Sree Padmanabhaswamy

Temple History

Sree Ananda Padmanabhaswamy Temple, this Mahavishnu Temple is located inside East Fort, in Thiruvananthapuram - the capital city of Kerala, India. This temple is a blend of the Kerala and Dravidian styles of architecture. It is also one of the seven Parasurama temples in Kerala. And references of this temple are there in texts like the Puranas, viz. the Skanda Purana and Padma Purana. The temple stands close to the holy tank - Padma Theertham, which means “lotus spring”.
Lord Vishnu is enshrined here in the Anananthasayanam posture (in eternal sleep of yognidra), lying on Sri Anantha, the hooded snake. According to traditions, Sree Padmanabhaswamy Kshetram is believed to have been worshipped by Chandra (Moon God) and Lord Indra (the head of the Devas)Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple is one of the most famous Lord Vishnu Temples in Kerala, South India.The city of Thiruvananthapuram is named after the Lord. The word Thiruvananthapuram literally means "The land of Sree Anantha Padmanabhaswamy".
The history of Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple dates back to 8th century. This Temple is one of the 108 Divya Desams of Lord Vishnu. Divya Desams are the holiest abodes of the Lord Mahavishnu that are mentioned in the works of the Tamil Azhvars (saints). In the sanctum sanctorum, Sri Padmanabha reclines on the serpent Anantha or Adi Sesha.[5] The serpent has five hoods facing inwards, signifying contemplation.The Lord's right hand is placed over a Shiva lingam. Sridevi, the Goddess of Prosperity and Bhudevi the Goddess of Earth, two consorts of Vishnu are by his side. Brahma emerges on a lotus, which emanates from the navel of the Lord.
Marthanda Varma, the noted among Travancore kings did a major renovation to the temple and it resulted in the present day structure of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple. It was Marthanda Varma who introduced the Murajapam and Bhadra Deepam festivals in the temple. Murajapam, which literally means continuous chanting of prayers, is still conducted in the temple once in six years.
The shrine is currently run by a trust headed by the erstwhile royal family of Travancore. In 1750, Marthanda Varma dedicated the kingdom of Travancore to Lord Padmanabha. Marthanda Varma vowed that the royal family will rule the state on behalf of Lord and he and his descendants would serve the kingdom as Padmanabha Dasa or the Servant of Lord Padmanabha. Since then the name of every Travancore King was preceded by the title Padmanabha Dasa. The donation of the kingdom of Travancore to Padmanabhaswamy was known as Thripadidanam. The current head of the Travancore Royal Family is Uthradom Thirunal Marthanda Varma.

The idol of the presiding deity of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple is noted for its composition, which has 12008 salagramams, which were brought from Nepal, taken from the banks of the River Gandhaki.
The garbhagriha or sanctorum of Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple is located on a stone slab and the main idol, which is about 18 ft long and Sree Padmanabhaswamy worshipped and can be viewed through three different doors. The head and chest are seen through the first door; while the hands can be sighted through the second door and the feet through the third door.
The idol of the presiding deity of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple is noted for its composition, which has 12008 salagramams, which were brought from Nepal, taken from the banks of the River Gandhaki and they were brought to the temple with all pomp and gaiety on elephant top. On top of them "Katusarkara Yogam", Navaratnams, a special Ayurvedic mix, was used to give a plaster. Followers believe that the Lord has personally come in disguise and had saved many times the Travancore Kingdom from the clutches of enemies.
The temple also has some interesting structural features in the form of Bali Peeda Mandapam and Mukha Mandapam. These are halls, decorated with beautiful sculptures of various Hindu deities. Another structure that captures attention here is the Navagraha Mandapa the ceiling of which displays the navagrahas (the nine planets).
Extending from the eastern side into the sanctum sanctorum is a broad corridor which has 365 and one-quarter sculptured granite-stone pillars with beautiful carvings. There is a ground floor below under the main entrance in the eastern side, which is known as the nataka sala, where Kerala's classical art form - the Kathakali is performed during the annual ten-day festival at the temple, held during the Malayalam months of Meenam and Thulam.


Additional Information

Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple Dress Code:
Only Hindus are permitted inside the temple. And dress codes are to be strictly followed before entering the temple. Men should wear 'Mundu' or 'Dhoti' while visiting the temple. They also have to remove shirt or t-shirt above waist.
Women have to wear Sari (Saree), Mundum Neriyathum (set-mundu), Skirt and Blouse, or Half Sari. This means no pants for men or churidhar for women is allowed inside the temple. Dhotis are available for rent near temple locker room. Nowadays temple authorities allow wearing Dhotis over pants or churidhar for the convenience of devotees.
As a capital city of Kerala many Hotels and lodges are available for the accommodation.

Thiruvananthapuram Central Railway station is about 1 km and the Bus station is 1.5Km in distance to reach here. The Trivandrum International Airport is 4.3Km to reach by flight.
  • Morning: 03.30 am to 04.45 am (Nirmalya Darshanam), 06.30 am to 07.00 am, 08.30 am to 10.00 am , 10.30 am to 11.10 am, 11.45 am to 12.00 Noon. Evening: 05.00 pm to 06.15 pm, 06.45 pm to 07.20 pm
  • Contact Person: Temple Office
  • Contact Number: 0471 2466830, 2464606, 2450233