The sacred site, Allagadda mandal of Kurnool district at Andhra Pradesh beholds the divine site Ahobilam Temple. There are two sects- the upper Ahobilam and the lower Ahobilam. In total there are nine Narasimhasthalams. They are:
- Jwala Narasimha
- Ahobilam Narasimha
- Malola Narasimha
- Kroda Narasimha
- Karanja Narasimha
- Bhargava Narasimha
- Yogananda Narasimha
- Chatravata Narasimha and
- Pavana Narasimha.
The main temple- Ahobilam Narasimha Swamy temple is holy place that enthrals visitors every time they visit the place. It is a majestic sight to see through bare eyes. It is one of the earliest of the nine temples falling under Narasimhasthalams. It is located at a distance of 70km from Nandyal and 150 km from Kurnool.
History of Ahobilam Temple
“Aho Veeryam Aho Souryarn Aho Bahuparakramah
Naarasimham Param Daivam Ahobilam Aho Balam.
There are quite few myths and legendary stories behind the temple’s foundation. So, according to local saying and legend it is said that this is the place where Lord Narasimha blessed Prahlada and killed the demon Hiranyakshipu.
Mythology says another story that Lord Vishnu once appeared as half-lion and half-man which is one of his incarnations. The Devas seeing him shouted crying “Ahobala” (powerful) and “Ahobila” (the cave where currently the sanctum is located) . so this place thus got its name Ahobilam or Ahobala.
Significance of Ahobilam Temple
- The temple follows the Vadakalai mode of worship.
- The shrine of the Ahobilam temple is located on the top of the first range and is known as Upper Ahobilam and down below is the Lower Ahobilam. A huge temple surrounded by a number of buildings can be seen at the Upper Ahobilam..
- The “sacro sanctum” at Upper Ahobilam was carved out of a big egg like rock with mandapams.
- The presiding deity is self-formed or believed to be a ‘swambhayu’.
- The Lord is also known as ‘Ugra Narasimha’ or the ‘Fierce One’ as the Lord appears in his fierce avatar.
- There are two Devis residing within the temple. They are Goddess Lakshmi and Goddess Senjulakshmi.
- The temple projects intricate stone art where the entire history of its building has been carved out in stone form. The temple also is the abode of Adivan Sathagopulu.
- The tower above the sanctum sanctorum of the temple is known as Guhai Vimanam and the Pushkarani (temple tank) of this temple are Pavanasini, Bhargava, Indra, Nrisimha and Gaja Pushkarani.
Darshan timings of Ahobilam Temple
- The temple remains open throughout the whole week from morning 5:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. at night.
Festivals at Ahobilam Narasimha Swamy Temple
- There is one major festival known as Brahmotsavam that is held with much grandeur and splendour during the month of February.
How to reach Ahobilam Temple
- By road: state buses from Hyderabad, Tirupati, Chittoor, Cuddapah, Kurnool, Nellore and Chennai are available.
- By rail: Nandyal town (74 km. on Guntur-Hubli line) and Cuddapah (118 km. on Madras-Bombay line) are the ones to avail.
- By air: Hyderabad and Tirupati are the nearest airports where regular flights are available.
Hotels nearby Ahobilam Temple
- The Haritha Hotel at Ahobilam is a great place to check in. It is reviewed to be very suitable and homely place.
- Malolan guest house at Sannithi dtreet, Ahobilm is another place where one can stay. It has a very soothing atmosphere with great amenities.
Places to visit near Ahobilam Temple
- Bhargava Narasimha Temple is located on a hill near a sacred pond known as Bhargava Theertham where Bhargava Rama performed his penance. Hence the Lord of the temple is called Bhaargava Narasimha Swamy.
- Yogananda Narasimha Temple, located at a distance of 2km from Lower Ahobilam is the place where Lord Narasimha is appeared in yogic posture.
- The Prahlada Varda temple is designed as per the architectural style of the Vijayanagar Temple. Surrounded by the three prakaras, the temple is situated in the Lower Ahobilam and primarily dedicated to Prahalada Varada. A beautiful temple dedicated to Lord Venkateswara exists in the south west direction of the Narsimha temple.