Ambalappuzha Sree Krishna Swamy Temple which is also known as Dwarka of the South is a famous Vaishnava temple which is situated in Ambalapuzha, Alappuzha District, Kerala. The Ambalappuzha Sri Krishna Temple is believed to have been built during the 15th – 17th AD by the local ruler Chembakasserry Pooradam Thirunal-Devanarayanan Thampuran. Sri Krishna (Sri Vishnu) is the presiding deity in this temple. The main deity is made of black granite stone and he is also known as Gopala Krishna. He appears in Parthasarathy, Arjuna’s charioteer from the epic Mahabharata, at this holy site in Alappuzha district. It is one of Travancore’s and Kerala’s seven most famous Vaishnava temples.
The Ambalapuzha idol resembles Parthasarthi with a whip in his right hand and a Shankhu (sacred conch) in his left. This temple is directly associated with the Guruvayoor Sree Krishna Temple. The idol of the Guruvayur temple was kept here during the raid of Tipu Sultan in 1789. The temple is associated with the origin of the famous performing art form of Kerala – Ottamthullal. The legendary Malayalam poet Kalakkaththu Kunchan Nambiar is believed to have created this unique art form at the Ambalappuzha Temple premises.
It is also known that the Sree Krishna Temple was built and designed in the best typical architectural style of Kerala, displaying beautiful paintings of various avatars of Lord Vishnu (a major central attraction for devotees and pilgrims) within its premises.
Ambalapuzha is famous for its porridge. The porridge is known as the payasam. Every day Paal Payasam is offered to devotees. The porridge is popularly known as Amabalapuzha Pal Payasam.
Aaraattu Festival and Vijayabali are the main festivals celebrated in this temple. Photography is not allowed inside the temple.
Ambalapuzha Sri Krishna Temple Timings:
Morning: 3:00 AM to 12:00 Noon
Evening: 5:00 PM 8:00 PM
Darshan timings may change during festivals and special days.
Ambalapuzha Temple Dress Code:
To enter Garbhagriha the devotees should follow the temple dress code. Devotees/visitors/pilgrims wearing various styles of clothing are allowed to view the other parts of the temple except for Garbhagriha.
The women should wear Saree or Salwar Kameez (Churidar) and men should wear Dhoti or trousers.
Men should ensure that their upper body remains bare-chested before entering the Garbhagriha (shirts and banyans should be removed).
Ambalapuzha Gopala Krishna Temple History:
According to the story, Sri Krishna visited the monarch at Ambalapuzha Palace. He pretended to be a sage. In a game of chess, Sri Krishna challenged the king. The saint only asked for a few grains of rice from the king as payment for winning. Sri Krishna wanted the same number of grains as a chessboard. One grain of rice had to go in the first square, two in the second square, four in the third square, eight in the fourth square, sixteen in the fifth square, and so on until the last court. Since the king has lost the game, he must give the sage an equal bowl of rice.
He began to calculate the total amount of rice and found that it was in the millions. This gift turned out to be impossible to give. As a result, the monarch found himself in a precarious position. Sri Krishna finally came in his original form. He asked the king to offer daily Paal payasam to devotees until he discharged the debt. As a result, he started serving Paal payasam in the temple.
How to reach Ambalapuzha Temple:
Cochin International Airport is 97.7 km and Trivandrum International Airport is the nearest airport which is 136 km from the temple.
The nearest railway station is Ambalapuzha which is just 2 km away.
The temple has a good road route from other cities.
Sri Krishna Swami Temple Address:
Kerala – 688561.