Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple – Tirunelveli

Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple – Tirunelveli

Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is located on the northern banks of River Thamirabarani in Tirunelveli District. Lord Shiva is worshipped in Lingam form as Nellaiappar and his consort Parvati as Sri Kanthimathi Ambal.

The temple comes under the administration of the Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Department of the Govt. of Tamil Nadu.

History of Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple

  • The temple sanctums were constructed by Nindraseer Nedumaran who ruled in the 7th century CE and the two gopurams were built by Pandyas (ancient Tamil dynasty of South India).
  • The Later Pandyas built the Mani Mandapam and the musical pillars in the 7th century.
  • The Sangili Mandapam or Chain Mandapam that links the temples of Nellaiappar and Kanthimathi Ambal was built by Thiru Vadamalaiyappa Pillaiyan in the year 1647.
  • Onto the western side of the Chain Mandapam is the Flower Garden that was set up by Thiruvengadakrishna Mudaliar in the year 1756.
  • The Nandi Mandapam is said to have been built by Sivanthiappa Nayak in the year 1654.

Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple Structure

The temple is believed to have been originally built by Pandyas in ancient Dravidian architectural style. The present structure was subsequently added by Cholas, Pallavas, Cheras and Nayaks.

The temple complex covers an area of fourteen and half acres of land. Apart from the prominent deities Swamy Nellaiappar and his consort Sri Kanthimathi Ambal, the temple has a number of other shrines.

Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple Festivals

The prominent festivals of the temple are the Brahmmotsavam during the Tamil month of Aani (June-July), Navarathri Festival and Thirukalyanam in the Tamil month of Aippasi (October-November) and Arudra Darsanam in the Tamil month of Margazhi (November-December).

Reference to the Literature

The temple is classified as ‘Paadal Petra Sthalam’ and revered in Tevaram, the 7th century Tamil Saiva canonical work written by the saint poets Nayanmars. The song ‘Sri Kanthimathi’ on the Goddess of the temple was composed by Muthuswami Dhikshitar.

Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple – Temple Timings

Morning Hours: 5:00 AM to 12:30 PM and Evening Hours: 4:00 PM to 9:00 PM.

Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple – Pooja Timings

The Nellaiappar Temple Pooja timings are as follows:

Name of the Pooja Pooja Timings
Thiruvananthai Pooja 6:30 AM
Vilapooja 7:30 AM
Sirukala Sandhi Pooja 8:30 AM
Kala Sandhi Pooja 9:30 AM
Uchikalam Pooja 12:00 PM
Sayaratchai Pooja 6:00 PM
Ardhajama Pooja 8:30 PM

The Ambal Temple Pooja timings are as follows:

Name of the Pooja Pooja Timings
Thiruvananthai Pooja 6:30 AM
Vilapooja 7:00 AM
Sirukala Sandhi Pooja 8:00 AM
Kala Sandhi Pooja 9:00 AM
Uchikalam Pooja 12:30 PM
Sayaratchai Pooja 5:00 PM
Ardhajama Pooja 8:15 PM
Palliyarai Pooja 9:00 PM

How to reach Kanthimathi Nellaiappar Temple

Road – Tirunelveli is well connected to all major cities in the state through State Road Transport Corporation.

Rail – The nearest railway station is Tirunelveli Railway Station (4 kilometres away). It is well connected to cities like Mumbai, Bilaspur, Coimbatore, Guruvayur and Howrah.

Air – The nearest airports are at Thoothukudi (42 kilometres away), Madurai (153 kilometres away) and Thiruvananthapuram ( 151 kilometres away)