Sri Krishna temple in Guruvayur is the pride of people residing in Thrissur district because the temple is considered as the fourth largest temple in India in terms of the number of devotees visiting per day. Here the god Vishnu is worshipped in the form of his avatar Krishna. The Guruvayoor Utsavam (annual festival) of the temple is celebrated for 10 days during the month of Kumbha (Feb-March). In 2019 the festival starts from 17th February with Kodiyettam and ends after the Aarattu on the 26th February (10th day). Every year, the festival attracts several thousands of devotees from across Kerala hence, finest arrangements are made by the Bhasuri inn to serve you at our best. Many pilgrims choose Bhasuri inn not only because of our outstanding services but also due to years of unbroken trust.
Guruvayoor Anayottam (elephant race) is the most interesting ceremony. The elephant that participates in the race should be checked thoroughly and should be fairly healthy and free from violent behavior. Participating elephants are bathed and taken to Manjulal and as the temple bells ring at three, the elephant race rituals begin. It starts from the premises of the east of the temple and ends with seven rounds within the temple. Among all, only the first three will enter the temple complex. The elephant that crosses the eastern gate of the Sri Krishna temple first will be declared the winner. The winner will have the prestige to carry out the ‘Thidambu’ (the replica of the idol of Guruvayoorappan) on all special occasions for one year.
The 8th day (24th February) of festival consists of Ulsavabali which is a major ritual of Guruvayoor festival.Ulsavabali is held after the morning Ezhunnellippu in the temple. It’s a ritual marking the feeding of ‘Bhoothaganams’ of the presiding deity of the temple Guruvayurappan.It is believed that all celestial beings combine at Guruvayur to take food offered during the `Ulsavabali’. The devaswom arrange a big feast for the day and another highlight is the ritualistic feeding of birds as part of the `Ulsavabali.’
Pallivetta (royal hunt) is an important ritual performed on the 9th day (25th Feb) of the festival. This ritual is symbolic of Lord Vishnu hunting down the demon of evil in a forest. Another myth for this ritual is that the gods and goddesses are brothers and sisters and one of them is paying the other an annual visit. The 10th day (26th Feb) of the festival is the ‘Arattu’ which starts from early from the Eastern Gopuram of the temple in a highly ritualistic manner. It covers ‘Rudratheertham’ and ‘Athani’ and comes to Edatharikathu Bhagavaty’s shrine. At last, the ritual comes to end with an ‘Oottapradikshinam’ in which elephants run around the temple for as many as eleven times.