Valliyoorkavu Sree Durga Temple, Mananthavady, Wayanad district.The festival of this temple dedicated to Goddess Durga is noted for its unique features. Hundreds of tribesmen in the district gather for the festival. Unlike other temple festivals, here the Kodiyettu (ritualistic hoisting of festival flag) is performed only on the seventh day of the festival. The district of Wayanad is home to various sects of tribals and this annual 14-day festival is an occasion for them to rejoice.

Located high in the Wayanad Hills at Valliyoorkkavu, 3 kms from Mananthavady town, the temple is dedicated to goddess Bhagavathy.The idol of the temple is believed to be self- manifested and the annual festival is held in March. The traditional ritual of the Kalamezhuthu is performed during all nights of the festival.

On the final day, the array of folk art forms are presented. The dances performed by the local tribals, using native percussion instruments, are a major attraction.The Valliyoorkavu starts on the 1st of ‘Meenam’ month and ends on 14th of Meenam month. This time spans around 14th March to 28th March according to the Gregorian calendar. The goddess of the temple is Bhagavathy.

In the older eras; slaves were exchanged by landlords during this festival, and the slave exchange was one of the main event of the festival, even though the slaves were given a very little freedom to celebrate the festival. Almost all of the slaves belonged to the different tribes in Wayanad and the near by locations.When slavery saw its sunset and freedom became reality, the mode of the festival changed a lot.

At present, Valliyoorkavu or ‘Kavu’ as people in Wayanad call the festival is the main yearly event of various tribes in Wayanad. To make the festival more colorful, Wayanad exhibition & trade fair is conducted along with the festival. When the consumerism changed the face of the festival, the importance of the role of tribal people in the festival started diminishing. Then also we can see a great lot difference in the way the tribes of Wayanad celebrate this festival when compared to others.

When I say there is a difference between the way tribes celebrates Valliyoorkavu from others, it is evident that this festival is not only for tribes. The festival is important event for almost all of the people in Wayanad, regardless of caste and religion. For tribal people, who mainly earn for thier life by working on farming or any other kind of labor, the festival is the end of the old-one year contract of labor and starting of a new contract. The termination of contract may happen with the same employer, or let us call, the landlord, or a new contract starts with a different land lord.

The difference between the older ages and the present is that, now the tribal people are able to bargain, get advance and they are free to choose the landlord, the work etc. In the older ages, the landlords decided the future of the slaves or ‘Adima’ and the deal happened between landlords. In a way, the old labour exchange is happening in a more complex way.What ever the way the job is changed, there will be a good amount of money with the tribes in the form of the arrears and advantages. The tribal family celebrates the Valliyoorkavu festival with this money. They will go with their entire family to the festival, and may spend two or three days or more in the festival ground and they just sleep in the open festival ground, on mats made of grass.

One of the special food items sold in huge lot is the so called ‘Pori’ which we can consider as the basic form of the popcorn. The sad thing about this festival is that the tribe will spend what ever money the acquired in the last one year, and there will not be anything in their hands when they go back to their home or ‘kudi’ except the happiness and prosperity they celebrated during their festival days. Some social evils like huge amount of alcohol flow during the festival spoils the financial background of these tribes a lot. Instead of celebrating the festival with their family, at present a major amount of the money they saved in the last one year goes towards buying alcohol, where children and women are deprived from the real celebration.

After decades and centuries, the festival still holds it purpose in the same or some other way. The various religious rites and events happening along with the festival make it unique. The festival gives a good opportunity for the traditional arts of tribes, as well as Wayanad as a whole to be staged. Sadly, interests of people towards the different folklore arts diminished and common events like orchestra, mimmics parade, cinematic dance etc are getting staged at present

Getting there:
Nearest railway station: Kozhikode railway station, about 106 km away from Mananthavady.
Nearest airport: Karipur airport, about 129 km away from Mananthavady.

