Lord Ganesha

Temple History

The ancient temple was constructed three centuries ago and still stands in all its magnificent glory.

n Tamil 'Manal' means sand and 'Kulam' means pond near the sea, earlier which was full of sand around pond. So the people called the god as Manal Kulathu Vinayagar which translates as 'God near the pond of sand'.

The monumental interiors of the temple are decorated with forty incarnations and forms of Lord Ganesha, carved on the stone walls of the temple. The golden spire forms the superstructure of the temple and is the steeple that crowns the place of worship. Within the premises of the temple lies the shrine devoted to Lord Murugan.

According to Hindu mythology, Lord Murugan is the younger brother of the presiding deity of the temple, Lord Ganesha. The architecture in which the temple structure is stylized is typical of the Deccan era and bears similarity with temples of other states of South India.

Manakula Vinayagar Temple was in existence before the French came and settled in Pondicherry i.e. before 1666. During the tenure of Dupleix, there were attempts to destroy the temple but the temple was finally spared owing to strong protests from the Hindu population and the threat of British and Maratha invasion of the territory.

Devotees and pilgrims gather in large numbers in the temple everyday to offer their prayers to the reigning deity and to seek blessings of Lord Ganesha. The pilgrims are entertained by the temple elephant Lakshmi who gathers coins from the tourists and showers blessings through her trunk.

The stone carvings and the golden shrine create a blissful aura around the temple making it a true abode of the temple deity, Lord Ganesha.


Additional Information

The Mega festival of Lord Manakula Vinayagar is celebrated every year for 24 days during the month of August & September.

From Puducherry Airport the temple is 5.6 KM. It is 1.7 KM from Puducherry Railway Station and 2.7 KM from Pondicherry Main Bus Station. The nearest bus stop is Aurobindo Ashram Bus Stop (140 m). Taxis and autos are available from all major localities in Puducherry for this temple.
  • 5:45 AM - 12:30 PM, 4:00 PM - 9:30 PM
  • Contact Person: PRO
  • Contact Number: +91 413 2336544