Guruvayur, the abode of Lord Sree Guruvayurappan, is located 29 kms north west to Trichur, the cultural capital of the 'God's own country', Kerala. The Guruvayur Temple is unique, as it is not built in the typical South Indian style of temple architecture. For example, its architecture is not massive or grand but simple in keeping with the style of Kerala houses. Its four gateways lead to the main gopuram (where the idol is installed), protected by a slopping terracotta roof made of Mangalore tiles. Again, in true Kerala style, the temple owns 36 mighty elephants that live at Punnathur Fort, 4 km north of the temple. The Guruvayur Sree Krishna Temple is a famous Krishna temple located in the town of Guruvayur in the Thrissur district of Kerala. It is one of the most important places of worship for Hindus and is often referred to as "Bhooloka Vaikuntam" which translates to the holy abode of Vishnu on Earth. The divine idol installed here represents the enchanting form of Sree Krishna endowed with the four lustrous arms carrying the conch Panchajanya, the discus Sudarshana Chakra, the mace Kaumodaki and the lotus. Adorned with the divine Tulasi garland the idol represents the majestic form of Maha Vishnu as revealed to Vasudeva and Devaki at the time of Krishna avatar; Hence it is also known as Dwaraka of the south (of India). Shri Krishna is popularly known here by different names such as Kannan, Unni-Kannan, Unni-Krishnan, Balakrishnan, and Guruvayoorappan.

Sightseeing in Guruvayur

Guruvayur Temple
The Guruvayur Sri Krishna Temple is one of the most important and sacred hindu pilgrim centers in South India. The temple known as 'Dwarka of the South' is 5000 years old. The temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna. It is believed that Lord Brahma himself worshiped this very idol at Dwarka. The idols of Lord Ganapati, Sri Ayyappa and Edathedathy Kavil Bhagavathy also in this temple. A visit to this temple will enlighten you about the traditions and religious beliefs of the people of Kerala. The temple is known for its magical healing powers. Exquisite paintings and huge murals adore the temple walls. The temple only allows Hindus to enter. May be Guruvayur is the only temple in Kerala where wedding ceremonies and annaprasanam (the first rice feeding ceremony of child) are held through out the year.

Institute of Mural Paintings
Institute of Mural painting in Guruvayur is established in 1989 and is managed by Guruvayur Devaswom. Shri Mammiyoor Krishnankutty, renowned master of mural painting founded this istitute. The institute is located at the east gate of the Guruvayur temple follows a traditional Gurukula system with residential facilities for the students. It offers many courses for the art loving students. The courses offered include five year diploma courses in mural painting, aesthetics, sculpture and art. This institute arranges exhibitions, seminars and training related to the art and culture of Kerala.

Elephant Camp
Elephant Camp in the Punnathur Kotta is managed by Guruvayur Devaswom. It is the largest elephant sanctuary in India and at present it has more than 60 elephants. All these elephants are offered to Guruvayur temple by the devotees of Guruvayurappan. Many renowned elephants like Guruvayur Kesavan and Guruvayur Padmanabhan was camped here. This elephant sanctuary is a specimen example elephant love and preservation and the elephants are well treated in this camp. These elephants carry Guruvayur temple idols in the procession known as Shiveli. To select the elephant to carry Guruvayurappan Idol during the festival, they conduct in an elephant race in the temple and the winner carries the idol. This race (Anayottam) attracts thousands of tourists to this place. The Camp is open to public from 9am to 5pm. Nominal entrance fee is charged.

Devaswom Museum
Devaswom museum located very close to Guruvayur temple's east gate has many collections of antiques, temple materials, mural paintings, musical instruments and other valuable materials. The museum stores valuable offerings in the temple. Devaswom museum also displays the images and remains of famous religious poets like Melapthur and Poonthanam. Adornments used in folk arts like Krishnanattam and Kathakali can also been seen here. The precious items like nettipattom used to adorn renowned elephants in Guruvayur are also displayed in this museum. The museum is open to public on all days.

Things to do in Guruvayur

Temple Darshan
A visit and pray in the Sri Krishna Temple is a must. Only Hindus allowed inside the temple. The temple opens morning 3 am to 9 am, 11.30 to 12.30 and 4.30 to 9.15 pm. The temple has many powers and many believe that a visit and pray to the deity will heal them.

