Ernakulathappan Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva
, is one of the prominent shrines in Ernakulam
. It is believed to have built by a local ruler, Tusath Kaimal.
Legend holds that Arjuna, one among the Pandavas, did a severe penance here to propitiate Lord Shiva. Pleased with Arjuna's devotion, Lord Shiva in the form of Kiratha set out from his abode to bless Arjuna. At this juncture, a demon named Mookasura in disguise of a wild boar appears there and both Lord Shiva and Arjuna shoot arrows at the demon. Then the quarrel arises between Kiratha and Arjun, as who killed the demon. Finally, the quarrel leads to a vigorous fight between Arjuna and Kiratha. Later, Arjun, vanquished by Kiratha, makes a Shivling and offers flowers to it. To his surprise, all the flowers fell over Kiratha's head. Then Shiva in his true form along with Parvati appears and blesses him and gifts him the divine arrow 'Pasupathastram'.
A major draw is an eight-day festival held here during January-February. The Durbar Hall ground, adjacent to the temple, becomes a beehive of activities during the festival. The highlight is Panchavadyam, and cultural programs such as Kathakali, Ottanthullal and Thayambaka are staged on this occasion.
This temple is easily accessible. Ernakulam Town Railway Station is 4 km away, and Cochin International Airport is 20 km away.