Chakkulathukavu Sree Bhagavathy Temple, also known as Women’s Sabarimala is one of the most famous temples in Kerala dedicated to Goddess Durga. Located at Neerattupuram, this temple is on the border of Alappuzha and Pathanamthitta districts. Both River Pamba and River Manimala are flowing on either sides of this shrine. Nestled in a serene place, visiting this temple shall be a beautiful experience for each devotee. Plan a pilgrimage tour in Kerala and visit this renowned temple through KSU.
Popularly known as a Women’s Sabarimala, Chakkulathukavu Bhagavathy Temple is a popular pilgrim center in South Kerala. There may not be too many people in India who are not heard about the famous jungle shrine, Sabarimala. One of the uniqueness of this temple is that the entry of women from the age group of 10-50 is restricted in it. For this reason, the number of female pilgrims is comparatively lesser in Sabarimala. However, millions of female devotees throng at the Chakkulathukavu temple in the Alappuzha district. This temple enjoys the reputation as the Sabarimala of Women.
Even though it is located in the southern region of the state, devotees from throughout the state and even from neighboring states regularly visit this temple. Temples in Kerala devoted to goddesses are quiet interesting for many reasons. Many women folks visit this shrine every day for seeking peace, welfare of the family and prosperity. Most of such temples observe a list of puja rituals and festivals in order to cater to people from all walks of life. The soil of this temple is considered as serene and usually a bit of taken during the construction of any temple in the state.
Chakkulathukavu Sree Bhagavathy Temple Thrikkarthika Festival
‘Thrikarthika Festival’ celebrated in Chakkulathukavu Temple on a grand scale. It is a ‘festival of lights’ and people who belong to the Hindu religion decorate their houses and premises with small oil lamps during this day. ‘Karthika Pillar and ‘Laksha Deepam’ (light 100,000 oil lamps on the temple premises) are the major attractions of this day. In the Karthika pillar, areca nut tree is decorated with straw, plantain and dry leaves and then set it on fire. It symbolizes the eradication of negative elements and evil thoughts from our mind. ‘Laksha Deepam’ is a symbolic of spread of goodwill, wisdom and prosperity. Pongala is a main festival for the Chakkulathukavu Bhagavathy Temple that celebrated on the Thrikarthika day.
Pongala is the main festival of the Chakkulathukavu Bhagavathy Temple which celebrates in the Malayalam month, Vrichikam (Novemer/December) on the Thrikarthika day. Pongala means food offering to the goddess and it is believed that pongala offering is prepared jointly by the devotees and the goddess. This rice preparation, kheer, is prepared in earthern pots with coconut and jaggery. Thousands of stoves are stretching out during this day to several kilometers around this temple. It is spectacular to watch numerous stoves positioned in lines on either side of the pathways and roads. Women celebrate this festival with devotion and fervor.
Chakkulathukavu Temple holds a very special annual ritual named ‘Naree Pooja’ in the month of December. It is the ritual of worshipping women that conducted on the first Friday of Malayalam month Dhanu every year. Thousands of women are worshipped in this temple during this ceremony irrespective of religion, caste or creed. The chief priest of the temple himself performs this pooja. In order to perform this ritual, women are seated on a decorated peedam (chair) and the chief priest washed their feet. After washing their feet, the women are offered and garlanded flowers. The temple trustees decide a woman guest of honor every year who is later worshipped in the presence of thousands of devotees.
How to reach Chakkulathukavu Sree Bhagavathy Temple
Chakkulathukavu Sree Bhagavathy temple is a must-visit temple for the pilgrims to Kerala. Located at Neerettupuram, this temple is almost 113 kilometers away from Cochin International Airport and approximately 135 kilometers away from Thiruvananthapuram Airport.