holy steps that too only on the opening dates.

Kerala Sabarimala Ayyapan Temple Festival Calendar – Opening & Closing Dates 2017-2018

Sabarimala Ayyapan is worshiped every year by millions of pilgrims. Lord Ayyapan temple opening dates, closing dates along with the ritual timings are listed below. Take a look before studying the importance of festival at Sabarimala Ayyapan Temple.

Makaravilakku Pooja or Puja at Sabarimala

Makaravilakku puja is celebrated in Sabarimala Ayyapan temple every year on January 14, 2017, and it is the important opening date of the temple. It is also called as the Makar Sankranti. The highlight of the Puja is the light of Makarajothi (Light of the lord) which is being lit on the Horizon of Ponnambala Medu. It is witnessed by millions of devotees. Makaravilakku pooja will be celebrated for 7 days starting from 14th January. Dharma Sastha temple will be kept open for all those days from morning till night.

One most important part of the pooja is the procession of Lord Ayyapan’s sacred jewelry which will be taken from the Pandalam palace along the streets of the area. Thousands of people will congregate to see the jewelry which will be carried by the priest in a vehicle. Makkaravilakku Pooja ceremony will be conducted in Manimandapam near Lord Durgadevi shrine. After the Puja, Malikappurath Amma will be taken a procession on an elephant’s back and returns back to the Sabarimala Ayyapan temple. This way the pooja will be celebrated in a magnificent manner at Sabarimala during the opening date of Makaravilakku.

Mandala Pooja at Sabarimala

Mandala Pooja is a famous celebration at Sabarimala Ayyapan temple. The pooja will be performed for a period of 41 days starting from the 1st day of Malayalam month of Vrishchikam. During the mandala pooja period, the devotees will make a pilgrimage to the Lord Ayyappan’s Shrine at Sabarimala. Mandala Pooja signifies 41 days of austerities. Mala(ball garland) will be worn by the devotee who has to take up Vrutham or austerities for the next 41 days. Main Mandala pooja happens on the 41st day in which the Mala will be removed thus ending the fasting. Closing date of the pooja can be calculated from our listed table of contents.

Chitra Vishu Darshan & Pooja

Vishu Darshan & Pooja will be held at Sabarimala Ayyapan temple on April 14th. It is the first day of Chithirai month of Tamil Calendar. But, the Ayyappa temple will be opened for the Vishu festival from April 10th itself. The opening date of the Ayyapan temple for Vishu Darshan is on April 10th. Every day, Neyyabishekam will be performed to the Vishukani followed by routine rituals and poojas. During the Neyyabhishekam between 3 to 7 AM, the temple will be opened and devotees are allowed to worship the Lord Ayyapan. Vishu Darshan is one important festival at Sabarimala and the opening date forVishu darshan is between April 10th to April 18th. The closing date will be on April 18th and the doors of Sabarimala temple for Vishu Darshan will be closed at 10 PM.

Sabarimala Lord Ayyapan Temple – A Must Visit Holy Place in India

Kerala Sabarimala Ayyapan Temple is a renowned religious place of India being visited by lakhs and lakhs of visitors every year to get the darshan of Lord Ayyapan. The temple has the beautiful authentic style of architecture and well-organized schedule for opening and closing of the temple. During the important festivals like Makaravilakku, Onam, Vishu festival, Sabarimala temple will be opened. The celebration of festivals is highly recognized among the people of South India. Almost all the people who enter into the temple will wear a black colored dress as a tradition. Also, Vibuthi is the prasad given after worshiping Lord Ayyapan. Foods can be got at considerably low rates for the ease of the pilgrims.

Also, accommodation facilities are available for the devotees to rest at reasonable prices. Online booking and reservation are also accessible for our Lord Ayyapan temple. Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sasta Temple is one of the best pilgrimage sites to visit in South India. Keep in mind that only a men, small boy or a girl can get into the complex of the temple as a custom. Hope so, all the information provided above has benefited you in an effective way. On the whole, Sabarimala Lord Ayyapan Temple is a must-visit holy place in India and do visit if chances are favorable.

