The Chamundeshwari Temple in Mysore is a well-known Hindu temple in Karnataka. It is situated on top of the Chamundi Hills at 3000 feet above the mean sea level. The Chamundeshwari temple is named after the furious form of Shakti Goddess Durga, also known as Chamundeshwari, a sacred deity worshipped for generations by the Maharaja of Mysuru.
The Mysore City was previously known as “Mahishuru,” named after the king “Mahishashura,” who ruled the place. It is said that, on this Chamundi hills, Goddess Chamundeshwari destroyed the demon king “Mahishashura,” which is why the name “Mahishuru.” Later, the British named it “Mysore,” now called Mysuru – a Kannadized version of Mysore. People of Karnataka also call Devi Chamundeshwari “Nada Devi,” which means the State Goddess.
Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore – A Shakti Peetha:
The Chamundeshwari Temple is regarded as a Shakti Peetha among the 18 Maha Shakti Peethas. Because the area was referred to as Krouncha Puri during the Puranic periods, it is known as Krouncha Pitha. The hair of Sati is said to have fallen here. And 17 other Shakti Peethas located in different parts of India.
History of Chamundeshwari Temple:
With a long history of more than 1000 years, Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore is said to have been constructed as a straight shrine. As the Goddess Chamundeshwari divinity spread across the state, it rapidly grew in popularity. Three popular dynasties—the Hoysala, Vijayanagar, and Mysore rulers, are credited with significantly contributing to Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore.
In 1399 AD, when Mysore Maharajas – The Wadeyar Dynasty, took control over the city, Mysore and Chamundeshwari Temple earned great significance. The original Temple of Goddess Chamundeshwari was built by the Hoysala rulers in the 12th century, while Vijayanagar Kings constructed the towers in the 17th century. Later, a staircase of 1000 steps leading to the 3000 feet above the hill’s top Chamundeshwari temple was built in 1659.
Nandi at Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore:
When you enter the Chamundeshwari temple, you can witness several images of Sri Nandi (the bull mount of Shiva). On the way to Chamundeshwari temple, through a staircase of 1000 steps, a big Nandi statue of Granite is built on the 700th step. This Nandi, which is almost 15 feet tall and 24 feet long with magnificent bells around its neck, is thought to have been sculpted in the second century CE. And this is in front of a little Shiva temple not far from Nandi.
Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore – the main building Architecture
The Temple is built in the shape of a quadrangular. Its components—the Main Doorway, Entrance, Navaranga Hall, Antharala Mantapa, Sanctum Sanctorum, and Prakara—are all built in the Dravidian architectural style. A stunning seven-tiered Gopura or pyramidal tower is at the entryway, and a “Vimana” (small tower) is perched atop the sanctum sanctorum. Seven golden “Kalashas” can be found atop the “Shikara,” the tower at the entryway. A tiny depiction of Lord Ganesha can also be seen in the tower’s doorway at the entrance. The Goddess is shown in several guises on the silver-plated gateway.
Festivities at Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore:
At the Chamundeshwari temple on Chamundi Hills, Mysore, a group of priests performs a special puja to the Goddess Chamundeshwari daily. Especially on Fridays, this is believed to be the sacred day for worshipping and visiting the Chamundeshwari temple. Every year, many devotees travel to the Chamundeshwari temple in Mysore from around the country and overseas. By bending their heads in front of the Goddess and touching her feet, they believe that Goddess Chamundeshwari will grant their wishes and aspirations.
The Temple is well-known for celebrating festivities like Ashada Shukravara, Navaratri, and Ammanavara Vardhanthi. The Fridays in the month of Ashadha are exceptionally holy. On this occasion, the Temple is crowded with thousands of worshipers. The Chamundi Jayanti festival is another one that takes place this month. The Goddess’s statue is carried around the Temple on this particular occasion on a golden chariot.
Navaratri Celebration in Chamundeshwari Temple
During Mysore Dasara, called “Nadahabba,” – The state festival is celebrated grandly in Mysore. Goddess Chamundeshwari is decorated in nine different aspects or avatars (Navadurgas) for nine days of Navaratri. On the 7th day, Chamundeshwari is decorated as Goddess Mahadevi or Kalaratri, which is dedicated to her. On this day, all the precious jewelry Mysore Maharaja gives is brought from the Mysore Treasury Office to the Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore to decorate the Sri Chamundeshwari Devi’s idol.
