About the Temple
Srisailam is an ancient pilgrimage town situated on the southern bank of the Krishna river, in the Nallamalai hills of Kurnool District of Andhra Pradesh. The Mallikarjuna Swamy Temple is among the 12 Jyotirlinga temples of India. The temple is established on Shri Shailam Mountain near the banks of the Patal Ganga river. It is fondly known as Kailash of the South.
The presiding deities of Mallikarjuna temple are Mallikarjuna (Lord Shiva) and Bhramaramba (Devi). Goddess Bhramaramba Devi is considered among one of the eighteen Mahasakthis and both the deities are self-manifested. The temple sculptures depict the epics from the Ramayana and Mahabharata. This temple is considered extremely holy. The unique feature of the temple is that all the devotees who visit the temple are allowed to touch the idol. Anybody can enter the Sanctum Sanctorum to perform puja. The Sree Sailam temple has rich sculptural art, tall walls and towers. The temple is constructed in Dravidian style with sprawling courtyards.
There are number of legends that have grown about the existence of this temple.
According to Shiva Purana, Lord Kartikeya became angry when Lord Ganesh got married before him. Despite being consoled by his parents Shiv-Parvati, Kartikeya went away to the Kraunch Mountain. Everybody tried consoling Kartikeya but all their efforts were in vain. At last Shiv-Parvati decided to go to Kraunch Mountain. However, when Kartikeya came to know about his parents arrival, he left that place. Eventually Lord Shiva took the form of Jyotirlinga and resided on that mountain by the name of Mallikarjuna. Mallika means Parvati, while Arjuna is another name of Shiva. Since then, both Shiva and Parvati came to reside in this lingam. It is said that by merely viewing the tip of the mountain, the person becomes free from the vicious cycle of life and death.
Another hearsay is that Parvatha, son of Silada Maharshi performed penance and pleased Lord Shiva. He agreed to live on his body. Parvatha assumed the shape of big hill and Shiva lived on its top as Mallikarjuna Swamy.
According to another story Sri,the daughter of a Sage pleased Shiva and got her name associated with the name of the hill Sailam which thereafter came to be known as Srisailam.
It is also believed that Goddess Durga had taken the form of a bee and worshiped Lord Shiva here. She selected this holy place as her abode.
Festivals and Celebrations
Mahasivaratri Brahmothsavams, Ugadi, Dussehra, Kumbhotsavam, Sankranthi, Kartheek Mahotsavam and Arudrothsavam are celebrated with a great zeal.
How to reach
By Road: Srisailam is well connected to Hyderabad. City buses connect Srisailam to other major cities like Vijayawada and Tirupati.
By Train: The nearest railway station to reach Srisailam is the Markapur Railway Station. The nearest rail head to Srisailam is Markapur Road (58kms), while the major railway station is Hyderabad (211kms).
By Air: The nearest airport is the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport at Hyderabad.