The Sri Rajagopala Swamy temple is an ancient temple dedicated to Sri Rajagopala Swamy, Sri Krishna. This wonderful temple is located in a small town called Mannargudi in Tiruvarur District of Tamil Nadu. This is one of the largest temples in India, spread over 23 acres of land and has 16 Gopurams (towers), 7 Prakarams (circumambulatory paths), 7 Mandapams (vast halls), 24 Shrines and 9 sacred Theerthas (holy tanks). The temple Tank called ‘Haridra Nadhi’ covers 23 acres of space (as much as the extent of this temple) and is regarded as one of the largest temple tanks in India. The Raja Gopuram (main Temple Tower) is at a height of 154 feet and can be seen from a distance of 10 kms from Mannargudi. It is believed that in Dwapara Yuga, the Sage Pulasthiar told King Bheeshma that a single night’s stay at this sacred shrine of Lord Sri Rajagopala Swamy in Mannargudi gives tremendous spiritual merit.
The Mythology of the temple is very interesting. The place where Sri Rajagopala Swamy temple stands today, abounded in champaka plants in the olden days and was regarded as ‘Champakaranyam’. In ancient days, thousands of years ago, many Sages used to meditate upon Lord Vishnu at this sacred spot. One of these Sages called Vahnimuni had two sons, Gopilar and Gopralayar. They were staunch devotees of Sri Krishna from childhood. As they grew up, their devotion to Sri Krishna grew manifold. Gopilar and Gopralayar would perform severe austerities sta