Amidst the chaos of city life of Pondicherry, there is located the revered shrine of Vedapureeswarar. Devoted to Lord Shiva, Vedapureeswarar Temple is also known as Eswaran Dharmaraja Koil. Here at this temple, Lord Shiva is commemorated as Vedapureeswarar and his wife Goddess Parvati is worshipped as Tiripurasundari. With more than 230 years of age, Vedapureeswarar is one of the oldest temples in the Pondicherry which receives a heavy footfall of tourists throughout the year. During Governor Dupleix’s rule in the year 1748, the original construction of the Vedapureeswarar temple was demolished to the ground. However, later in 1788, the present construction of the temple was built. Inside the temple, the idol of the presiding deity, ‘Swayambhu Linga’ (another form of Lord Shiva), is worshipped. As per the beliefs, the presiding deity of the temple was transferred from Mission Street Samba Easwaran Temple about 100 years ago. Besides, on the southern side of this temple, there is also a separate shrine which is dedicated to Lord Dakshinamurthy.
A custom of ‘abhishekam’ is performed at this popular temple where devotees bathe deity with honey, milk, fruit juice, ghee, and other liquids. The mix of all the liquids from which deity is bathed got preserved in a container to serve as prasadam (holy offering) to the devotees. This entire ritual of pouring liquids depicts the love and respect of devotees towards the deity. It is said that devotees who perform this ritual with all conviction and belief can consecrate their mind, body and soul from all sins and impurity. Throughout the year, several festivals are celebrated at this popular temple in Pondicherry. Of those, the most significant festivals that are observed at Vedapureeswarar Temple with all zeal and devotion are Navratri (September - October), Sankatahara Chaturthi, Chitra Poornima (March - April) and Shivaratri (February - March). Besides, Deepawali, Tamil New Year and Pongal are few more important festivities that are observed at Vedapureeswarar Temple.
Vedapureeswarar Temple has a traditional architectural design which is beautifully adorned with seven tiered gopuram having a height of 75 ft. The main entrance through Artha Mandap and Maha Mandap leads to the sanctum of the temple. The idol of Nandi faces is installed in the Maha Mandap. Besides, the temple complex also includes two separate shrines of Vinayagar and Murugan. Along with that, the temples of Durga, Shani Dakshinamurthy, Chandikeshwara and Navagraha are some more temples located inside the vicinity of the temple. Along with that, the presiding deity of the temple is also installed in the temple’s sanctum in the form of Lingam.
M.G. Road, adjacent to the Varadaraja Perumal Temple, Pondicherry - 605001.
Opening and Closing Timing
The temple of Vedapureeswarar opens all days a week from 6:30 AM to 12:00 PM and 4:30 PM to 9:30 PM.
Best Time to Visit
Winter is undoubtedly the best time to visit Vedapureeswarar Temple because of the cold and pleasant weather conditions the city of Pondicherry enjoys through the season. The season commences in the month of October and lasts until March.