How to Reach Ayyappan Temple, Mahalingapuram
This Ayyappa - Guruvayoorappan temple is situated in Madhavan Nair Road and very near to Kodambakkam Railway station. You can reach this temple easily by bus, electric train or auto rikshaws. This is the first Ayyappan temple in Chennai. The beginning of this temple was very simple and humble, that is a few devotees of Lord Yapp wanted to do social service and conduct weekly Bhajans and such religious programmes. So they required a place of their own, in 1968 a Sabha was formed and named as "Ayyappa Bhaktha Seva Sabha".
The aim of this sabha was to help the devotees who make pilgrimage to Sabarimala, conduct “Vilakku Pooja” during the Mandalam/ Jyothi season and do some social service. They also wanted to spread the worship of Lord Ayyappa. Sabha built a small shrine for Lord Ayyappa in a plot donated by Lady Madhava Nair and started functioning. In March 1974 the idol of Lord Ayyappa was installed in the shrine by the head priest of Sabarimala temple. The elders of this area say that at the time of installing the idol a Garuda (eagle) flew over the shrine thrice which is believed to be a good omen.
The temple is built in the style of Kerala art and architecture. The poojas are also performed according to that of the Sabarimala temple in Kerala. The priests are Keralites. The main festivals in the temple are that of Lord Guruvayurappan (a separate shrine is there for Lord Guruvayurappan) and for Lord Ayyappa. For Guruvayurappan the festival is from Oct 28 to Nov 4th every year and for Lord Ayyappa it is during Dec-Jan The main poojas are Archana, Sahasranama Archana and Abhishekam. Also Udayasthaman Poojas are performed for Lord Guruvayurpaan and Lord Ayyappa. There are separate shrines for Lords Ganesha, Subramanya, Sri Ambal, Nagaraja and Navagrahas.
During the season from Mid November to January there will be heavy rush in the temple since all the Ayyappa devotees who make a pilgrimage to Sabaraimala will visit this temple every day. The temple also provides items for Irumudi and prepare Irumudi at a reasonable cost. So lot of devotees avail this facility and start their pilgrimage from here. During the Mandala season there will be special programmes like dances, music concerts of famous artists, spiritual lectures and bhajans in the temple auditorium.
The temple is open from early morning 4 a.m tp 11.30 a.m and from 5 p.m to 8.30 p.m in the evening.