Sabarimala Mandala Pooja begins on first day of Vrischikam masam (16th November) and ends on eleventh day of Dhanu masam (27th December) in Malayalam calendar of Kerala. For Mandala Puja 2010 Sabarimala Ayyappa temple opens at 5.30 pm on 16 November and closes at 10 pm on 27 December 2010.
This 41 days Ayyappa Deeksha is referred as Mandala Deeksha. The Diksha begins at least 41 days before Makar Sankranthi when Makara Jyothi is appeared in Sabarimala.
Temple reopens on 30 December 2010 for Makara Vilakku festival. Makaravilakku 2011 date is 14 January 2011. Women who have attained puberty but not reached menopause are barred from entering the Lord Ayyappa temple. Sabarimala temple is situated in the Western Ghats, at an altitude of 914 meters above sea level. The temple is accessible only by foot from Pamba, the main halting point.
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