Elephant Camp
The Punnathoor Kotta, 4 km away which houses more than 60 elephants is the largest elephant sanctuary in India. You can see the renowned elephants here.

Walk on the Beach
Chavakkad, 3 km from Guruvayur has very good beach. You can wet your feet on the shore when the tide passes you.

How to reach Guruvayur

Nearest bus stations: Guruvayur has both private and KSRTC bus stands.
Nearest railway station: Guruvayur, town itself.
Nearest airport: Cochin International Airport, about 80 km away

Latitude: 10.594671, Longitude: 76.039733

Daily poojas in the Guruvayur Temple

3.00am to 3.30am: Nirmalyam
3.20am to 3.30am Oilabhishekam, Vakacharthu, Sankhabhishekam
3.30am to 4.15am Malar Nivedyam, Alankaram
4.15am to 4.30am Usha Nivedyam
4.30am to 6.15am Ethirettu pooja followed by Usha pooja
7.15am to 9.00am Seeveli,Palabhishekam,Navakabhishekam, Pantheeradi Nivedyam, and Pooja
11.30am to 12.30pm Ucha pooja (the noon pooja)
4.30pm to 5.00pm Seeveli
6.00pm to 6.45pm Deeparadhana
7.30pm to 7.45pm Athazha pooja Nivedyam
7.45pm to 8.15pm Athazha pooja
8.45pm to 9.00pm Athazha seeveli
9.00pm to 9.15pm Thrippuka, Olavayana
9.15pm The Sreekovil will be closed. On the day of Special Illuminations called "Vilakku" the Thripuka is performed after that. The Sreekovil will be closed after Thripuka. Then the Krishnanattam, a colourful traditional dance-drama on Lord Krishna's life is enacted inside the Temple on specified days.


Heritage Tour Packages

Fort Kochi

Village Tour Packages


Guruvayur Temple Customs

  • Only Hindus are allowed to enter the temple.
  • The temple pond on the northern side is known as Rudratheertham. Devotees can purify themselves by taking bath here and can enter the temple preferably with wet clothes.
  • Follow the temple rules and regulations, so that all can comfortably worship the Lord.
  • Do not enter the temple wearing shirt, banyan, pyjama, lungi, chequered clothes, chapels etc. There are facilities to keep them outside the temple.
  • Do not enter the temple wearing shirt, banyan, pyjama, lungi, chequered clothes, chapels etc. There are facilities to keep them outside the temple.
  • Do not take video camera, mobile phone, radio, tape recorder etc. inside the temple wall.
  • Do not touch on the big altar stone (Balikkallu) by foot.
  • Immediately after marriage, the couples should not enter the Nalambalam.
  • Do not spit in the temple premises.
  • Do not retain babies and children for a long time within the Nalambalam.
  • The receipt for the remittance for offerings (Vazhipad) can be obtained from the booking counters on the ground floor of the oottupura. Be careful not to get deceived by fraud agents for such bookings.
  • Receipts obtained for the feeding of the poor etc. should be put inside the box for the purpose in front of the booking counter.
  • Such items as miniature human figures, replicas of hands, legs, eyes, abnormal body eruptions etc. made of gold and silver can be obtained from the temple official, who are available near the Kodimaram (Flag-staff. Put the amount you wish to offer in the Bandaram (Hundi).
  • Udayasthamana Pooja, Chuttuvilakku, Bhagavathy Chuttuvilakku, Namaskaram, Krishnanattam and offerings of the like, have to be booked in advance.
  • Ornaments and such other costly offerings can be put in the Bhandaram.
  • Enter the temple with an absolute sense of devotion.
  • Take special care of your valuables.
  • Offerings and the relevant letters should be sent to the Administrator, Guruvayur Devaswom, Guruvayur - 680101, Kerala. Complete information about offerings and full address of the person making the offerings in bold capital letters should be given on the money order coupon or covering letter of DD. If these are not given, the amount sent will be put in to the Bhandaram.
  • Bank drafts or Money orders should be sent well in advance to make the offerings on the desired date.