Kalpathy Ratholsavam is a ten day long remarkable festival, known for its unique rituals. Situated in Palakkad district and nestled by the banks of Kalpathy river, the Sri Visalakshi Sametha Sri Viswanatha Swamy temple, is considered to be one among the oldest Siva temples in Kerala. Kalpathi Ratholsavam, also called as Kalpathi Chariot Festival is an annual Hindu Festival celebrated mainly in the Kalpathi village in the state of Kerala. The celebration of this chariot festival started about 700 years ago. Kalpathi is a traditional Tamil Brahmin settlement in Kerala. During the festival days the entire Kalpathi will be teeming with devotees and visitors from near and far. Vedic recitals and cultural programmes render a unique ambience for the place. On the last three days of the festival, thousands of devotees gather together to draw decorated temple chariots through the streets. Legend has it that a Brahmin widow named Lakshmiammal went to Banaras and brought Lingam and installed in the present site on the Southern bank of river Neela Bhagirathi. The location of the temple and steps leading to the river brings mind of a visitor the Banaras Temples on the bank of Ganges. Hence this temple is called “Kasiyil Pakuthi Kalpathy” (Half Banaras).
The festival of Kalpathi Ratholsavam is celebrated with great enthusiasm every year. As part of the festival, deities are taken out from the temple and are placed in chariots that have been beauti fully decorated. While the first chariot is meant jointly for the main deities, Lord Vishwanatha and Goddess Visalakshi, the second is meant for Lord Vigneswara and third chariot is for Lord Subramanya. It is a 10 days long festival, wherein devotees gather here to witness or join in in the Rathotsava. Many devotees gather simultaneously to pull the gigantic, vibrantly decorated temple Chariots across the village streets during the festivities. It will be just one chariot that will be pulled on the first day, followed by two on the second and three on the last day of the festival. The annual Chariot Festival is a tribute to the Indian culture and traditions that has been well preserved by the people of Kerala. The Festival is a must watch spectacle, and even the weather of the place during the time of Festival is absolutely favorable.
HOW TO REACH:
By Rail: Palakkadu railway station is just 3 km away.
By Road: It is very close to Palakkadu.
By Air: Coimbatore International Airport is just 55 km away.
Start date: 13–11–2013.
End date: 15–11–2013.
Location: Kalpathy, Palakkadu District, Kerala, India.
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