Ambalpady Temple: A Historic and Sacred Destination

Ambalpady Temple is a historic and sacred Hindu pilgrimage site in Karnataka, located in the Udupi district. The temple is dedicated to Goddess Mahakali, an incarnation of Goddess Parvati. It is known for its rich history, spiritual significance, and associated legends. Henceforth, we will delve into the history, significance, festivals, and stories associated with Ambalpady Temple.

Early History:

The history of Ambalpady Temple can be traced back to the 14th century when it was built by the local rulers of the region. Markedly the temple underwent several renovations and expansions over time. It includs a major restoration in the 18th century under the patronage of the Keladi Nayakas.


The temple’s architecture is a blend of Dravidian and Kerala styles, with intricate carvings and paintings adorning the walls and pillars. The main deity of the temple, Mahakali, is depicted as a four-armed goddess holding a Trishul, Sword, and Shield. The temple also houses several other shrines dedicated to various deities, including Lord Ganesha and Lord Subramanya.

Festivals and Celebrations

Ambalpady Temple is known for its vibrant festivals and celebrations, which attract thousands of devotees from across the country. The most prominent festival is the annual Navaratri festival, which is celebrated with great fervor and enthusiasm. During this festival, the temple is decorated with colorful lights and flowers, and several cultural programs and performances are held.

Legends and Stories

Ambalpady Temple is associated with several legends and stories that add to its spiritual significance. According to one legend, the temple was built at the spot where Goddess Mahakali appeared to a group of devotees in a dream and instructed them to build a temple for her. Another popular story is that of the demon Kukkuda, who terrorized the region until Goddess Mahakali appeared and vanquished him with her divine power. The temple is also associated with the story of a local chieftain who was cured of a deadly disease after offering his prayers to Goddess Mahakali.


Ambalpady Temple holds great significance for devotees, who believe that worshipping Goddess Mahakali. Which can bring them prosperity, good health, and happiness. The temple also has a unique tradition of offering ‘Kanipooja,’ a ritual where devotees offer their prayers to the goddess by standing on one foot.

All in all, Ambalpady Temple is a historic and sacred destination in Karnataka. It is known for its rich history, spiritual significance, associated legends, and vibrant festivals. Nevertheless its stunning architecture, intricate carvings, and divine atmosphere, the temple continues to attract devotees from all over the country. If on a trip to Udupi, visit to Ambalpady Temple is a must-visit to explore the spiritual and cultural heritage.

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