Venkatachalapathi Ettaiyapuram

Venkatachalapathi, Ettaiyapuram

Vaishnavite Temples - Thoothukudi


Venkatachalapathi, facing east


Sree Devi and Bhoodevi, facing east

Other Deities

Garuda, Anjaneya, Vishwaksenar, Nammazhwar, Ramanujar

Venkatachalapathi Ettaiyapuram is an east-facing temple situated in a single completely covered Prakaram. The entrance is through a beautiful Mukha Mandapam in the east. Two long corridor mandapams with beautiful pillars lead inside. Goddesses Sreedevi and Bhoodevi are in separate shrines on either side of the sanctum sanctorum of the main deity. Aanjaneya is carved on a pillar outside the Sreedevi Thaayar shrine.

Holy Water (Theertham) – No information

Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) – No information


There are inscriptions on the base of the outer wall of the Sanctum Sanctorum of Venkatachalapathi Ettaiyapuram. These inscriptions mention that Venkatachalapathi Ettaiyapuram was built by King Jagaveera Rama Venkateswara Ettappa Naicker in 1710 CE. The village was called Ilasanadu in the olden days until the ruling zamindars came under the favor of the Vijayanagar Empire and took on the name of Ettappan, also changing the name of the village to Ettaiyyapuram in 1565. This corresponds to the time of the Vijayanagar King Sadasiva Raya (1542 – 1570 CE). Unlike the common attribute of traitors associated with the name Ettappan (one of the kings who betrayed Veerapandya Kattabomman to the Britishers), the entire dynasty of Kings and Queens were excellent administrators, kind-hearted, and have taken care of the land, its people, and their needs very well. Ettaiyapuram is the birthplace of the famous Tamil Poet Subramanya Bharathiyar and his ancestral home is now a nice museum situated in the street on the south side of the Venkatachalapathi Ettaiyapuram Temple. Umaru Pulavar, a Tamil Muslim poet was born here in Ettaiyapuram in 1642 and is celebrated as one of the greatest Islamic Poets of India. A Memorial has been constructed for him here with a tomb, prayer hall, and library on the south side of the village. The Ettayapuram Palace is on the east side, in front of the Shiva Temple.


The prince of Ilasanadu (old name of Ettaiyapuram) visited Vijayanagar to meet the ruling Emperor (Sadasiva Raya). Custom had it that you had to either bow to the unbeatable wrestler guarding the gate or fight with him. The prince decided to fight and killed the wrestler. The emperor met him and recognized him with gifts. He then said that the 8 brothers of the slain wrestler had no one and he should adopt them as his father. This he did and received the name Ettappan – father of eight sons. It also became a custom here in the olden days that people will not utter the number 8 in Tamil as it was considered disrespectful to mention the king’s name and utter the number only as ‘Maharaja’.


Venkatachalapathi Ettaiyapuram is 42 kilometers northeast of Thoothukudi.

Stay and Food

None locally. The closest are Kovilpatti, Thoothukudi, and Tirunelveli depending on your travel plan.

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