Karaikandeswarar Elathur

Karaikandeswarar, Elathur

Saivite Temples, Thiruvannamalai District


Karaikandeswarar, facing east


Brahanayaki Amman, facing east

Other Deities

Ganesha, Navagraha, Muruga with Consorts, Anjaneya. Sanctum Niches of main deity – Ganesha, Dakshinamurthy, Lingotbavar, Brahma, Durga, Chandikeswara.

Karaikandeswarar Elathur is a small east facing temple with a single Prakaram. The entrance is from the south through a gateway. The vimaanams have been painted up in gold color recently. The original stone structures have been reinforced with concrete structures. The antiquity of the temple remains though. There are old idols of a large Ganesha and a beautiful 6 faced Karthikeya on peacock kept outside the shrines which have been installed with new idols. This is the fifth of the Saptha Karaikandeswarar Sthalams (7 temples) located on the north banks of the Cheyyar River. As the Cheyyar River runs northwards at this spot it is considered as holy as Varanasi. The temples in the order of proceeding north from Kanji along Cheyyar River are Kanji, Kadaladi, Mambakkam, Thenmathimangalam, Elathur, Poondi and Kuruvimalai.

Holy Water (Theertham) – Cheyyar River

Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) – No information


Karaikandeswarar Elathur has been renovated by Chola and Vijayanagar Kings. But verifiable historic information is not available as of now.


Lord Muruga is believed to have built the Saptha Karaikandeswarar temples in the northern banks of Cheyyar River to counter the sin of killing seven Sages (Puthirandan, Puruhudan, Pandurangan, Bodhavan, Bodhan, Koman and Vaman) performing penance in the hills in the region with his spear (Vel). Karaikandeswarar Elathur  is said to be the fifth in this series. This event happened in a quest to create a Theertham for his Mother Parvati to perform ablutions for the Shiva Lingam she created out of earth at Vazhapandal. Another version is that to counter the sin of killing the asura Surapadman, Lord Muruga was advised by his mother to throw his spear and install and worship a shiva lingam where it lands. According to the same legend Muruga is also believed to have created seven temples in the southern banks of the river Cheyyar which are called Saptha Kailasha Sthalams and worshiped Lord Shiva there. The River Cheyyar is believed to be the Theertham created by him – Sei (child) representing the young Muruga and Aar meaning river in Tamil.


Karaikandeswarar Elathur is about 12 kilometers from Kadaladi in the Polur Road. Take a right before the Muruga Hill temple and drive for about 1.5 kilometers to reach the temple.

Stay and Food

None locally. Closest for food would be Kalasapakkam or Polur. There is a small mess at Kadaladi Bazaar where you can get simple decent food.

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