Guruvayur Temple is a Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Sri Krishna, situated at Guruvayoor town in the ‘God’s Own country’ Kerala. The divine places name is spelled with Guruvayur, Guruvayoor and Guruvayurappan. It is one of the sacred and vital Hindu pilgrim places in Kerala and is often referred to as “Bhuloka Vaikunta” (means the ‘Holy Abode of God Vishnu on the Earth’).
Guruvayur temple is one of the five popular Krishana/Vishnu Temples in India, other famous temple are Jagannath and Puri Temple in Odisha, Tirupati Venkatachalapati in Andhra Pradesh, Dwarka in Gujarat and Nathdwara in Rajasthan. No doubt, there are many Sri Krishna and Vishnu temples but these are most famous temple. Guruvayur is also known as Dwaarka of the south.
According to Legend, there is a story about the emergence of Guruvayoor Temple. King Parikshit, a successor of Kuru dynesty, who was the son of Abhimanyu and Grandson of Arjuna, died due to bite by a fierce snake (NAME - Takshaka). Son’s of King Parikshit, Janamejaya, tried to revenge by conducting a brutal Yaga named Sarpasatra. Lots of innocent snakes got killed in the fire but Takshaka (A Snake) did not died because he was immortal due to drunken Amrita. Therefore, Janamejaya got cursed by snakes and he was weaker by mind and body over time due to sever leprosy. Though, he tried his best to escape from the cursed, but his condition did not get better. Then, Saga Dattatreya emerged and was suggested him to worship Lord Mahavishnu of Guruvayoor to get cure of leprosy.
There are two festivals celebrated in the place of worship Chithirai Vishu-Tamil New year day (April 14) and Vrichika Ekadasi. The temple opens early in the morning at 3:00 am every day. The main statue of the God Unnikrishnan in the temple is not made by stone or metal but made of a rare stone known as Padala Anjanam.
By Air: Nearest International airport is Cochin airport which is 87 km away from Guruvayoor.
By Train: Grurvayoor has own railway station.