This is one of the important pilgrim centers of the Christians in
Kerala. The mortal remains of Sister Alphonsa (1916-46), who was
pronounced as blessed is kept in St. Mary's Church here. This 1000
yrs old church features an attractive grotto of Virgin Mary.
Changanachery Thrikodithanam Temple
It is believed that this is one of the five temples where the original
Vishnu image worshipped by the Pandavas is kept. 'The Deepam"
festival is celebrated here with great joy in the month of November
This is an important pilgrim centre for Hindus and Muslims. Sree
Dharmasastha Temple here is an ancient temple dedicated to lord
Ayyappa and there is also an ancient mosque dedicated to 'Vavar'
who is considered to be the friend of lord Ayyappa. 'Petta Thullal'
of Kanni Ayyappa is an important festival held in December or January.
12 kms north of Kottayam, is the ancient Shiva Temple, which attracts
many devotees. There are exquisite mural paintings and sculptures
inside the temple. The Ramayana scenes from Santhana Gopala Krishna
Leela and Bhagavatham are beautifully carved round the shrine. The
state Archaeological dept. has opened a mural art centre near the
temple. The annual festival of the temple is held in February or
March and it lasts for 10 days.
This is a famous temple in Ettumanoor, which is 12 kms north of
Kottayam town. It is well known for its murals, especially the painting
of Nataraja in the Gopuram and Ezharaponnana (71/2 elephants finished
in gold). The temple festival, Ezharaponnana utsavam is in February
An important Syrian Christian Centre, the town of Mannanam, 8kms
from Kottayam, sites the St. Joseph Monastery, associated with the
name of Fr. Kuriakose Elias of Chavara (1805-71), one of the saintly
figures of the Syrian Catholic Church of Kerala. Among renowned
institutions here is the St. Joseph Press, which was established
in 844. This is one of the oldest printing presses in Kerala. It
printed the Nasrani Deepika, one of Kerala's oldest newspapers.
Pundareekapuram is a small temple atop a small hill called Midayikunnam
near Thalayolapparambu, in Kottayam District. The temple is dedicated
to the Lord Vishnu mounted on his vehicle Garuda. The temple at
Pundareekapuram is famous for its Mural Collection.
Situated in Vaikom, 40 kms from Kottayam, this temple is dedicated
to Lord Shiva. This temple is very famous for its typical Kerala style of temple architecture and is believed to have been constructed
by Parasurama, the mythological creator of Kerala. The 12 days 'Ashtami'
festival is celebrated here in November or December and is renowned
for its elephant procession, religious discourses, traditional dances
and important musical performance ' Panchavadyam'. Vaikom has figured
prominently in the history of Kerala as the venue of the famous
Sathyagraha, staged in 1925 with the blessings of Mahatma Gandhi
for the admission of the Harijans in the Temple.
Thirunakkara Mahadev Temple
This is a beautiful old temple situated in Kottayam town. The Koothambalam
here is one of the best in the state and the temple has also a wealth
of paintings on its walls. The main festival of the temple is 'Phalguna
Utsavam' which is celebrated during March.
St. Mary's Church, Kuravilangad
Built in 355 ad on the high ranges of Kuravilangad town, this church
has an old bell, which bears an un-deciphered inscription.
Valiyapalli Church and Cheriyapalli
2 kms from Kottayam town, situated in Thazhathangadi these are two
churches dedicated to St. Mary which were built in 1515 AD and 1579
AD respectively. The Valiapalli is well known for its Persian Cross
and Pahalavi inscriptions on it. The Cheriyapalli house some of
the most exquisite murals and paintings, depicting biblical and