The presiding deity in this temple is Sri Maha Vishnu in the divine form of Chennakesava Swamy and is seen with His consort Goddess Sri Mahalakshmi. The Lord is called Kesava because He killed a demon called Kesi.
Chennakesava Swamy Temple was built during 1405-1459 AD, the period of Vijayanagar rulers. The temple has magnificent gopurams. The first storey of the temple was built during the Krishnadeva Raya’s reign, while the other storeys were added in 1837. The walls of Sri Chenna Kesava Swamy Temple were constructed in 1425 AD and have 18 inscriptions. These inscriptions give an account of culture and lives of people during the reign of Krishnadeva Raya. It is said the king gave away 355.14 acres to 14 surrounding villages just so that the people of villages would look after the temple.
Chenna Kesava Swamy temple has a huge Galigopuram which stands 135 ft tall. It can be seen from 5 km away. It is an imposing and amazingly magnificent sight. The temple has a 40-pillared Mandapam with the mystic carving of the Lord Sri Krishna, Lord Anjaneya, Lord Vighneswara and Goddess Sri Maha Lakshmi along with their Vahanas. The wonderful Kalyana Mandapam of the temple has 6 musical pillars that create 7 musical notes in its correct "Aaroha" and "Avaroha" when tapped gently with the fingers.
Sun Rays falling at the Lord’s Feet: The astounding feature of this temple is every year from 16th December to 14th January every morning the sun’s rays enter the sanctum sanctorum through specially placed windows and fall at the feet of the Deity. This is an incredible architectural wonder that speaks volumes of the expertise of the artisans of Vijayanagar Dynasty. This causes the deity’s feet to glow for 20 minutes every day, during which devotees throng to the temple to catch a glimpse of this spectacular vision.