Witness The Grand Elephant Procession !!
'Pooram' or Elephant Festival is the most colourful temple festival of Thrissur (or Trichur), which attracts thousands of tourists from around the world. This festival is celebrated in the month of April-May. As the name symbolizes, Thrissur Pooram or elephant festival is characterized by a huge parade of elephants. The festival is celebrated outside Vedakkunathan temple and is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Shakthan Thampuran, the former king of Cochin, who was the pioneer of this festival in the late eighteenth century.
The major attractions of this festival are caparisoned elephants and fireworks. Numerous (usually 101) elephants, decorated with flowers, glittering gold jewellery and ornaments, line up for a long parade. The festival lasts for two days continuously. People enjoy fireworks and colourful traditional dance performances. The festivals also includes a show called “Kudamattahm”, in which colourful umbrellas are exchanged between different temples. These umbrellas are very big in sizes and are designed secretly. The opponent temples spend numerous days and lakhs of rupees in the designing these umbrellas.
The two rival groups of Paramekkavu and Thiruvambadicompete with each other on this occasion to display fireworks. Both groups are allowed to display a maximum of fifteen elephants. They make all efforts to decorate their elephants in the best possible way and showcase the most artistic umbrellas also. The celebration starts early in the morning and last till the break of dawn.
The Pooram festival is considered the day of celebration of the meeting of all gods and goddesses. The atmosphere is full of excitement. Local people perform several traditional dances to the loud rhythm of drums, air pipes and cymbals. Elephant Festival, perhaps, is the only festival that attracts so many people from all over the world to witness the ancient culture of Kerala.