Sabarimala pilgrimage season
Sabarimala’s main pilgrimage season is from mid November to mid January every year. Mandala pooja and Makara Vilakku celebrations comes during this period. Immediately after Mandala pooja, the temple closes for five days prior to re-opening for the the Makaravilakku session.
The most important event is `Makara Vilakku’ celebrations on `Makara Sankranti’ day which generally falls in the month of january .( Jan 15th 2016).
On this day, at dusk, Lord Ayyappa’s idol is adorned with Thiruvabharanam (Divine Ornaments of Ayyappa) brought from the home of his ancestors (Pandalam Maharajah at Pandalam Palace).
After this the doors of the Sanctum Sanctorum are thrown open for the ‘Aarti’. It is at this time that the Divine Light `Makara Jyothi’ is visible at `Ponnambalamedu”