Friday, March 20, 2009

Vallam Sri Vedhaantheeswarar & Sri Giri Varadharaaja Perumaal

Vallam is a small village near Chengalpattu. While going from Chennai, one has to take left from Chengalpattu on the Mahabalipuram Road and Vallam is located on the 3rd Km from Chengalpattu. A small pathway from the main road leads to the village.

Vallam has a beautiful small hillock on which two wonderful rock cut temples are found. There are steps leading to the temples. According to the inscriptions found, these temples are said to have been built during the period of Mahendravarma Pallava. Inscriptions also reveal the ancient name of the place as Valla Naadu under Kalathur Kottam.

On the left hand side there is a temple for Lord Shiva called Sri Vedhaantheeswarar. Goddess here is Sri Gnaanaambigai. This is perhaps the only place where one can have dharshan of Sri Vinayagar, Sri Subramanyar, Lord Shiva, Sri Ambaal and Sri Sandigeswarar from the same place where we stand. Lord Muruga here is called as Sri Muthukumaaraswami.

Unlike other Shiva temples, here Goddess Sri Gnaanaambigai is facing the east. Sri Gnaanaambigai looks like a very new idol with clear details and is beautifully decorated with silk saree. The face has so much of Thejas and benevolence. The Dwarapaalakaas are so exquisitely sculpted in life size. The Soolam and Mazhu, which are the weapons of Lord Shiva, are carried by the Dwaarapaalakaas here. It is said that, in this temple, during Pradhosham, the Abishegams are first performed to Dwaarapaalakaas and then to Sri Vedhaantheeswarar and finally to Sri Nandhigeswarar. Now a concrete structure is built around this temple for convenience.

It is said that during the sunrise, the rays from the Sun fall directly on the Lord like a garland.

On the right hand side there is a temple for Sri Giri Varadharaaja Perumaal. Sri Perumaal is seen here with his consorts Sri Devi and Bhu Devi. Dwaarapaalakaas are found outside the sanctum.

Unusually, Sri Durgai is found in the Perumaal temple facing south instead of north as found in Shiva temples. According to the inscriptions, it is found that a lady called Kommai (கொம்மை), daughter of a Pallava King has installed Sri Durgai in this temple 1300 years back.

The temple pond is called as Sivaganga Pushkarani, the water from which is used for Abishegams to the Gods.

Pradhosham and all other Saivite and Vaishnavite festivals are done here at these temples. On usual days, priest visits the temple once a day for daily rituals. But one can have dharshan even in the absence of the priest.

Nice temple with serene ambience with excellence of Pallava architecture.


  1. It is a beautiful description about the temple. This noble service of writing stla purana should come as a book compilation of temples of shiva sthala and vishnu stla with road map. Hope you will be very successful in this venture.

    Kaveri Natarajan


    Got Vedandeeswarar & Gyanaambikai dharshan. She is Gyanammbikai apram Dejasku ketka venduma.
    it is new that Durgai in vishnu temple and facing south. is there any spl reason?

    anyhow thank you once again

  3. Thanks a lot for this good article and for your efforts & time. We appreciate you for your noble works. Words are inadequate to express our gratitude and appreciation.

    In this article, at the following lines,
    "This is perhaps the only place where one can have dharshan of Sri Vinayagar, Sri Subramanyar, Lord Shiva, Sri Ambaal and Sri Sandigeswarar."

    I feel, some more wordings should be added like "at the same time" or "from the same place". Please correct this, if you think so. Thanks again.

  4. Guru Sir,

    Mistakes corrected and the sentence amended.

    Thanks once again


    Take care...

    Charter Member, Lions Club of CHENNAI ANBALAYA -Dist-324 A1
    0- 93800- 82198

  6. DEAR SIR,

  7. dear sir

  8. This Chengalpat Vallam cave temples needs attention. For the daily pooja itself these Vallam cave temples doesn’t have enough money. And the temple tank also not in good condition. Current week Kumudam Jothidam features the details of this temple and the bank account details.

  9. Thanks to your blog, we had wonderful dharshan yesterday and we witnessed the Pradosham Pooja. Your yeoman service is greatly appreciated.
    The beauty of the Presiding Deity made me think of this:
    Om Vedhantheeswaraya Vidhmahe
    Adhi Sundaryaya Dheemahi
    Tanno Siva Prachodayat.
    The priest there also did the pooja with great devotion and it was a great experience to visit the temple.
    23 May 2013

  10. This village Vallam is the hometown of the engineer of Thanjavur periyakovil. Here is where the model of Thanjavur periyakovil was first executed, where the shadow wouldn't fall on ground.
    Source: Kanchi Mahaperiyavaa Chandrasekhara saraswati swamigal