Mangala Devi Kannagi Temple, also known as Mangala Devi Temple, is located on the Tamil Nadu-Kerala border at Thekkady in Idukki district of Kerala. The temple is dedicated to Kannagi or Kannaki, who was a legendary woman believed to be synonymous with strength and conviction.
The temple is said to have been built more than 2000 years ago. The temple stands amidst the thick Periyar Tiger Reserve, and is one of the unique temples in South India. People visit the temple not only to seek blessings from the deity, but also to experience the wilderness of the surroundings.
PC: sabareesh kkanan
Legend Behind The Temple
Every temple has a story to unfold. It is said that Kannagi burnt the whole city of Madurai out of rage when her husband was falsely accused of theft and killed. Kannagi, then, is believed to have gone to Suruli Hills and to heaven from there on Pushpaka Vimana, along with Kovalan, her husband. The then King Chera Chenguttavan, who was inspired by this story, built a temple for the undying love and determination. The story of Kannagi, later, was narrated to a Tamil poet Illango Adigar by the King. The poet later wrote a book 'Silapathikaram' based on the story of Kannaki and Kovalan.
Architecture Of The Temple
The temple is built in Pandyan architectural style. The walls of the temple and the steps that lead to the sanctum sanctorum are made of stones. The other idols that are worshipped here apart from Kannaki include Karuppuswamy, Lord Shiva and Ganesha.
PC: Reji Jacob
Something More About Mangala Devi Temple
Mangala Devi Temple is not open throughout the year. It is open to the devotees during the Chitrapournami festival which takes place in April-May. The festival is organised by the Governments of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The Goddess is adorned with garlands and jewellery during the festival, and priests come from both the states to perform rituals at the temple.
Permission To Visit The Temple
If you intend to visit the temple, you have to take prior permission from the wildlife warden of Thekkady, who can also guide you to the temple. The jeep ride to the temple is one beyond words. Take this amazing trip through the jungle with wild beauties, to reach Goddess Mangaladevi!