Places of Interest

This temple is known for its massive Compound, and reminds one of the adages “Mannargudi Madhil Azhagu”.  The reference is to the massive and impressive walls (Madhil) of this most important Vaishnavite temple of Tiruvarur District known as Sri Rajagopalaswamy Temple.

With its 154 feet high Rajagopuram, the temple is situated over and extensive area of about 15 acres.  Sri Vasudeva Perumal about 7 feet tall with His Divine consorts Sri Devi and Bhudevi in standing posture is the presiding deity of this temple and the Goddess is Hemabja Nayagi.  The deity is Sri Vidya Rajagopalan with His Dlivine consorts Rukmani and Satyabhama is taken out in procession.  Goddess who is taken in procession during festival called Senkamala Thayar.  The sanctum sanctorum of the presiding deity was built about 1000 years ago.  The mandapams in this temple were built later by the Vijayanagar kings.  A kumbabshegam was performed during 1995 after some repairs and renovations.

The temple facing east has seven prakarams and sixteens gopurams.  There are twenty four separate small shrines in this temple including the presiding deity and the Goddress.  Vellala Maharajan Mandapam, Thousand pillars Mandapam, Garudavahana Mandapam, Yanai Vahana Mandapam, Palakani Mandapam, Vennaithazhi Mandapam and Punnai Vahana Mandapam are the seven beautiful mandapams in this temple.

This place is famous for Theertham.  Sthalam and Murthy.  Haridra Nadhi, Durwasa Theertham, Thirupparkadal, Gopika Theertham, Rukmani Theertham, Agnikunda Theertham, Krishna Theertham, Senagu Theertham and Chakkara Theertham are the nine sacred waters here.

A characteristic feature of this renowned temple is the litte but beautiful shrine of Garuda atop a monolithic pillar, 50 feet high in the forefront.

Seven poojas are performed daily in this temple,  The priests belonging to about twenty five families are looking after the poojaas in the various sannathis in this temple.  Antique and modern jewels worth about Rs.4,75,600 are owned by the shrine.  Thondaman Pathakkam, Amirthasing Maharaja Pathakkam and Saraboji Raja Pathakkams are among these antique jewels.  The Raja of Venkatagiri was childless.  He worshipped the Lord Sri Santhanagopala Krishnan and had children.  As a token of his gratitude, he presented one costly diamond necklace which is still in this temple.  Rathna Nethram is a rare ornament in this temple.

Six inscriptions are found in the Garba Graham, Arthamandapam and third Gopuram.  They relate to the periods of First Kulothunga Chola, Thirupuvana Chakravarthi Raja Raja Devar, Thirupuvana Charavarthi Rajendra Chola Devar and Konerinmai Kondan.  It is under stood that this temple was built in the 43rd regnal year of First Kulothunga (1113 A.D.) and the place was called “Kulothunga Cholan Vinnagaram”.

The annual Brahmothsavam, Adi Pooram and Ani Theppam are the three important festivals here.  Brahmothsavam celebrated in the month of Panguni for eighteen days is a special feature here.  This attracts thousands of people from far and near.  Besides this three are a number of festivals throught the year.

Even though the great saints had not sung hymns, the Jeer Manavala Mamunivar, Sri Muthuswamy Dikshitar, one of the musical trinity and Moovalur Sabapathy Iyer have sung in praise of Sri Vidya Rajagopalan.  Sri Raju Sastrigal, also known as ‘Mannargudi Periawal’ has composed eighteen beautiful verses in praise of Rajagopalan after seeing the deity in different ‘alankarams’ on the eighteen days of the festival.

The Goddess “Sengamala Thayar” is a Padi Thanda Pathni.  The idol is never taken out of the temple.  It is significant that the festival in Her honour is conducted within the temple itself and that ‘Adi Pooram Car’ is houled in the outer parakaram of the temple by the students and teachers of NHSS.

The God appeared before Swarna Sigamani, a Sourashtra prince and blessed him with a child by sitting on his lap as Santhana Gopalan.  The idol of Santhana Gopalan can be found by the side of that of Sri Rajagopalan in the sanctum sanctorom of the temple.  Couples without issues visit the temple and keep the idol of Santhanagopalan on their laps of a while in the firm hope that they too would be rid of their sins and blessed with children.