Suryanar Kovil (or) Suryanar Temple is located at Aduthurai, Tanjore district of Tamilnadu, dedicated to Sun God and hence named as Sun Temple. Suryanar Kovil is considered as one of the Navagraha temples, which houses the Sun God (Surya god). Navagraha temples are the nine temples dedicated to Navagrahas (nine planets or nine celestial bodies). The Navagrahas are believed to be the transmitters of Universal, quintessential energy or power.
The Navagrahas are closely associated with the fixed stars in the Zodiac. Each Navagraha temples are located at different places in and around Kumbakonam sector. The Navagraha temples are considered to be the best destination to get rid of from the influence of planets. And most of these Navagraha temples are dedicated to Lord Shiva and Lord Shiva is worshipped as the main deity. The only Navagraha temple dedicated to one of the nine Grahas (celestial bodies) is Suryanaar Kovil. This temple is closely associated with Thirumanagalakudi temple. The devotees visit Thirumanagalakudi temple right after visiting Suryanar Kovil.
The Navagraha Temples are:
- Suryanar Kovil (or) Sun Temple – Surya (Sun)
- Agneeswarar Temple, Kanjanur – Shukra (Venus)
- Kailasanathar Temple, Thingalur – Chandra (Moon)
- Vaitheeswaran Temple – Mangala (Mars)
- Thirunageswaram Naganatha Swamy Temple – Rahu
- Sri Dharbaranyeswara Swamy Temple,Thirunallar – Sani (Saturn)
- Naganathaswamy Temple, Keezhaperumpallam – Kethu
- Abathsahayeswarar Temple, Alangudi – Guru (Jupiter)
- Sri Swetharanyeswara Swamy Temple, Thiruvengadu Budhan Sthalam – Budha (Mercury)
The presiding deity of Suryanar Kovil is Lord Suryanar (Sun God). And the favorite color of Sun God is red. Lord Suryanar is seen with Goddess Ushadevi and Goddess Pradyushadevi. Suryanar Temple is the only temple where the eight other planets are also housed, and each planets are located in separate Sannadhis of the temple. The peculiarity of this temple is that the eight other planets here, faces towards the Surya god. The Vahanam (vehicle) of Lord Suryanar is horse, which is called by the name “Saptha”, which refers to number “seven” in Sanskrit. The chariot of Lord Suryanar is drawn by seven horses.
The inscriptions indicates that that the temple was believed to be built in the Kulottunga Choladeva, the greatest kings of the Chola Empire who ruled in the late 11th century and early 12th century. And it was believed that those who pray at this temple, they will get rid of from their issues. The main offerings offered to Lord Suryanar are wheat, lotus flower, red colored cloth, Ruby madar plant, etc. Sunday is considered more special day for Lord Suryanar and special poojas takes place on every Sundays.
The temple remains open in the morning from 6.00 AM to 12:30 PM and in the evening from 4.00 PM to 8.00 PM.
- Ratha Saptami festival – January or February
- Vijaya Dasami – October
Bus facilities are available from Mayiladuthurai, Aduthurai, Anaikarai and Thirupananthal.
The nearest railway station to Suryanar Temple is Mayiladuthurai railway station which is 20 Km away from the Temple.
The nearest airport to Suryanar Temple is Thanjavur airport, which is 44 Km from Suryanar Temple.
- Agneeswarar Temple
- Sri Purushotma Temple
- Thirumananjeri Temple
- Kailasanathar Temple
- Uppiliappan Temple
- Sri Sunderaswarar Temple
- Nageswarar Temple
- Sri Kalahastheeswar Temple