Guruvayoor Temple : The much-famous temple at Guruvayoor enshrines the youthful form of Lord Krishna. It is known for its interesting legends, traditions and festivals. According to the popular belief the preceptor of Gods, Brihaspati also known as ‘Guru’ and Lord of Winds, ‘Vayu’ founded the temple and hence its name. According to one of the legends that the image of the deity installed here belonged to Brahma, who originally worshipped it. Later, he gifted it to Lord Vishnu who took it to Dwarka, his kingdom during his incarnation as Krishnavataram and decided to get in installed safely just before the destruction of Dwarka. Thus, he sent Uddhava as a messenger to seek help from Vayu and Guru for the purpose, wo fulfilled their task by installed it at Guruvayur at the shores of the lotus lake, opposite the shrine of Shiva and Parvati on the other side.
Devotees believe that worshipping here can cure all the bodily ailments of a person just as Janamejaya, son of Parikshit was cured of leprosy here and a Pandya King was cured of snakebite. The 16th century work of Naarayaneeyam was said to be composed here in front of the presiding deity, who cured the author of severe arthritis he was suffering from. It is said that during the reign of Tippu Sultan, the image of Krishna was taken to Ambalapuzha for safety purposes, only to be brought back here two years later in 1789. It is believed that Aadi Sankaracharya set up the worship rituals here. The worship services are conducted throughout the day. However, a visit to the Mammiyur Mahadevar temple nearby is considered customary to complete the visit to the temple. The annual temple festival known as ‘Mandala utsavam’ is celebrated for a period of 41 days and concludes with an elephant race.