Vadapalani Andavar Temple, Chennai, Tamil Nadu

Vadapalani Andavar Temple, dedicated to Lord Muruga is Located in the city of Vadapalani in Tamil Nadu. The present temple is the result of the renovation in the temple conducted in the year of 1920. The main reason for the popularity of the temple is the support given by the South Indian temple film stars.

There are so many other Murugan temple in and around Chennai, and this is the most famous one among them all. The temple was built in the end of 17th century, about 125 years ago from now. This large shrine of Lord Muruga emerged from a single thatched hut, with only a single picture of Lord Muruga, all of this because of one keen devotee of Lord Muruga, Shri. V.A Sundara Gurukkal, who is said to have walked through all the streets of Chennai since when he was just a teenager. He is the one who single handily developed the temple, he walked around and invited every one and anyone he saw to the temple with his arrulvakku. He is also said to have relieved many people including film stars from many major problems.  He visited the Thiruthani hills and decided to offer his tongue to Lord Muruga on the Balipeeta, which was however stopped by the temple officials. Many of the people were inspired by his devotion to Lord Murugan and contributed to the fund for the renovation for the temple. When he felt that his death was nearing, Sundara Gurrukal had asked his friend Rathinaswamy Thambiran to continue the services to the temple on his behalf.

One of the main attraction of the temple is the festival of Mahakumbhabishekam. Till the year 198, 4 times, Shri V.A Sundara Gurrukal had done all the rituals for the Mahakumbhabishekam single handily, and since his retirement he dedicated his whole body and soul for the development of the temple. He is considered the only Pradhana Sthanikar; main founder, of the temple. The devotion and sincerity of Sundara Gurrukkal still reflects in the Kalvettu, in the main entrance or the Raja Gopuram Entrance of the temple. The Rajagopuram, has many carvings indicating the legends in Skanda Purana. The eastern tower of the temple is about 40.8 meters. The tower also constitutes 108 bharatanatyam steps carved in it.

Another one of the specialties of the temple is the Paddukkas; chappals, which are believed to be of Lord Muruga.  It is believed that Lord Muruga represents the planet Mars, and hence there is a special shrine which is dedicated to the planet. The temple also owns a golden ratha. The Tamil New Year Chithirai, is considered as an important festival in the temple, and is celebrated every year on April 14. The Chithirai Poornima- full moon day, is celebrated in the temple during April-May. The Vaikasi Vishakm is an eleven days celebration in the temple, during the months of May and June. In the months of October and November the temple celebrates Aipasi Skanda Sashti.  Panguni Kruthika Laksharchana, a floating festival is celebrated for three days in the months of March and April.

The main deities of the temple are Varasiddh Vinayaka, Meenakshi Amman, Chokkanathar, Bhairava, Kalli, Devasenna and Shanmugha.  Inside the temple there is moolavar kept in standing position, and has a good resemblance to the Palani Murugan Deity. The inner prakara of the temple one can find niches of Dakshanamurthi, Mahalakshmi, Chandikeswar and many others. Next to it is a huge hall which is used for the purpose of marriages and other religious programes.

The nearest railway station, located to the temple is the Chennai Egmore railway station and Chennai Central railway station, which has regular trains from every major cities in the country. The nearest airport to the temple is the Chennai airport. The city has well connected roads to all the major cities, with regular buses.