Arunachalam Temple Information Timings and Girivalam

Arunachalam Temple Information, Darshan Timings and Giripradakshina details

Arunachalam Temple (Also known as Annamalaiyar Temple)

Location: Tiruvannamalai, Tamil Nadu, India

Temple History and Significance:

The Arunachalam Temple is one of the oldest and most revered temples in India. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva, who is worshipped here in the form of Arunachaleshwarar or Annamalaiyar. The temple has a rich history dating back over a thousand years and holds great spiritual significance in Hinduism.

The origin of the temple can be traced back to the ancient Tamil Saiva texts, where it is mentioned as one of the Pancha Bhoota Sthalams representing the element of fire. The Arunachalam Temple is believed to be the embodiment of Lord Shiva himself, who manifested in the form of a massive column of fire (Agni) on Annamalai Hill.

The Legend of Annamalai Hill:

According to legend, once there was a dispute between Lord Brahma, the creator, and Lord Vishnu, the preserver, over their supremacy. To settle the argument, Lord Shiva took the form of a fiery column stretching between the earth and the sky. He challenged both Brahma and Vishnu to find the top and bottom of the column. Lord Vishnu took the form of a boar and tried to find the bottom, while Lord Brahma took the form of a swan and tried to find the top.

After searching for an extended period, they both realized the futility of their endeavors and paid homage to the infinite form of Lord Shiva. Impressed with their humility, Lord Shiva granted them his divine blessings. The place where the column of fire appeared is now known as Arunachala, and the temple was built around this sacred hill.

Arunachalam Temple Information and Architecture

The Arunachalam Temple showcases the magnificent Dravidian style of architecture. It features impressive gopurams (towering gateways) with intricate carvings and sculptures depicting various deities and mythological scenes. The temple complex comprises several halls, shrines, and courtyards, each with its unique significance and beauty.


Girivalam, as mentioned before, is the practice of circumambulating the sacred Annamalai Hill. The path around the hill is approximately 14 kilometers long and is considered highly auspicious. Devotees undertake this sacred walk, especially during full moon days, and it is believed to cleanse one’s soul and bring spiritual benefits.

Karthigai Deepam Festival:

The Karthigai Deepam festival is the most significant annual celebration at the Arunachalam Temple. It usually falls in the Tamil month of Karthigai (November-December) and coincides with the full moon day. The festival involves the lighting of a gigantic lamp (Deepam) on top of Annamalai Hill. This act is considered highly auspicious and attracts a large number of devotees from all over the country.

Other Festivals:

Apart from Karthigai Deepam, the temple celebrates various other festivals throughout the year, including Maha Shivaratri, Panguni Uthiram, and Arudra Darshan.

Pilgrimage and Accessibility:

The Arunachalam Temple is a significant pilgrimage destination, and millions of devotees visit the temple every year to seek the blessings of Lord Arunachaleshwarar. Tiruvannamalai is well-connected by road and rail, making it accessible from major cities in Tamil Nadu and neighboring states.

Arunachalam Temple Facilities Information

The temple provides various facilities to pilgrims, including accommodation, prasad distribution, and clean drinking water. Several shops and stalls around the temple complex offer religious items, souvenirs, and food for visitors.

The Arunachalam Temple conducts various poojas and rituals throughout the day to worship and honor Lord Arunachaleshwarar. The poojas held at the temple include:

Nitya Poojas:

These are daily rituals performed by the deity at specific times.

Ushakala Pooja:

The early morning pooja is performed during sunrise.

Kala Sandhi Pooja:

Pooja performed at noon.

Sayaratchai Pooja:

Pooja performed in the evening.

Arthajama Pooja:

The final pooja of the day is performed before nightfall.


The ritual of bathing the deity with holy substances like milk, honey, ghee, and water while chanting sacred mantras.


Devotees can offer flowers, fruits, and other offerings to the deity during specific times.

Deepa Aradhana:

Lighting oil lamps in front of the deity.

Rudra Homam:

A sacred fire ritual is performed to seek blessings and protection from Lord Shiva.

Panchamrutha Abhishekam:

An abhishekam uses five sacred items, namely milk, curd, honey, ghee, and sugar, to the deity.


As mentioned earlier, Girivalam is the practice of circumambulating the Annamalai Hill, which is considered a highly significant pooja at the temple.

Festive Poojas:

During festivals like Maha Shivaratri, Karthigai Deepam, and Arudra Darshan, special poojas and celebrations take place at the temple.


These are just a few of the poojas and rituals conducted at the Arunachalam Temple. The temple follows a well-defined schedule of daily, weekly, and yearly poojas to cater to the spiritual needs of devotees. Each pooja has its significance and benefits, and devotees can participate in these rituals to seek blessings, fulfillment of desires, and spiritual upliftment.

Arunachalam Temple Timings and Information

  • Morning Timings:
  • Monday to Sunday: 5:30 AM to 12:30 PM
  • Evening Timings:
  • Monday to Sunday: 3:30 PM to 9:30 PM

Arunachalam Temple Pooja abishekam Information Fees description Fees
1. Swami Amman special abishekam 2500/-rs
2. Milk abishekam 1000/-rs
3. Ruthra abishekam 5000/-rs
4. Vinyagar, swami, Amman special Abishekam 3000/-rs
5. Panchamoorthigal abishekam (vinayagar swami, Amman, Subramanian and chandikeswara) 4500/-rs
6. Parivara moorthi sannathi nilk abishekam 1000/-rs
7. 1008 sangu pooja special abishekam 10,000/-rs
8. Thirkkalyana utsavam special abishekam pooja 8500/-rs
9. Annadhanam 10,000/-rs


Poojas timings details:

Morning Poojas:

  1. Ushakala Pooja: Early morning pooja performed during sunrise, usually around 5:30 AM to 6:00 AM.

Daytime Poojas:

  1. Kala Sandhi Pooja: Performed at noon, around 12:00 PM to 12:30 PM.

Evening Poojas:

  1. Sayaratchai Pooja: Evening pooja, performed around 5:00 PM to 5:30 PM.

Night Poojas:

  1. Arthajama Pooja: The final pooja of the day, performed before nightfall, usually around 8:00 PM to 8:30 PM.


These timings may be subject to slight variations based on the sunrise and sunset times, as well as any specific changes made by the temple authorities.

How to reach Arunachalam:

By road:

Many buses operate from Chennai and all important towns and cities in Tamilnadu. Buses also operate from Bangalore and Tirupathi.

By train:

Arunachalam temple’s nearest railway station is Tiruvannamalai. It is around 10km from the temple.

By flight:

Chennai is the nearest airport and it lies around 185 kilometers away by road.

Nearest Temples to Visit in Arunachalam:

  1. Arulmigu Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy Temple, Vellore.
  2. Arulmigu Ekambaranathar Temple, Kanchipuram.
  3. Arulmigu Kamakshi Amman Temple, Mangadu.
  4. Arulmigu Subramanya Swamy Temple, Tiruthani.
  5. Arulmigu Thiruverkadukarumari Temple, Thiruperumputhur.