Navagraha Temple Tour 2018

We have been doing Navagraha Temple Tour for more than six years now and have seen so many positive changes in our life. Our temple trail this year was the quickest and economical one. We traveled from Bengaluru and halted in two places, Velankanni and Kumbakonam to visit all the nine planetary temples. We also got a chance to visit two additional places of worship!

We did not book any rooms in advance, as our decision was sudden. We did try to book the rooms on the go through various apps. However, no hotel booking apps provided us with best deals at the last moment. We decided to reach our destination first and then look out for the rooms.

Day 1 
1. Thingalur Chandran Temple
2. Guru Bhagavan - Alangudi Temple

Day 2 
3. Thirunallar Shani Temple
4. Kethu Temple
5. Budhan Temple
6. Sevvai Temple
7. Sukran Temple
8. Suryan Temple

Day 3 
9. Rahu Temple

The Navagraha Temple Tour 

On 29th April 2018, we departed to Thingalur Chandran Temple, one of the nine Navagraha temples from Bengaluru at about 4.45 am. We drove the Maruti Swift 2017 diesel car. We were six of us including two children. We covered 1200 kms in three days and spent less than Rs. 4000 on the fuel.

The advantage we had by leaving Bengaluru as early as 4.45 am is that we crossed the Electronic City flyover by 5.05 am, in just 20 minutes. Imagine covering the distance from Indiranagar to EC flyover in the peak hours.

Our intention was not only to save time while crossing the city border but also to reach the Thingalur temple before it closes in the afternoon.

Leaving home early in the morning means having no breakfast at home. We, as usual, planned our breakfast at Sri Saravana Bhavan restaurant near Krishnagiri, Tamil Nadu.

The Thingalur Chandran Temple 

Thingalur Chandran Temple
Thingalur Chandran Temple
The Thingalur Chandran Temple is open from 6 am to 1 pm and 4pm to 7-8pm. This timing is similar to all the temples we visited in the Navagraha Temple Tour. As planned, we reached the Chandran temple by 12 noon and completed our prayers and rituals in few minutes.

Lunch

Our next destination was the Alangudi Temple (Guru Sthalam).  We were driving through Chennai Road in Kumbakonam when we came across “The Sara Regency Hotels & Resorts”. We stopped here for lunch at 1.30 pm and eventually booked the rooms for our next day stay.

Guru Bhagavan (Alangudi Temple)

Guru Bhagavan Temple
Guru Bhagavan - Alangudi Temple
By 3.40 pm, we were in Alangudi Guru Bhagavan temple. We were well before time here. We had to wait until 4 pm when the temple opened. The month of May is too hot in Tamil Nadu and to walk barefoot in the temple premises is the testing times for the devotees. The hot weather pulled out the last drop of water from our body.

Large number of devotees had already gathered when the temple re-opened. There were three types of entry to reach the sanctum – Free entry, Rs. 20 and Rs. 100 entry. We opted for Rs. 20 entry to skip the line. We were out of the temple by 4.30 pm.


Stay at Velankanni 

All though not a part of our Navagraha Temple Tour, we decided to visit the Velankanni Church and book our rooms in Velankanni for the night. Few Navagraha Temples are in close proximity to Velankanni town. (Vantage point)
To book a room in Velankanni during the holiday season is a herculean task. No apps will give you a decent room on a budget friendly price at the last moment during the seasons.

Day 1 night halt at Queens In Velankanni

After enquiring couple of hotels like VPN, Sea Gate and even the Hotel Crown, which still runs on generator, we landed up in Queens Inn and had a wonderful experience here.

Velankanni Church and the Beach 

We spent some time in the church and walked towards the beach. The shops running towards the beach was crowded even at 7 am. If you are first timer, you will love shopping here. We got our family photograph snapped and printed on the spot for just 30 rupees. We returned to our hotel by 8 am for the delicious complimentary breakfast.

Thirunallar (Shani Temple)

Thirunallar Shani Temple
Thirunallar Temple - Shaneeswaran

Thirunallar is very close to Velankanni. We reached the holy pond in Thirunallar by 10.40 am and it took us nearly an hour to complete the rituals like the holy dip in the water and breaking of coconut in the Ganesha Temple.