SooraSamharam SuraSamharam – Festival of Lord Murugan Famous at Tiruchendur

SooraSamharam SuraSamharam – Festival of Lord Murugan Famous at Tiruchendur

SuraSamharam aka SooraSamharam – Famous Festival of Lord Murugan

Soorasamharam is a ritual practice followed in Thiruchendur which interprets the killing of Asuras by Lord Murugan. ‘Sooran’ is the name of the demon and ‘Samharam’ refers to the act of killing. Generally, this practice is performed in Tamil Nadu, Sri Lanka and in some Murugan temples of Kerala. According to the history, this festival has been grandly celebrated in Thiruvannur Subramanya Swami temple in Kozhikode, Kerala for more than a century. Sooranpada is the name by which they call Soorasamharam in Kerala.

History of Soorasamhaaram (Sura Samharam Story )

Soorasamharam was celebrated according to Tamil Calendar and this year it falls on November 5. This divine act known as Soorasamharam is conducted on the account of Lord Muruga beheading Soorapadman with his ‘Vel’. On the day, devotees enjoy the victory of good over evil. The very next day, Thirukalyanam will be performed which portrays the divine marriage of Lord Muruga and Devasena. These are the acts which are taken from the Kandhapuranam.

According to Skanda Purana, the Surapadma has a battle of demons under his control. Two of the demons namely Simhamukha and Tarakasura were sued by the Devas. They continued harassing the human and committed Adharma everywhere. Lord Brahma, the demigods, and humans prayed to Lord Shiva to come forward and put a full stop to the demons. At that time, Lord Muruga was born to Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Lord Murugan was very powerful and was a great commander for all the Devas. He was so brave and destroys people who do adharma.

In the same way, Lord Muruga came to battle with the demons. The fight took place continuously for six days. It is not that Lord Muruga was not powerful to kill him at that instant. Everything happens only at the assigned time. Likewise, it happened and Lord Muruga killed all the demons and assistants of Padmasura. On the last day, serious and a long fight took place between Muruga and Soorapadman. Ultimately, Lord Murugan pierced Surapadman’s body with his weapon (Vel). Then also, he didn’t die completely.

Surapadma transformed himself into a big mango tree. He thought himself to be too brilliant. But, of course, what happened was not a surprise. Lord Muruga broke the trees into two pieces with his powerful weapon. The two pieces then changed into a peacock and cock. Lord Muruga sat back on the peacock ( his vahana or vehicle ) and he gave a place for the cock on his banner. This event is popularly known as Soorasamharam.

Celebration of Soorasamharam ( Kandha Sasti Kavasam )

In Tamil Nadu, Soorasamhaaram is a festival celebrated every year by a large number of devotees. The state government and Indian Railways ply special buses and trains to facilitate people in traveling to the temple. The Sooranporu was based on the story of Murugan as given in Kandhapuranam. A few days before commencing Soorasamharam, the skandhapuranam is narrated in the temple.

Soorasamhaaram is preceded by several procedures before the ending of Kanda Sashti festival. Specific Poojas will be conducted and Lord Murugan is ritually anointed (abhishekam). The devotees seek the deity’s Darshan. In some parts of Tamil Nadu, women do fasting for six days and they break at the end of the Soorasamhaaram. In Palani, Lord Murugan is taken down for a procession from the hill temple to the main road before the festival. Kanda Shasti is the sixth day from new moon day. These are the Poojas which will be conducted on the account of Kanda Sasti festival.

Thiruchendur Yaga Salai Pooja

During this season devotees get crowded in almost all the Lord Murugan’s temples and especially high number at the seashore temple in Thiruchendur. The function will begin with yaga salai puja and to initiate the function, a sacred flag will be hoisted in many places. The following event will be kappu kattuthal or sacred thread tying practice. Generally, the Priests will be doing the tying activity to all the devotees after having done with the pooja. Devotees with kappu in hand need to stay in the temple until the end of the festival.

Kandha Sasti Fasting

A lot of devotees especially women will observe fasts during the six days. You can take fruits alone, or some milk and liquid foods, and even some take one meal per day. It all depends on a devotee’s choice. There are possibilities that some devotees will fast only for the single day that too on the sixth day.

Many spiritual lectures will be taking place for day and night in temples. Reading of Kanda Puranam, chanting the hymns of Murugan will happen. Mainly Kanda Sasti Kavacham will be chanted on all six days. Special Poojas along with abhishekam, archanai, and deeparadhanai will be done on a daily basis. In some temples, Laksarchanai will also be conducted to Muruga.

