Devi Kanyakumari, Kanyakumari
Devi Kanyakumari, Kanyakumari

Kumari Devi is believed to be an incarnation of Goddess Parvati. Parvati Mata took the birth of Kumari Devi to kill the demon named Banasura.

Kanya Maa Bhagawati Durga
Kanya Maa Bhagawati Durga

The Kumari Amman temple situated in Kanyakumari has Maa Bhagawati Durga in its sanctum sanctorum.  What’s unique about this holy spot is that it firmly prohibits men from entering its premises at any time. Only sanyasis (celibate men) are permitted to proceed to the gate, whereas married men are not permitted to enter.

With Goddess Bhagawati as the reigning deity of the temple, it’s believed to be one of the 52 Shakti Peethas. As per the puranas, the right shoulder and spine area of Sati’s corpse fell at this spot, which is housed inside the Kanya Kumari temple. Another legend says that Goddess Parvati was supposedly treated disrespectfully by Lord Shiva at this site on the day of their wedding, and male entry remains restricted here to date.

It is said that Maa Parvati went to a lonely site in the mid of the ocean for Tapasya. She tried very hard Tapasya for getting Lord Shiva as her husband. So in this temple, only women are allowed, men are prohibited there. This is a famous temple of Kanya Kumari, where Kanya Maa Bhagawati Durga is worshipped by women only.

Architecture

The Kumari Amman temple was built during the reign of the Pandya dynasty. It was later rebuilt by the Vijayanagara, Chola and Nayaka kings. A pavilion of sixteen pillars is built in the temple. 

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The main deity of the temple, Devi Kumari is facing east. The idol shows Goddess as a young girl with a garland. The nose-ring of the deity is known for its extraordinary lustre. There are many tales related to it as well.

The eastern gate of the temple is kept closed on most of the days. It is opened only on special occasions and days such as new moon days during the month of Vrischikam, Edavam and Karkidakam.

There is a well inside the temple from where water is used for the consecration of the goddess. This is known as Moola Ganga Theertham.

Legend / Local stories

In great Hindu epic Mahabharata and Ramayana, Kumari Amman Temple has been mentioned. Even in the Sangam works such as Manimekalai and Purananooru, there is mention of this temple.

According to the legend behind the Kanyakumari Temple, demon Banasura had captured all devas and kept them in his cruel captivity. As per the boon, he could be killed only by a virgin girl. Hence, upon devas prayers and pleadings, Goddess Parasakthi took the form of Kumari, the virgin girl so as to kill the demon.

With time, Lord Shiva fell in love with Kumari and the arrangements for their celestial wedding were made. Sage Narada, who was aware of the fact that demon Banasura can be killed only if the Goddess remains unmarried, tried to cancel the wedding in many ways. When he couldn’t succeed and the marriage time was fixed for midnight, he devised a plan. On the day when Lord Shiva started his journey for the wedding, from Suchindram at Valukkuparai to Kanyakumari, Sage Narada took the form of a cock. He crowed to misleadingly indicate the onset of the morning. Lord Shiva, hearing the cock, returned back, thinking that the auspicious time of wedding had passed, while the Goddess was left waiting for him. Later, Goddess decided to remain unmarried.

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However, when demon Banasura, mesmerised by the Goddess’s beauty, tried to marry her forcibly, she annihilated him with her Chakra Gadha, as well as freeing devas from his capture. Later, Banasura asked Goddess for mercy and prayed to her to absolve his sins. Goddess forgave him and blessed the water of holy confluence. It is said that whoever takes a dip in the waters here, washes off his/her sins.

As per the legend, Saint Narada and Lord Parasurama requested the goddess to stay on earth till the end of Kaliyuga. Lord Parasuram later constructed a temple by the side of the ocean; he then installed an idol of the Goddess Kanya Kumari. The shores around the temple have around 25 theerthams. Another holy place near the temple is Sripada Parai, also known as Vivekananda Rock Memorial. Imprints of Goddess’s feet can be seen on the rock.

Fairs / Festivals

 Vaisakhi Festival which is mostly celebrated in the month of May is the most important festival of the temple. It is celebrated for a span of 10 days. During this festival, the utsava idol of Goddess Kumari also takes part in various processions of the festival.

Other important festivals of the temple are Navaratri Festival, Float Festival, Chitra Purnima Utsav, Car Festival and Kalabham (Sandal) festival.

How to Reach:

Tourists can reach Devi Kanyakumari Temple easily as it is easily accessible by road. Tourists can take auto rickshaws or taxi to the temple. There are also city buses that one can take to reach here.

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This temple is at a distance of 1 km away from Kanyakumari Bus Stop as well as quite close to the Kanyakumari Railway Station which is also around 1 km away.

  • Nearest Railway Station : Kanyakumari Railway Station at a distance of nearly 1.6 km from Kumari Amman Temple.
  • Nearest Airport  : Trivandrum International Airport at a distance of nearly 101 km from Kumari Amman Temple.

Address

Kumari Amman Temple Kanyakumari Address: Sannathy Street, Kanyakumari, Tamil Nadu, 629702, India

Contact Details

Phone: 04652 246 223

Kumari Amman Temple Kanyakumari Timings

DayTiming
Monday4:30 am – 12:30 pm
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Tuesday4:30 am – 12:30 pm
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Wedesday4:30 am – 12:30 pm
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Thursday4:30 am – 12:30 pm
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Friday4:30 am – 12:30 pm
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Saturday4:30 am – 12:30 pm
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Sunday4:30 am – 12:30 pm
4:00 pm – 8:00 pm

FAQs on Kumari Amman temple (Devi Kanyakumari)

Which goddess is there in Kanyakumari?

Kumari Amman Devi is referred as Devi Kanyakumari. The town is named after this goddess.

Who built Kumari Amman temple?

Kumari Bhagavathy Amman temple is the first Durga Temple created by Lord Parasurama and one of the 108 Shakthi Peedas. This temple is situated at the shore of the Laccadive Sea. Kumari temple has been mentioned in Ramayana, Mahabaradha and Purananooru.

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