Mannarasala Temple - Kerala

Mannarasala Temple

Mannarasala Temple is located in Haripad, in Alleppey district of Kerala, The temple is dedicated to "Nagaraja" the serpent god and his consort, Sarpayakshini. This temple is situated in forest area which has around 30,000 images of snake along the path and among the trees, and is the largest such temple in Kerala, In this temple, the rites are presided over by a priestess.

The main festivals are on the day of Ayilliam in the months of Kanni and Thulam (September and October), when all the serpent idols in the grove and the temple are taken in procession to the illam (family connected with the temple) where the offerings of Nurum Palum (rice flour and milk), kuruthi (a red liquid made of turmeric and lime) and cooked rice are made. The oldest female member of the family carries the idol of the Nagaraja and the procession is conducted with great pomp and rejoicing. The Ayilyam in Kanni is the birthday of Nagaraja and that in Kumbham (Mahasivarathri) is the birthday of Anantha, the Muthassan of Nilavara (cellar).

During the festival days thousands of people assemble at Mannarasala to worship and propitiate the serpent gods. The most popular offering of this temple is ‘Uruli Kamazhthal’, the placing of a bell metal vessel upside down in front of the deity, which is believed to restore fertility to childless couples, Other than that silver and copper, grains of all kinds, pepper, tender coconuts, plantains, melons, sandalwood etc. are also offered.

Mannarasala is one of the main pilgrim attraction in kerala.