Vetta and Arattu Festival is a closing festival of the 10-day celebration of the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram. The festival is held twice in a year, once in the Malayalam month of
Thulam (October-November) and the other in
The Vetta and Arattu processions are held from the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple to Shanghumughom Beach, which are led by the members of the royal family of erstwhile Travancore state. In this procession images of Sree Padmanabhaswamy (Lord Vishnu), Sree Krishna and Sree Narasimha are carried out to the beach. The head of the royal family wears traditional dress and carries the family sword called Udaval in his hand. The procession is also escorted by armed police contingents. As the procession leaves the ramparts of the fort, a salute of 21 guns is made.
The images are ritually bathed in the sea. During this occasion, cultural presentations including Kathakali, are staged. The event is concluded by a procession carrying these purified images, back to the Padmanabhaswamy Temple.