Sholinghur or Gadikachalam is at a distance of about 50 km from Kanchipuram. Sholinghur is in Vellore district and can be reached by both rail and road. Though Sholinghur has a railway station few trains stop there so Arakkonam is a better choice. We can take an auto or bus from here to Sholinghur. It is advisable to leave heavy baggage at the foothills and proceed uphill with minimum essentials.
Taxi and tourist cars can also be taken from Kanchipuram(costs about Rs.2000) But to have Narasimha darsanam one has to climb about 1300 and odd steps or engage a doli (costs about Rs.1200).
We decided to climband after chanting our acharya thaniyan we started .There were monkeys of all sizes everywhere and we climbed cautiously fearing an attack any time. After a difficult climb we looked at the number on the steps it showed 400. Almost 1000 more could me make it? We all were equipped with wooden sticks but the monkeys were not worried. We saw many pilgrims handing over their handbags to them and the monkeys were examining the contents much in the manner of the frisking officials at the airport. One monkey decided he wanted the turmeric powder I was carrying and there was no go but to hand it over for examination. Their presence propelled us up and after panting and resting now and then we sighted the gopuram. The monkeys were around there too and we made our way up the golden steps to have darshan of the most Beautiful Narasimha seated in yogic posture making us forget all the strain.
After offering prayers and archana, we went to Thayar sannidhi. Amrithavalli also seated poured forth Her Amritha kataksham making us feel grateful for being there that day. The climb down was not as hard. After resting for sometime at the dharmsala we climbed the Anjaneya Hill which had 400 steps.
Anjaneya is seated and has four hands. He is in yogic posture and holds shanku chakram. This is perhaps the only temple where Anjaneya holds the shanku chakram. We have sannidhis for SriRama and Ranganatha on this hill.
At the foothill we have a temple for AdiKesava Perumal. While moolavar is at the top of the Hill utsavar known as Bhakthavatsala(Bhakthasithan) is in ninratirukolam(standing posture) flanked by Sridevi and Bhudevi. This divyadesam is associated with Dodachariar swami.
Dodachariar swami never missed Kanchipuram Garuda sevai (Vaikasi Visakam) but as old age took hold of him he could not travel so far. He however longed for darsan and Varadaja Perumal accorded him darsan at Thakan kulam in Sholinghur. To date when Kanchi Varadan’s Garuda sevai takes place He is covered by two umbrellas and gives sevai to Dodachariar. To commemmorate this event there is a temple for Varadaraja in Sholinghur and Garuda sevai takes place here as also at Bhakthositan temple coinciding with Kanchi Garuda Sevai. There is a sannidhi for Doddacharya in the temple.
Amruthavalli Thayar comes downhill in Purattasi and returns uphill on the first day of Karthigai. Those who have a problem climbing up can make use of this opportunity and have darshan at the foothills itself.
Such then is the mahimai of Sholinghur Narasimha who is known as Akkarakani and Thakaan who dwells on a single-stone Hill of Chozhasimhapuram also known as Tirukadigai (A kadigai is equal to 24 minutes and it is believed that one is lead to the moksha path if he spents 24 minutes in this divyadesam) along with the greatest of devotees Hanuman who has been promised moksham at the end of kaliyugam.
Jaya jaya Lakshmi Narasimha!
Taking permission from the dwarapalakas
The climb starts