Varadharaja Perumal Temple in Kanchipuram is also popularly known as Hastagiri Temple or Attiyuran. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is one of the 108 Divya Desams where Alwar or 12 saints went. Like other Vishnu temples, this temple is also located in the Vishnu Kanchi part of Kanchipuram. According to legend, Hindu scholar Ramanuja stayed in the temple for some part of his life. Locals refer to this temple as well as Ekambareswarar Temple and Kamakshi Amma Temple as Mumurtivasam or Teen Ka Vaas. The temple is also called Perumal Koil and devotees of Lord Vishnu must come here. Due to an annual festival held every year, the temple is quite popular among locals as well as foreign tourists. At this festival, you can see a huge umbrella which is regularly considered as a gesture of the beginning of festivals. Another major festival or Brahmotsavam is held in the months of May and June.
History and Architecture
The temple has a huge complex and was built by the Chola kings in their reign, it is a work of worship. The Varadharaja Perumal Temple has great historical importance. Devotees of Lord Vishnu visit the temple to seek blessings from all over the world. The Vishnu Kanchi is more crowded during the occasions of Vaikasi Brahmotsavam, Purattasi Navaratri and Vaikuntha Ekadasi which is a 10-day festival. The grand architecture of the temple complex and the brilliant sculptures will surely captivate one and all. The peaceful ambiance of this scared place is so unreal that it cannot be expressed in words.
Varadharaja Perumal Temple is one of the three temples of Mumurtivasam with Ekambareswarar and Kamakshi Amman Temples being the other two. The temple is also known as Perumal Koil and is believed to highly sacred in Vaishnavism. The temple complex has 32 shrines that are constructed as per the ancient architecture. There is a statue of Lord Vishnu that is carved of wood. The statue is placed in a silver box and is immersed in the water. The idol is immersed as a belief of the local people which receives good rainfall. There are stories relating to this belief stated in the Vedanta Desika, Tirtha Prabandha Peyalvar, Bhoothathalvar, and various other articles written by Muthuswami and Tyagaraja Dikshitar in the 18th century.
The temple complex is spread over the land of 23 acres. The architecture of this ancient temple belongs to the Vishwakarma Sthapathis. The temple consists of various inscriptions depicting the equal distribution of land, gifts, and offerings made to the gods since the temple is built. There are seven precincts in the Varadharaja Perumal Temple in Kanchipuram. The main shrine has a 130 feet seven-tiered Rajagopuram.
Some other attractions of the temple are the stone chain that was made from a single stone and the carvings of lizards. The lizards are fully covered with gold. The Varadharaja Perumal Temple also has a Vimana of Varadaraja Swami. The wooden idol of the god is about 40 feet tall and the idol made of granite is just 10 feet tall. There is also a Maha Mandap inside the temple consisting of 100 pillars. The stories of Ramayana and Mahabharata have been sculpted on the pillars. The walls of the temple consist of mural paintings along with ceilings.
How to reach Varadharaja Perumal Temple
Varadharaja Perumal Temple is located in the holy city of Kanchipuram. The nearest railway station is the Kanchipuram Railway Station which is at a distance of 5 km and one can hire an auto-rickshaw from the station to the temple. The nearest airport is the Chennai International Airport and cabs are easily available from Chennai to Kanchipuram.
Best time to visit Varadharaja Perumal Temple
The best time to visit Varadharaja Perumal Temple in Kanchipuram is in the morning and the evening the routine rituals and aartis are done during those hours. Weekdays are a preferred option for those who want to escape the crowd.
Places to visit near Varadharaja Perumal Temple
The Varadharaja Perumal Temple has so many famous tourist attractions in its proximity which include Sri Ulagalanda Perumal Temple, Kamakshi Amman Temple, Sri Ekambareswarar Temple, Sri Vaikuntha Perumal Temple, etc.
Varadharaja Perumal Temple, Kanchipuram Timings: 6:00 A.M. to 12 noon and 4:00 P.M. to 9:30 P.M.
Varadharaja Perumal Temple, Kanchipuram Entry Fees: Nil