Valliam pathi or more popularly known Vallimalai is near Vellore in North Arcot district in Tamilnadu and is well connected by rail and road to the nearby metro, Chennai. Frequent buses are available to Vallimalai from Vellore.

Valli Malai in Tamil means the mountain of or mountain belonging to the deity Valli, one of the two consorts of Lord Muruga, the other being Deivayani. As per the legend, it is at Vallimalai where Valli as a child, was found by the local tribesmen, who raised her to a beautiful maid and later got her married to Lord Muruga as per their customs and tradition.

Temple at the foot of the hill

Five tier tower of the lower temple

Saravana Poigai, the temple tank

There are two temples for the Lord with his consorts, one at the foot of the mountain with a five tier tower where Muruga is seen as Shanmuga with six faces and the other in a cave on the top of the hill where he is granting darshan as Muruga with a single face. The tank at the foot of the hill is called Saravana Poigai. There is also a small temple for Velli at the foot of the hill which is considered to be the place where she looked after the paddy fields.

Goddess Valli Temple at the foot of the hill

Scenic foot path to the hill top temple

Scenic foot path

On the way to hill top temple

Colorful Flame of Forest trees on the track

This hillock is a picturesque place with greenery amidst the hills, and a long flight of steps of some four hundred and forty with winding ways, interspersed by shady trees leading to the cave temple. It is believed that this place was once chosen by many sidhas and sadhus for performing meditation and penance and people believe that these pious men are continuing to do the penance even today.

A mandapam for meditation on the flight of steps

A view of hill top temple

Another view of the hill top temple

Entrance to the cave temple of Lord Muruga on the hill top

The saint composer Sri Arunagirinathar had consecrated this place with eleven verses in his well known Tirupugaz, a collection of verses on Lord Muruga. This place is also associated with Sri. Sri Sachithananda Swamigal who made available these verses of Arunagirnathar’s Tirupugaz and popularized them to what they are today. It is said that the Goddess Valli herself appeared before him as a girl and taught him the various ragas for the verses of Tirupugaz at this place.

சில துளிகள், திருப்புகழில் இருந்து . . .

நாள் என்செயும் வினைதான் என்செயும்
எனை நாடி வந்த கோள் என்செயும்
கொடுங்கூற்று என்செயும்
குமரேசர் இரு தாளும் சிலம்பும்
சதங்கையும் தண்டையும் சண்முகமும்
தோளும கடம்பும் எனக்கு முன்னே
வந்து தோன்றிடினே

சேந்தனைக் கந்தனைச் செங்கோட்டு
வெற்பனைச் செஞ்சுடர் வேல்
வேந்தனை செந்தமிழ் நூல்
விரித்தோனை விளங்கு வள்ளி
காந்தனைக் கந்தக் கடம்பனை
கார் மயில் வாகனனைச்
சாந்துணைப் போதும் மறவாதவர்க்கு
ஒரு தாழ்வு இல்லையேஅருணகிரி நாதர்

Valli malai being the place where Muruga and Valli were married, as per the legend, is considered to be a pariharastalam for overcoming the obstacles in performing marriage and other impediments that cross in the married life. This writer had a wonderful personal experience after visiting this temple.

CSG Raju

P-S: The photographs were taken in May 2001 by the writer. But for the main structures of the temple and rock formation, other scenes might have changed now.


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