Mahavishnu Temple, Thrichittatt, Kerala - associated with Pandava brothers!!

Mahavishnu Temple,Thrichittatt,
The Mahavishnu Temple, Thrichittatt, is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is in Chengannoor, Pathanamthitta District, Kerala, South India. Considered as one of the 108 Divyadesams -holy shrines  glorified in the Divya Prabandham, the early medieval Tamil canon of the Azhwar saints from the 6th–9th centuries AD,  it is dedicated to Sri Krishna. Here, he is worshiped as Imayavarappan  and can be accessed from Chengannur town.  It is one among the five ancient shrines in the Chengannur area of Kerala, having close link  with the  Mahabharata

The five Pandavas (belonging to Pandu Vamsha) are said to  have built one temple each; Thrichittatt Maha Vishnu Temple by Yudhishthira, Puliyur Mahavishnu Temple by Bheema, Aranmula Parthasarathy Temple by Arjuna, Thiruvanvandoor Mahavishnu Temple by Nakula and Thrikodithanam Mahavishnu Temple by Sahadeva.  

According to the legend after crowning Parikshit as king of Hastinapura, five Pandavas  came down south on a pilgrimage and upon  arriving on the banks of river Pamba, they liked the serene and quiet place very much and  each one is believed to have installed a tutelary image of Sri Krishna at the afore-mentioned places. Yudishthira who was never given to lies once lied to Guru Dronacharaya during the great war. To make amends for this sin he did penance worshipping the lord here. Devas -Imayavar are believed to have come to this place prior to him, hence the lord is worshiped as Imayavarappar.  Nammalvar, in circa 800 AD, one of the Tamil Azhvar saints made reference to this temple in his devotional hymns. Stone inscriptions in the temple date it back to the Second Chera Empire (800 - 1102 AD).

The sanctum of Trichittatt temple,Kerala

Built in the typical Kerala style, the main entrance 
to the temple is an arch way. There is no gateway tower. The shrines are within the boundary walls called Kshetra-Madilluka punctured by gate ways. The other common features of the temple are the Dwajasthambam, flag-pole, outer pavilion Chuttuambalam followed by Nallambalam -mantap.   Thevrapura or Madapalli, the temple kitchen where naivaidyam food (offering to the god) is cooked is  on the left of Namaskara Mandapa from the entrance. Balithara is an altar is primarily used for making ritualistic offering to demi-gods and the festive deities.  The central shrine  with pyramidal roof called Sreekovil or Garbhagraha  houses the image of the presiding deity.  As a tradition, it is on an elevated platform with a single door accessed  through five steps. As per Kerala puja and ritualistic tradition being followed under the temple Board, only the main priest called Thantri and the second priest called Melshanthi alone can enter the Sree Kovil.
The sanctum  has a circular plan with the base built of granite, and the superstructure made of laterite and conical roof with terracotta tiles s is supported from inside by a wooden structure. The image of the presiding deity is 4 ft (1.2 m) tall. Krishna is in Vishvarupa pose as he appeared before Arjuna on the Kurushetra battle ground.  There are shrines  dedicated to Sastha, Yakshi, Nagaraja and Erangavil Bhagavathy Balarama in the lower shrine - in the second prakara. .

The two major festivals celebrated in the temple are Vaikunta Ekadasi and Thiruvonam are two important festivals celebrated here on a grand scale.