Thirunakkara Mahadevar Temple
Celebrated in the Malayalam month of Meenam (March-April), the famed 'Arattu Utsavam' of Thirunakkara Mahadevar Temple is truly one of its kind. People from far and wide flow to the city to immerse themselves in the sights and sounds of this grand fiesta.
The festivities begin with the 'Kodiyettu' (ceremonial flag hoisting) and the premises of the temple transforms itself into a celebration of the rich cultural heritage of Kerala. Kathakali, the classical dance form of Kerala, is performed on the third and fourth days of the festival. Enrapturing the audience with their skilled storytelling, the performance continues till the early hours of the morning. The sixth day dawns in anticipation of the 'Pakal Pooram', a magnificent event modelled on the well-known 'Thrissur Pooram', complete with a percussion ensemble and 'Kudamattam' (exchange of decorated parasols). The enthralling atmosphere created by the fast beats of the Chenda, the grand vision of the tuskers adorned in fineries and the crowd of people united in enthusiasm, is a feeling like no other.
The Thirunakkara Festival comes to an end with the 'Arattu', where the idol of Lord Shiva is bathed in a ritualistic ceremony. The highlight of the day is a grand procession comprised of nine caparisoned elephants accompanied by the temple orchestra and folk dance forms like 'Mayilattam' and 'Velakali'. And as the concluding spectacular display of fireworks lights up the night sky, you will realise that you have not just been a part of this grand festival but a part of the varied colours of Kerala itself.