Location info:

Address:Valliyoorkavu Sree Durga Temple, Mananthavady, Wayanad district.
District: Wayanad
Best Time : March/April


Interesting things to do:

Interesting things to Visit:

Thirunelly temple (32 km northeast of Mananthavady)
Surrounded by Kambamala, Karimala and Varadiga, the Thirunelly temple is a marvel of temple architecture. The shrine is shielded with 30 granite columns and the ground is paved with huge square pieces of granite. The crystal clear waters of the Papanasini river running downhill add to the enchantment of the place.

Sentinel Rock Waterfall
This waterfall is at Vellarimala village near Chooralmala in Meppadi panchayat. It is a picnic spot as well as a trekking centre. The sentinel rock, a rock of more than 200 m.in height, is ideal for rock climbing.

Wayanad wild life sanctuary is here. The sanctuary and park with ever flowering trees is a major tourist attraction. Muthanga and Tholpetty are ideal places to spot wild life.

Pookot Lake, Wayanad Tour GuidePookot Lake
It is a natural fresh water lake, brimmed with ever green mountains. The weather here is salacious; the scenic beauty, hypnotising and the nature, unspoiled. Pookot lake tourist resort in Vythiri is the most sought after tourist spot of Wayanad. There is an aquarium and a green house here. Boating facilities also are available. Spices and handicraft items are also arranged for sale at Pookot. The lake has an area of 8.5ha. and the maximum water depth is 6.5mtrs. This lake is three kms.south of Vythiri.

Deer, Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary, Wayanad Tour GuideMuthanga Wildlife Sanctuary
Muthanga, Which is 16 kms. east of Sulthan Bathery, is located very near to the Karnadaka border. Wild forests covering an area of 345 sq.kms form the Muthanga wild life sanctuary; the biggest abode of wild animals in Malabar. Elephant, spotted deer, bison, tiger, cheeta, wild bear, etc. are found in this sanctuary. The forest Department has facilities for providing elephant rides to tourists, here.

Chembra Peak, Wayanad Tour GuideChembra Peak
The hills, rocks and valleys which contribute to the very unique character of Wayanad provide a lot for adventure tourism. Trekking to the Chembra peak is a risky mountaineering endeavour. Chembra peak, the highest hill in Wayanad, is near Meppady town. Trekking to the top of this peak takes almost a day. Tourists can also stay one or two days at the top of the peak in temporary camps. District Tourism Promotion Council provides guides, sleeping bags, canvases, huts and trekking implements on hire. The scenic beauty of Wayanad, which is visible from the top of Chambra, is very exhilerating.

Edakkal Cave
A pair of caves on top of the Ambukuthimala with historical importance. The New Stone Age pictorial writings on the walls of these natural caves at Edakkal are evidence of the civilisation that existed in these regions in prehistoric times. Symbols of human beings, animals and ancient tools are visible here.

Pazhassi tomb (32 km northeast of Kalpetta)
The memorial of the 'Lion of Kerala' - Veera Pazhassi Raja - who organised the guerilla warfare against the British East India Company, is situated at Mananthavady. The Pulpally cave is where Pazhassi took refuge until he was captured by the British. The Glass Temple of Kottamunda (20 km away from Kalpetta): This temple is located on the slope of Vellarimala and is dedicated to Parswanatha Swamy of the Jain faith. The mirrors inside the temple walls reflect images of the icons in the temple's sanctum sanctorum.

Banasura Sagar Dam
This is the largest earth dam in India. The topography here is such that many islands will be formed in the upstream of the dam when the dam is full. These islands with the background of the Banasura hill will provide a hypnotising sight to tourists.

Pakshipathalam(10 km from Thirunelly)
Pakshipathalam in the Brahmagiri hills at Thirunelli, is a challenging tourist spot for any adventure seeking tourist. To reach Pakshipathalam seventeen kilometres have to be covered through wild forest. The deep rock caves, formed among the thick blocks of rocks at the northern top end of the Brahmagiri, are the abode of various birds and wild beasts. Special permission has to be obtained from Forest Department to go to Pakshipathalam. District Tourism Promotion Council arranges vehicle, guides, camping equipments, etc. to the tourists, on hire.

