Welcome to the Dwarka of South !!
Guruvayur is one of the greatest pilgrimages of Kerala. It is a small town in Thrissur district located about 25 km from Thrissur city, synonymous with the Shri Krishna or Guruvayur Temple. Guruvayur or Guruvayoor temple is said to have been founded in ancient times when Guru Brahspati (the teacher of Gods) and Pavan Dev (God of winds) placed the statue of Lord Krishna at this place. It is one of the most sacred temples in India, and is dedicated to lord Krishna. Kerala's literature and several traditional art forms are linked with this temple. This place of festivals is legendary and traditional in each and every perspective.
The city is most famous for its Guruvayurappan Temple, which is dedicated to Balagopalan (Lord Krishna in childhood). Here, Shri Krishn is said to be worshiped by Lord Brahma himself. This beautiful temple is a marvelous spot to explore the traditions of Kerala. Beautiful paintings, nakkashi and murals depict the life stages and stories of Shri Krishna in an extraordinary way. Only Hindu people are allowed to enter the temple. It is a major site for marriages as well.
Guruvayur is also known for an elephant sanctuary, called Punnathurkotta Anakotta. It is spread over an area of 10 acres and has more than 60 elephants. This sanctuary is unique because all these elephants are the offerings made by devotees to the temple god. This sanctuary is approximately 3 km from the temple.
Another attraction near Guruvayur is Gokulam And Vrindavanam Estate. It is a 100 acre estate located at Vengad in Malapuram District, about 55 Kilometers from Guruvayur. The Vrindavanam Estate is known for the cultivation of world class coconuts, cashew, palm. In this estate, there is a 25 acre plot called Gokulam, which is the habitat for more than 550 cows.
Festivals And Occasions
Being near Thrissur city, Guruvayur celebrates Thrissur Pooram with full vigor at Vedakkunnathan temple. Caparisoned elephants, traditional dance performances, colourful dresses, giant umbrellas are the main attractions of this festival.
People of Guruvayur celebrate Ekadasi festival during Mandalam period. This was the day when Lord Krishna revealed the Gita to Arjuna.
Another is Udayasthamana pooja, that symbolizes praying from sunrise to sunset. This special worshiping needs 15 different kind of Pujas apart from normal routine praying.
Guruvayur also celebrates Chembai sangeetholsavam. As the name suggests, this is purely a music festival which lasts for 11 days. It is celebrated as a tribute to Sri Chembai Vaidyanadha Bhagavathar. Different art and dance forms are presented on this occasion.
Mandala Ulsavam is a puja dedicated to Lord Ayyappa. The puja starts from the very first day of Malayalam month of Vrishchikam (Nov). It is celebrated for a period of 41 days and concludes with an elephant race.
Climate And Best Time To Go
The climate is tropically humid at Guruvayur throughout the year. Temperatures generally vary from 20 to 36 degrees, but in winters, temperatures as low as 3 degrees have been recorded. The city receives heavy rainfall from June to August, so it is advisable not to plan your vacations during the monsoon.
September to March is considered the best time to visit Guruvayur.
How To Commute
Cochin International Airport (Nedumbassery) is 80 kms from Guruvayur. Another airport is at Calicut which is 100 km. from Guruvayur. The city has its own railway station which is connected to all the major cities of Kerala. Besides, it is very near Thrissur city, so commuting via rail and road is not at all a problem.