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Mannarasala Shri Nagaraja Temple

Dedicated to the “Snake God” i.e. Nagaraja is a temple located in the state of Kerala known as “Mannarasala Shri Nagraja”. This temple which is supposed to possess over “30,000 images” of snakes is situated in a town called Haripad in the Alappuzha. Apparently, the origin of this temple is closely linked to Lord Parshuram, the sixth avatar of Vishnu and supposedly the creator of Kerala. Furthermore, this temple is known to be visited by women struggling with fertility issues. In addition, this temple is also known to possess a special “type” of turmeric powder that is said to have medicinal properties.

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a. Best time to visit Mannarasala Shri Nagraja Temple

The ideal time to visit this temple is during the winter season from November to February when the climate is pleasant and the temperature ranges from a maximum of 32 degree Celsius to a minimum of 17 degree Celsius.

b. How to reach  Mannarasala Shri Nagraja Temple

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Mannarasala Shri Nagaraja Temple Map

1. By train:

The closest railway station is located in Alappuzha itself. The Alappuzha Railway Station is well connected to major cities in the country.

2. By road:

If you intend to drive to this temple the ideal starting points would be Kottayam, Ernakulum, Thrissur and Kochi.

  • Via Kottayam:

There are three routes from Kottayam to this temple, and they are via NH183, via Kollam-Theni Highway, and via Thengana Thiruvanchoor Road.

  • Via Ernakulam:

There are two routes from Ernakulam to this temple, and they are via NH66 and via NH183.

  • Via Thrissur:

There are three routes from Thrissur to this temple, and they are via NH544 and NH66 and via NH66 and NH544.

  • Via Kochi:

There are two routes from Kochi to this temple, and they are via NH66 and via NH183.

3. By air:

The nearest airport is located in Kochi. The Kochi International Airport is well connected to major cities in the country as well as to international destinations.

c. Religious significance of the Mannarasala Shri Najraja Temple

According to a myth Lord Parshurama, the sixth avatar of Lord Vishnu threw an axe given to him by Lord Shiva into the sea to reclaim the land and gift it to the Brahmins. It was this reclaimed land that became known as “Kerala”. Unfortunately this land due to the “saline” nature of the soil was not habitable. The fact that the soil was found to be saline disappointed Parshurama, as a result of which he undertake severe penance to appease Lord Shiva. Impressed with his devotion Shiva replied that the only possible way to remove the salinity from the soil would be via a large scale application of the snake poison, which can only be possible by appeasing Lord Nagaraja i.e, the King of Snakes. In response Parshurama very humbly prostrated before Lord Nagaraja asking him for help. Nagaraja then on seeing the devotion of Parshurama granted him his wish and spread snake poison throughout the land which resulted in desalination. Happy with Nagaraja’s response Parshurama then asked him to bless the land forever which he did readily.  It was then that Parshurama constructed a “Thirthasthala” i.e. Hall pilgrimage for Nagaraja and filled it with Mandara trees which later became known as “Mannarasala”.

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