The abode of Sree Guruvayoorappan

From the time immemorial, India has been a spiritually enlightened country consecrated by Rishis and temples of worship. Holy places like Kashi and Rameswaram have magnificent Temples which, besides their spiritual significance, are noted for their antiquity and historical importance.

The presiding deity in the Garbhagraha (central shrine) is Mahavishnu, worshipped according to the pooja routines laid down by Adi Sankaracharya and later written in to the Tantrasamuchaya by Chennas Narayanan Namboodiri (born in 1427). The Chennas Namboodiris are the hereditary Tantri of Guruvayur temple. The people at large, however, invoke the Lord as UNNIKRISHNA or BALAKRISHNA.

Pooja/ Offerings

The temple is open at 3 am and closees after the day’s poojas and rituals around 10 pm. Normally there are five poojas and three circumambulatory processions called Sreeveli, propitiating the celestial deities and carrying the Loard’s Thidambu on elephant’s back. During the days of Udayasthamana Poojas there will be a total of twenty one poojas.


Pooja Advance Bookings

Krishnanattam must be Booked in advance at the advance booking counter. Devotees who book Krishnanattam can watch the performance inside the temple that particular day. Prasadam is not issued to devotees who book krishnanattam
The advance booking amount is 50,000/-.Contact devaswom office finace department for more information.

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Ekadasi, the eleventh day of every lunar fortnight, is very auspicious to the Hindus. Of the 24 Ekadasis in an year, the Vrishchika Ekadasi (Suklapaksha) has got special significance in Guruvayur.
Mandala pooja begins on the first day of the Malayalam month of Vrishchikam. This is a period of 41 days for the pilgrimage to the shrine of Lord Ayyappa at Sabarimala. Most of the devotees who go to Sabarimala also visit Guruvayur.
Saraswathy Pooja
Of the 9 days of the Navarathri festival, the last three days are specially sacred for goddess Saraswathy who presides over the world of learning and fine arts
ThiruvonamOn the Uthradam day of the month of Chingam (August- September), thousands of devotees bring “Kazhcha kulas” (bunches of Banana) as offering to the Lord
Ashtami Rohini in Chingam (August-September) is the birthday of Lord Krishna. Appam and Palpayasam are considered to be important offerings on this day. Special feast is arranged for the devotees.

It means new rice. It is a formal beginning of the use of rice from the new harvest season for offering in the temple. Puthari payasam is offered to Lord; it takes place in the month of Chingam.

The Vaishakha is the lunar month starting from new moon of Medam (April-May). The Vaishakha vratham (fast) is auspicious and sacred to Vishnu. The vratham can be followed in the routine of morning ablutions , feeding the poor, keeping fast, taking prasadams from the offerings to the Lord and participating in the divine discourses. The third day of this month – Akshaya-thrithiya – birth day of Balarama, is the most auspicious. Palpayasam is the main offering and feast is also arranged during the entire Vaishakha month.

The first day of Medam ( mid April) is the new year day for Malayalees. People believe that the fortunes for the next year depend on the nature of the objects one sees in the morning of Vishu. For this purpose, Kani (an omen) with articles like yellow flowers, rice, betel nuts, golden coins etc. is displayed in front of the deity. Thousands prefer to see Kani at Guruvayur on Vishu morning. Crowds stay overnight inside the courtyard of temple, which is specially permitted on this day. They close their eyes and set their eyes on the Kani and deity, as the doors are opened at 2.30 am for darshan.

The first Wednesday of the month of Dhanu (December) is celebrated as Kuchela Dinam. It is based on the belief that it was on this day that Kuchela, an ardent devotee of Lord Krishna offered Avil (parched rice) to him and in return attained eternal bliss and material property . Avil offering is considered auspicious on this day.

The Samkrama Sandhyas, a very auspicious occasion for worship of the Lord, is observed by the devotees on the eve of each Malayalam month in the spirit of intense devotion and piety. Thousands of people stream in to the temple for a darshan of the Lord at the time of Deeparadhana. Spiritual discourses and various cultural programmes befitting Hindu faith are held at Melpathur Auditorium.

It is actually a part of Ekadasi festival, which is conducted for 15 days and attracts more than 2000 Carnatic musicians. This music festival is in commemoration of Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagawathar who was a doyen of Carnatic music and an ardent devotee of the Lord Guruvayurappan. It is almost a replica of Saint Thyagaraja festival. Earlier it was a three day festival but with the phenomenal rise in the number of participants, the period was extended with artists of all types – young, old, novices, experts, vocalists and instrumentalists are allowed to participate. The highlights of the Utsavam are group singing of saint Thyagaraja’s Pancharatna Krithis on Dasami day by several leading artists. All India Radio and Doordharsan telecast the last few days’ programmmes live.

The day on which Narayaneeyam was completed, 28th Vrichikam, is celebrated by the Devaswom as Narayaneeyam day. Discourses and debates on Narayaneeyam written by Melpathur take place. Special functions are held at Melpathur Illapparambu also.

The Poonthanam day is celebrated on the Aswathi day of the month of Kumbham (February-March) in commemoration of the Saint Poonthanam, a great devotee of the Lord, who enriched Malayalam devotional literature with his renowned poetic composition ‘Jnanapana’, a philosophical work of all times. On this day, recital of Poonthanam’s works and debate takes place. A one week literary festival is conducted at Poonthanam illam.

