Legends: Rama bathed in the sea and worshipped Shiva after his victorious return to Ayodhya. Bhrama worshipped Shiva prior to commencing his work of creation. Agastyar was blessed with a vision of the divine marriage here. The doors of the temple which remained shut for ages, reopened when Appar composed his Patikam. Viswamitrar worshipped Shiva to become a Bhrammarishi. It is believed that Rama attempted to build a bridge to Sri Lanka from Vedaranyam first but was directed by Shiva to proceed to Rameswaram. The Pandavas installed the Pancha Lingams here.
Temple: This is a vast temple and has a treasure of sculptures. Pillared halls with images, Yaalis with rolling pillars in their mouths, images of the 12 zodiac signs and the 27 asterisms are found here. Rama worshiped Veerahatti Vinayakar here.
There is an image of Uma Maheswarar behind the Shivalingam in the sanctum. There is also a separate temple for Durga here. There are inscriptions here from the Chola, Vijayanagar and Maratha periods here.