The famous Sri Surya Narayana Swamy - Sun God temple situated in Arasavalli Village which is at a distance of about 1km east of Srikakulam Town of the North east coastal Andhra Pradesh. It is one of the ancient and all among two sun God temples in our Country. According to Padmapuranam , Sage Kasyapa installed the Idol of Surya at Arasavalli for the Welfare of mankind.
The unique feature of this temple is that the rays of the sun fall on the feet of the deity for about few minutes through the closed entranced gate twice a year in the month of February and June (in the early morning).
Legend / Sthala purana
The Puranic story of the temple is, When Lord Indra, the king of gods, wanted to vigor his entry to the temple of Rudra Koteeshwara (Lord Shiva) temple here, was thrown away by the Dwarapalakas (gate keepers) of the temple. Lord Indra got regretted by this act and enshrined a temple for the Sun god Surya at Arasavalli and performed rituals at the temple.
The image of the sun god was made of black granite, and stands about five feet in height holding Padma Paani (lotus buds), which is flanked by the Goddesses Padma, Usha and Chhaaya, the consorts of Lord Indra, on a seven horse chariot. The gatekeepers of the shrine are Pingala and Danda and the saints Sanaka and Sananda and Aruna, a charioteer of the Surya, a god of the Hindus, is also found in the image.
Archeological experts say that the stone inscriptions available in the temple throw some light to the effect that Devendra Varma, the Ruler of the Kalinga Kingdom, must have build this temple and installed the image of the Sun God in it in the later half of the 7th Century.
The temple locates five idols in a single location namely - 1. Aditya, 2. Ambika, 3. Vishnu, 4. Ganesha, 5. Maheswara, and hence Sri Suryanarayana Swamy temple is called as a Panchayatana temple. The main shrine is surrounded by four subsidiary shrines. Here Lord Aditya being the center, surrounded by Ganesha, Shiva, Parvati and Vishnu in four corners.
People who are unfortunate enough to suffer from eye and skin, diseases visit the Temple, take bath at Indrapushkarini and offer their prayers to Sun God. They believe that the God is essentially a God of Health and Prayers offered to Him would heal their sickness.