Festivals of South Tamil Nadu : Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple

Festivals of South Tamil Nadu : Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple

Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple: Where Tradition Meets Devotion by the Sea


Nestled along the picturesque Western coast of Kanniyakumari District, Tamil Nadu, the Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple stands as a beacon of Hindu spirituality and devotion. Dedicated to the revered goddess Devi Parvathi, this temple near Colachel has earned its place among the most renowned and important Hindu sanctuaries in the region.

The Spiritual Oasis by the Sea:

Perched near the Colachel seashore, the Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple beckons pilgrims from both Tamil Nadu and Kerala. Its significance is amplified during the ten-day Kodai festival, celebrated in the Tamil month of Maasi (March), known as Maasi Kodai. This major celebration has become a cultural touchstone not just in the region but throughout the district.

A Festival of Splendor:

The Kodai festival unfolds with a series of rituals and events, with the seventh day marking the grand 'Valiya Padukka' ceremony, showcasing an exhibition of fruits, food, and flowers before the deity. On the ninth day, the mesmerizing 'Periya Chakkara Theevetti,' a ring of fire, illuminates the Utsava Murthi Amman during a procession around the temple. The pinnacle of the celebration arrives on the tenth day with the unique 'Odukku Pooja,' a midnight ritual that marks the festival's crescendo.

A Women's Sabarimala:

Known as the Women's Sabarimala, the Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple draws parallels to the famed Sabarimala pilgrimage. Kerala women, reminiscent of Sabarimala traditions, carry 'Irumudi' on their heads as they make the journey to this sacred temple. To accommodate the influx of devotees, special buses and chain services operate between Nagercoil and nearby towns, including Thiruvananthapuram.

Unique Offerings and Rituals:

The temple's idol of Devi is not only unique and immense but also holds an earthy presence. Within the Sanctum Santorum, three idols of Amman stand, and a distinctive worship tradition unfolds as every woman visiting the temple must make Pongala, offering it to Bhagavathy Amman. Cane Sugar Payasam and Mandaikadu Mandaiappam are the goddess's favored delicacies, creating a sensory experience for devotees.

A Sacred Connection:

The goddess Mandaikadu Amman is intricately linked with Ayya Vaikundar, as detailed in the holy text of Ayyavazhi, Akilathirattu Ammanai. This connection, narrated in various texts, adds a layer of spiritual depth to the temple's aura.

A Glimpse from Afar:

A unique feature of the Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple is the accessibility for devotees to catch a glimpse of Bhagavathy Amman even from the roadside. During festivals, the streets surrounding the temple transform into a bustling marketplace with hundreds of shops, attracting thousands of devotees who come to offer their worship each day.


The Mandaikadu Bhagavathy Amman Temple Festival, as witnessed through recent news articles, paints a vivid picture of a cultural and spiritual extravaganza. This sacred space, where tradition meets devotion by the sea, continues to capture the hearts and minds of those who seek solace and connection in the vibrant tapestry of Hindu spirituality.

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