About the Temple
The famous temple of Surya Narayana Swami or Sun god is situated in Arasavalli Village which is at a distance of about 5 km from Srikakulam Town in Andhra Pradesh. It is one of the ancient and all among two sun god temples in India. This temple was built by Kalinga Ruler Devendra Varma of Orissa origin in the 7thCentury AD.
According to Padmapuranam , saint Kasyapa installed the Idol of Surya at Arasavalli for the Welfare of mankind . Hence, the Surya is of Kasyapasa Gotra. He is also the planetary king. The presiding deity of Arasavalli temple is Sri Suryanarayana Swamy, the Sun god.
Here, sun god is seen riding on a chariot, drawn by seven horses and driven by Aruna, a charioteer. The greatness of this temple is that the rays of the sun touches the feet of the deity for about few minutes through the closed entranced gate twice a year during the month of February and June. The temple also houses the shrines of Lord Indra and Navagraha.
The temple has five idols of Lord Sun, Goddess Parvati, Lord Vishnu, Lord Ganesha, Lord Shiva at a single location which are carved out from a single black granite stone. Hence the temple is known as a Panchayatana temple. .
It is believed that people who suffer from skin and eye diseases are cured by praying sun god in this temple.
As per the mythology, the king of gods, Lord Indra wanted to enter in the Koteeshwara temple but was thrown out by the Nandi. Hence, Lord Indra enshrined a temple for the Sun god at Arasavalli and performed rituals at the temple as an apology for of his arrogance behavior in attempting to force his entry.
The temple has a 5 feet tall, black granite image of Sun god bearing lotus buds, Padma Paani flanked by his consorts Padma, Usha and Chhaaya. The temple also has the images of Pingala, Danda, the gatekeepers and Sanaka and Sananda, the sages.
The temple holds a special pillar, the base of which was adorned with jewels as an offering to the Sun god.
Festivals and Celebrations
Several festivals such as Ratha Saptami, Kalyanotsavam, Maha Shivratri, Dolostavam, Maha Vaisakhi, Raksha Bandhan, Janmashtami, Dusserah, Naraka Chaturdasi, Diwali, Vaikuntha Ekadashi and Makara Sankranti is celebrated joyously in this temple.
Special pujas like Suprabhatam, Nitya Archana, Maha Nivedana are conducted at this temple.
Sundays are considered more sacred at this temple and special rituals are performed on every Sundays.
How to reach
By Air: Visakhapatnam airport is the nearest airport.
By Train: Srikakulam is a nearby railway station which is 13 km away from the temple.
By Road: Arasavalli is about 3 km from Srikakulam, from where the bus transport is available to reach the temple.