Skandha Puranam and Soorasamharam

Skandha Puranam will be chanted by the devotees during the Poojas. The festival clearly gives a picture of killing the four Asuras Anamughan, Panumughan, Simhamughan, and Soorapadman. The last one to be killed is the Soorapadman or Padmasura. The Asuras are decapitated by Lord Murugan using his Vel (Weapon) which looks like a kind of spear or javelin.Before starting all this, the vel is consecrated and the ceremony takes place like Lord Murugan placing vel on Padmasura’s head and thereby it falls off on the ground. Soorasamhaaram is performed at the last week of Kanda Sashti festival.

Significance of Soorasamharam – Victory of Good over Evil

Soorasamharam own a peculiar religious significance, especially for Tamilians. The awesomeness of this day is cleared mentioned in Hindu scripture of ‘Skanda Puranam’. It is essential for every Hindu-Tamilian to visit the temple and get the Lord’s blessings. Every participant in the festival will find the enjoyment in the celebration. That, in turn, will automatically make you attend the function every year. It will be a real treat and pleasure for people to see all this. The only thing is the crowd which can cause some inconvenience. But, keeping Lord Muruga in mind, all the pains will disappear. Do visit this wonderful place of Thiruchendur Murugan temple which is one of the six abodes of Murugan.

Thai Pongal Celebrations in Tamil Nadu – Tamilar Thirunal Tamil Harvest Festival

Thai Pongal 2017 - Tamil Harvest Festival 2017 - Ulavar Thirunal 2017 - Tamilar Thirunal 2017 - Pongal Celebrations

Thai Pongal 2017 – Tamil Harvest Festival 2017 – Ulavar Thirunal 2017 – Tamilar Thirunal 2017 – Pongal Celebrations

FestivalDate
Pogi Pongal13-01-2017
Thai Pongal14-01-2017
Mattu Pongal15-01-2017
Kaanum Pongal16-01-2017

Tamil People’s Traditional Harvest Festival  – Tamilar Thirunal Pongal Celebrations in Tamil Nadu

Thai Pongal Celebrations in Tamil Nadu - Tamilar Thirunal Tamil People's Traditional Harvest Festival

Pongal is a Tamil people’s traditional festival celebrated by Hindus for annual harvest in Tamil Nadu. Pongal Celebrations in Tamil Nadu is preceded by worshiping Sun god with utmost reverence and thankfulness. In precise Pongal is rejoiced for the agricultural profusion offered by god during one full year. Pongal literally means ‘overflow’ in Tamil which symbolizes the overflow of wealth, joy, and prosperity within a family. Pongal is a 4-day cultural and traditional festival of Tamil people celebrated from last day of Tamil month Margazhi to the first three days of Tamil month Thai. Each day of Pongal celebration in Tamil Nadu has its own historic and cultural importance. Copious happiness along with strong family bonding is developed with this event. Pongal is mostly celebrated by the Tamil people of Tamil Nadu and hence also called as ‘Tamizhar Thirunaal’ meaning Tamil people’s traditional festival.

Significance of Pongal Celebrations in Tamil Nadu

Every festival has its own significance and history. Of that Pongal is a festival of Sangam age. Pongal festival is celebrated for four days. All the four days are celebrated with immense joy and pleasure all around. Margazhikolam is the specialty in houses during Pongal celebration in Tamil Nadu. Kolam is nothing but different patterns drawn using rice flour and colored in front of the gate or in portigo. Houses are cleaned and whitewashed to welcome the Goddess of wealth during the festive time. It is one of the famous tradition and culture followed by Tamil people in Tamil Nadu. In the top of the front doors mango leaves and turmeric are hanged as a part of traditional practice.Doors are decorated with turmeric and Kumkumam. These are the sequences followed by Tamil people in the Pongal celebration in Tamil Nadu.

Thai Pongal Festival Days

The four different days of the Pongal festival include

  • Bhogi
  • Thai Pongal
  • Maatu Pongal
  • Kaanum Pongal

Pongal Bhogi Festival

Bhogi is the first day of Pongal which is on last day of the Tamil month Margazhi. Bhogi is dedicated to Lord Indra for the blessing of abundant rain. Lord Indra is the God of the sky and precious rains. Tamil Devotees offer veneration to god by presenting sweets and foods before god. Bhogi is celebrated with a concept – ‘dispose old possessions to welcome new comings’. On this day people used to burn their old belongings in the daybreak. It is believed that this will erase the bad happenings thereby create a new beginning of blissfulness into one’s life. Along with that burn flames, Tamil people used to dance as a part of Pongal celebration in Tamil Nadu to express their contentment.

