Anandavalleswaram Devi Temple, also known as Mannanthala Devi Temple, is located about 9 km from Thiruvananthapuram
at Mannanthala in Thiruvananthapuram District
. The presiding deity of the temple is Ardhanariswara
(a combination of Lord Shiva
and Goddess Parvati
The significance of this temple is that it is the second temple in Kerala where Shri Narayana Guru made the pradishta (installation of the deity), in the year 1888. Legend says that the local populace used to worship a deity here under a Pipal tree. The place now holds the flag staff, which is in front of the temple. Earlier it was a small temple but was reconstructed in 1974. The temple with its white gopuram resembles typical north Indian style of architecture. This east facing temple has a mukha mandapam and also a ‘Sadyalayam’. The temple spans over an area of about 0.7 acre.
The specialty of the deity is that there is a carving of an elephant on one ear of the deity and the other ear holds that of a lion. The sub deities enshrined here are Lord Ganesh, Lord Muruga and
Anandavalleswaram temple celebrates its seven-day festival during February or March. It starts on the Revathi asterism and concludes with an Arattu on the Thiruvathira asterism in the Malayalam month of Kumbham. There is an open-air theater by the side of the temple where cultural programs are held during the festive occasion. On the concluding day there is a procession from the temple that covers the places in the vicinity and come back to the temple after the deity is bathed in the pond. Caparisoned elephants and Chendamelam adds the beauty of the procession.
By road, the temple can be easily approached from Thiruvananthapuram by traveling on the MC Road towards Kottarakara.