Thiruvannamalai Temple

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Thiruvannamalai Temple - Temple of  Arunachaleswarar (Shiva worshipped as a Shiva Lingam) and Unnamulaiyaal (Abitakuchambal - Parvati), is one of the largest temples in India.

It is one of the Pancha Bhoota Stalams (one of the five grand temples associated with the five basic elements) – associated with the element Fire, the other four being Tiruvanaikkaval (Water), Chidambaram (Space), Kanchipuram (Earth) and Srikalahasti (Wind) respectively.

Significance of Thiruvannamalai Temple:

Legend has it that Shiva manifested himself in the form of a massive column of fire, whose crown and feet, Bhramma and Vishnu  attempted in vain to reach. (See: Lingodbhavar) A celebration of this manifestation is seen today in the age old traditions observed in the Shivaratri and the Kartikai Deepam Utsavams held here.

There is an air of deep mysticism around the temple, the hill and its environs and the town itself has been known for its long association with Yogis, Siddhas, the well known spiritual savant Ramana Maharishi and several others. The origin of this temple dates way back in time, although much of the temple structure as seen today, is a result of building activity over the last one thousand years.

All of the four Saivite Saints Appar, Sambandar, Manikkavacakarand Sundarar have sung the glory of this temple and it was at this temple that Arunagirinathar began composing his immortal work Tiruppugazh. Muthuswamy Deekshitar’s kriti Arunachalanatham pays tribute to the presiding deity of Tiruvannamalai.

Temple Architecture:

  • The ancient and vast Arunachaleswarar Temple as it stands today is the result of several centuries of building, alteration and extension.
  • A Nandi faces the main shrine in each of its five prakarams.
  • The outermost prakaram houses the thousand pillared hall and the Shiva Ganga tank and is pierced on four sides with colossal Gopurams.  The fourth prakaram includes the Bhramma Tirtham, and its eastern gateway Vallala Gopuram holds a statue of King Ballala.
  • The third prakaram which dates back to the 12th century CE has several Linga Shrines, and the Kili Gopura Entrance. In the East side of the prakaram stands the Flag Staff while the Northern side is home to the massive shrine of Unnamulai Amman.
  • The 3rd prakaram surrounds the roofed 2nd prakaram which houses the pantheon of deities associated with Shiva, which in turn surrounds the shrine of Annamalaiyar.

Special Worship Services:

  • An elaborate protocol of worship services marks each day at the Tiruvannamalai temple where about a hundred and fifty people are attached to the temple including priests, musicians, singers, carpenters, potters, washermen, palanquin bearers, garland makers, administrators, guards etc.
  • The day begins with the ceremonial arrival of Ganga to the shrine, from a tank in the Southern part of the town on an elephant through the Southern, Tirumanjana Gopuram.
  • This water cleanses the entrance to the second prakaram, and then the next ritual involving the waking up of Shiva and Parvati in the bedchamber. The Shiva-Meru returns to the Annamalaiyaar shrine while the image of Parvati returns to the Unnamulaiamman shrine.
  • Six other pujas are offered at the temple, the first one at 6 am, and the last one at night where the Shiva Meru and the image of Parvati are processionally brought into the bed chamber.
  • Each service is accompanied by chants of invocation, dedication and praise. In the south west corner of the prakaram, the sacrificial fire ritual takes place, ending with the consecration of vessels of water which are used in the ablution of Annamalaiyaar and Unnamulai Amman.

Festivals in Thiruvannamalai Temple:

  • Kartikai Deepam festival is the famous festival of  Tiruvannamalai. Lakhs of people across the globe throng Thiruvannamalai Temple on this speical day.
  • Each occurrence of the full moon is a celebration in itself, as hundreds of thousands throng to circumambulate the Annamalai Hill which is well known as Giri Valam, considered to be a reperesentation of Annamalaiyar himself.
  • The festivals of the temple are remarkably intertwined with the life of the locals, marking the so called subtle transcendence between the human and the divine states.
  • Tiruvannamalai celebrates four annual Bhrammotsavams (10 day festivals) the most famous of which is the Kartikai Bhrammotsavam(in the Tamil month of Kartikai Nov 15 - Dec 15).
  • The Arudra Darisanam in the month of Margazhi (Dec 15 through Jan 15) is a celebration of the cosmic dance of Shiva.
  • The Tai Poosam festival which occurs in the month of Tai (Jan 15 through Feb 15) is also of great significance. 
  • The Tiruvoodal festival, enacting a mock quarrel between Annamalaiyaar and Unnamulai Amman is enacted in the presence of Sundaramoorthy Nayanaar in the Tiruvoodal Street, a street that has been earmarked for this annual event.
  • In the month of Maasi, (Feb 15 through March 15) Shiva is crowned as the King in the absence of a royal heir to King Ballala of the Hoysala dynasty (an early 14th century ruler) whose statue adorns the Vallala Gopuram.

Temple Timings:

5.30 AM to 12.30 PM and 3.30PM to 9 PM


  • The Price of the Puja includes service charges, prasad, packing and courier cost and any other incidental charges
  • We are not agent of any temple, our representative will perform the puja on your behalf and collect the prasadam.
  • You will receive the prasadam within 30 days