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Sabarimala Temple Tour package  Yatra

Package offered from Chennai Banglore Mumbai Delhi - All India

 

Sabarimala Temple Darshan Dates: 2015-2016

  • Daily from 15-11-2015 to 20-01-2016

Sabarimala Temple - No Darshan Dates:

  • 27th, 28th 29th & 30th Dec- 2015

 

About Sabarimala temple

Sabarimala is The Main Hindu pilgrimage Destination in Kerala India located at the Periyar Tiger Reserve in the Western Ghat mountain ranges of Pathanamthitta District, Perunad grama panchayat in Kerala. It is one of the largest annual pilgrimages in the world, with an estimated 3-4 million devotees visiting every year. Sabarimala is believed to be the place where the Hindu God, Ayyappan, meditated after killing the powerful demoness, Mahishi. Ayyappan's temple is situated amidst 18 hills.

 

Location of Sabarimala Temple

The temple is situated on a hilltop at an altitude of 468 m (1,535 ft) above mean sea level, and is surrounded by mountains and dense forests. The dense forest, (Periyar Tiger Reserve), around the temple is known as Poomkavanam. Temples exist in each of the hills surrounding Sabarimala. While functional and intact temples exist at many places in the surrounding areas like Nilackal, Kalaketi, and Karimala, remnants of old temples survive to this day on remaining hills.

 

Preprations-Prerequisites for the Sabarimala Temple Darshan Yatra

Sabarimala pilgrims can be identified easily, as they wear black or blue dress. They do not shave until the completion of the pilgrimage, and smear Vibhuti or sandal paste on their forehead. The devotees are expected to follow a Vratham (41-day fasting) prior to the pilgrimage

 

This begins with wearing of a special Mala (a garland made of Rudraksha or Tulasi beads). In general from then they are to refrain from non-vegetarian food of any kind (except dairy) alcohol, and tobacco, engaging in sex, using foul language, hair-cut, shaving and even trimming the nails. They are expected to bath twice in a day and visit the local temples regularly and only wear plain black or blue colored traditional clothing. Saffron colored dresses are worn by Sanysis (monks) who have renunciated material life. But, many devotees still continue to wear saffron colored clothes which becomes a part of vedic culture which connects the whole Hindus worldwide.

 

Menstruating Females not Allowed in Temple

Females who menstruate (usually between the ages of approximately 12 and 50) are not allowed to enter the temple, since the story attributed to Ayyappa prohibits the entry of the women in the menstrual age group. This is because Ayyappan is a Bramhachari (celibate).

 

Sabrimala Temple Opening Time

The temple is open for worship only during the days of Mandalapooja (approximately 15 November to 26 December), Makaravilakku or "Makar Sankranti" (14 January) and Maha Vishuva Sankranti (14 April), and the first five days of each Malayalam month.

 


Trek to Shabrimala temple

Hundreds of devotees still follow the traditional mountainous forest path (approximately 61 km) from Erumely,12.8 km from Vandiperiyar and 8 km from Chalakayam, believed to be taken by Ayyappa himself.

The Erumely route starts from Erumely to Aludha river, then crosses the Aludha mountain to reach Karivilam thodu. Now comes the sacred Karimala crossing, from there to Cheriyanavattom, Valliyanavattom and finally Pamba River. Then they have to climb neelimala and enter into the ganesh bettam, shreerama betta padam. Then comes the Aranmula kottaram, which is one of the halt place of holy journey 'thiruvabharana ghoshayatra'.

 

Route for vehicles for Sabarimala Temple

Vehicles to reach the Pamba River by an alternate road. From Pamba, all the pilgrims begin trekking the steep mountain path of Neeli Mala till Sabari Mala. This route is now highly developed, with emergency shops and medical aid by the sides, and supporting aid is provided to the pilgrims while climbing the steep slope, which used to be a mere trail through dense jungle. The elderly pilgrims are lifted by men on bamboo chairs till the top, on being paid.


