Besides the beauty of backwaters and houseboat cruises, Kerala is flourishing with spiritual destinations. Apart from Sabarimala, there exists a lot of temples in the Malabar coast and we all know that a couple of years ago the world turned its head towards Anantha Padmanabha Swamy temple which fascinated everyone with its wealthy secret chambers. Have you ever heard about a temple which is known as 'Moolasthanam' of Anantha Padmanabha Swamy temple? Yeah! It is there and to your surprise, the temple is guarded by a vegetarian crocodile.
To know more about the temple please give a quick scroll down!!!
Is This The Origin Of Anantha Padmanabha Swamy Temple?
Located in the heart of Ananthapura in Kasaragod district and is renowned as the only lake temple in entire Kerala. The serene environment and the pagoda style architecture of the temple amid the coconut groves fascinate the visitors.
Here, in the inner sanctum (sreekovli) the Lord Vishnu appears to devotees in the incarnation of Anantha Padmanabha Swamy in a sitting posture with his consorts Bhoodevi and Sridevi on a seven-headed serpent named as Anantha. The temple is known as Moolasthanam, the source of Anantha Padmanabha Swamy temple of Thiruvananthapuram where the lord appears in an inclined position over serpent Anantha. The mural paintings on the outer wall of the sreekovli depicts the various characters of Hindu Purana.
There are many interesting legends over the history of the temple. According to a local legend, once a saint named Sri Vilvamangalathu Swami, an ardent devotee of Lord Vishnu performed penance at this place. Later, Lord Krishna appeared in the form of a little boy and disturbed the saint. The angrier saint pushed lord Krishna aside with his hand. As a result, Lord Krishna disappeared into a nearby cave named as Bilvamangala cave. The saint realised that the little boy is none other than Lord Vishnu, therefore he tried to get him back but he couldnot. Now one can see the cave on the temple premises and to your surprise, it is guarded by a vegetarian crocodile.
It is the cave where Lord Krishna disappeared. According to the local legends, this cave connects the Anantha Padmanabha Swamy temple, Thiruvananthapuram. Saint Vilvamangala ran into the cave in search of 'Ananthankadu' and he reached a seashore and travelled towards the South. Finally, he reached Thiruvananthapuram where the Lord Vishnu appeared in front of him in different forms.
Babiya, God's Own Crocodile
Babiya, a pure vegetarian crocodile which lives in the water pond guards the temple and Bilvamangala cave. According to the locals, the crocodile is alive for 150 years and once a British soldier shot dead the crocodile. After a few days, he died due to a snake bite. Devotees said that the serpent Anantha took the revenge on him. Very soon, a crocodile appeared in the pond and it is the only crocodile that lives in the pond. It doesn't harm anyone and even it won't kill a fish in the pond. The temple priests feed the crocodile with jaggery rice after the temple rituals.
Darshan Timings: 5:30 AM – 12:30 PM & 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM every day.
How To Reach:
By Air: Mangalore Airport is the nearest one to reach the temple.
By Rail: Kasaragod is the nearest railway station to reach the temple which is just 16 km away.
By Road: Numerous buses are available from all the major Indian cities to Kasaragod.
(Gif Courtesy: YT)