Attukal Pongala -World’s largest gathering of women on 9th March 2020

Unni Mohanadas Destinations 0

Location: Thiruvananthapuram,Kerala , India

Destination type : Cultural Destination

Attukal Pongala is a 10-day festival celebrated at the Attukal Temple,Thiruvananthapuram, during which there is a huge gathering of millions of women on the ninth day. These women prepare a divine food made of rice in earthen pots and offer it to the Goddess Kannagi of the Temple.The popular mythology behind the temple relates to the story of Kannagi who was married to Kovalan. After burning Madurai Kannagi is said to come to Kerala where she took form of a girl. There she met an old man.She asked him to build a temple where she was first seen. A temple for Goddess Kannagi was built there(present day Attukal). Pongal offerings has been given to Kannagi the goddess since then at this temple .

History of  Attukal Pongala

  1. Ilango Adigal has written the epic Silappattikaram (written in 5th-6th century AD) based on the story of Kannagi and Kovalan.
  2. The current temple evolved from a modest “Mudipura” built 1000 years back(a humble abode of the deity worshiped by Dalits
  3. In 1857 Govinda Pillai (a judge and land lord )installed the wooden idol which is worshiped today
  4. The Guinness book of world record mentioned it as world’s largest women gathering festival on 1997 with 1.5 million women and 2009 with 2.5 million attendees

Activities for tourists at Thiruvananthapuram during Attukal Pongala festival

  1. Participate in the largest festival of divine femininity
  2. Watch Kuthiyottam by young boys
  3. Attend the cultural events and enjoy Indian classical and folk dance forms
  4. Visit Padmanabha Swamy temple nearby
  5. Visit Kovalam beach

How to reach there

Air

Thiruvananthapuram International airport has flights to international destinations such as ;

  1. Dubai
  2. Sharjah
  3. Kuwait
  4. Bahrain
  5. Doha
  6. Male
  7. Kula Lumpur
  8. Colombo and
  9. Singapore.

There are flights to Indian domestic destinations such as Kochi, Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore and Chennai

Train

Trivandrum Central railway station is the main railway station and Kochuveli railway station is 10 Kms away from city centre. From these railway station trains are available to:

  1. New Delhi
  2. Mumbai
  3. Kolkotta
  4. Chennai
  5. Baengaluru
  6. Kanyakumari
  7. Gandhidham etc

Climate

Winter is the best time to travel in Thiruvananthapuram , Kerala.

Season Average Temperature
Winter( October to February) 22°C to 31°C
Summer( March to June) 24°C to 35°C

Nearby destinations for tour operators / travel agents

1. Kovalam ( 17 kms away)
2. Kanyakumari( 90 kms away)
3. Kumarakom ( 158 kms away)
4. Kochi ( 207 kms away)
5. Alappuzha ( 154 kms away)

Some hotels in Thiruvananthapuram for tourists and tour operators with room tariff less than Rs.5000/- per night

Uday Suites http://udaysuites.com/

SP Grand Days http://www.spgranddays.com/

Hotel Highland https://www.highland-hotels.com/

Hotel Apollo Dimora http://www.apollodimora.com/

The Central Residency http://thecentralresidency.com/

Fortune Hotel The South Park http://thesouthpark.com/

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 Photo courtesy: By Maheshsudhakar – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=48220494

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