Ksheerarama Temple (or) Pedda Gopuram is located in Palakollu, West Godavari district, state of Andhra Pradesh and also dedicated to Lord Shiva. This temple is also named as Ksheera Ramalingeswara Swamy Temple. Ksheerarama Temple is one of the Pancharama Kshetras (five temples), dedicated to Lord Shiva in Andhra Pradesh. The Pancharama Kshetras are:
- Amareswara Swamy Temple, Amararama
- Bhimeswara Temple, Draksharamam
- Someswara Temple, Somarama
- Ksheera Ramalingeswara Swamy Temple, Ksheerarama
- Sri Kumararama Bhimeswara Swamy Temple, Kumararama
The temple tower of Ksheerarama Temple is considered to be one of the tallest towers among the temple towers of Andhra Pradesh. This temple stands at a height of 120 feet and was said to be constructed during the period of Chalukyas in the 9th century. The mythology of the temple was that during Tarakasura vadha, it is said that the Shivalingam which was present on the throat of Tarakasura, a powerful asura, was divided into five pieces. And the place where the five pieces fell where the Pancharama Kshetras are built.
The presiding deity of Ksheerarama temple is Lord Shiva in the form of Shivalingam, who is also called by the name Ksheera Ramalingeswara Swamy. The sacred Shivalingam at Ksheerarama temple is believed to be installed by Lord Vishnu. The Shivalingam at Ksheerarama temple is the tallest one and found to be very unique milky white in color. And the Shivalingam here is also called as Kshiralingam. The Shivalingam can be seen through the windows of the sanctum sanctorum on all four sides. Ksheerarama temple is considered to be the most sacred temple that staying one day in this temple is considered to be equivalent to staying one year in Varanasi (Kasi).
The mandapa (outdoor hall) of Ksheerarama temple contains 72 pillars, which are made of lack stone. The deities found close to the main shrine of the temple are Lord Gokarneshwara, Lord Vigneshwara, Lord Subramanya Swamy, Lord Janardhana Swamy, Nandi, the bull mount of Lord Shiva. The temple complex of Ksheerarama temple also houses the shrines of the Sun God (Kashi Vishweshwara), Goddess Parvati, Goddess Lakshmi, Nagareshwara Lingam, Lord Dundi Vigneshwara, Lord Veera Bhadra, Sapta Matruka, Goddess Kanaka Durga, Lord Brahma, Goddess Saraswathi, Lord Kumara Swamy, Lord Kartikeya, Goddess Mahishasura Mardhini, Lord Kala Bhairava, Naga sarpa, Nataraja, Dattatreya, Lord Nageshwara, Lord Shaneeshwara, Radha Krishna, Lord Shankara.
The temple remains open in the morning from 5.30 AM to 11.30 AM and in the evening from 4.00 PM to 8.30 PM.
- Mahasivaratri – February/March
- Navaratri – September/October
Palakollu is located at the National Highway 214 which is in the heart of Andhra Pradesh. APSRTC operates buses from Palakollu to major cities like Hyderabad, Vizag, Vijayawada, Tirupati etc.
Three express trains service the town, which is on the Narsapur – Vijayawada railway route.
The nearest Domestic Airport is Vijayawada Airport.
- Kanaka Durga Temple
- Amareswara Swamy Temple
- Somarama Temple
- Sri Bheemeshwara Swami Temple
- Veerabhadra Temple
- Balasubramanya Temple