The Sankara Narayanan temple is situated at Sankarankovil town in Tenkasi district in state of Tamil Nadu. The temple is dedicated to Hindu God Sankara Narayanan –a fusion of half – Lord Shiva and the other half – Lord Vishnu. The deities of this temple are Sri Sankara Linga Swamy, Sri Gomathi Amman and Sri Sankara Narayanar. In older name of the city was called as Sankaranayinar kovil while now it is called as Sankaran Kovil. The ant-hill sand is offered as Prasad which the sick consume along with water for cure.
Legends and History of Sankara Narayanan temple
There is an interesting story behind Sankarankovil. Once the devotees of Lord Vishnu and Lord Shiva quarreled with each other to determine whose god is powerful. Then Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu appeared as Sankaranarayanar to make their devotees to understand that both Hari and Shiva are one and the same.
Once upon a time a “Devan” (Angel) called “Manikkeerivan” was cursed by Goddess Parvathi. Because of which, he had to come to earth and work as gardener in a beautiful garden. One day while he was clearing a snake pit, the snake tail was also cut. He found a Sivalingam next to the snake. He went and informed about this to his king Ukkira Pandiyan. The king considered it to be the god’s wish to stay there and constructed the temple and a city around.
Architecture of Sankara Narayanan temple
In the 11th Century, King Ukkira Pandiyan built the temple in Dravidian Architecture. Later, in the 12th Century, king Seevalaramapandian constructed the Rajagopuram (big tower) and front Mandapam. This temple has three important sannadhis with in its premises. The temple has a 9 tier Rajagopuram, height of 125 feet. Also there is a Nagasunai or holy tank inside the temple premises, which was said to have been dug by serpent kings named Paduman and Sangan. Tree for the Temple is Punnai Tree.
Sankara Narayanan Temple Timings:
The temple is open in the Morning 05:30 AM to 12:30 PM and Evening 04:00 PM to 09:30 PM.
- Thiruvanandhal – 6.00 AM
- Vizha Pooja – 6.30 AM
- Siru Kaala Santhi -8.30 AM
- Kaala Santhi -10.30 AM
- Uchikkaalam -12.30 PM
- Saaya Ratchai -5.30 PM
- Artha Jaamam -9.00 PM
Festival of the Sankara Narayanan temple:
- Chitthirai Bramorshavam Festival (April / May): 10 Days
- Aadi Thapasu Festival (July / August): 15 Days
- Navarashtri Festival (September/October): 10 Days
- Kandhasasti Festival (October):7 days
- Aippasi Thirukkalyaanam Festival (October):12 Days
- Thiruvempavai Festival (December/January):11 Days
- Theppam Floating Festival ( Thai Last Friday) (February):10 Days
How to reach the Sankara Narayanan temple
Nearest airport Sankarankovil town is Tuticorin Airport situated at 73.0 KM distance. The Madurai Airport is 95.7 KM away.
Near By Railway Station Sankarankoil. Daily passenger trains are available from Madurai. From Railway Station, the temple is only 400m distance.
Sankarankoil is 120 km from Madurai, 30 km from Rajapalayam and 56 km from Tirunelveli. Bus facilities are available from Madurai and other cities. From Sankarankoil Main Bus stand, the temple is only 550m distance.