Exploring Trivandrum’s Padmanabhaswamy Temple: The World's Richest Temple

Exploring Trivandrum’s Padmanabhaswamy Temple, the world’s richest temple

Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the Padmanabhaswamy Temple is known for its spiritual power, beauty and wealth. It draws pilgrims from around the world.

Many of us were unaware of the Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Kerela when it suddenly made headlines in the year 2011. This temple, located in Trivandrum, captivated the world when news broke about the discovery of its mysterious vaults. These vaults or chambers are shrouded in mystery and are believed to contain enormous wealth till date.

However, beyond its riches, the Padmanabhaswamy Temple is also known for its spiritual significance. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, it draws millions of pilgrims from around the world. Join us as we explore the fascinating history and spirituality of the world’s richest temple.

A historical and spiritual gem

The Padmanabhaswamy Temple is a beautiful Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. It is located in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India. It is a part of the 108 ‘divya desams’, which are known to be Lord Vishnu’s sacred abodes. The city of Thiruvananthapuram literally translates to ‘town of the Lord Anantha’, with thiru meaning sacred, anantha referring to the serpent on which Lord Vishnu reclines and puram meaning city.

Although the exact date of this temple’s construction isn’t known, the earliest mention of it dates back to the 9th century. Interestingly, the temple has undergone numerous renovations over the centuries—in the mid-17th century, the King of Travancore, Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma ordered extensive renovations to the temple. The sanctum sanctorum was rebuilt and the old idol was replaced with a statue made using 12,008 shaligram stones. In a significant event in 1750, this king dedicated his kingdom to Lord Vishnu.

A magnificent Pandyan-style gopuram

A magnificent Pandyan-style gopuram

One of the most beautiful features of the Padmanabhaswamy Temple is its stunning architecture. When you arrive at the temple complex, you are greeted by a magnificent structure; a grand gopuram. Rising to a height of approximately 100 feet, it is adorned by intricate carvings and sculptures depicting various mythological figures and deities. The gopuram serves as a gateway, inviting devotees into the sacred space of the temple.

Beauty that cannot be expressed in words

Beauty that cannot be expressed in words

As you enter the temple, you are struck by the intricate carvings, pillars and sculptures that showcase the skill and craftsmanship of ancient Indian artisans. When you walk further inside the temple, you see the stunning mural paintings adorning the walls. These intricate artworks depict mythological stories, deities and scenes from ancient Indian epics. The vibrant colours and fine details are truly a sight to behold. For art enthusiasts and history buffs, these murals offer a fascinating glimpse into the rich cultural heritage of the Padmanabhaswamy Temple.

Wealth beyond imagination

The Padmanabhaswamy Temple has often been referred to as the ‘Golden Temple’ in several Hindu texts, including the Vishnu Purana, Brahma Purana and Bhagavata Purana. The name itself is believed to have originated during the early Sangam period, indicating the temple’s enormous wealth at that time.

The wealth contained within the vaults of the Padmanabhaswamy Temple is nothing short of legendary. The hidden chambers, known as Kallara A to Kallara F, are said to include gold, jewels and priceless artefacts, valued at an astounding $1 trillion. Indeed, this solidifies the Padmanabhaswamy Temple’s status as the world’s wealthiest temple.

The mysterious Vault B

There are many mysterious stories surrounding the vaults in the Padmanabhaswamy Temple, making it an absolute pleasure for anyone interested in history and mystery. Among these are certain vaults, specifically vault B, that remain unopened till date.

The vault B is not just protected by one door but by two ante-chambers and a third final door that is believed to be guarded by giant serpents and deities. The serpent imagery and Yakshi on the door indicate danger to anyone who dares to open it. Legend has it that a hundred years ago, during a severe famine, temple authorities considered opening the vault to use the treasure but stopped when they heard the sound of ocean waves from behind the door. They believed it was connected to the Arabian Sea and could be disastrous if opened.

A spiritual sanctuary

The Padmanabhaswamy Temple isn’t just about its riches, mysteries and history; it’s a place where you can feel the presence of the divine. When you step inside its premise, the calming and soothing ambience makes you feel at peace and connected to Lord Vishnu.

Visiting the Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Trivandrum is more than just a trip; it’s a journey through history, spirituality and devotion. Whether you are drawn by its rich history, architectural beauty or spiritual significance, the temple is a must-visit.


What is the Padmanabhaswamy Temple famous for?

The Padmanabhaswamy Temple is one the most famous temples of Kerala. It is known for its wealth, architecture and spiritual significance.

Where is the Padmanabhaswamy Temple located?

The Padmanabhaswamy Temple is located in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, India.

Can anyone visit the Padmanabhaswamy Temple?

Yes, the temple is open to all visitors, regardless of their religious beliefs. However, there is a certain dress code that visitors must follow.

What are the key highlights of the Padmanabhaswamy Temple?

The main attractions of the temple include its grand 100 ft gopuram, stunning mural paintings and the mysterious hidden vaults.

Is photography allowed inside the Padmanabhaswamy Temple?

Photography is prohibited inside the temple premises.




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