Nalambalam Thozhal (Nalambalam Yatra / Nalambalam darshanam) 2023

Nalambala Darshanam in Thrissur in Kerala – Visiting Four Temples Dedicated to Lord Rama and his Brothers

Karkkidakam (mid-July - mid-August) was once a month of starvation and destitution. However, Malayalis have recreated it, and they have done it well! Today, Karkkidakam is a time for physical and spiritual renewal.

The Nalambala Darshanam, or the darshan of four temples, is a significant pilgrimage in Kerala during the Karkidakam month (Ramayana Masam), June - July. The four temples (Nalambalam) honour Lord Ram, Bharatha, Lakshman, and Shatrughan, the four brothers of the Ramayana legend. Most visitors start their journey to the four temples in the famed Sri Krishna Temple in Guruvayur, Thrissur District, because the temples are just 60 kilometres apart.

This month, people from around the world visit Kerala to refresh their bodies and mind via Ayurvedic therapy at the state's various spas and health resorts. Karkkidakam is located in the heart of the rainy season, which is ideal for regeneration.

The recital of the Hindu epic Ramayana is another popular tradition. Most Hindu households in Kerala follow this rigorously. The recited version is Ezhuthachan's 'Adhyathma Ramayanam.' known as the "Father of Malayalam." A specific section is repeated on each day of this month. The goal is to memorise the entire passage in 32 days. In Karkkidakam, there are 32 days. During this month, temples also hold Ramayanam recitations. Devotees think that reciting this verse will give them the moral strength and bravery to tackle life's challenges.

A trip to Nalambalam temples on the same day in the month of Karkkidakam is said to wash away sins and gain God's blessings.

Sree Rama Temple at Thriprayar

Kerala does not have many temples devoted to Lord Rama, but the one in Thriprayar is the most well-known. The temple includes a 6-foot-tall statue of Lord Rama. He is shown here standing and facing east. Meenoottu (fish feeding) is the primary attraction here.

Triprayar Sri Rama Temple is a historic Shrine dedicated to Bhagavan Sri Ram in Triprayar, Kerala, near Guruvayur.

The shrine is open from 3:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. during Ramayana Masam. The temple will after that reopen from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m.

During this time, unique offerings include 

  • Kathina Vedi (firework)
  • meenoottu (fish feeding)
  • and Avil Naivedyam

How to reach Triprayar Sree Rama Temple

Thriprayar is located between Guruvayoor and Kodungallore if you're coming from Thrissur, head west from Cherpu to the temple's east entrance.

Triprayar temple phone no: 0487 2391375

Koodalmanikyam Temple, Irinjalakuda

Bharatha, the second brother, is honoured at Irinjalakuda.

The Koodalmanikyam temple in Irinjalakuda is maybe India's sole temple dedicated to Rama's brother Bharata. This temple also includes a 6-foot-tall Bharata statue facing east. Another unique speciality of this temple is the absence of any other deities.

Koodalmanikyam temple is approximately 24 kilometres from Triprayar. The shrine is open from 3:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and from 5:30 p.m. to 8:15 p.m.

During the season, special offerings include: 

  • Lotus garland
  • Thattu Naivedyam
  •  Meenoottu (fish feeding)
  • Kathina Vedi (firework)
  • Vazhuthanga (brinjal) Naivedyam

How to reach the Koodalmanikyam temple

Thriprayar is roughly 25 kilometres away from Irinjalakuda. Take the Kodungallore road to Edamuttam or Moonnupeedika. So take a detour from here.

Irinjalakuda temple: 0480 2826631

Moozhikkulam Sree Lakshmana Perumal Temple

This temple is located in Ernakulam. This is one among 108 temples that Azhwars lauded. This temple also contains a 6-foot-tall idol, like Triprayar and Kootalmanikyam. This is the third temple you should see.

The Moozhikulam Lakshmana Perumal temple is around 31 kilometres from Irinjalakuda. The shrine is open daily from 4:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. and again from 4:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

During this time, unique offerings include 

  • Palpayasam 
  • Ottayappam

How to reach Moozhikkulam Sree Lakshmana Perumal Temple

This temple is located next to the Annamanada Mahadeva temple. From Irinjalakuda, take the Kodungallore route. Arrive at Mala, then in Muzhikkulam.

Payammal Sree Shathruknha swaamee Temple

This temple's idol is smaller than the idols at the other three temples. This is the fourth temple you should visit.

The Payammal Shatrughan Swamy Temple is located 2 kilometres from Aripalam on the Irinjalakuda-Kodungallur route. The shrine is open daily from 5:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and again from 4:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.

During the month, unique offerings include Sathru Samhara Pushpanjali, Sudarshana Pushpanjali, and Sudarshana Chakram Prasadam ottu or temple feast.

To visit all four temples in one day, you must begin early in the morning. Devotees from the adjacent districts of Palakkad and Malappuram begin their trek around 2 or 3 a.m. Those travelling from other communities or states should plan to get to Triprayar before sunrise.

All of these ancient temples are located south of Guruvayur Krishna Temple. They are listed in the following order: temple of eldest brother Ram first, the temple of youngest brother last.

During the Ramayana Masam (mid-July to mid-August), government and commercial tour companies provide daily trips to the four temples from the Guruvayur Sri Krishna Temple.

Karkidakam and its traditions

A time when humanity prayed to the Gods to prevent nature's fury, 'Karkidaka Masam was characterized by heavy rain decades ago. Although times have changed, some traditions have not.

During this time, we encounter an abrupt shift in the environment, which has a variety of repercussions on our bodies. The rise in humidity at this period upsets the Tridoshas' equilibrium. Disruption of Vata, Pitta, and Kapha can weaken immunity and cause various human disorders.

Karkidaka Masam may appear to be terrible news, yet according to Ayurveda, it is the best time for cures and therapies. Because of the high humidity, the pores open up, allowing for improved absorption of drugs applied externally.

Karkidakam month is significant in Kerala because those who perform Karkidaka vavu rites offer 'Moksha' to their departed ancestors and are bestowed with benefits.

Importance of Karkidaka Masam

This month, also known as the Ramayana Masam, is usually dedicated to reading the Ramayana and following religious rituals. In addition, Karkidakam is the month when monsoon rains are at their peak.

On the Amavasya or no moon day, the Karkidaka Masam performs Karkidaka Vavu Bali, a ritual dedicated to deceased ancestors and relatives. Thousands of people achieve the practice along the coasts and riverbanks.

Starting on July 16, the State Institute of Languages will organize a month-long 'Darshinika Pushthakolsavam' to mark the season.

This month, Hindus don't begin new ventures or hold auspicious functions.

Karkidakam month is also known for the specific ayurvedic treatments people follow. For example, Karkidaka Kanji, a gruel mixed with herbs and medicines, is consumed this month.

also read: Ramayana Masam 2023 – Reading Of Ramayanam In Kerala In Karkidakam Month


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