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Palani

2.8 /5

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Best Time: November-March Read More

Ideal duration: 1-2 Days

Nearest Airport: Coimbatore International Airport Check Flights

"Lord Murugan's Ascetic Home"

Palani Tourism

Right between the 200km distance from Coimbatore and Madurai lies the hilly town of Palani. The town has two hills, Sivagiri and Sakthigiri, that are the prominent visual in this scenic, hilly landscape. There are many lakes in Palani that eventually drain into the Shanmuga River at the foot of these hills.

Palani, derived from Pazham (Fruit), combines two words - 'Fruit' and 'You'. This Tamil town is famous for its temple dedicated to Lord Murugan or 'Kartikeya', son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, who is believed to have lived here after leaving Mount Kailash to become an ascetic.

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Religious Importance

It is believed that Sage Narada had once visited Lord Shiva with the Fruit of Knowledge (Gyana-Pazham) as a gift. Lord Shiva, wanted to split the fruit between his sons - Ganesha and Kartikeya, but Narada warned against dividing it. A race was to be won by either of the two sons to receive this fruit - being he who took 3 circles around the world the quickest. Lord Murugan set forth on his peacock. When he returned, he was told that the world wasn't the Earth,but his parents, as rightly identified by Ganesha who won the race long ago. In disbelief of his boyhood and the time wasted, he settled down in this very town, Palani. It is this town that became the real fruit, Pazham, that Lord Murugan bore himself.

History

Apart from religious beliefs as to Palani being the real place where Lord Murugan renewed himself, the town also has an ancient history. It is said that the Palani Murugan Temple was re-consecrated by the Chera dynasty. Palani, due to its blessings from Lord Murugan, was felt to be the perfect guardian of the Chera kingdom. The eastern frontier of the kingdom remained unguarded and was west of Palani. This is why the sanctum of the temple exhibits elements of Chera architecture.

Suggested Itinerary

  • Depending on the timing of the pooja you wish to attend at the Palani Murugan temple, reach Palani the morning of the day you wish to visit the main attraction or the previous night.
  • The timings and prices for each pooja are available online. 
  • You should keep an hour to visit the Thiru Avinankudi temple before visiting the main temple. When going to the Palani Murugan Temple, each darshan typically takes up to an hour excluding lunch, offered as prasadam at the temple.
  • After the darshan and prasadam, you can spend some time seeing the architecture of the temple.
  • A quick visit to the Periyanayaki Amman Temple or the Varathamanathi Dam may be done for a more wholesome day at Palani.
  • You can take a bus or taxi back to Coimbatore and end your day.

Places to Visit in Palani

The Palani Murugan Temple has been built on a hill, overlooking the town of Palani, 1500ft above sea level. Being on top of a hill, the view from here is serene and enchanting. This is the most prominent temple of devotion towards Lord Murugan and is also considered one of the richest temples in Tamil Nadu. The poojas happen throughout the year from 6am to 8pm. There are special poojas on certain auspicious occasions that may start as early as 4.30am.

The Thiru Avinankudi Temple or Kulandai Velalyudhaswami Temple is located at the foothills of Palani. It is one the earliest abodes of Lord Murugan, known to have been a place of worship that blossomed under the shade of an ancient Nelli (Amla) tree. The temple was renovated over twelve years in the beginning of the 20th century. A sacred tank is also attached to this temple. This temple is older than the main Palani Murugan Temple. Pilgrims usually visit this temple before they climb up the Palani hills.

The Periyanayaki Amman Temple or 'Town Temple' is located in the town of Palani and is popular among the local folk. It is considered as the most artistic temple in Palani. The temple is also known for housing the vahanas (vehicles) of all the temples in Palani made of silver, brass & wood and is considered a museum, in this sense. It is starting to gather alot of attention amongst all the abodes of Lord Murugan. It is most crowded on fridays.

Around 7km from Palani, the Varathamanathi Dam is a non-religious attraction unlike most attractions in Palani. The dam is a calm family picnic spot for families. It is important to carry your own food and entertainment as the dam does not provide services or support. 

Palani Photos

Holidify's Opinion

What's Great?

The land itself is said to have been the ascetic home of Lord Murugan. Sacred and Serene. Ancient, rich temples.

What's Not So Great?

Many locals offer 'quick Darshan' or 'private Darshan' or selling offering materials to scam tourists. Avoid them.

For Whom?

Must-Visit for the Hindu or Hindu-curious. This town is known more for being the place where Lord Murugan actually found himself and is a sacred to the religious.

How To Reach Palani

Palani is a religious town located between Coimbatore and Madurai. To get to Palani, one can fly to Coimbatore. Once you reach Coimbatore, you can take a train or bus to Palani, which is about 100km away. There are a few trains to Palani including the Palani Express and Amritha Express. There are many buses that are available as well. 

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