Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
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Kapalishvara Temple

Marvel at the Dravidian architecture of this centuries-old temple, spot intricately carved figurines, watch devotees pray and experience a lively Hindu festival.

A visit to the beautiful Kapalishvara Temple presents a fascinating glimpse into the life of a working Hindu temple. Admire the striking Dravidian architecture and a sacred tank. Watch as worshippers lay offerings to the deities and be part of a colorful Hindu celebration. Kapalishvara Temple honors the Hindu god Lord Shiva and his wife Parvati. The temple dates back to the 16th century and is the second edition. The original, built around 600 A.D., was demolished by Portuguese colonists.

Major highlights of the temple are the two towering and elaborately decorated gopuram (gateway entrances). The almost 131-foot-tall (40-meter) east gopuram is the most striking and a fine display of Dravidian architecture. Gaze up to see carvings of allegorical figures, gods and mythological creatures. See more detailed artwork on the smaller west gopuram. It faces a sacred lake, where pilgrims throw offerings to a multitude of fish.

Step inside the temple to feel a sense of calm. Observe respectfully as devotees ask for blessings at the various shrines. Look for bronze statuettes of the Nayanars, a group of 63 poet saints devoted to Shiva. Spot sculptures of revered Hindu gods such as Ganesh, Karpagambal, Muruga and Shiva. Visit on a Friday to see the Goddess Karpagambal decorated with garlands of gold coins during a ritual.

The temple hosts several festivals throughout the year, when thousands of pilgrims flock to celebrate Hindu traditions. Attend the Arubathimoovar Festival, a 10-day event held during March and April. It celebrates the Nayanars and includes a lively procession of brightly colored chariots.

Located in the Mylapore neighborhood, Kapalishvara Temple is about a 20-minute drive from Chennai’s city center. Taxis and auto-rickshaws provide easy access to the temple or you can catch a train to nearby Thirumayilai MRTS Station. While here, be sure to wander the surrounding streets to find shops that sell flowers, incense and religious souvenirs.

The temple is open daily, from dawn until dusk. It’s an active place of worship, so dress appropriately. Remove your shoes and leave them at the temple’s entrance. Find the complete opening times and a festival schedule on the temple’s official website.


Top Hotel Deals

See all 776 properties near Kapaleeswarar Temple
Grand Chennai by GRT Hotels Rs4,599
Grand Chennai by GRT Hotels

Grand Chennai by GRT Hotels

120, Sir Thyagaraya Road, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
     
    4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Mylapore Tiruvallikk, this luxury hotel is within 3 miles (5 km) of Consulate General of the United States, Chennai, Marina Beach and Valluvar Kottam. Kapaleeswarar Temple and Old Mahabalipuram Road are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Mambalam Station is 28 minutes by foot.

    OYO 11661 Krishna Park
    OYO 11661 Krishna Park

    OYO 11661 Krishna Park

    No.1 South Mada Street, South mada street, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
       
      2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Mylapore, this hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of San Thome Cathedral, Marina Beach and Kapaleeswarar Temple. Consulate General of the United States, Chennai and Old Mahabalipuram Road are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Thirumayilai Station is 9 minutes by foot and Chennai Mandavelli Station is 18 minutes.

      FabHotel Picnic Plaza Mylapore
      FabHotel Picnic Plaza Mylapore

      FabHotel Picnic Plaza Mylapore

      New No- 2, RK Mutt Road, Mylapore, Chennai, TN
         
        3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Mylapore, this hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of San Thome Cathedral, Marina Beach and Kapaleeswarar Temple. Consulate General of the United States, Chennai and Valluvar Kottam are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Thirumayilai Station is only a 4-minute walk and Chennai Mandavelli Station is 18 minutes.

        Hotel Shelter Rs2,040
        Hotel Shelter

        Hotel Shelter

        19, Venkatesa Agraharam street, Mylapore, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
           
          3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Mylapore, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of San Thome Cathedral and Kapaleeswarar Temple. Marina Beach and Consulate General of the United States, Chennai are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Thirumayilai Station is only a 4-minute walk and Chennai Mandavelli Station is 12 minutes.

          Redlollipop Hostel Rs1,276
          Redlollipop Hostel

          Redlollipop Hostel

          129/67 RK Mutt Road, Mandaveli, Chennai, TN
             
            2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

            Located in Mylapore Tiruvallikk, this hostel is within 1 mi (2 km) of San Thome Cathedral and Kapaleeswarar Temple. Marina Beach and Consulate General of the United States, Chennai are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Mandavelli Station is 8 minutes by foot and Chennai Thirumayilai Station is 12 minutes.

            OYO 15132 Colors
            OYO 15132 Colors

            OYO 15132 Colors

            128 Santhome High Rd, Chennai, TN
               
              3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Located in Mylapore, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of San Thome Cathedral and Kapaleeswarar Temple. Marina Beach and Consulate General of the United States, Chennai are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Thirumayilai Station is 20 minutes by foot and Chennai Mandavelli Station is 23 minutes.

              FabHotel Santhome Inn
              FabHotel Santhome Inn

              FabHotel Santhome Inn

              No.157, Santhome High Road, Mylapore, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
                 
                3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                Located in Mylapore, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of San Thome Cathedral and Marina Beach. Consulate General of the United States, Chennai and Kapaleeswarar Temple are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Light House Station is 16 minutes by foot and Chennai Thirumayilai Station is 17 minutes.

                Grace Residency
                Grace Residency

                Grace Residency

                Muthu Pandiyan Ave, Santhome High Road, Chennai, Tamil Nadu
                   
                  3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  Located in Mylapore Tiruvallikk, this golf hotel is within a 10-minute walk of San Thome Cathedral and Marina Beach. Consulate General of the United States, Chennai and Kapaleeswarar Temple are also within 3 miles (5 km). Chennai Light House Station is 17 minutes by foot and Chennai Thirumayilai Station is 18 minutes.