Mannarasala Temple

Mannarasala temple is situated in the district of Alappuzha and is dedicated to Nagaraja and his consort Nagayakshi. The temple is located 2 kms off the National Highway. It assumes the form of a small forest in a tiny village. Legend has it that hundreds of years ago, there was a Namboodiri family who were childless. They performed continuous penance and Nagaraja made himself visible to the couple and blessed them that he would incarnate on the earth as their beloved son. The boon came true. The Brahmin lady became pregnant and gave birth to five-hooded serpent-child as well as a human child. It is supposed that this snake was installed in the sanctum of the temple as Nagaraja. Uruli Kamazhthu in Nilavara (offering of traditional bronze vessel) is one of the most popular devotees offering in Mannarasala. Known for begetting children to couples, thousands of people come here to carry out this sacred and rare offering to Nagaraja. Normally more than 5000 Urulis are offered in a year at this temple. The temple is reputed for having 30,000 images of snake-gods. On the day of Ayilyam, in the months of September and October, all the serpent idols in the grove and the temple are taken in procession to the illam (the house of the priestess connected with the temple) where Noorum Palum, and 'Kuruthi', a red liquid made of turmeric and lime, offerings are made.

Air: The nearest airport is Cochin, 64 km to the north, Thiruvananthapuram International Airport is 159 km to the south.

Rail: Alappuzha has recently been linked to Cochin by rail. Some trains link Alappuzha to cities like Chennai and Bokaro. The Alappuzha Railway Station is 5 km from the central bus stand and the boat jetty.

Road: Alappuzha is on the NH 47 highway and is connected to all important towns in south India by public state transport buses.

Ferry: Alappuzha is linked by boat services through the backwaters to Quilon and Changanassery, Kottayam, Cochin, Kumarakom, Kavalam and Chengannur.