Mallikarjun Jyotirling is situated on Shri Shaila Mountain by the banks of the Patal Ganga, Krishna River in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh. Also known as Kailash of the South, Mallikarjuna constitutes one of the 12 Jyotirlingam shrines of Shiva and is one of the greatest Shaivaite shrines in India. The presiding deities of Mallikarjuna Temple are Mallikarjuna (Shiva) and Bhramaramba (Devi). Every year there is a fair organized on account of Mahashivratri.
The temple sculptures narrate in stone, epics from thre great Hindu epics-Ramayana nand Mahabharata.This temple is considered very holy and is dedicated to Mallikarjuna Swamy and Bhramaramba. One unique feature of the temple is that all the devotees who visit the temple are allowed to touch the idol which is not prevalent in any other temple. The temple is located at a distance of 245 km from Hyderabad.
The architecture of the ancient Mallikarjun Temple is very beautiful and intricate. The temple has fort like walls, towers and a rich endowment of sculptural work.
Legend of Shri Mallikarjun Jyotirling
According to Shiva Purana, when Lord Ganesh was married of before his Kartikeya, and because of this brother Kartikeya became angry. Despite being stopped and consoled by his parents Shiv-Parvati, Kartikeya went away to the Kraunch Mountain. Even the Gods went and tried consoling Kartikeya but all their efforts were in vain. Because of this incident Shiv-Parvati were very sad and both decided that they would themselves go to Kraunch Mountain. However, when Kartikeya came to know that his parents have arrived, he went away. Eventually Lord Shiva assumed the form of Jyotirlinga and resided on that mountain by the name of Mallikarjuna. Mallika means Parvati, while Arjuna is another name of Shiva. In this way both Shiva and Parvati came to reside in this linga. It is said that by merely seeing the tip of mountain one is emancipated from all his sins and worries. The person becomes free from the vicious cycle of life and death.
The sprawling temple is situated on the side of the Rudra Sagara Lake; this is a three storied temple, where is Mahakaleshwar Lingam installed at the beneath part, while Nagachandresvara installed at the uppermost part of the temple. One can only see Nagachandresvara at the festival time of Nag Panchmi. In the inner and outer walls there are various sculptures have been carved during the Parmar period. At the east side of the temple where is a large veranda, adjoining the way which lead to the ‘Garbhgraha’ (Sanctum). At the northern side there is Images of Lord Rama, Goddess Avantika. at the southern side of the temple, where is many small temples, built during the rein of Shinde. A lofty Kunda named Koti Tirtha is built in the sarvatobhadra style, which is situated in the temple complex.The massive spire of the temple is soaring into the sky; the architecture of the outer side of the temple is so fascinating, which depicts north-Indian style.