The Sabarimala temple has been opened for the three-month annual Manadalam- Makarvilakku festival. On the first day itself, the temple witnessed a huge crowd of devotees. The next day i.e. 16th of November was the first day of the Malayalam month Virischikam. It started with the tantri or the Chief Priest performing the Ashtadravya Maha Ganapati Homam in the morning which marked the begining of the Mandalam festival.
The Mandalam festival will be celebrated for continuous 41 days and will get over after the Athazhapuja on the eve of December 26. The temple will be closed for the next 4 days and will again reopen on 30th of December for the Makaravilakku festival. This festival will be celebrated on January 14th. A week after the festival, the temple gates will get closed finally marking the end of the annual festival season in the Sabarimal temple.