Krishnanattam is a performing art that combines both piety and art. It is based on a Sanskrit work named “Krishnageethi” written by the Manavedan Raja, a Zamurin king of Kozhikode (Calicut) 350 years ago. The work includes 8 phases of the life of Lord Krishna starting with the incarnation (Avatharam) and ending with the Ascension to Heaven (Swargarohanam). The salient feature of the ‘Krishnanattam’ is the rhythmic and beautiful dance. The musical instruments used in Krishnanattam are Chengila, Ilathalam (Cimbal), Sankhu (Conch), Sudhamadhalam and Thoppimadhalam.
After Guruvayur Devaswom has taken over the art form Krishnanattam in 1958, the singers have started to use two more musical instruments namely ‘Sruthipetti’ and ‘Idakka’ besides the traditional ones.
In Guruvayur temple the month of June is the vacation for Krishnanattam. July and August are months for rehearsal. Tuesday is weekly holiday. On all other days , ‘Krishnanattam’ is performed in the temple on demand of devotees. This traditional performing art of Kerala is getting popular and performed not only in other parts of Kerala, but also in many other countries of the world.
If the performance is made in the temple as part of worship, the devotees have to pay the fixed fee and for performance outside the temple, the devotees may pay the fixed charge for the performance.

Guruvayur, the Utsavam lasts for ten days. Beginning on the day of Pushya (the 8th asterism) in the month of Kumbham ( February-March), it ends after the Aarattu on the 10th day.

GURUVAYUR DEVASWOM Religiously, it is the restoration of divine Chaithanya. Brahmakalasam is preceded by the Utsavam. It is aimed at the purification and energisation of the powers of the deity. It is the last of the long series of rituals of kalasam and at the end, the flag will be hoisted heralding the Utsavam.

Culturally, it consists of various processions, illumination and modest fire-works (this is a specialty of Guruvayur Utsavam that no explosives are used, unlike most of the other Kerala temples). All ten days, the place wears a festive look, streets dressed up with arches, festoons etc., houses freshly thatched and painted. Every shrine and building is tastefully decorated with lights, plantain trunks, bunches of coconut and arecanuts. Two Gopurams and the bahyankana (outer-courtyard) are elaborately decorated with illuminations and eye-catching electric displays. The lamps, deepasthambams and vilakku are all lightened.
The Devaswom provides several amenities for the comfortable stay of pilgrims. The devotees can reserve the rooms in advance. For this, full room rent and reservation charges should be sent to The Administrator, Guruvayur Devaswom, Guruvayur – 680101. by Demand Draft or Money Order well in advance. Full information about the reservation should be given along with the Demand Draft or Money Order.

  • Kousthubham rest house
    Tel: 0487 2556537, Fax: 04872554844
  • Panchajanyam rest house
    Tel: 0487 2556535, Fax: 04872554844
  • Sreevalsam Guest House
    Tel: 0487 2556539
  • Sreevalsam Extension
    Tel: 0487 2556539
  • Sreevalsam Annex
    Tel: 0487 2556535
The Devaswom publication division since its beginning has published a gamut of books ranging from the great Indian epics like Bhagavatham and classics like Narayaneeyam to contemporary literary works such as Thirumudimala (a collection of poems by Mahakavi P. Kunjhiraman Nair). Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri’s “Prakriyasarvaswam” published by Devaswom, ranks the best among the Sanskrit Grammar books available today. The publication division runs two book stalls – one in the Vyjayanthi buildings in the East Nada and one inside the temple. The publication division now has an annual sales turnover of about 20 Lakhs.


  • Connector.

    Institute of Mural Painting

    The Guruvayur Devaswom’s Institute of Mural Painting was established in the the year 1989.

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    Colleges & Institutes


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    School of Temple Music Instruments

    The school imparts training in music instruments like Chenda, Thakil, Maddalam, Thimila, Kombu, Kurumkuzhal, Nadaswaram and Ashtapathi.Duration of the course is three years. Students are provided with the facility of formal education in Standard 8,9 and10. They are also given stipend and accommodation. The method of training is “Gurukula”(directly trained under a mentor)

How to Reach

Guruvayur is well connected with the other parts of the country by road and rail. The National highway is passing through Kunnamkulam which is just 8 kms away from Guruvayur. The private bus stand is towards the east of the temple, near Manjulal (the banyan tree). It is half an hour drive by car from Thrissur and busses ply every 5 minutes from Thrissur to Guruvayur.

Kerala Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) runs bus services from all major locations of the state and few inter-state services. The bus stand is 500 meters to the west of the temple. Both KSRTC and private busses offer interstate services to all major South Indian cities like Madras, Madurai, Palani, Salem, Coimbatore, Thiruchandoor, Mysore, Mangalore, Uduppi, Mookambika etc.

Kochi international airport (Nedumbassery) is 80 kms from Guruvayur and the Calicut airport is 100 kms away. All major international flight services are operated from these airports.
Guruvayur has got a railway station towards the east of the temple which is connected to the Madras-Mangalore main line at Thrissur. It has got computerised ticket booking facility and tickets can be booked to any locations from here. One from the Mangalore side can get down at the Kuttippram station. Regular buss services are available from there to Guruvayur. Those from the Madras/Trivandrum side can get down at Thrissur.

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