September 5, 2010

Tiruchendur Murugan Temple - Tamil Nadu, India

Tiruchendur is a small town located in the Southern part of Tamil Nadu state of India. The town is famous because of Tiruchendur Murugan Temple. Tiruchendur town is located at a distance of around 75 kms from Kanyakumari, and around 55 kms from Tirunelveli. Tiruchendur Murugan temple is one the six "arupadai veedu" (six main adobes) of Lord Murugan. (Lord Murugan aka Lord Subramanya is the son of Lord Shiva).

Tiruchendur Beach
Tiruchendur Murugan temple is very huge and it is located too close to the sea shore. In fact, the sea waves keep touching the walls of Murugan temple. Tiruchendur beach is a different kind of beach where you cannot find resorts or romantic couples; the beach is full of devotees of Lord Murugan. Even though the actual temple entrance starts from the Rajagopuram (temple tower) near the beach, there is mandap (closed corridor) for a distance of around 1-1.5 kms away from the temple. You can find a lot of devotees staying beneath these closed corridors during the night. On both sides of this mandap, you can find a lot of shops selling pooja related materials. Also, there are small temples. The temple starts from the Rajagopuram (tower), where you can find a big mandap (corridor). The temple structure and entrance are a bit confusing. Moreover, you will be troubled by the beggars outside the temple and priests inside the temple. There are some shrines including that of Lord Ganesha and Murugan located in the outside mandap.
Tiruchendur Murugan Temple

The presiding deity of the temple, Lord Murugan, is believed to be many thousands of years old due to its reference in Hindu puranas and Tamil ancient books. The sanctum enshrines Lord Murugan in the standing posture. Lord Murugan in this temple is also called as Senthil, Senthil Andavar, Karthikeya, and Subramanya. In the main shrine itself, there is a Shiv linga called as Jagannatha. It is believed that this Shiv linga and a group of five Shiv lingas (Pancha linga) behind the main shrine were worshipped by Lord Murugan. You can also go and visit the Pancha Linga in the cave located behind the main shrine. Near the main shrine the idols of Veera Bagu, Veera Mahendra, Ganesha, and Parvathi are found.

In the prakara (corridor surrounding the main shrine) there is a monolithic figure of Lord Murugan seating on the peacock and fighting with the Asura. There are two separate shrines - one for Valli and another for Devasena (consorts of Lord Murugan) are also found in the corridor. There are a lot of Shiv Linga idols found in the corridor. There are also shrines or idols for Veera Kesari, Veera Marthandar, Dakshinamurti, Ganesha, Nataraja and Shanmukha. In the corridor, there is a shrine dedicated for Lord Venkatesa Perumal (Vishnu). Near his shrine, you can find the carved idol of Gaja Lakshmi and Ranganath along with Sri Devi, Bhoo Devi, and Neela Devi.

Outside the temple, there is a holy well named 'Nazhi Kinaru' where the devotees take bath. There is a small separate cave temple for Valli named ' Valli Guhai'. This is the place where Valli hid herself inside the cave as she was afraid of the elephant. (Ganesha took the form of elephant so that Valli would join his brother Lord Murugan). The small cave temple has the idols of Valli, Dattratreya, Chandra, Shiv Linga and Ganesha. In two kms from the Muruga temple, there is an ancient Shiva temple named 'Shiva Kolundeeswarar'.

Tiruchendur is the site where Lord Murugan killed the demon. In the 17th century CE, Tiruchendur temple was occupied by the Dutch for few years and they even looted some of the idols in the temple.

Ensure that you spend at least one full day to get a complete experience of Tiruchendur.

Happy travelling.

Fast Facts:
Site Name: Murugan Temple
City Name: Tiruchendur
1) The site where Lord Muruga killed Asuras
2) One of the six most important temples of Lord Muruga
3) One of the most important temples of South India
Location: 60 kms from Tirunelveli; 175 kms from Madurai; Located in the Southern part of Tamil Nadu state, India
Nearest Railway Station: Tirunelveli
Nearest Airport: Madurai (around 175 kms)
How to reach: Easily reachable by road from Tirunelveli or Madurai
Hotel: A lot of luxury hotels and budget hotels are available in Tiruchendur
Restaurants: There are a lot of good restaurants in Tiruchendur

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1 comment:

  1. Please note, nearest railway station is in Tiruchendur itself.