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Location : Near Bekal, Kerala
Main Deity : Lord Vishnu
Major attraction : The only lake temple of Kerala
Ananthapura Lake Temple is an ancient shrine of Kerala which is located near Kasaragod district. As the name suggests, this lovely temple has earned the distinction of being the only lake temple of the state. Situated on the top of a hill, the temple rests in the lake Ananthapura and is believed to be guarded by a crocodile. You can visit this mysterious temple and get lost in its surreal beauty.
The temple premises are surrounded by lush green imageries. It is the seat of the deity Sri Padamanabha or Lord Vishnu who is shown to be resting on a serpent. After reaching Ananthapura Lake Temple, you will hear stories about the famous crocodile called Babia who is supposed to be living in a nearby lake for the past six decades. This animal is considered a protector of the sacred temple and is offered a number of meals by the devotees. The meal is a mixture of jaggery and rice.
Legend linked with the crocodile :
According to a legend, once a devotee of Vishnu, Vilvamangalathu was doing penance for his deeds. Lord appeared before him in the guise of a boy and started disturbing him from his prayers. Enraged by the child's behavior, the devotee pushed him back. After this, the mysterious child disappeared in a cave; the saint realized his mistake. The cave into which Lord Vishnu had gone is still present and is protected by the crocodile since then. It is believed that there is a single crocodile in the Lake and as one dies, its place is taken by another one.
Other attractions :
The original idols were prepared by a unique combination of several herbal plants, but were later replaced by metallic material. The temple welcomes its guests with open hands and no distinction is made on the basis of religion, caste or community. The shrine is surrounded by an enclosed verandah called Chuttambalam. The mural paintings on the walls of Ananthapura Lake Temple are going to mesmerize you. The legendary cave that is situated nearby opens in a pond; the water of this pond remains at the same level whatever be the Climatic conditions.
So next time when you plan to visit this country of God, don’t forget to have a glimpse of this spectacular temple.