Ernakulam Shiva Temple
This sacred shrine is situated in the heart of the town, near the Cochin Cultural Centre and the Durbar Hall Ground. According to a legend, the idol here was installed by sage Nagarishi.It is one of the largest temple of the State and the annual temple festival held for eight days during the month of January.
The festival starts with Kodiyettam( hoisting of the temple flag ) on the first day evening. On the seventh day there is Pakalpooram, when the deity is being taken out in procession with caparisoned elephants with Panchavadyam and finally terminating at Durbar Hall Ground after the famous Pandimelam and colourful fire works. On the final day around evening, in a solemn ceremony the flag is lowered and the deity is then taken for the Arattu ( holy bath ) in the nearby temple tank. After that starts the famous Arattu procession with the accompaniment of Panchavadyam.
The procession ends at Durbar Hall Ground. The impressive fireworks then bring the curtain down to this weeklong festival. During all these days Sheeveli is arranged inside the temple and the best available Chendamelam artists are arranged for this. Special poojas connected with this festival are conducted everyday by famous priests from Chennose and Puliyannur Mana.
A variety of cultural programmes are also arranged during these days. Special emphasis is given to promote temple arts like Ottanthuallal, Paatakam, Thayambaka, Kathakali, Classical dances, Classical music concerts, Bhajans etc. Annadanam is also arranged. Thousands of people throng the temple for witnessing these programmes. Watching the Pakalpooram and Arattu processions will be an unforgettable experience for anybody. The adjacent Durbar Hall ground becomes a beehive of activities during the Uthsavom. Various stalls are set up here selling consumer items. Some companies use this festival week to introduce or market their products.