Mangaladevi Temple is a 1000-year-old temple inside the dense forests of the Periyar Tiger Reserve. Made of huge pieces of granite, it stands at an altitude of 1337 m above the sea level. The temple is dedicated to the deity of Mangaladevi, who is also known as Kannaki. Even today, Kannaki remains as a symbol of the moral power that resides in an ordinary woman who is able to take on royalty because her cause is just.
Legend has it that Kannaki burnt the town of Madurai down with a curse when she came to know that the royal court had killed her husband Kovilan after wrongly accusing him of theft. It is also believed that Kannaki reached the Periyar forests after burning Madurai.
How To Reach:
The temple can be reached only by jeep. There is a 12-kilometer stretch to be covered through dense forests and high altitude grasslands to reach the temple.However , the surroundings of the temple are known for their pristine beauty.
The temple is situated on the northern boundary of the
Periyar Tiger Reserve for centuries. Kannaki has remained a symbol of the great
moral power that even an ordinary woman is capable of. Kannaki’s tale has been
immortalized by the poet-prince Ilanko Adikal in the Tamil epic,
Silapathikaram. Silapathikaram is one of the five epics of ancient Tamil
Literature. The epic, which contains three chapters and a total of 5270 lines
of poetry, revolves around Kannaki.