Priest of Shabrimala temple

Thazhamon Madom is the traditional priest family who has powers over the matters to be decided in Sabarimala Temple. Tantri is the highest priest and is the head of the temple. It's the privilege of the family to decide on matters relating to Sabarimala shrine. Tantris are to be present in all ceremonial poojas and functions to be held at temple premises and functions associated with temple. The installation of idols of the temple was also done by Tantri of this family. It is with the Tantri that the supreme authority is vested in each temple and in Sabarimala Temple, the Tantri is the one who decides and declares the normal worship rituals to be performed. Brahmasri Kantararu Maheshwararu Tantri is the traditional supreme priest of Sabarimala Now. The other famous family members include Kandararu Rajeevararu, Kandararu Mohanararu and Kandararu Mahesh Mohaner.

 

Why Sabarimala is Famous

Why you must Take Pilgrimage to Sabarimala temple


Sabarimala Sree Ayyappa Temple is one of the most ancient and prominent Sastha temples in the country. Located in the Western Ghat mountain ranges of Pathanamthitta district in Kerala, Sabarimala Sri Dharmasastha Temple is one of the few Hindu temples in India that is open to all faiths.

 

Most Remote Temple - Sabarimala temple

The shrine of Sabarimala is one of the most remote shrines in southern India yet it still draws three to four million pilgrims each year. Surrounded by mountains and dense forest Sabarimala is believed to be the place where Ayyappan meditated. Perhaps the best known pilgrimage destination in Kerala is Sabarimala. 
 

The pilgrimage begins in the month of November and ends in January. The temple attracts pilgrims not only from the southern states of India, but also from other parts of the country and abroad.

 

Sabarimala Temple Yatra - By Train from Hyderabad-Secunderabad, Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkala, Chennai


Sabarimala Train Tour Itinerary:

  • Mumbai/Delhi to Secundarabad Railway Station
  • Secunderabad-Ernakulam-Sabarimala-Ernakulam-Secunderabad
  • Secunderabad - back to Delhi/Mumbai/Kolkata

Onward Journey:
Train Name: Sabari Express & No.17230 + Departure time from Secunderabad(SC) 11:55 hrs & Arrival Time 13:10 hrs at Ernakulam(ERN)

Return Journey:
Train Name: Sabari Express & No.17229 + Departure time from Ernakulam(ERN) 11:55 hrs & Arrival time 13:10 hrs at Secunderabad(SC).

 

Sabrimala temple train package - Itinerary

Day 01
Departure from Secunderabad Railway Station by train no.17230 at 11:55 hrs. Overnight journey.

 

Day 02

Arrival at Ernakulam Town Railway Station at 13:10 hrs. Pick up from the station & proceed to Vaikom. After arrival, freshen up & lunch [Andhra Food].

Visit of Vaikom & Kaduthuruthi Ettumannur Temple at 17:00 hrs. Proceed to Pampa via Erumeli; and arrival at Pamba at 22:00 hrs. Proceed to Sabarimala (Sannidanam).

Day 03

Early morning darshan of Sabarimala (by the pilgrims/tourists). Pickup from Nilakkal at 12:00 hrs. Proceed to Erumeli for lunch.

Then proceed towards Alleppey/ Kumarakom; and arrival at Alleppey/ Kumarakom at 16:15 hrs. Enjoy village backwater-cruise from 16:30 hrs to 18:00 hrs.

Proceed towards Ernakulam & night stay. 

Day 04

Transfer by road to Ernakulam Town Railway Station at 10:00 hrs. Departure of the train no.17229 to Secunderabad at 11:55 hrs.

Day 05
Arrival at Secunderabad Railway Station at 13:10 hrs.


Sabarimala Train Package Includes:

  • Confirmed train tickets in 3AC for comfort and SL Class for standard.
  • Non A/c road transportation seat in coach basis for transfers & sightseeing as per the itinerary.
  • 1 night non A/c accommodation on triple sharing basis in standard hotels at Ernakulam.
  • Freshen-up facility at Ernakulam.
  • Off-board food service (1 lunch & dinner on Day-2 & 1 lunch & dinner on Day-3).
  • 2 hours boating at village back-waters.
  • Travel insurance.
  • Toll, Parking and all applicable taxes for above services.

