Srikalahasti Pancha Bhoota Shiva Temple Andhra Pradesh

Srikalahasti Temple is one of the important ancient Shiva Temples of South India, situated in the holy town of Srikalahasti, just 36 km from Tirupati in Chittoor District of Andhra Pradhesh. Sri Kalahasti Temple is one of the Pancha Bhoota Stalams, enshrining one of the elemental Lingas, the Vayu (Air) Linga. This is the only shrine for the God of Wind in India. Here, Hindu God Vayu is incarnated as Lord Shiva and worshipped as Kalahasteeswara and his consort is Goddess Gnanaprasunambika (Goddess Parvati).

Dakshina Kailasam

Regarded as Dakshin Kailash or the Kailash of the South, Srikalahasti Shiva Temple lies on the banks of river Swarnamukhi, at the foot of the Kailasagiri hill. Sri Kalahasteeswara Temple is also linked with Lord Rahu and Lord Kethu (of the Navagrahas – the nine planets or celestial bodies associated with Indian astrology). The importance of the temple has been sung by many Shaivaite saints of the first century.

Srikalahasti Temple Pancha Bhoota Shiva Temple Andhra Pradesh

Read Srikalahasti Temple Story - Legend Here

Sri Kalahasti Shiva Temple Architecture

Kalahastiswara Temple is constructed in the 12th century by the Chola king, Rajendra Chola. It faces west and is built adjoining a hill. There are three towering Gopurams, noted for their splendid architecture. Lying to the north of Srikalahasti Temple is the Durgambika hill, south is the Kannappar hill and east is the Kumaraswamy hill. There is a small underground temple dedicated to Lord Ganesh, called Patala Ganapati, located in the temple complex. Another significant feature of Sri Kalahasthi Temple is the 100 pillar Mandapam, constructed by Krishnadevaraya, the Vijayanagara king, in 1516. Chola inscriptions dating back to the 10th century CE are found in Sree Kalahasti Temple.

Shrines inside Sri Kalahasti Temple 

The Shivalinga inside the sanctum is white and is considered Swayambhu, or self-manifested. It has a plinth and is seen in the shape of the trunk of an elephant with tusks on either side or like that of the spider at the bottom. When seen from the top, the Shiva Linga looks like that of a snake with five hoods. The lamp inside the inner sanctum continuously sparkles, even without the air movement inside. The main Sivalinga of Sri Kalahasti Temple is not touched by human hands, even by the priests. A mixture of water, milk, camphor, and Panchamrita is used for Abhishekam.

The statue of Goddess Gnana Prasunambika Devi- the flower of divine knowledge, assumes great importance here, as this is considered one the 108 Shakti Peethas of Goddess Shakti. It is said that the skull fell here at Srikalahasti Temple. According to the legends, the Goddess is a representation of Santana Lakshmi.

Other Hindu Gods Worshipped in the Temple 

Other deities found in Kalahastiswara Temple complex are Sri Balambika, Sri Kalimatha, Lord Saneeswara (Lord Shani), Bezawada Kanakadurga, Lord Venkateswara, Lord Subrahmanya, Sri Kasi Visweswara, Sri Ramalingeswara and Sri Dakshinamurthy. The sacred pond inside the temple is Sri Saraswathi Theeram, commonly known as the ‘Pathala Ganga’. It is said that the holy water of this pond relieves devotees from chronic diseases and physical defects.

Srikalahasti Temple Darshan Timings and Visiting Hours

Saturday to Monday - 6.00 AM to 9.30PM
Tuesday to Friday - 6.00 AM to 9.00 PM

Sri Kalahasti Temple Festivals

Maha Shivaratri Festival, which lasts for ten days in February - March, is the most important festival celebrated at Srikalahasti Temple. On the fifth day of the festival, the pilgrims take bath in the river and observe fast throughout the day and night. Rathotsavam, Teppotsavam and Kalyana Mahotsavam are held during the festival.

How to reach Srikalahasti Temple in Andhra Pradesh 

By Air

Nearest airport is located at Tirupathi, which is about 60 km from Sri Kalahasti. Tirupathi is connected to Madurai, Chennai, Hyderabad and Bangalore. Chennai International Airport is the nearest international airport to Sri Kalahasti.

By Train

Sri Kalahasti is on Tirupati-Vijayawada broad gauge rail route. Narayanadri Express, Krishna Express, Tirumala Express, Seshadri Express, Thiruvananthapuram-Hyderabad Sabari Express and Padmavati Express are some of the important trains that run through the station. Renigunta Junction Railway Station is another nearest railway station to reach Srikalahasti.

By Road

Frequent buses ply to Sri Kalahasti from Vijayawada, Tirupati, Bangalore, Chennai, Nayudupet and Nellore.

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