Mysore Dasara celebration starts at Chamundeshwari temple on the Chamundi hills. Inauguration of the Dasara festivities begins on the Day 1 of Navaratri, by worshipping the idol of Chamundeshwari Devi by the Wadeyar family. There will be a long queue of devotees outside the Temple during these nine 9 days of Dasara, waiting to get Chamundeshwari Devi’s blessings on Navaratri’s auspicious days. A complete list of Sri Chamundeshwari temple festivities/Jatras is shown below.
- Sri Chamundeswari Birthday Ashadakrishna Saptami day
- Sri Chamundeswari Shainotsava Asvauja Krishna tritiya
- Sri Chamundeswari mudi utsava Asvauja Krishna Panchami day
- Sri Chamundeswari vasantotsava Chaitrapadya day
- Sri Chamundeswari Dasara Utsavas Asvauja Sukla Padya to Dasami day (9 days)
- Sri Chamundeswari Kritikotsava Kartika Poornima day
- Sri Chamundeswari Kotarotsava Pusyamasa 4 th day
- Sri Chamundeswari Rathotsava Asvayuja Poornima day (morning)
- Sri Chamundeswari Teppotsava Asvauja Krishna Dvitiya (Evening)
- Sri Mahabaleswara Rathotsava Palgunaksirhna sresti
- Uttanahalaii jwalamuki temple jatra Magamasa 3rd Sunday.
Chamundeshwari Temple Timings:
The Chamundeshwari Temple in Mysore, Karnataka, India, is generally open every day from early morning until late evening. The specific timings for the temple may vary slightly depending on the day of the week and any special events or festivals that may be taking place.
Approximate timings for the Chamundeshwari Temple in Mysore:
- Monday to Sunday: 7:30 AM to 2:00 PM and 3:30 PM to 6:00 PM
- Abhisheka’s timings are from Morning 6 AM till 7.30 AM.
- On Fridays, the Abhisheka timings change slightly – from 5 AM to 6.30 AM.
Best time to visit Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore:
The best time to visit Chamundeshwari temple in Mysore is September to November. Due to the Dasara and Deepawali festivities, the Temple will be specially decorated for the occasion, and you can witness the Goddess Chamundeshwari in different avatars of Navaratri.
The best time of the day to visit Chamundeshwari temple is dawn. Chamundeshwari Temple, a beautiful bird view of Mysore city, can be seen from the top of the Chamundi hills, with the whole lighting of the city. Also, it offers a great Panoramic view of the city during these months.
How to reach Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore:
Chamundeshwari temple in Mysore has located 13 km from the main city bus stand. One can reach the Temple by City buses or by cabs also. City buses are running every 20 minutes to the Chamundeshwari temple, normal, as well as Volvo buses. It takes around 30 minutes to reach Chamundeshwari temple from the main bus stand of Mysore. On a particular platform in the bus station, you can hear many conductors and the drivers calling out “Betta, betta,” which means “Hills.” Board those buses to reach Chamundi Hills.
As the Chamundeshwari temple and the surroundings are declared as non-plastic zones, carrying and using plastic bags are completely banned.
Things to see at and near Chamundeshwari Temple Mysore:
Apart from the main Temple, Sri Chamundeshwari temple, there are other attractions on the site. You can visit Mahabaladri, Narayanswami temple, Nandi Statue, and the Mahishashura statue on the Chamundi hills, near Chamundeshwari temple. Another nearby location, located at the Chamundi hills, is the Lalit Mahal palace. Lalit Mahal Palace in Mysore was originally built for the short stays of Maharajas. Whenever they visit the Chamundi hills, Maharaj’s family used to rest here for some time.
Nearby places to visit in Mysore:
- Mysore Palace – 10 Km
- Mysore Zoo – 9 KM
- KRS – Krishna Raja Sagar – 30 Km
- Jaganmohana Palace – 12 Km
Sri Chamundeshwari Temples, the pride of Mysuru, are a magical location surrounded by breathtaking scenery. The forest has different kinds of trees, birds, and animals. A bird’s eye view of Mysuru and several notable areas may be viewed as you ascend the Chamundi hills. It provides a breathtaking view when the Palace and its surrounds are illuminated during the Dasara and other occasions.
In my next blog, I will read about another historic site, Badami Cave Temples.