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Kottiyoor Temple – God’s Own Country’s Famous Shiv Temple

Kottiyoor Temple in Kerala

Kerala is not called “God’s Own Country” for no reason. Besides the abundant nature, elite temples have earned Kerala the said phrase. Kottiyoor temple is a prominent Shiva Temple and is located in Kottiyoor Village in Kannur District. The village is also a famous Wildlife Sanctuary of Kerala.

Additionally, the temple is also famous as Sri Kottiyoor Mahadeva Kshetram, Dakshina Kashi and Varanasi of the South. It’s a significant Hindu pilgrimage centre that’s also the abode of Goddess Parvati. The Kottiyoor Temple Pooja Timings usually are from 5 AM to 8 PM. However, they vary during special occasions, festivals and holidays. Additionally, the Kottiyoor temple timings can be found on their website.

Huts near  Kottiyoor Temple
Thatched Huts at Kottiyoor Temple

Kottiyoor Temple History

The characters of Daksha, Sati and Shiva form the history and the mythology behind this temple. Daksha’s daughter Sati married Shiva against his wishes, forcing him to perform a yagna to insult Shiva. He invited all the gods and goddesses except Lord Shiva. Sati attended the yagna against Shiva’s wishes. She was insulted by her father and committed suicide by immersing in the yagna fire.

Shiva opened his third eye with enrage and Veerabhadra appeared with 1,000 arms with a weapon in each. Shiva cut off Daksha’s head and destroyed his sacrifice. The gods then had to appear in front of Shiva to pacify him and restore the yagna.

The Restoration

Shiva replaced Daksha’s head with a goat’s head and this is the place where Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva come together. It is known as Koodiyoor meaning ‘meet’ or ‘join’. Over the years, it earned the name Kottiyoor. It’s the place of the ancient Dakshayagna.

It’s also one of the oldest Hindu pilgrimage spots in the world. Kottiyoor Temple Photos give a glimpse of the ancient setting and it’s tradition.

Significance of Kottiyoor Temple

There is a belief that this shrine has the blessings of the divine presence of The Holy Trinity. It also has the blessings of Bhagavathy. Therefore, Kalki is keeping the promise not to enter the temple premises.

It’s also a highly sacred shrine of Shakti and features simple structures. Building new structures is forbidden to maintain the old customs and traditions. The structures resemble thatched settings. It’s also popular as the origin of Shakthi Peethas.

A Unique Feature Of The Temple

There is no sanctum but only Swayambhoo linga with water surrounding it called Thiruvanchira. Devotees consider it to be the blood of Virabhadran while destroying the Yaga.

Kottiyoor Temple During A Festival
Festival Time at Kottiyoor Temple

Social Significance

The society as a whole participates in the pilgrimage. Besides, every community performs a specific duty and also consider it as a birthright. It is the norm since the ancient days and, therefore, has become a significant part of their culture.

Association With Other Temples

Akkare kottiyoor temple has close associations with prominent temples in South India. The puffed rice is given to Narasimha Swamy temple. It also has association with Thirunelli MahaVishnu Temple that offers

Over the years, tons of firewood burnt without the need to remove the ash. Manathana shrine supplies almost all the essentials. Karimbanagopuram supplies pooja items and ornaments. Chapparam Bhagavathi temple supplies sacred swords.

Rituals At Kottiyoor Temple

Kottiyoor Mahadeva Temple timings are very auspicious and mark some important rites and rituals. The most prominent ritual is the Vaisakha Maholsavam celebration that happens during May and June every year. Sri Shankaracharya initiated these rituals after experiencing the presence of Lord Shiva. He left the place without polluting it with his feet. This 28-day festival starts off with a sword from Muthirerikavu. Neyyattam ritual starts on Chodi Day and ends with the Thrikkalashaattu.

Other Rituals

Elaneer Vayppu is yet another significant ritual where devotees place tender coconuts at the swayambhu Shiva linga. Devotees carry numerous tender coconuts from different parts of Kerala. After this day, the priests pour coconut water on the idol known as ‘Elaneeraattam.’

Rohini Aaradhana is a ritual typical only to this temple and a procession is performed, called Ezhunnallippu. Two elephants carry idols of Shiva and Parvathi.

Kottiyoor Temple and its surroundings
Kottiyoor Temple amidst the state’s greenery

Travelling To Kottiyoor

If you are looking to travel by air, Cochin International Airport is the nearest airport that is 101 KM away from the temple. You can also catch a train at the Ernakulam Junction railway station. Its 121 KM away from the temple. Kottiyoor is also easily accessible by road from all major South India cities.

Performing a ritual at this ancient temple lets devotees experience mythological bliss. Additionally, it’s one of the few temples in the world to maintain its glory over the decades.