Chamayavilakku Festival at Kottangkulangara, Kerala
Noted for the unique festival where gender traits undergo change temporarily for a cause. Those who wish to witness and participate in such a festival should visit the Kottangkulangara Devi temple during the month of March. It is on the 10th and 11th of the Malayalam month Meenam, that the temple celebrates the annual Kottangkulangara Chamayavilakku festival.
During the festival, men will dress up as women, as part of an offering to the presiding deity, which is a swayambhu (self-formed). It is celebrated to show respect to the deity for the favours and blessings received. During the festival nights, these men dressed in women's attire and make-up will hold traditional lamps and walk in a procession to the temple to the accompaniment of the traditional orchestra.
The Kottankulangara Devi temple is situated at Chavara in the district of Kollam formerly Quilon in Kerala.
How to reach:
Nearest railway station: Kollam, on the Salem – Kanyakumari Highway, about 13 km
Nearest airport: Thiruvananthapuram International Airport on the Salem – Kanyakumari Highway about 81 km