The Vaikom Mahadev Temple is a must visit destination in Kerala which is 33 km away from Ernakulam and 40 km away from Kottayam. It's a sacred destination for tourists, dedicated to Vaikkathu Perumthrikkovilappan (a form a Lord Shiva). Sprawled over 8 acres of areas, the idol of Lord Ganesha is the major attraction of this shrine. The temple makes a leading trio with Ettumanoor Shiva Temple, Kaduthuruthy Thaliyil Mahadev Temple. It is believed that worshipping all these three temples in a day make the wishes come true. The idol of Panachikkal Bhagavathi and the Sarppa Sanidhya (the god of snakes) are also kept within premises to worship.
It is believed that Kharasura offers prayers to Lord Shiva at Chidambaram. Seeing his devotion, Lord Shiva offers holy Shiva Lingams to Kharasura, ensuring him to be present in these lingams. Shiva advised Kharasur to worship them to get Moksha. Then, he holded two of the Lingams in each hand and the third one in mouth and moved towards south from Himalayas. Later, while moving towards south, he felt tired and took rest at Viakom. When he woke up he realized that it has been stuck at this place. So, he placed the other two lingams also.
Vaikom Temple is one of the largest temples of Kerala and the architecture of the temple is in a traditional Kerala style. The temple has five prakarams and four towers, where a huge Nandi is made in a single stone. The sanctum of this temple is built in oval shape, which is covered with a copper plated roof and a golden Kalasam at its top. There are two chambers including Mukhamandapa (the main hall) which is built in stone shaped with a piece of wood and Garbha Griha (the second chamber) which is built of stone and its roof is made in a square shape. The height of Shiva Linga is six feet, which is made up of chaste black stone and decorated with Chandrakala. While, the outer walls of Sreekovil are bedecked with wooden sculptures and stories from Puranas.
Vaikom Ashtami is one of the main festivals celebrated in this temple. It is conducted every year in the month of February- March and November –December. Another festival is Arattu which is also celebrated here. During this festival, one can enjoy dance performances and classical music on the eighth and ninth days.
Morning: 3.30am to 11.30am
Evening: 5.00pm to 8.00pm