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The Aarattu Festival in Kerala is of special relevance at the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram.The Aaarattu Festival is more of a ritual than a festival that is connected to the temple festivals in Kerala. The custom has been traditionally observed ever since the festivals were celebrated. However at the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram, this religious rite is observed with so much of ceremonial elegance and splendor that it is synonymous with celebrating a festival. The Aarattu Festival in Kerala therefore gains greater magnitude at Thiruvananthapuram.
Pallivetta (Royal Hunt) and Arattu (Holy Bath) are part of the rituals held in connection with the Aarattu ceremony at Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple at Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala.The speciality of the Arattu at the Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple in Thiruvananthapuram is that the head of the royal family of erstwhile Travancore escorts the procession of idols alongwith a grand paraphernalia. The idols are taken to the Shankumugham Beach and then given the purifying bath in the sea.
The Aarattu Festival is celebrated twice each year. It is once celebrated in the months of October - November and yet again in the months of March - April. On both the occasions, this festival lasts for a period of ten days and is a magnificent sight to behold, attracting a lot of tourists from all over.
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