Attukal Pongala -World’s largest gathering of women

Ajith Kumar Culture, Destinations, festival, India, Kerala 0

Photo courtesy: By Maheshsudhakar – Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0,

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  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 that of Kannagi and her determination that turned her like Goddess; this story believed to be happened in Madurai, Tamilnadu. There is  another story connected with the previous incident  is believed to be the reason for  the creation of present day Attukal Temple in Thiruvananthapuram. 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


Thiruvananthapuram International / domestic airport 


Trivandrum Central railway station is the main railway station and Kochuveli railway station is 10 Kms away from city centre.


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 

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)

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