Kerala, the enchanting land known as “God’s Own Country,” is also a treasure trove of spiritual destinations that offer a serene and blissful experience to travelers seeking inner peace and spiritual enlightenment. From ancient temples to serene ashrams, Kerala is home to a wide range of spiritual places that are worth exploring. In this article, we will take you on a journey to discover some of the most prominent spiritual places to tour in Kerala.
Located in the Periyar Tiger Reserve, Sabarimala Temple is one of the most famous and revered pilgrimage sites in Kerala. Dedicated to Lord Ayyappa, this hilltop temple attracts millions of devotees every year. The temple is known for its rigorous pilgrimage traditions and is open to male devotees who follow a strict 41-day penance before visiting. The challenging trek through the dense forests adds to the spiritual experience of the journey.
Guruvayur Temple, situated in the town of Guruvayur, is one of the most significant Lord Krishna temples in India. The temple is believed to be more than 5,000 years old and is renowned for its divine presence. The architecture of the temple is awe-inspiring, with intricate carvings and a beautiful idol of Lord Krishna. The divine atmosphere and the melodious chanting of hymns create a captivating spiritual ambiance.
Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple
Nestled in the heart of Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala, Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple is a marvel of Dravidian architecture. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the temple is famous for its stunning architecture, including a 100-foot gopuram (tower), intricate stone carvings, and a mesmerizing idol of Lord Vishnu reclining on the serpent Ananta. The temple is not just a spiritual destination but also a treasure trove, as it houses ancient treasures worth billions of dollars.
Varkala, a serene coastal town in Kerala, is not just known for its stunning beach but also for its spiritual significance. The famous Janardhana Swamy Temple, located on a cliff overlooking the Arabian Sea, attracts devotees and tourists alike. The temple has a history dating back thousands of years and is believed to have healing powers. The breathtaking view of the sea from the cliff adds to the spiritual experience.
Aranmula Parthasarathy Temple
Aranmula Parthasarathy Temple is a significant Hindu temple located in the village of Aranmula in Kerala, India. Dedicated to Lord Krishna in his role as Parthasarathy (the charioteer of Arjuna), this temple holds great religious and cultural importance. The temple is known for its beautiful architecture and intricate woodwork, showcasing the traditional Kerala style. One of the unique features of the temple is the annual Aranmula Boat Race, held during the festival of Onam. The temple attracts devotees and tourists alike, who come to seek the blessings of Lord Krishna and admire the rich cultural heritage of the region.
Amritapuri Ashram, also known as the Mata Amritanandamayi Math, is a renowned spiritual center located in Vallikkavu, Kerala. Founded by Mata Amritanandamayi Devi, also known as Amma, this ashram attracts spiritual seekers from all over the world. The ashram provides a serene and peaceful environment for meditation, yoga, and spiritual retreats. Mata Amritanandamayi Devi is revered as a spiritual teacher and humanitarian, and her presence at the ashram offers devotees an opportunity to receive her blessings and guidance.
Nestled amidst the lush Brahmagiri Hills in Wayanad district, Thirunelli Temple is an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Surrounded by breathtaking natural beauty, the temple is believed to have been built by Lord Brahma himself. The sacred river Papanasini flows by the temple, and it is believed that taking a dip in its waters can cleanse one of their sins. The serene ambiance and the majestic backdrop of the hills make Thirunelli Temple a must-visit spiritual destination in Kerala.
St. Mary’s Forane Church
Located in the town of Athirampuzha, near Kottayam, St. Mary’s Forane Church is one of the most revered Christian pilgrimage sites in Kerala. The church is known for its annual feast dedicated to St. Sebastian, which attracts thousands of devotees. The architecture of the church is a blend of Kerala and European styles, and the stunning artwork and murals inside depict biblical stories. The church holds a significant place in the hearts of the Christian community and offers a peaceful atmosphere for prayer and reflection.
Pazhavangadi Ganapathy Temple
Situated in Thiruvananthapuram, Pazhavangadi Ganapathy Temple is a popular Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Ganesha. The temple is known for its unique idol of Lord Ganesha, which is depicted in a standing posture with the right hand raised in blessing. The temple attracts devotees from far and wide, and the serene atmosphere and daily rituals create a spiritual ambiance. The temple also hosts the famous Vinayaka Chathurthi festival, which is celebrated with great enthusiasm.
Chottanikkara Bhagavathy Temple
Located in the village of Chottanikkara, near Kochi, this temple is dedicated to Bhagavathy. The deity is believed to have healing powers and devotees from different parts of the country visit the temple seeking divine blessings. The temple complex consists of two main shrines, one dedicated to Bhagavathy and the other to Lord Shiva. The annual festival, called the Makam Thozhal, is a grand celebration that attracts devotees in large numbers.
Kerala, with its rich spiritual heritage, offers a unique blend of diverse religious traditions and a peaceful environment for seekers of spiritual solace. Whether you are looking to experience the ancient rituals and traditions of Hindu temples or seeking tranquility in ashrams, Kerala has something to offer for every spiritual traveler. So, embark on a spiritual journey to these divine places in Kerala and immerse yourself in the serenity and bliss they have to offer.