Pazhassi Raja Tomb
Pazhassi Tourist Resort at Mananthavady is a good picnic centre in north Wayanad. There is a good aquarium here. Coin-operated toys for children and boating facilities for tourists are available here. Pazhassi Raja, the Lion of Kerala, who organised guerilla type warfare against British East India Company, was cremated here in 1805.

Soochippara Waterfall
The waterfalls at Soochippara near Meppadi is really a treasure of nature, yet to be discovered. The stretches of waterfalls ranging at places from 100 to 300 feet height is a treat to the eyes. The pool below, provides for water rafting, swimming, bathing,etc. The tree top huts at Soochippara give an unique view of the valleys of the Western Ghats and the glimmering shallow waters of the surrounding springs.

Thirunelly Temple
Thirunelly is situated 29 kms.north east of Mananthavady under the Brahmarigi hills in the reserve forests. The temple at Thirunelly is often called 'Thekkan Kasi' It is believed that a bath in the holy water of 'Papanasini' will wipe off all the sins. Apart from the temple, Thirunelly is a place of scenic beauty. Pakshipathalam, an interesting trekking centre, is 7 kms. away from the temple.

Boys town (15 km north of Mananthavady)
Herbal garden, nature care centre, sericulture unit, perma-culture centre etc., established by the Wayanad Social Service Society and Jean Park (the Indo-Danish project for promoting herbal gardening) are situated here.

Thusharagiri Waterfalls
Nestled cozily in the Western Ghats, are the gurgling waterfalls of Thusharagiri. Meaning the snow capped mountains; Thushargiri displays a distinctive kinship between the land and water.

One of the highest locations in Wayanad, Lakkidi also commands a picturesque scenery. It is about 58 kms. north east of Kozhikode and five kms. south of Vythiri. Lakkidi, the gate way of Wayanad, lies atop Thamarassery, a ghat pass at an elevation of 700 m. above mean sea level.The lofty mountain peaks, the gurging stream, luxuriant vegetation and the bird's eye view of the deep valley on the south, with its winding roads, are breath taking. The 12 kms.long journey from Adivaram to Lakkidi through ghat road with nine hairpin bends amidst thick forests, is a fascinating experience.

Valliyoorkavu Festival
The Valliyoorkavu Festival is a popular event at the Bhagavathy temple at Valliyoorkkavu, 3 kms from Mananthavady town. The idol of the temple is believed to be self- manifested and the annual festival is held here in the month of March.

Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary
The Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary is adjacent to the protected area network of Nagarhole and Bandipore National parks of Karnataka and Mudumalai of Tamilnadu.

The headquarters of the Wayanad District are located at kalpetta. A stronghold of the Jains in the past, the famous Ananthanathaswamy Jain Temple is situated at Puliyarmala near Kalpetta.

Kuruva Island, Wayanad Tour GuideKuruva Island
The Kuruva island, 950 acres of ever green forest on the tributaries of east flowing river Kabani, is an ideal picnic spot, far away from the disturbances of city life. The island is uninhabited. Rare species of birds, orchids and herbs are the sovereigns of this supernal kingdom. It is 17 Kms. east of Mananthavady and 40 kms. north west of Sulthan Bathery.

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Thiruvampadi police Station
Kozhikode, Kerala, India

Koduvally Police Station
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Kerala State, India

Pothuckal police station
Pothuckal, Chungathara, Malapuram, Kerala, India

Nadakkavu Police Station
NH 17, Calicut, Kozhikode, Kerala, India

Edacheri Police Station
SH 54, Kozhikode, Kerala, India

Nearest Hospital:

Ashoka Hospital
Bank Road, NH 17, Calicut, Kozhikode, Kerala 673001, India - 0495 2721123

MIMS Hospital
SH 54, Calicut, Kozhikode, Kerala, India

Daya hospital
Malappuram, Kerala, India - 0483 2700258

Vinayaka Hospital
Sultan Bathery, Wayanad, Kerala, India - 04936 220102

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