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Srikurmam temple is known for its distinctive architectural style. The design of the gopuram is different from the regular style seen at other Vaishnavite temples. It also has two dhvajasthambas, one on the west and the other on the east, which is another rare element in a Vaishnavite temple. The upper part of the sanctum sanctorum is built in the form of an ashtadala padmam (eight-petaled lotus). The devotees can directly enter the sanctum sanctorum to offer prayers, unlike the method specified by the traditional rules of Vaishnavism.

Kurma avatar


The utsava deities of Govindaraja Swamy and his consorts Sridevi and Bhudevi were found in the Swetha Pushkarani in the 12th century AD. The utsava deities of Rama, Sita, and Laksmana were presented by Naraharitirtha. All these deities are located in a small room near the sanctum sanctorum and are worshipped daily. The deity of Kurmanathaswamy is made of black stone, but due to regular applications of sandalwood paste, it appears yellow. It sits on a platform made of stone with a length of 5 feet, a height of 1 foot, and a width of 4 feet. The deity is 2.5 feet (0.76 m) long and consists of three stone structures. The stone representing the head faces the west; the middle stone represents the body of the tortoise; the small stone at the rear end, covered with swirling circles, represents either the tail of the tortoise or the Sudarshana Chakra.

Beside the sanctum sanctorum of Kurmanatha, there is a temple dedicated to Kurmanayaki in which a deity of Andal is found. Hatakeswara, Karpureswara, Koteswara, Sundareswara, and Pathalasiddheswara are among the temple's guardian deities. The temple's tank Swetha Pushkarani is also known by the name Sudha Kundam. In the middle of the temple tank, there is a small construction named Narasimha mandapam. The sand below the waters of the temple tank is white in colour, and is known as Gopi Chandanam. Legends say that Krishna played with gopikas in these waters, after which the sand turned white when a sage saw them. The temple contains 108 ekasila (single-stone) pillars, with none resembling each other. They bear few inscriptions related to the royal lineages that existed in this area in the past.

In the temple's premises, a tortoise park has been built to conserve the adult and young star tortoises, which are found in the foothills and fields of Srikakulam. Srikurmam is the only conservation centre for this species. Devotees offer these tortoises from the nearby fields. They also feed gongura leaves to these tortoises as a token of respect for the deity. The Endowment Board of the Government of Andhra Pradesh and NGO Green Mercy took on the responsibility for the conservation of these star tortoises. As of September 2015, the temple hosted a total of 255 tortoises. The temple also contains 42 mural paintings of Krishna on its walls.

Special Attractions:

  1. Swetha pushkarini which was created by lord Vishnu's Sudharshana Chakra. It is believed that goddess Laxmi emerged out of this holy tank in garuda vahana and self manifested as Kurma Nayaki
  2. Sri Kurmam temple has Tortoise centre where one can see number of tortoise together there
  3. Dashavatara statue's at back side of the temple
  4. Two Dwaja stamba's one at East and one at West

Temple Timings:

  • Darshan is from 06:00 am to 07:45 pm
  • Abhishekam is from 04:30 am to 06:00 am

Near by other temples:

  1. Arasavalli Surya Narayana Swamy Temple. 13 km Away
  2. Sri Mukhalingam Siva Temple. 45 km away