 

No. of Train Berths :

Standard: 24 in SL
Comfort: 09 in 3A

Details of Hotels
Ernakulam    Hotel Embassy/ Av Residency/Similar

 

Sabarimala Tour Yatra PACKAGES From Cochin - 2nights/3 days Pilgrim package:

Package Details:

Day 01: Arrival at Cochin Airport/Railway Station

Proceed to Sabarimala, on the way visit to Chottanikara Temple, Vaikom Temple, Ettumanoor Temple, Erumeli Temple and drop at Pamba. (You can trek 5 kms to reach the temple to have Darshan)

Day 02:( Darshan- depends upon rush over there) Early morning after the Darshan you can reach Pamba around 9.30 am and proceed to Guruvayoor.


On the way visit - kodugallur Bhagavati Temple and Vadakkumnadhan Temple at Thrissur. On arrival at Guruvayoor, Check into the hotel . Overnight stay at hotel.

 

Day 03: Early morning nirmalya Darshan at Guruvayoor Temple. Back to hotel and check out and proceed to Thrissur/Cochin for Railway station Drop.

Package Includes:

  • Indica car for 3 days, for pick up, darshans and transfer
  • Accommodation on triple sharing basis on room only basis.
  • A/c Package Rate: Rs. 9,000/- for 3 persons. ( 600 kms limited )
  • Non A/c Package Rate: Rs. 8,400- 

 

Sabarimala Pilgrimage package - 3nights/4 days Pilgrim package:

  • A/c Package Cost : Rs. 12,100- For three persons. (700kms limited)
  • Non A/c Package Cost : Rs. 11,430/- For three persons

 

Day 01: Arrival at Cochin Airport/Railway Station,

Proceed to Sabarimala, on the way visit to Chottanikara Temple, Vaikom Temple, Ettumanoor Temple, Erumeli Temple and drop at Pamba. (You can trek 5 kms to reach the temple to have Darshan)

 

Day 02:( Darshan- depends up on rush over there)

Early morning after the Darshan you can reach Pamba around 9.30 am and proceed to Cochin . Check into the hotel at Cochin. Evening 3.pm you can start the sight seeing at Cochin by proceeding to Mattancherry Dutch palace, Fort Cochin Beach , shopping etc. Overnight stay will be at Cochin.

 

Day 03: Visit Siva Temple at Cochin and proceed to Guruvayoor Temple.

On the way visits to Aluva Shiva Temple , Kodugallur Bhagavati Temple and Vadakkumnadhan Temple at Thrissur will be made . On Arrival at Guruvayoor , Check into the hotel.
Refresh and visit Guruvayoor Temple. Back to hotel and overnight stay at Hotel at Guruvayoor.

Day 04: Check out from the hotel and proceed to Thrissur or Cochin for drop at Railway station.

 

Package Includes:

  • Indica car for 4 days, for pick , sight seeing, transfer
  • Accommodation on triple sharing basis on room only basis.

 

HOW TO REACH Sabarimala temple


How to reach Pamba 

By Rail:
The pilgrims can reach Kottayam & Chengannur by Railway (Broad gauage) and Punalur (Metre Gauage) and from there by bus to Pampa. 

  • Nearest Railway Stations
  • Kottayam  0481- 2563535
  • Chengannur - 0479- 2452340
  • Pamba Railway Enquiry Counter - 04735- 203605


By Air:
The pilgrims can reach Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi & Nedumbassery by Air and from there reach Pampa by bus/car. 

By Road:
KSRTC has started operating buses to Coimbatore, Palani and Thenkashi from Pampa for the convenience of the Sabarimala pilgrims. Besides, the Government of Tamil Nadu & Karnataka has been given the permission to operate buses to Pampa. A chain service exists between Pampa and Nilackal base camp.

Bus services from Chengannoor, Kottayam and Ernakulam railway stations have started to help pilgrimage to Pamba. Advance seat reservation facility is also available including group reservation prior to 10 days. The KSRTC will provide bus to Pampa from any place within 10 kms from special service centre for a group of 40 pilgrims.

