The reading of Ramayana (the epic of Lord Sri Rama) during the whole month of Karkidakam (July 17/August 16) in Hindus homes in Kerala is a practice followed since time immemorial. This practice is stemmed from the belief that it will create peace and prosperity in the home. Nalambala Darshan during Karkidakam is believed to be a Punyam (a heavenly reward of holiness). The Nalambalam is of Rama and his brothers Baratha, Lakshmana and Shatrughna.
The worshipping and praying at Sree Rama Temple at Triprayar, Bharatha Temple at Irinjalakuda, Satrugna at Payammal (all in Thrissur district) and Lakshmana Temple at Moozhikulam (in Ernakulam district) in a day is the practice. After the Darshan at Triprayar in the morning, the devotee is supposed to worship at Payammal temple before noon.
The more credible legendary tales about the creation of Nalambala is, Once the fisher-folks got a good catch from the sea. The weight in the net led them to believe it is a good catch. When they reached the shore they realized the catch is not a big fish but four idols tied together. They entrusted the idols to Vakkayil Kaimal who was a local landlord. He called in astrologers for astronomical investigation. Their findings were that these idols were the ones Lord Krishna worshipped during Dwaraka Yuga in Dwaraka. When Dwaraka submerged into the sea the idols came along to sea and trapped in the fisherman’s net. The astrologers further said that these idols should be installed at appropriate places and suggested the places. It is thus the birth of Nalambala took place.
Triprayar Sree Rama Temple
Thriprayar is in the middle of Guruvayur- Kodungallur route. People who prefer to travel via Trichur should reach Cherpu and should proceed to reach the east nada of the temple. This is the first temple to visit as part of Nalambalam Pilgrimage. Darshan is possible from 3 am to 12.30pm and 5 pm to 7.30pm. Meenuttu and Vedi are important Vazipadu.
Koodalmanikyam Temple, Irinjalakuda
The second temple to visit from Triprayar proceed in the Kodungallur route and divert from Edamuttam or Moonnupeedika. Irinjalakuda is about 20 km away from Triprayar. Darshan is possible from 3 am to 12 noon, and 5 pm to 8 pm. Important Vazhipatus are Thamaramala, Brinjal Nivedyam, Vedi, Gheelamp, Meeunttu.
Moozhikulam Sree Lakshmana Perumal Temple
Moozhikulam Temple is the third temple to visit and is dedicated to Lakshmana. Mahadeva temple proceeds along Vellankallore in Irinjalakuda route to Kodungallur and reach Mala, Annamanada and then towards Moozhikulam. Darshan from- 4 to 11.00 and 5 to 8.
Payammal Sree Shathruknha swami Temple
This is the last temple to visit. After reaching Vellangallore and proceed. 4 km to reach Aripalam. Take a right turn and reach the temple. Important Vazhipadu is Sudarshanan dedication. Darshan time is as given along temples.