Kalyāṇa Veṅkaṭeśwara Swāmi (Nārāyaṇa Vanam)

Location: 45km SW of Tirupati (route)

Timings: Not closed on afternoons.

Kṣhetra Purāṇam: This is the place where the Lord was married to Śrī Padmāvatī Devi, who is the daughter of King Ākāśarāja and avatār of Goddess Lakṣhmi. This temple was constructed by the brother-in-law of the Lord in commemoration of the divine marriage.

About the Temple: The Lord appears here with a contradicting alaṅkāram:  He has a Khaḍgam, as He came here for mrgayā-vihāram, and also simultaneously has a Kalyāṇa Rakṣhā-bandhanam, as He got married to the Goddess here. The temple has many antique artifacts which were used during the divine marriage: e.g., a stone used to grind turmeric etc. Nārāyaṇa Vanam was the capital of the king Ākāśarāja and hence has many Temples near-by which were patronized by him. This temple is currently maintained by TTD.

Other Main Deities: Śrī Padmāvati Devi, Śrī Ānḍāl, Sīta Lakṣhmana Sameta Śrī Rāma Chandra Swāmi and Ranganāyaka Swāmi.

Sevas & Festivals: Please refer TTD site.

Near by Temples: Temples in and around Nagari (route) and other temples in Narayana Vanam.

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Kāśi Viśweśwara Swāmi (Nagari)

Location: Bugga Agraharam, near Nagari, 56kms SE from Tirupati (route)

Timings: Not closed on afternoons

About the Temple: The temple is located on the banks of Kuśasthali river. It is currently maintained by TTD. The main deity is Śri Kāśi Viśweśwara Swāmi, with His consorts Śri Annapurṇa and Śri Kāmākṣhi Devi. There are many great vṛkṣhas in the temple including the Śiva-liṅga-vṛkṣham shown in the picture. It is said that the Lord likes being worshipped by these flowers a lot.

Other Main Deities: Śri Prayāga Mādhava Swāmi along with His consort Śri Bhūdevi.

Sevas & Festivals: Kalyaṇotsavam seva once in an year on Panguni Uttaram day. The main utsavams are: Pradoṣha pūja (twice a month), Kāla Bhairava Aṣhṭami (monthly), Kārtīka-Induvāsara pūja, Mahā Śiva-rātri.

Near by Temples: Temples in and around Nagari, Temples in Narayana Vanam (route).

Deśamma Temple (Nagari)

Location: 53kms (SE) to Tirupati (NH205).

Timings: Not closed on afternoons

About the Temple: This is a temple of Grama-devata by name Deśamma (Pārvati Devi). Bhaktas visit the temple on Tuesdays and get the blessings of the Devi. Bhaktas put abhishekam water into their eyes which cures all eye diseases.

Near by Temples: Temples in and around Nagari, Temples in Narayana Vanam (route).

Subrahmaṇya Swāmi (Tiruttaṇi)

Location: 82kms (NW) from Chennai (route), 71kms (SE) from Tirupati (route)

Timings: 5:00am-9:00pm

Kṣhetra Purāṇam: Once Tārakāsura stole Lord Vishnu’s Chakra-āyudham and then Lord Subrahmanya slayed the asura, and his younger brother Śūrapadma and returned the Chakram to Shri Hari in Tiruttani. With the killing of Tāraka, Lord Subrahmanya also returned the throne to Devendra. Hence as a token of gratitude, Lord Devendra gave His daughter Devasena to Lord Subrahmanya. Later, Subrahmanya also married Valli (Vallimalai, the Godesses’s birth place, is also near to Tiruttani) and hence the Lord appears here with both His consorts.

This is also the place where Lord Subrahmanya gave upadeśam of Praṇava-mantram to Lord Brahma Himself! Once Nandīśvara (11 avatar of Lord Shiva), performed penance on the banks of a river in Tiruttani. The Lord impressed by it blessed Him with Divya-Jñānam. This river hence is also called by Nandi’s name. Vāsuki, who was used as a rope in kṣhīra-sāgara-mathanam, prayed to Tiruttani Lord and cured his wounds.

Mahātmyam: This is the fourth in the six important Subrahmanya Kshetrams. There is a small pushkarini near the start of the foot-way by the name Brahma-kuṇḍam. A holy dip in which cures even deadly diseases! There is a 4ft stone on which everyday kilos of sandal wood paste for the Lord is prepared. Though this stone is being used since many yugams, owing to its great auṣhadha-śakti, it has not eroded. Hence if the sandal-wood paste used for God is taken, it will cure great diseases. The foot-way to the temple on the hill from the village has 365 steps and many bhaktas offer turmeric and kumkum to each step and thereby achieve the puṇyam of performing archana to the Lord throughout the year (365 days).

Other Main Deities: Sudarshana-murti (behind Ugra-Narasimha), Aarumuga svami, Vinayaka

About the Temple: Temple is located on a small hill (700ft above sea) with 365 foot steps from village base. There is a small pushpavanam which was constructed by Lord Devendra. This vanam has a divya vruksham which offers exactly three flowers everyday. The Lord is worshipped with them everyday.

Near by Temples: 15 temples in Tiruttani iteself within radius of 15km, Temples in Nagari (route) and in Arakkonam (route)

Useful Links: Link1, Link2

Suvaleśvara Swāmi (Tiruvallūr)

Location: ~15kms from Tiruvallur on the way to Tiruttani (NH205).

