Sabarimala,in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala, as a place of pilgrimage, is a nation-wide acclaimed destination.Sri Dharmasastha Temple is the most famous among all the Sastha Temples of India. It is believed that Sage Parasurama who uplifted Kerala from the sea by throwing his axe, installed the idol of Lord Ayyappa at Sabarimala for worship The pilgrimage begins in the month of November and ends in January. The temple attracts pilgrims not only from the southern states of India, but also from other parts of the country and abroad.
The unique feature of the Temple is that it is open to people of all castes and faiths and innumerable non-hindus conduct pilgrimages to Sabarimala. The secular aspect of the temple is best exemplified by the existence of the “Vavar Nada” in honour of a Muslim saint at the close proximity to the main temple at Sabarimala. The pilgrims enter the gateway of Pathinettampadi only after worship at this place. The pilgrims on their sojourn to Sabarimala also worship at Erumeli Sree Dharma Sastha Temple and conduct “Petta Thullal”. They also worship in the mosque at Erumeli as a part of their pilgrimage.
Ayyappa cult gives much importance to secularism and communal harmony and the pilgrimageSabarimala has turned out to be a model place of worship for the whole world. Another significant aspect of the pilgrimage is that all the pilgrims whether rich or poor, learned or illiterate, holding high position or not, master or servant ,are all equal before the Lord and all address one other as Ayyappa, highlighting the ego less aspect of humanity. destination of
Besides the temple, there are a number of other sightseeing places one can visit around Sabarimala.Aranmula is a little temple town in Pathanamthitta District, which is famous for its scenic ranges and handicrafts especially the Aranmula mirror. It also features the annual boat race during Onam festival.One can visit the hill town of Konni, which is famous for timber trade and the wild elephant training centre.
Rail : You can arrive at Kottayam & Chengannur by Railway (Broad gauge) and Punalur (Metre gauge) and from there by BUS to Pampa