Dedicated to Lord Ganesha, Kottarakkara Ganapathy Temple is a popular shrine located at Kottarakkara in the Kollam district. This temple is famous for Unniappam, which is the main offering to Lord Ganesha in this shrine. The kitchen where this dish is prepared is situated in front of the Ganapathy shrine. The 3-feet high idol of the deity has four hands carrying Pasa, Modakam, Kadalippazham and Ankusa. The temple also has historical importance. Even though the main idol of the temple is Lord Shiva, the temple is popular with the name of Lord Ganesha. In fact, the real name of this temple was Kizhakkekara Siva Kshethram.
The idol of Mahaganapthy in the Kottarakara Ganpathy Temple was carved and enshrined by the well known sculptor, Perumthachan. Kottarakara Ganpathy Temple is a Maha Kshetra with a golden flag mast. It has the idols of both Shiva and Parvathy. Lord Shiva is facing towards east while Sree Parvathy is facing west but both are in the same circular-shaped sreekovil. The conical roof of the sreekovil is covered using copper. The Ganapathy idol of the temple is facing south. There is also a pond in front of this shrine. Kottarakara Ganpathy Temple organizes an 11-day annual festival in the Malayalam month of Medam (April-May). The festival ends with colorful Aarattu on the Thiruvathira day.
The sub-deities of the temple are Subhramanya, Sastha and Naga Devathas. The famous art form of Kerala, Kathakali took its shape at this temple in the 17th century. The nearest railway station Kollam is approximately 26 kilometers from this temple. Pilgrims need to cover around 76 kilometers from the Thiruvananthapuram airport to reach Kottarakara Ganpathy Temple. Check the attractive pilgrim holiday packages of Tour My India if you wish to visit the popular temples in Kerala.