Located on the outskirts of Kochi, Vaikom is best known for the Vaikom Mahadeva Temple. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple boasts a marvellous Kerala-style architecture. It is popularly called Kashi of the South. Devotees can also visit Ettumanoor Shiva Temple and Kaduthuruthy Thaliyil Mahadeva Temple. It is said that worshipping at all the three temples opens doors to a multitude of blessings. Legend has it that demon Kharasura once did severe penance and prayed to Lord Shiva to attain moksha or salvation. Lord Shiva granted him all his wishes and gave him three lingas, asking him to worship them to attain moksha. Kharasura carried one in his right hand, the other in his left hand and the third tied around his neck. After travelling for long he sat down to rest awhile. When he rose to continue his journey he realised that he couldn't lift the lingas. Upon hailing Lord Shiva, he was told that Lord Shiva would remain where he had been put down to give moksha to anyone who came here to worship him. So it is said that the linga in the right hand is Vaikom, the left one Ettumanoor and the one on the neck is Kaduthuruthy.

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