Kalpathi Ratholsavam is an annual Hindu Temple festival in the Kalpathi village of Palakkad district in Kerala. The festival is at the Sri Visalakshi Sametha Sri Viswanatha Swamy temple where the deities are Lord Siva and his consort Visalakshi, another name for Parvati.
The annual ten day chariot festival conducted here during the month of November is one of the most remarkable festivals of Kerala. Vedic recitals and cultural programmes are held in the temple during the first four days of the festival. This is believed to be over 700 years old. On the last three days, thousands of devotees gather together to draw decorated temple chariots through the streets. The ceremonial procession is taken by a host of people which itself is a sight to enjoy
The ancient temple nestles by the banks of the Kalpathy river which is also known as the Nila river. The temple dates back to 1425 A.D. Legend has it that One Lakshmy Amma , a widow of Sekhari Puram came back from Kashi and gave the prince Itikombi Achan 1320 gold coins in 1424-25 AD and requested him to build the temple of Siva.
The rituals inside the sanctum sanctorum of the temple and mode of worship are strictly in accordance with the Tamil Brahmin culture. Practices out side the temple like drum beating, decoration or chariot, are truly Kerala style. As the part of chariot festival carnatic music festival is also organied.
Getting to the site of the festival is easier with the railway route with the Palakkad railway station being just 3 kilometers from it.