The timing of bus from KSRTC is not specifically scheduled since bus will always available as and when required. That is, one bus will always be there at the bus station and will starts the trip just after filling the seating capacity. Contact: Kerala State Road Transport Corporation
Transport Bhavan, East Fort, Trivandrum, Kerala.
Phone: +91 471- 2471011


 
Hospital facilities at Sabarimala


The Health Department of the Government of Kerala runs allopathy, homoeopathy and ayurvedic hospitals at Sannidhanam and Pamba during the pilgrimage season. A cardiology unit functions at the Neelimala ascent the Devaswom Board also runs a cardiology hospital at Pamba near the Pamba Maramath Complex, in cooperation with the Amritha Institute of Medical Sciences, Kochi.
In addition to the above facilities, some organizations from and outside Kerala also conduct free medical camps for pilgrims during the Mandala pooja and Makaravilakku festivals. They are at Sannidhanam and Pamba, and also along the sides of the path leading to the Sannidhanam.
Sufficient ambulance services are also available at Pamba.


Sabarimala Temple TREK ROUTES Details

 

Three Routes to Sabarimala temple

There are three routes to Sabarimala (0929 North 7706 East) -

(a) The Erumeli route :- Most Tough, most arduous and the pilgrims cover about 61 km on foot through forest and hill track.The Erumeli route was used by Ayyappan himself during his forest expedition to kill Mahishi is described here.Erumeli is about 56 km from Kottayam. There are shrines for Lord Dharmasastha and Vavar Swamy (the Muslim lieutenant of Lord Ayyappa). The first timers to Sabarimala, called Kanniswamy, perform pettatullal. Pettatullal is painting the face with colours and dancing with wooden weapons to make one look odd. 

 

(b) The Vandiperiyar route :-  The Vandiperiyar route starts at 94.4 km stone on the Kotayam - Kumili road. The Sannidhanam is about 12.8 km from here. 

 

(c) The Chalakayam route :- Chalakayam route is the easiest of all. Chalakayam is near Pampa river. Sannidhanam is just 8 km from here.

 

The people had to walk from Erumeli to Sabarimala via Peroorthodu, Kottapadi, Kaalaketti, Azhhuthamedu, Kallidaamkunnu, Inchipaarakotta, Karimala, Valiyaanavattam, Cheriyaanavattam, Pamapa, Neelimala ,Appachimedu, Sabareepeedom, and Saramkuthi through the forest.


Another path was also used by people to reach Sannidhanam. That was from Kumily through Changara Estate, Uppupaara and Paandithavalam, but it was the route from Erumeli that people used regularly.


 

Sabarimala Temple Trek Route From Tamil Nadu:

1. Shencottai - Punalur - Pathanamthitta --170 Kms. 
2. Kumily – Vandiperiyar - Erumeli - Plappalli--180 Kms.

 

 

Trek Points from Erumeli towards Sabarimala
 

Perur Thodu

It is a river about 4 km from Erumeli. Lord Ayyappa rested here during his expedition. It is from here the rise begins. Giving alms here is important. By giving alms, one is disposing of all dharma and seeking asylum in Ayyappa. The forest beyond Perur Thodu is poongavanam (Ayyappan's garden).

 

Kaalaketi

About 10 km from Perur Thodu is Kalaketti. The legend says that Lord Shiva, Ayyappa's father, came on his ox and tied it here and witnessed Lord Ayyappa killing Mahishi. There is a shrine where the pilgrims light camphor and break coconuts.

 

Azhutha

Azhutha river, a tributary of Pampa, is about 2 kms from Kalaketti. On the far side of the river is the steep Azhutha hill, famous for its arduous track. In the 2 km of steep ascent there is hardly anyone who does not shed tears. At the summit of Azhutha is Kallidumkunnu. The pilgrims drop the pebble taken by them from Azhutha river here. This is done as the mortal remains of Mahishi was cast off from here and filled with stones.

Inchipparakota

`The next important place is the Inchipparakota where there is Kotayil Sastha shrine. Pilgrims offer prayers here and break coconuts. From here the pilgrims descend the slippery path carefully. The descent ends at Karimala thodu (canal) with Azhutha hill on one side and Karimala hill on the other. Pilgrims rest here for a while.