At exactly 11.40 am, we stood in front of “Sri Dharbaranyeshwarar Swamy” the main deity of the Thirunallar temple. This temple is the most powerful temple where the devotees worship “Sri Saneeshwara Bhagavan” in great devotion. We completed our prayers here by 12.15 pm.

Lunch

Our next destination was Keelaperumpallam village where the temple dedicated to “Ketu Bhagavan” is located.  Before that, we stopped for lunch at the Hotel Aryaas in Karaikal.

Ketu Sthalam – Nagannathaswamy Temple, Keezhaperumpallam

Ketu Temple
Ketu Temple


We reached the Ketu Temple by 2.40 pm, to early it was. We waited until the temple opened to the devotees at 3.30 pm. The crowd here was less and we completed our prayers in few minutes. Our next destination, the Budhan Temple is very close by to the Ketu Temple.

Budhan Temple – (Thiruvenkadu)

Budhan Temple
Budhan Temple
We reached the Budhan Temple in Thiruvenkadu well before it opened at 4 pm. It took us 20 minutes to complete our prayers and other rituals and head to our next Navagraha Temple, the Sevvai.

Sevvai Temple (Vaitheeswaran Kovil)

Sevvai - Vaitheeswaran Temple
Sevvai - Vaitheeswaran Temple

We reached the Vaitheeswaran temple by 5.10 pm and offered salt and pepper to the gods on one of the temple sections. There is a pond in the temple where we melted the Jaggery. It is the temple customs. The priests were performing Mahabhishekam for the Sevvai god, we were lucky to witness it.

Kanjanur Sukran Temple 

Sukran Temple Kanjanur
Sukran Temple - Kanjanur

We reached the Kanjanur Sukran Temple by 7.20 pm and in 20 minutes; we completed our prayers and rituals and headed to Suryanar temple.

Suryanar Temple 

Suryan Temple Sun Temple
Suryanar Temple
The Suryanar Temple is the only temple where the presiding deity is the Sun God and not Shiva. You will notice that the presiding deity in all other Navagraha Temples is the Lord Shiva. It is surprising that in all the temples we visited, we did not have to spend time in the Que.

Day 2 night halt at Sara Residency Kumbakonam

We decided to visit the remaining one temple next day and head to Bengaluru. We had booked the rooms in Sara Regency Hotels and Resorts the previous day when we had lunch there. We checked into the hotel by 8.40 pm to rest for the night. The next day morning, electric fire broke out in our room. We had a horrible experience.

Rahu Temple (Thirunageswaram)

Rahu Temple
Rahu Temple

We reached the Rahu Temple at Thirunageswaram by 10 am. Like any other temples we visited, there was not much crowd here. We completed our prayers in about 20 minutes and were out by 10.20 am. If you are here, ensure you visit the sanctum from the left as the priest may insist you to go back if you approach from the wrong direction.

Navagraha Temple Tour completed

With the Rahu temple, we completed our Navagraha temple trail. We did not visit the temple in the planetary orders. We visited the entire Navagraha Temples basis their proximity to each other. If we have to go in order, we will end up spending more number of days travelling.

It was little more than 8-hour’s journey from Kumbakonam to Bengaluru and we had little time to spend. Therefore, we decided to visit another powerful Hindu temple.

Ayyavadi Sri Maha Prathyangira Devi Temple 

The Ayyavadi Sri Maha Prathyangira Devi temple is in Kumbakonam and very close to the Rahu temple in Thirunageswaram. Goddess Prathyangira Devi is the most powerful in the Hindu mythology. We were lucky enough to witness the priests performing homa during our visit.

Back to Bengaluru 

We packed our luggage’s in the room and checked out by 12 pm. The roads are narrow and sometimes un-even until Salem. We stopped in between for tea breaks and buy snacks. Eventually we skipped our lunch. At 4.45 pm, our car came to a halt in front of the popular Star Biryani for our late lunch. We again started at 5.25 pm and reached Indiranagar in Bengaluru by 9.15 pm.

Not all the Navagraha Temples are in Tamil Nadu. The main temple "Thirunallar" is in Pondicherry

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