Sri Neelamega Perumal Temple is located in Thirukannapuram, Nagapatnam district of Tamilnadu. The temple is also called as Sri Sowriraja Perumal Temple and also revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam temples, dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Sri Neelamega Perumal has a seven tiered Rajagopuram (monumental tower), built in a Dravidian style of architecture. This temple was believed to have built by the Cholas and was later contributed by the Thanjavur Nayaks.
The various shrines inside the temple and the three water bodies of the temple are enclosed by a granite wall. Sri Neelamega Perumal temple is considered as one of the Panchakannan Kshetrams (five Holy temples of Lord Vishnu), Lord Kannan (Lord Krishna), is the incarnation of Lord Vishnu. The Panchakannan Kshetrams are:
- Sri Loganatha Perumal Temple, Thirukannangudi
- Sri Gajendra Varadha Perumal Temple, Thirukavithalam
- Sri Neelamega Perumal Temple, Thirukannapuram
- Sri Bhaktavatsala Perumal Temple, Thirukkannamangai
- Sri Ulagalantha Perumal Temple, Thirukovilur
The presiding deity of Neelamega Perumal temple is Lord Neela Meghar (Lord Vishnu) and the Goddess of the temple is Kannapura Nayagi (Goddess Lakshmi). The other deities of the temple are Lord Sowrirajar (festival deity), Lord Gajendra Varadhar, Goddess Sridevi, Goddess Bhoodevi, Goddess Padmini, Goddess Andal, Lord Santhana Krishnar, Lord Chakrathaazhwar, Garuda (the mount of Lord Vishnu) and Maharishi Dandaka. Neelamega Perumal temple is respected in Nalayira Divya Prabandham, a Vaishnava canon, and Paasurams (hymns) were sang by Thirumangai Azhwar, Andal, Kulashekhara Azhwar, Nammazhwar, and Periyazhwar.
The Vimanam (tower above the sanctum sanctorum) of Neelamegha Perumal temple is called Utpalavataka Vimanam and the Pushkarani (temple tank) of the temple is called Nithya Pushkarani. Neelamegha Perumal temple is considered as one of the holy centers of Salvation listed in Vaishnava mythology. The eight holy temples of Salvation are:
- Tirupathi Venkateswara Temple
- Srirangam Ranganathaswamy Temple
- Srimushnam Temple
- Naguneri Vanamamalai Permual Temple
- Thirukkannapuram Neelamegha Perumal Temple
These eight temples signifies Ashtashara (eight lettered spelling) denoting ‘Hari Om Narayana’, where each temple represents each letter. Neelamegha Perumal temple is the temple where Lord Vishnu said to have represented Himself in all the eight forms and hence the temple is also called as Bhoologa Vaikundam.
The temple remains open in the morning from 6.00 AM to 12.30 noon and in the evening from 4.30 PM to 8.00 PM.
- Masi Magam Festival – February to March
- Vaikasi Brahmotsavam Festival – December to January
- Chitra Poornima Festival – April to May
- Aadi Pooram Festival – July to August
- Navaratri Festival – September to October
- Karthikai Festival – November to December
- Pangunu Uthiram Festival – March to April
- Makar Sankranti – January
Nagapattinam is connected by two national highways, NH 45A to Villupuram and NH 67 to Coimbatore and Gundlupete in Karnataka state. Nagapattinam is also connected with Chennai, Coimbatore, Tiruchirapalli, Karaikal and other major towns of Tamil Nadu.
Nagapattinam railway junction connects Thiruvarur in the west, Nagore in the north, Velankanni in the south and Karaikal in the east. There is a daily express train to Chennai via Mayiladuthurai and Ernakulam via Coimbatore and it connects all major cities.
The nearest Airport to reach the temple is Tiruchirapalli Airport, located 145 km away from the town.
- Kayaroganeswarar Temple
- Thanthondreeswarar Temple
- Loganatha Perumal Temple
- Pallavaneswarar Temple
- Aranyeswarar Temple
- Naganathar Temple