Timings: 6:30am-12:00pm and 4:00pm-8:00pm

Khetra Purāṇam: A 500 year old temple contructed by Chola kings. The main deity is Lord Shiva with the name Suvaleśvara (One who controls māya) and consort as shri Kāmākṣhi devi.

Other Main Deities: Kubereshvara, Dakshina murty, Kalabhairava, Vinayaka, Anjaneya, Subrahmanya, Navagrahas, Kashi Vishveshvara.

Near by Temples: Tiruvallūr (~15kms), Tiruppāccūr (Vasīśvara swami temple at distance ~15km), Tiruttaṇi (~20kms).

Vaidya Vīra Rāghava Swāmi (Tiruvallūr)

Location: 44kms (NW) from Chennai (route) or 103kms (SE) from Tirupati (route). District: Tiruvallur, State: Tamil Nadu

Timings: 6:30am-12:00pm and 4:00pm-8:00pm

Kṣhetra Purāṇam: Long, long time ago, in kṛtayugam, there lived a great maharshi by name Purupuṇyar and his wife Satyavati. Once they performed the great Putrakāmeṣhṭhi (Śāli) yāgam, at the end of which Lord Vishnu appeared before them and gave a boon that they will be blessed with a child and he should be named Śālihotra. In young age itself Śālihotra was a great bhakta of Vishnu. Once he was old enough, he set out for a pilgrimage. On one great day he reached Tiruvallur and before Swami darshan took a holy dip in Htpāpanāśini pushkariṇi. This pushkariṇi is so great that as soon as he took a holy dip, he decided to perform a penance for the Lord. After two years of severe penance, on the last day of penance he made prasadam and divided it into three parts. One for the Lord, one for atithi and the remaining for himself.  The lord in the form of an old man then came and Śālihotra happily offered him prasadam. After eating it he asked if he can lie down for which Śālihotra readily agreed and the old man lied down putting his head towards south and legs towards north and facing east. Then the Lord took his real form and Śālihotra prasied the Lord in thousands of ways. Impressed by the Bhakti of the maharshi, the Lord asked his wish for which Śālihotra asked for Mokṣham and also requested the Lord to stay in this form and bless the bhaktas. This form of the Lord sleeping is what is presently worshipped as Vaidya Vīra Rāghava Swāmi.

Here is a shlokam from Saraswati sahasram starting with the maharshi’s name:

“शालिहॊत्रप्रॊक्तविद्या शालिरक्षणतत्परा ।
शालारण्यकृतावासा शललीकृतलॆखना ॥”

There is an interesting story about the consort of the Lord, Shri Vasumati Devi too. Vasumati, the avatar of Lakshmi, was the daughter of King Dharmasena who belonged to the lineage of the great king Dilipa. Vasumati was a great bhakta of Vishnu and always dreamed of marrying Him. Once lord took the form of a prince (Lord Rama) and appeared before Her with a proposal for marriage. Dharmasena agreed to it and the holy marriage happened. As per the tradition, the new couple were taken to the Tiruvallur temple and there before everyone, the Lord submerged into the idol and blessed that He will henceforth be known as Veera Raaghava Svami and His consort Vasumati will be known by the name Kanakavalli and the Dharmasena couple will attain moksham.

Mahātmyam: The temple is one (93rd) of the 108 Vaishnava divya deshams. This is a rare kshetram in which Lord Rama appears in a sleeping position. The bhaktas offer a mixture of salt and pepper to the Lord and get blessed with good health. The temple has a big  pushkarini and is aptly named Htpāpanāśini. Bhaktas who take a holy dip in the pushkarini are relieved of all paapas including those done through the manas and also gain good health. It is here that the vedas were releaved to Lord Brahma by Mahavishnu. Lord Shiva cleansed His brahma-hatya-paapam (of killing Daksha) by worshipping this Lord only. Very uniquely, the only vastram used for the Lord is a simple red-white checked lungi. The other name for Tiruvallur is Vīkṣhvāraṇya Puram. Narasimha swami gives darshan in two forms here — Lakshmi Narasimha and Ugra Narasimha. One cannot directly see and withstand the Ugram of Ugra Narasimha, so the idol is turned back facing a mirror, through which bhaktas can see Him and in the front, the Lord gives darshan as Sudarshana-murti. There is a huge Yajña Śāla in which every day, Yajñams are performed and it is believed that whoever sees the Agni here will be liberated from the cycle of birth-death!

Other Main Deities: Kanakavalli tāyār or Vasumati (consort of the Lord, ~4ft tall idol), Lakshmi Narasimha and Sudarshana murty (with Ugra-Narasimha idol at the back), Andal. Shri Rama, Venugopala swami.

Structure & Sculpture: The temple in its present form (though existant from krtayuga) was built with rich sculptures by the Chola kings. It is in a big area with a 5-leveled Rājagopuram and 7 kalaśams on it. The main deity is sleeping on a 5-headed Ādi Śesha. Here Lord Vishnu is with dvibhujam only with one hand taking support of Śālihotra maharshi. The name of the Vimānam is Vijayakoti Vimānam. There is 30-pillared mukha-maṇḍapam with tall idols of Dvārapālakas. Towards the south, there is a vast Kalyāṇa-maṇḍapam with several pillars and rich sculptures. . There are many śilpas and śāsanas on the borders of the pushkarini, including those on which excellent sāhityam is inscribed.

Near by Temples: Tiruppāccūr (Vasīśvara swami temple at distance ~1km), Tiruninḍravūr (~20kms map), Tiruvalangaḍu (~22kms map)

Useful Links: link1, link2, link3, link4, link5