Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple - Kerala

Introduction :

Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple is centuries old and the most prominent Maha Ganapathy Temple in Kerala which is situated in Kottarakkara, about 25 Km from Kollam. This temple is of historical importance and was originally known as Kizhakkekara Shiva Temple. Even though the main deity of this temple is Lord Shiva, it is famous as a Ganapathi temple. The idol of this temple is 3-feet high and has four hands carrying Pasa, Modakam, Kadalippazham and Ankusa. The devotees truly believe that Lord Ganesha removes all the obstacles in their life.

Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple

The temple celebrates the Vinayaka Chaturthi, the birthday of Lord Ganesha with a lot of festivities which is marked with Mahaganapathi Homam using 1008 coconuts. Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati, Lord Murugan, Lord Ayyappan, and Nagaraja are the sub-deities of this temple. Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple is famous for Unniyappam which is the main offering to Lord Ganesha in this shrine.

History of the Temple:

As per the legends, Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple was originally Kizhakkekara Shiva Temple. Lord Shiva was the main deity of this temple whereas Lord Ganesha was just a minor deity here. But today, Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple is famous as a Ganesha temple rather than a Shiva temple.

The history of this temple is related to the royal sculptor Perunthachan. He had a son who mastered and excelled in carpentry and architecture like his father. The fame of his son soon spread far and wide. This made a sort of professional jealousy in Perunthachan. As per the Aithihyamala, Perunthachan dropped his chisel on his own son faking it as an accident. After his son's death, Perunthachan started wandering and finally, he reached Kottarakkara. At that time, the Padinjattinkara temple was under renovation. He saw a huge piece of jack tree root inside the Sarppakkavu and started chiseling it. Finally, he sculptured an admiring Ganapathy idol from it.

Perunthachan then asked the permission of the chief priest of Padinjattinkara temple to install the idol there. As there is already a Ganapathy idol in the temple, the chief priest denied his permission. Changed his plan, Perunthachan went to Kizhakkekara Shiva temple where the chief priest of the temple, hearing his story, agreed to consecrate the Ganapathy idol there. After the installation of the idol, Perunthachan offered half a dozen Unniyappam in a plantain leaf before the deity which is still considered as the favourite nivedyam (offerings) of Ganapathy. The kitchen of this temple is situated in front of the Ganapathy shrine where Unniyappam are prepared. Perunthachan had then predicted that even though the father (Lord Shiva) is the principal deity here, his son (Lord Ganapathy) will become more famous in this temple.

Speciality of the Temple

Even though the main deity of Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple is Lord Shiva, the temple is popular as Ganapathy Temple.

The temple has a golden Dwajastambam or a flagpole.

The Sreekovil of the temple is circular in shape and has a copper covered conical roof.

Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati, Lord Murugan, Lord Ayyappan, and Nagaraja are the sub-deities of this temple.

Unniyappam Udayasthamanapooja, Mahaganapathi Homam and Pushpanjali are the main offerings of Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple.


  • 4:00 AM to 11:30 AM.
  • 4:00 AM to 11:30 AM.

Festivals in the temple

Vinayaka Chaturthi: Vinayaka Chaturthi is one of the most important festivals of Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple. It is also known as Ganesh Chaturthi and is celebrated as the birthday of Lord Ganesha. It occurs on Shukla Chaturthi of the Hindu month of Bhadra that generally falls between August and September. This festival is marked with great Mahaganapathi Homam, using 1008 coconuts which is believed to remove obstacles not only in the material world but also in one’s spiritual progress.

Navarathri: Navratri is another divine festival celebrated at the Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple. The Navaratri festival is divided into sets of three days to worship different aspects of the supreme Goddess. On the first three days, the Goddess is invoked as a powerful force named Durga in order to destroy all our impurities, vices and defects. The next three days, the Goddess is worshipped as Lakshmi, who is considered to have the power of bestowing on her devotees the inexhaustible wealth. During the final set of three days, the Goddess is worshipped as Saraswathi, the goddess of wisdom during which thousands throng to the temple to perform the Vidyarambham.

Vishu: The temple also celebrates Vishu which is the first day of the local calendar and is the beginning of Meda Rashi, the first zodiac sign. According to the English calendar, it usually falls in the second week of April.

Sivaratri: Another important festival of this temple is Sivaratri which is celebrated on the moonless night of the month of Phalguna.

Dress Code to visit the temple:

Traditional wears are the most preferable attire while visiting Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple.

Best Time To Visit

Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple can be visited throughout the year. But August to September is the best time to visit this temple as you can take part in the Vinayaka Chaturthi festival.

Way to reach :

 By Air - Trivandrum International Airport is the nearest airport to Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple which is situated at a distance of 74 Km. On reaching the airport, one can hire a cab or a bus to reach the temple.

 By Rail - Kottarakkara Railway Station is the nearest railway station to Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple. 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 Kottarakkara.