Thai Pongal

Thai is the tenth month of Tamil calendar. It falls either on 13th or 15th of January on a regular basis. Pongal is a holy festival celebrated on the first day of this month and hence termed as Thai Pongal. This day marks the second day of Pongal ceremony. Pongal is the name of the Tamil people’s food which is prepared during the Pongal days.

Preparation and serving of Pongal (food)

The Pongal cuisine is cooked in a small earthen pot with ginger and turmeric wound around the pot. The first harvested paddy is used for cooking rice. Rice along with jaggery, cashews, cardamom, etc are mixed and boiled in rice to get the delicious Pongal. The recipes of Pongal celebration will be overflowing out of the pots which signify a good sign of growth. When it overflows people used to scream ‘Pongalo Pongal’ to express their happiness.
Two types of Pongal are prepared namely Venn Pongal and Sweet Pongal which are made my Tamil people during the Pongal celebration. Food preparation is made in front of the sunlight and dedicated to the Sun god. Hence Thai Pongal is also known as Surya Pongal. On both the sides of the god sugarcanes are kept which is the essential portion of the festival. Only after offering prayers to god foods are tasted by the devotees. Tamil Folks of Tamil Nadu wear new traditional clothes and go to temples in the morning in reverence to god.

Maatu Pongal – Bull Pongal – Cow Pongal

Maatu Pongal (Festival of Cows) falls on the second day of Thai month. As the name indicates Maatu Pongal means ‘Pongal festival of cows’. Cows are decorated in a grand manner as well as their horns are painted in Tamil people’s houses. Garlands made of flowers, colorful beads and leaves are worn around the Cow’s head. Even loud sound bells are tied to the rope of cows to generate more rings. Those who are having cows will do this on a yearly basis. After all that decorations they are worshiped by lighting a lamp in front of their legs as a part of Pongal celebration. The customs are followed to show their gratitude by proffering chow to the cows which sacrifice a lot for human beings. Following that in the evening, cows are taken out for a round in their respective towns or villages of Tamil Nadu to show off delight. This marks the end of the Pongal celebration of this day in Tamil Nadu.

Jallikattu & its Importance on Maatu Pongal

Jallikattu or Sallikattu is the traditional game of Dravidian played in Tamil Nadu. “Salli” means coins and “Kattu” means “to tie”. Together it means tieing coins to the bull’s horns. The Bullfighter needs to embrace the bull for a particular distance and take the coins to win the award prize. “Maatu Pongal” stands to be the cultural festival of praising cattle. Hence, in many places of Tamil Nadu, Jallikattu events will be conducted as a part of the celebration.The most famous one is the Alanganallur Jallikattu near Madurai. It is one of the renowned sports of ancient Tamil Nadu that prevailed for years together. But, it was banned by the Supreme Court recently according to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act. This was the most unexpected action taken by the Government of India. As a true Tamil blood, we need to strive hard in some possible way to bring back Jallikattu in Tamil Nadu.

Kaanum Pongal or Uzhavar Thirunal

Last day of the Pongal celebration is known as Kaanum Pongal in Tamil Nadu. Kaanum means ‘to visit’ which means to visit their relatives’ houses and go outing with them. That is, there exists a get-together of different family members residing at various places. Apart from the above, there will be many gift exchanges among the societal members to celebrate Tamil people’s traditional festival. The gifts include food, clothes and household items which are useful. All the picnic spots and tourist places will be filled by hundreds of thousands of people. An added beauty of the Pongal celebration in Tamil Nadu is that Tamil people’s game play activities like Jallikattu, Gummi, Kabaddi and other village sports.These games are played only by the Tamil people to celebrate their traditional festival of Pongal.

Pongal – A Cultural Festival dedicated to Farmers

Pongal or Thai Pongal is a traditional festival of Tamils which falls on January 14, 2017, this year. Pongal means “overflowing” and this festival is celebrated so as to bring about overflowing happiness in life for the forthcoming years. Pongal is called to be the festival of farmers since this is the period of Harvest too. Also, Pongal is one big festival which brings not only joy but also harmony to our family. All the farmers will cook their first harvested rice and present before the Sun God. It is also celebrated to be the thanksgiving event for Mother nature. On the whole, the four-day festival Pongal is a traditional festival filled with cultural heritage. Let’s celebrate this holy festival of Pongal with bonds of love and Thanksgiving. With that note, I wish you all to have a very Happy and Prosperous Pongal this year.