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Top 5 Temples in Kerala: Discovering Peace and Spirituality

the top 5 temples in Kerala

Kerala, often referred to as “God’s Own Country,” is a land of diverse landscapes and rich cultural heritage. Among its many attractions, the state is renowned for its ancient temples, which stand as symbols of architectural splendor, spiritual sanctity, and historical significance. In this article, we’ll take you through the top 5 temples in Kerala, each with its own unique charm and divine aura. Whether you’re a devout pilgrim or a curious traveller, these temples are must-visit destinations that promise to leave a lasting impression.

1. Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple

Location: Thiruvananthapuram

the top 5 temples in Kerala

The Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram is not just a place of worship but also a marvel of ancient architecture. It is one of the most famous temples in Kerala and holds the Guinness World Record for being the wealthiest place of worship. The temple’s treasures, including gold idols and precious stones, were discovered in its hidden vaults, bringing it global attention. Devotees and tourists flock here to witness the grand idol of Lord Vishnu and the temple’s exquisite carvings and murals.


  • Renowned as the richest temple in the world.
  • Intricate Dravidian architecture.
  • The deity is Lord Vishnu reclining on Anantha, the serpent.

2. Guruvayur Sri Krishna Temple

Location: Guruvayur

the top 5 temples in Kerala

The Guruvayur Sri Krishna Temple is one of the most important pilgrimage centers in Kerala, often referred to as “Bhuloka Vaikunta” or the “Heaven on Earth.” The temple’s deity, Guruvayurappan, attracts millions of devotees annually. The temple’s rituals, festivals, and the nearby elephant sanctuary, Punnathur Kotta, add to its charm. The temple’s deep spiritual ambiance and historic relevance make it a top choice for those seeking divine blessings.


  • Dedicated to Lord Krishna, known as Guruvayurappan.
  • Believed to be over 5,000 years old
  • Famous for its elephant sanctuary, Punnathur Kotta.

3. Sabarimala Sree Ayyappa Temple

Location: Pathanamthitta

the top 5 temples in Kerala

Sabarimala Sree Ayyappa Temple is unique due to its location and the rigorous pilgrimage rituals associated with it. Nestled in the Periyar Tiger Reserve, the temple can be reached after a challenging trek through the forest. The pilgrimage season, known as Mandala-Makaravilakku, sees millions of devotees undertaking the journey with utmost devotion and discipline. The temple is also notable for its strict entry rules, including a 41-day vow of celibacy and abstinence for pilgrims.


  • Dedicated to Lord Ayyappa.
  • Located in the dense forests of the Western Ghats
  • Known for the annual pilgrimage, attracting millions of devotees.

4. Attukal Bhagavathy Temple

Location: Thiruvananthapuram

the top 5 temples in Kerala

The Attukal Bhagavathy Temple is celebrated for its vibrant and record-breaking Attukal Pongala festival, where millions of women gather to cook a special offering for the goddess. This temple, dedicated to Goddess Kannaki, is a symbol of women’s power and devotion. The festival’s scale and the unity among the women who participate make it a unique cultural phenomenon, drawing attention from all over the world.


  • Known for the Attukal Pongala festival.
  • Dedicated to Goddess Kannaki (Bhagavathy).
  • Holds a Guinness World Record for the largest gathering of women for a festival.

5. Chottanikkara Devi Temple

Location: Ernakulam

the top 5 temples in Kerala

The Chottanikkara Devi Temple is revered for its powerful deity, believed to have miraculous healing powers. Devotees come here seeking relief from various ailments, particularly mental health issues. The temple’s serene surroundings and the rituals performed to invoke the goddess’s blessings create a peaceful and spiritually uplifting environment. The temple is also a fine example of Kerala’s traditional architecture and cultural richness.


  • Dedicated to Goddess Rajarajeshwari (Adiparashakti).
  • Known for curing mental illnesses and other ailments.
  • Beautifully situated amidst lush greenery.

Practical Tips for Visiting the Top 5 Temples in Kerala

1. Dress Code: Most temples in Kerala have a strict dress code. Traditional attire is preferred, with men often required to wear mundu (a type of sarong) and women in sarees or salwar kameez.

2. Timing: Check the temple timings before planning your visit. Early mornings and evenings are generally the best times to experience the temple rituals.

3. Etiquette: Maintain silence and decorum within the temple premises. Photography might be restricted in certain areas, so always ask for permission.

4. Offerings: Carry offerings like flowers, coconuts, and sweets if you wish to participate in the rituals. These can usually be purchased from stalls outside the temple.
5. Guided Tours: Consider hiring a local guide to enhance your understanding of the temple’s history, architecture, and rituals.

Learning Malayalam: A Key to Enhancing Your Temple Experience

Visiting these temples can be a more enriching experience if you understand the local language, Malayalam. Here are some practical tips for getting started with learning Malayalam online:

1. Online Courses: Enroll in structured online courses like Decode Malayalam, which offer comprehensive lessons from basic to advanced levels.

2. Language Apps: Utilize language learning apps such as Duolingo, Memrise, or Rosetta Stone that offer Malayalam.

3. Practice with Locals: Engage with native speakers through language exchange platforms to practice conversational Malayalam.

4. Cultural Immersion: Watch Malayalam movies, listen to local music, and read Malayalam literature to immerse yourself in the language and culture.
5. Consistent Practice: Dedicate a specific time each day to practice Malayalam. Consistency is key to mastering any new language.


The top 5 temples in Kerala are not just places of worship; they are repositories of history, culture, and spirituality. Each temple has its unique story, architectural beauty, and divine presence that captivate the hearts of millions. By visiting these temples, you can gain deeper insights into Kerala’s rich heritage and spiritual traditions.

Moreover, learning Malayalam can significantly enhance your temple visit experience. It allows you to connect with the locals, understand the rituals better, and fully appreciate the cultural nuances. Enroll in a course like Decode Malayalam to start your language learning journey today. Embrace the divine serenity of Kerala and the richness of its language for a truly fulfilling and memorable experience.

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