Chengannur Mahadeva - Temple - Kerala

Chengannur Mahadeva Temple is one of the prominent as well as the oldest temples in Kerala. It is also counted as one of the major Bhagavathy Temples in Kerala as it houses a shrine for Goddess Parvathi.

Chengannur Mahadeva - Temple

Chengannur Mahadeva Temple is one of the 108 Shakti Peethas dedicated to Goddess Parvathi. The idol of Lord Shiva faces the East and Goddess Parvathi faces the West. The temple complex spreads over an area of six acres and has a circular sanctum. The Shivalingam of this temple is believed to have emerged on its own (Swayambhu) and it bears a gold planted image of Ardhanareeswara. Ganapathi, Shasta (Lord Ayyappan), Chandikeswaran, Neelagrivan, Ganga, and Naagar are the sub-deities of this temple. There is also a shrine dedicated to Lord Krishna nearby this temple.


As per Hindu legends, Lord Vishnu, Brahma, Saints, Devas, Gandharvas, Yakshas and all other heavenly ones went to Himalaya to attend the auspicious marriage of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi. The Trimurthis requested sage Agastya to go and sit on Shronadri, to prevent the Earth from sinking to the northern side due to the weight of all the invitees who came for the marriage ceremony. Though Sage Agasthya conceded the request, he expressed his concern about losing the chance of viewing the marriage.

After the marriage, Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi went to meet sage Agasthya at Shronadri. There the Goddess became ‘rithu’ (menstruate), so she remained there for 28 days till the period of menstruation was over to give darshan to the sage Agasthya. The place where sage Agastya meditated, is known as Shronadri in Sanskrit and is known as Chenkunnu (Red Hill) in Malayalam. Later it came to be known as Chen Kunnu Uru (Ooru refers to a place) which is now popular as Chengannur.

Another legend about this temple is that Lord Vishnu severed the body of Goddess Parvathi (Sati) into pieces which scattered over different places known as Shakti Peethas. And it is believed that the reproductive organ of Goddess Parvathi's body fell at the place where the Chengannur Mahadeva Temple is located. The Kamakhya Temple in Assam is also related to the same legend.


  • Triputharattu which is marked as a symbol of fertility is the most important and unique feature of the Chengannur Mahadeva Temple.
  • It is believed that the Chengannur Mahadeva Temple is also associated with the great epic Mahabharata.
  • The temple has an altar known as Balithara which is used for making the ritualistic offering to demi-gods and the festive deities.
  • The idol of the presiding deity is kept inside the central shrine called Sreekovil.
  • The Sreekovil is positioned on an elevated platform with a single door that can be reached through a flight of five steps. And the doors have images of guardian deities called Dwarapalakas on its either sides.
  • The roof and some of the pillars of the temple have lavish wood and stucco carvings that depict various stories of Indian epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata.


  • Varshikotsavam: Chengannur Mahadeva Temple celebrates 28 days long annual temple festival that starts from Thiruvathira Nakshatra in Dhanu Masam to Thiruvathira Nakshatra in Makaram month. The temple is traditionally decorated with plantain, coconut leaves, flowers, leaves, traditional lamps, lights and special pujas are also held during the festival season. Traditional performing arts, music and dance are the highlights. On the final day, the utsava Murti of the deity is taken out of the shrine for ritual bathing. 
  • Thripputhu: Thripputhu is one of the important festivals celebrated in Chengannur Mahadeva Temple which is associated with the menstruation ceremony and is observed periodically in the temple. During Thripputhu, the temple is kept closed for three days. But worships will be offered to another image of the Goddess in a different spot of the temple. On the fourth day, the idol of the Goddess is taken to a nearby river and Arattu (holy bath) is conducted. Later the idol is taken back to the temple. The idols of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati are taken in procession around the temple three times during this festival. Then Lord Shiva enters the temple through the eastern side and the Goddess Parvathy enters through the western side.
  • Thulasamkrama Neyyattu: Thulasamkrama Neyyattu is the Ghee Abhishekam festival of the Chengannur Mahadeva Temple which is conducted on every 1st day of Thulam (mid-October to mid-November). During this festival, 36 paras (measurement in Malayalam) of ghee is showered on the ‘Shivalingam’.
  • Shivaratri: Maha Shivaratri falls on a moonless February night during which the devotees offer special prayer to Lord Shiva. Shivarathri is considered as an auspicious day for women during which the married women pray for the well-being of their husbands and sons, while the unmarried women pray for an ideal husband like Lord Shiva.


  • 4:30 AM to 11:30 AM.
  • 5 PM to 8 PM.

Dress Code

Traditional wears are the most preferable attire while visiting Chengannur Mahadeva Temple.

Way To Reach

Air : Trivandrum International Airport and Cochin International Airport are the nearest airports to Chengannur Mahadeva Temple which are at a distance of 117 Km and 126 Km respectively. On reaching the airport, one can hire a cab or a bus to reach the temple.

Train : Chengannur Railway Station is the nearest railway station to Chengannur Mahadeva Temple which is situated at a distance of 2 Km. On reaching the railway station, one can hire a cab, bus or an autorickshaw to reach the temple.

 By Road -  Many state transport buses and private buses are easily available to Chengannur.