Nagaraja Temple (Nagercoil)

Nagaraja Temple (Nagercoil)

Nagaraja Temple (Nagercoil)

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Nagaraja Temple( (serpent) + Raja (king), is a Hindu temple temple dedicated to the God Nagaraja which is situated at the heart of Nagercoil. The name for the town 'Nagercoil' originated from this temple. The temple is full of images of Snakes. In addition, the gate keepers of the sanctums are two snakes.

Head priest who was recently interviewed in 2009 truly believe that it was originally a Dravidian Tamil Jain temple taken over by Hindus and rechristened as new mythological god by name Naga Raja.

Besides Nagaraja, there are Images of Jain Tirthankaras, Mahavira and Parswanatha are seen carved on the pillars of the temple. The entrance of the temple is reminiscent of Chinese architecture of Buddha Vihara.


From the five headed-serpent deity of the temple, the name of this place (town) Nagercoil is derived and gradually its old name Kottar has mostly faded. Still there is a part of the town that was called Kottar and hence the old name still remains.

It is difficult indeed to ascertain the exact age of the temple. There is no authentic epigraph to aid this historian under the topic of Chronology. The Mountain Mahendragiri in the district of Kanyakumari is referred to as the abode of Nagas in the Ramayana of Valmiki. From this fact it can be presumed that the origin of Naga influence in the area goes back to legendary times.

Traditional background

There is a traditional background regarding the origin of Nagaraja temple.

One day when a girl was cutting grass, blood...
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