Kundrakudi or Kunnakudi as colloquially called, is located near Karaikkudi, Sivagangai District of Tamil Nadu. This is one of the important temples of Lord Subramanya. The temple is situated in asmall hill with a few hundreds steps. As per the legend, the peacock of Lord Muruga was arrogant and he swallowed Garuda and Swan. Lord Vishnu and Brahma appealed to Muruga to get back their vahanas. Muruga cursed the peacock to become a hillock. Repenting for the mistake, he performed a severe penance and got back his form.
It is interesting to note that the appearance of the Kunnakudi hill resembles that of a peacock at certain angles
The history of the temple dates back to more than 1200 years. It could have been constructed and maintained by the Pandya kings. At the foothills is a cave temple dedicated to Shiva with a 5 tiered gopuram. There are three caves here. The first houses a Shivalingam. One of the walls bears a sculptured image of Vishnu, while the other bears an image of Lingapurnadeva, being worshipped by Bhrama,with a swan above him and a four armed Vishnu bearing a Sangu (conch) and Chakra.
It is said that Pandavas, sage Agasthya have worshipped in this temple.
As you climb the steps ( which are not very tiring) you come across the sannidhi of Idumban. At the top of the steps you can see the sannidhi of Vallabha Ganapathy.
As you enter the main sanctum you are mesmerised by the beauty of Lord Shanmuga with his six faces and twele arms sitting in a beautifully carved peacock. The peacock and the Lord are of monolithic ( carved out of a single stone). His consorts Valli and Deivanai have their own peacocks as their vahanas. ( you can request the priest to explain and show these features. In a crowded day it may not be possible to leisurely look at these beautiful sculptures).
As you come out of the sanctum, you can see the beautifully carved pillars. ( when the author visited the temple most of the pillars were covered with white cloth for maintenance). There are sannidhis for Kasi Viswanatha, Somaskandar, Sandeeswarar.
Farmers contribute grains as their thanks giving. They also spill rice on the steps. Some villagers donate cocks and cattle.
10 day Panguni Uthiram during March-April and 10 day Thaipoosam in January-February, are the two big festivals of the temple. Paal (milk) Perukku vizha in Chithirai (April-May), Vaikasi Visakam in May-June, Aani Mahabishekam in June-July, Aadi Tirupadi Puja in July-August, Aavani Moolam Pittu Thiruvizha in August-September, Skanda Sashti and Arrow festival in October-November are some of the the festivals celebrated in the temple in a very grand manner.
This temple has been revered by the Thirupugazh hymns of Arunagirinathar.
Temple Timings The temple is open from 6:00 AM till 12 noon and from 5:00 pm till 9:00 pm
The nearest airport is Trichy. Rail head Karaikkudi is a major station with trains from Chennai, Trichy, Madurai. From Karaikkudi , buses, taxis are available to reach this place.