Thirucherai – Sri Saranathan Perumal Temple

Name of the Temple

Sri Saranathan Perumal Temple

Period of origin

Before 2000 years

Name of deity

Moolavar: Saranathan Perumal

Thayar: Sara Naachiyaar, Saranayaki

Pushkarani: Sara Pushkarani.

Vimanam: Sara Vimaanam

Mangalaashaasanam: Thirumangai Alwar


One of the Pancha Sara Kshetrams ( Saaranathan, Saara Nayagi, Saara Vimanam, Saara Theertham and Saara Kshetram – Hence Pancha Saara Kshetram ) is located around 15 KM from Kumbakonam and just 3 KM south of Nachiyarkoil, another Divyadesam in Kumbakonam, Thanjavur  District, Tamil Nadu, on the way from Kumbakonam to Thiruvarur.Thirucherai is one of the oldest temples and is believed that it was there in existence from Dwabara Yuga, with the Grand Raja Gopruam with the height of 120 feet. When time came to destroy the whole world and to finish the yugam, Lord Brahma was worried and appealed Lord Vishnu to guide him a way to keep the tools which are needed for Srishti again and all Vedas safely.

The Legend for the name Thirucherai – By hearing the worries of Lord Brhama, the lord asked him to put all the tools those are required for a Srushti again in a strong mud pot. Lord Brahma started to create a unique pot, but all went in vain, the pots were broken and not strong enough to hold the Vedas. He was not succeeded at his task.  Finally, Lord Brahma with no other way approached Lord Vishnu again, and he was advised to collect sand from this sacred land Thirucherai to make a pot. Thus, Lord Brahma crated a unique pot with this supernatural sand from here and preserved Vedas and tools for the creation. Hence as this place gave the magical mud which held a lead role and became the reason for all living things to live even after Pralaya is being called Sara shetram and Thirucherai. Thiru means Saint and Cheru means Sand in Tamil. Hanuman blesses as Vara Prasadhi here.

Nayak King Azhagiya Manavala Nayakkar of Thanjavur decided to construct a temple for Rajagopala Swamy in Mannargudi and he appointed one of his ministers Narasa Boopalan for that assignment. He was to get black stones from all possible places. Minister Narasa Boopalan  was a great devotee of Saranatha Perumal at  Thirucherai and wanted to build a temple for him too. So he ordered to unload one stone from each cart, which passes Thirucherai.  The King came to know this through one of his spy. The angered king came for an inspection.  But before that in overnight Narasa Boopalan constructed this temple and to please the king he added a Sannathi for Rajagopala Swamy too and passionately prayed the to Lord. To the big surprise, when the King came to the temple he could visualize Lord Rajagopalaswamy as blessing in Mannargudi before him in this sacred place.  The most delighted King forgave his minister and also offered the great quantity of funds for further construction of this temple.

Once River Ganges and River Cauvery had an argument about their supremacy.  River Ganges was very certain about that she is the superior amongst all the rivers as she was originated from the feet of Lord Sreeman Narayanan and was also carried by Lord Shiva on his head. Both of them approached Lord Brahma devar to get their disagreement sorted out. Lord Brahma declared them that River Ganges is the Superior amongst All the Rivers.  River Cauvery became upset, Lord Brahma instructed her to undergo a penance praying Lord Vishnu in this sacred place Thirucherai to get her status as equal to River Ganga. River Cauvery underwent a severe penance nearly for 3000 years praying towards the lord here in Thirucherai. Pleased with the Tapas made by Cauvery the lord crawled towards her as a child. To symbolize this event there is a Statue of River Cauvery with a Child on her Lap here. AS requested lord gave her his darshan with Sreedevi, Bhoodevi, Neeladevi, Mahalakshmi and Saranayagi here and this is the Only Divaydesam where lord blessing along with 5 Goddesses and blessed her with equal status to River Gangaand affirmed her as one of the sacred rivers. Cauvery earnestly requested the ALMIGHTY to bless here forever as Lord Saranathan

Thirucherai is the One and Only Divyadesam where Lord Vishnu Blessing with five Goddesses – Thirucherai is the One and Only Divya Desam where Lord Vishnu is blessing with five Goddesses. Lord Sree Rama gives the devotees a very special dharshan here along with Sita Devi and Lakshmanan, all Azhwars and Sri Rama’s kolam (ie) he poses as he was found in forest for 14 years. Instead of the regular Abhaya Hastham, Perumal here poses a Padma Hastham. Out of 108 Sree Vaishnava Sthalams, only in this Kshethram, Rathotsavam is being celebrated on the Makara Pushyam Day – Thai Poosham in tune with the day on which ALMIGHTY gave darshan to Cauvery. There are sanctums for Sreenivasan, Sree Andal, Yoga Narasimhar, Hanuman and Cauvery


15 kms from Kumbakonam and 3km south of  Nachiyar Kovil, All buses between Kumbakonam and Tiruvarur run through this place.

Temple Timings:

6.00 a.m. to 11.00 a.m. and from 5.00 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.

Temple Telephone Number:

+91 0435-2468078, 435-2468001.9444104374,

Temple Address:

Sri Saranatha Perumal Temple,


Thanjavur district.

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