Kottiyoor Festival
About The Festival

The Kottiyoor festival is among the most coveted and famous festival periods in the beautiful state of Kerala. The rituals performed here are quite different from those performed in other temples of the state. The Kottiyoor festival is usually held in the forested region alongside the Bavali River, situated in the district of Thalassery, Kerala. A 28-day festival which takes place in the Kottiyoor temple provides the backdrop to the festival. Lord Shiva is the presiding deity in the temple and is found in the form of a self created lingam, as legend has it. The Kottiyoor festival is celebrated by hundreds of devotees that arrive here on the first day (Neyyattam) and on the last day (Thirukalasattu).

Travel Tips

The nearest railway station to Kottiyoor is Thalassery; however, it should be noted that the Kannur railway station is more convenient for pilgrims that are travelling from the north while the Kozhikode or Vadakara railway stations are convenient for pilgrims coming from the south. There are regular bus services which operate to the small town during the Mahotsavam period at regular, short intervals. In addition, there are regular bus services which operate throughout the year to Kottiyoor. The nearest airport is located at Kozhikkode, connecting the town to other major cities in India.

When to visit

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During the duration of the festival, hundreds of devotees make their way to the temple and offer tender coconuts to the patron God. The devotees who visit the temple believe that the heap of stones is representative of the deity and therefore prayers and offerings are made to these stones instead of having a dedicated temple for this festival.


The start of this auspicious festival is marked by the bringing of a sword to the Muthirikavu temple located in the Tavinal village, which is brought from the Ikkare Kottiyoor temple. Legend has it that this particular sword was used by Lord Shiva to behead Daksha while he was performing a yagna. The Auda flowers are used during the festival and are white in colour and have a beard-like shape. This flower is mostly restricted to the region of Kottiyoor and comes to full bloom during the festival. There are a number of rituals which are observed during the course of the whole month and people arrive here to attend the festival on any of the 28 days. However, the highest attendance for the festival is recorded during the first and the last day.

Most Celebrated Places

The Kottiyoor festival is held in Akkare Kottiyoor temple, one among the two ancient Shiva temples located in Kottiyoor, around 60km from Kannur. Devotees from around the state descend upon this small town for close to 28 days to take part in the festivities.

How to Reach

Time Period

The festival is most often than not held during Chothi asterism, during the month of Edavam and continues for close to a month (28 days). The festival is held during the months of May and June and usually overlaps with the monsoon season.