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| Last Updated:: 12/09/2023














Swamimalai is a panchayat town near Kumbakonam in Thanjavur District, Tamil Nadu. It lies on the banks of river Kaveri and is one of the six abodes of the Lord Muruga.














Swamimalai temple is fourth among the six holy shrines of Murugan called Arupadaiveedu.  According to Hindu mythology, Karthikeya explained the meaning of pranavam  (Om) to his father Lord Shiva at Swamimalai, after arresting Brahma for not answering his question about Pranava Mantra. The teaching capability of Murugan is found as one of his identifying features. Hence, one can see the Karthikeya depicted as Guru (teacher) and Shiva listening as shishya (disciple) in the gopuram of the temple complex. The God is referred here by the name Swaminathan and Thagapan Swami (literally Father of God).



The shrine of the presiding deity, Swaminathaswamy is located atop a 60 ft (18 m) hillock and the shrine of his mother Meenakshi (Parvathi) and father Shiva (Sundareswarar) is located downhill. The temple has three gopurams (gateway towers), three precincts and sixty steps and each one is named after the sixty Tamil years. The temple has six daily rituals at various times from 5:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., and three yearly festivals on its calendar.



The annual Vaikasi Visagam festival is attended by thousands of devotees from far and near. Like in Palani Murugan temple, Vibhuti Abhishekam, the ablution of the central deity with ash is performed. The central deity is adorned with diamond Vel every Thursday.




Hymns in praise of the presiding deity have been sung by saint Nakkeerar in Tirumurukatrupadai and by Saint Arunagirnathar in Tiruppukazh.