Sarkara Devi Temple - History, Timings & Entry Fee


Photo Credit: Flickr

Distance (From Varkala Railway Station): 7 Kms

Trip Duration (Including Travel): 1 Hour

Place Location: In Chirayinkeezhu

Transportation Options: Bus / Cab / Auto

Travel Tips: None

At a distance of 7 km from Varkala Railway Station, Sarkara Devi Temple is a Hindu temple situated in Chirayinkeezhu near Varkala. It is one of the famous temples in Varkala, and among the popular places of pilgrimage near Trivandrum.

One of the major pilgrim destinations in South India, the Sarkara Devi temple at Chirayinkeezhu is dedicated to Goddess Bhadrakali. There is a legend associated with the Sarkara Devi Temple: Long ago, the place where this temple stood was less populated. A group of merchants who traded molasses was passing by this place. They saw a roadside shelter and decided to halt for some time. When they resumed their journey they found that one of their pots cannot be moved. As they tried to lift it, the pot broke apart and the molasses flowed and there appeared an idol. Later, an old woman saw the idol and intimated the villagers about the miracle. The villagers constructed a temple and consecrated the idol there. Since the goddess came from Sarkara (Malayalam word for Molasses), the deity became popular as Sarkara Devi.

The sanctum sanctorum is a two-storied rectangular structure. The roof is polished with bronze. The goddess idol is positioned towards the north. Countless sculptures of Lord Krishna, Lord Rama, Durga, Lord Ganapathy, Lord Vishnu, Narasimhamoorthi, and several other important deities ornate the second storey. The Sarkaradevi Temple has some basic attachment with Nakramcode Devi Temple which is located in Avanavanchery, Attingal. The temple has a small pond where devotees can wash their hands before entering the temple. There is also a huge compound near the temple where temple elephants are chained.

The temple has gained cultural and religious importance for its Kaliyoot festival, which is celebrated during March or Kumbham, as per the Malayalam calendar. This festival was started by Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma, the Travancore sovereign, in 1748. Kaliyoot is a 9-day long festival that involves a dramatic presentation of the story related to the genesis of Kali and the feud between Kali and the demon, Darika. Meena Bharani in March/April and Sarkaradevi Pongala in mid-February are the other important festival celebrated in the temple.

Timings: 6 AM -– 11.45 AM & 4 PM -– 8 PM

Entry: Free