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Tirunavai (Colonial)
Revenue Village
Grama Panchayat
Bharathapuzha in Thirunavaya
Bharathapuzha in Thirunavaya
Tirunavaya is located in Kerala
Location in Kerala, India
Coordinates: 11°00′04″N 75°59′28″E / 11.0010°N 75.9911°E / 11.0010; 75.9911Coordinates: 11°00′04″N 75°59′28″E / 11.0010°N 75.9911°E / 11.0010; 75.9911
Country  India
State Kerala
District Malappuram
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)
Nearest Municipality Tirur

Tirunavaya - styled as the Kashi of South India[1] - is a Hindu pilgrim centre situated 8 km south - east of Tirur Municipality in Malappuram district, Kerala state. Situated on the northern bank of Bharathapuzha (Nila River), Tirunavaya is one of the most prominent places for bali tharpan in Kerala.[2]

Thirunavaya was the venue for Mamankam, a medieval military and cultural festival, held once every 12 years.[3]

Thirunavaya is situated in the Revenue Village of the same name, in Tirur Taluk.[4] Thirunavaya is part of the Grama Panchayat of the same name.[5]

History and culture[edit]

From medieval times, Thirunavaya was known throughout India as a centre of excellence for Vedic teachings, with Veda Patha Salais (Thirunnavaya Otthanmmar Maddom) for teaching the Vedas, Sasthras, Tantric mantras, performing of rituals and preaching under learned scholars.[6]

The Thirunavaya Nava Mukunda Temple is also a famous Hindu pilgrim centre. The Vaishnavas have 108 Thiruppathis (most holy temples) and eleven of them are now in Kerala and Thirunavaya is one among them. Though the temple had undergone periodical renovations, the last and major renovation with the reconstruction of sanctum sanctorum was done by the legendary Perumthachan under the direction of the chief of Vettom. The reconstruction had the typical 'Perumthachan touch' making the rays of the rising sun fall on the idol on every Medam First (in Utharaayana period, ie in April) and on Kanni First, (in Dakshinayana period ie, in October).[7]

Bharathapuzha in Thirunavaya, flows caressing the temples of god Vishnu (Nava Mukunda Temple) on its north bank and god Brahma and Shiva on its south bank. Hence the pithrukarma/pithrukriyas performed at this 'Thrimoorthy Sangam' are considered as very sacred. On Karkidaka Vavu (no moon day of the Karkidaka month), Hindus from different part of northern Kerala travel to the temple, to perform the pithrukriya (bali tharpan) seeking moksha for their ancestors.

The site of Melpatthur Illam, the home of the medieval polymath, Melpathur Narayana Bhattathiri; author of Narayaniyam, is about 2 miles from Thirunavaya.[8]



  1. ^ The Hindu [1]
  2. ^ The Hindu [2]
  3. ^ Kerala Tourism - Pilgrim Centres - Thirunavaya [3]
  4. ^ Census India [4]
  5. ^ Government of Kerala Grama Panchayat [5]
  6. ^ Thirunavaya Nava Mukunda Temple (OFFICIAL WEBSITE) [6]
  7. ^ Thirunavaya Nava Mukunda Temple (OFFICIAL WEBSITE) [7]
  8. ^ Kerala Tourism - Pilgrim Centres - Thirunavaya [8]