Fodor's Expert Review Sree Janardana Swamy Temple
Varkala is a major center for the worship of Vishnu—it's known as Dakshin Kashi, or the Varanasi of the south. At the Sree Janardana Swamy temple, you can see what happens at a popular Hindu pilgrimage destination—the prayers; the morning and evening aarti (devotions), when the gods are feted with oil lamps; and the customs of the devotees. You will probably not be allowed in the inner sanctum of the temple unless you are dressed in traditional clothes, but you can certainly view the architecture and soak up the atmosphere of this pretty and very busy temple. Note that photographs of the deity are not allowed, and there may be a charge for using a camera outside. Check with your hotel in case there is a change in temple times.