Karimalai

Karimala is the abode of elephants which visits the Karimala canal to drink water. Pilgrims light the aazhi (campfire) to protect themselves from wild animals and cold weather. Karimala hill consists of seven levels and is climbed in stages. As the ascent of 5 km is difficult the pilgrims continuously chant saranams. On top 
of Karimala the terrain is flat suitable for the pilgrims to rest. It is interesting to see the Nazhikkinar - a well within a well with fresh spring like water. Prayers are then offered to Karimalanthan, Kochukaduthaswami and Bhagawathi, all deities. From here after the exhausting descent one reaches the Pampa river that is about 5 kms.

Pampa Nadi

Pampa is the most important and holy spot on the way to Sannidhanam. It is here that Lord Ayyappa was found by King Rajasekara. The Pampa river is as holy as the Ganges. The Pampa water purifies one from curse and evil.

 

Trek from Pampa to Sannidhanam

 

Pampa Feast :

Pampa Annadhanam (feast) and Pampa Vilakku are important rituals followed at the Pampa bank. Pilgrim groups prepare feast with the provisions taken from the Irumudi of the pilgrims. Thousands of pilgrims are fed at Pampa. When a group of pilgrims are ready to feed the fellow pilgrims they display a large papad outside their cottage. It is usually the kanniswamy who are fed first, as they are considered to be Lord Ayyappan himself. After the feast the Guru is honoured by pilgrims prostrating before him and offering him the Gurudakshina.

Kanni Ayyappas move from kitchen to kitchen collecting the ashes which are considered to be very sacred. It is done with the belief that Lord Ayyappa would have had the feast in one of the cottages in the disguise of a pilgrim. The ash is taken home as prasad.

 

Pampa Vilakku :

At sunset the pilgrims believe that Lord Ayyappan will be present at the banks of Pampa and the cottages are decorated with lights and candles. Small floats are decorated with lights called Pampa Vilakku and are let in the Pampa river.

 

The next morning after a dip in the cold Pampa river and performing pitru darpanam (offering to ones' departed soul) the pilgrims start their ascent towards the hill Neelimala after worshipping at the temple of Lord Ganapathi, Lord Rama (avathar of Balaji) and Lord Hanuman. On the foot of the Neeli hill is the representative of the King of Pandalam. The pilgrims offer their respects to the representative. After seeking the permission of the representative to visit the shrine of Lord Ayyappa they proceed with their journey. From here the Sannidhanam is about 6 km. The neeli hill is as difficult as the Azhutha and Karimala. The top of Neeli hill is called Appachi medu. Here there are two abysses - Appachi kuzhi and Ippachi kuzhi. Kanniswamys throw rice balls here to calm down the evil spirits present around the place. From this point the ground is almost even. Some distance from here is the Sabari peetam.

 

Sabari Peetam :

This was the Kota where Shri Sabari, in Sri Rama's era, performed Tapas. Pilgrims worship here breaking coconuts, firing crackers and lighting camphor.

 

Saramkuthi :

Half way between Sabari Peetam and Sannidhanam is Saramkuthi. Kanniswamy leave the wooden arrow they picked from Erumeli here.

 

Patinettampadi :

The holy Patinettampadi (18 steps) is 15 minute walk from Saramkuthi. The Golden steps is such a magnificent sight. Pilgrims chant saranams loudly. After breaking the coconut they climb the 18 steps to have the darshan of Lord Ayyappa


18 HOLY STEPS to Sabarimala Temple

Pathinettapadi (18 divine steps) to the sanctum sanctorium is divine in all aspects. The first three steps depict "Bhoomi, Agni, Vayoo & Akash", 6 to 9 steps for Karmendriya, 10 to 15 for Jhanandriya, 16th for mind 17th Intelligence and 18th Jeevathma Bhava. Those who cross all these steps are believed to achieve "Punyadarshan". The steep steps are so important and holy that no one can climb them without fasting for 41 days and carrying the holy irrumudi on ones' head.There are many mythological stories associated with the holy Patinettampadi. Some believe the eighteen steps denote the 18 puranas. Some say that 18 weapons with which Lord Ayyappa destroyed the evil denotes the 18 steps. Others are of the belief that the first five steps denotes the indriyas (eyes, ears, nose, tongue and skin). The next eight steps signifies the ragas (tatwa, kama, krodha, moha, lobha, madha, matsraya, and ahamkara. The next three steps signifies the gunas (satwa, rajas and thamas). The seventeenth and the eighteenth denotes vidhya and ignorance.

The Patinettampadi can be used only twice - once for ascending the temple and once for descending below leaving the hill. Before ascending or descending the steps, pilgrims break coconut as an offering to the steps. One needs to have the sacre Irumudi on head while going up or down the 18 steps. While descending the steps the devotees climb down backwards facing the sanctum sanctorum.

One who climbs the Patinettampadi for 18 times shall plant a sapling of coconut in Sabarimala.

Built on a plateau about 40 feet high, the Ayyappan temple commands a lofty view of the mountains and valleys all around. The ancient temple has been rebuilt after a fire in 1950. Within the confines of the sanctum sanctorium with a copper-plated roof and four golden finials at the top, two mandapams, the belikalpura which houses the altar, the flag-staff replacing the earlier stone image of the deity, sits a beautiful idol of Ayyappa in panchaloha, an alloy of five metals, about one and a half feet tall.

 

PILGRIM CENTERS ENROUTE SABARIMALA TEMPLE


NILACKAL MAHADEVAR TEMPLE


This is an important Temple enroute to Sabarimala and located between Plappally and Pampa. This is an intermediate halting area (with parking facilities). Most of the pilgrims to Sabarimala halt here for a sojourn and worship.

ERUMELI SASTHA TEMPLE


Erumeli Sastha Temple, an important meeting place in the pilgrimage trip to Sabarimala is famous on many counts. There is also a Muslim Temple very near to the Sastha Temple. Ayyappans go to Sabarimala after worshipping at these two temples, that symbolise the Hindu-Muslim unity. The pilgrims go to Sabarimala after 'Pettathullal' at Erumeli. Pilgrimage to Sabarimala without Pettathullal and worship at the above mentioned temples is against the traditional dogmas. Erumeli Temple is at a distance of 38 Kms from Kottayam. Nearest Railway station is Kottayam.


PANDALAM VALIYAKOYICKAL TEMPLE


According to legend Ayyaappa as a babe was found lying on the banks of the river Pampa, by the Raja of Pandalam. The Raja had no issue and the child was considered as a God-given gift. It was therefore brought up in court with all regal honours. Ayyappan grew up endowed with heavenly splendour, super human wisdom and physical powers. Sree Dharmaa Sastha of Pandalam Valiyakoyickal Temple is Dharma Deva to King to Pandalam. One of the Major events associated with the Makaravilakku Festival is the procession of the Thiruvabharanam of Lord Ayyappa from this Temple. The nearest town and railway station is Chengannoor-12 Kms away.


KULATHUPUZHA SASTHA TEMPLE


The Sastha Temple at Kulathupuzha is a very ancient one. The idol at Kulathupuzha is called 'Manikantan'. It is believed that the Temple was constructed by the Raja of Pandalam. But the idol was discovered by a Brahmin from Kottarakkara after several years and he started pooja there. The King of Kottarakkara heard about this and he constructed the present temple. Feeding the fishes in the nearby river is an important vazhipadu in the Temple.


ACHANKOIL SASTHA TEMPLE


Achankoil Sastha (Arachan) temple is a sacred place of worship where pilgrims from Kerala and Tamilnadu come in groups through out the year. According to a legend the God gave 'Darshan' to a worshipper who had undertaken long term penance at Kandamala, where the the present temple stands. The main festival season here comes during the Mandalam puja. The nearest town and railway station is Shenkottah-Tamil Nadu.


ARYANKAVU SASTHA TEMPLE

The legend behind the Ayyappa of Aryankavu is similar to that of Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sastha. The only difference between the two is that Sastha was brough up by the Pandi Raja of Madura and not the Raja of Pandalam. The temple is constructed about 35 feet below the road level. It is at a distance of 2 kms from the majestic Pallaruvi waterfalls located in the deep dense forests. It is believed that Ayyappa had relationship with Sourashtrans while living in the palace of Raja of Madura. Even now Sourashtrans reach here in groups during the time of Mandalapooja. The temple rests 86 Kms away from Thiruvananthapuram.

 

 






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