Hey everyone, how are you doing ? So, those who follow my blog must have already read about my Kanyakumari expedition (those who havent can please read it here ). From Kanyakumari I headed to the beautiful, the less crowded ISLAND CITY Rameshawaram.
Rameswaram, in the state of Tamil Nadu is a part of the holy Hindu pilgrimage of the Char Dhams. Located on Pamban Island placed at the tip of the Indian peninsula, Rameshwaram is separated from mainland India by the Pamban channel.
The town is a historical city which has been mentioned in the mythological Hindu epic, Ramayana. It is said that this is the place from where the Hindu god Rama built a bridge across the sea to Lanka to rescue his wife Sita from her abductor Ravana.
Reasons to Visit
- Ramanathaswamy Temple, one of the Char Dhams.
- Rameshwaram is the closest point to reach Sri Lanka from India.
- Geological evidence suggests that the Rama Setu was a former land connection between India and Sri Lanka.
- Its home to Former President of India Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
Agnitirtham is the shore in front of the Ramaswaminatham Temple where pilgrims are supposed to take a dip before proceeding for the bath inside the temple. The shores of Rameshwaram are one of the most holy places for the Hindu pilgrims. According to Hindu mythology Lord Ram took a bath at the shores to get rid of the sin of killing Ravana. It is believed that bathing in this sea will get rid one of his/her sins. Holistic rituals such as those for the dead ancestors are also performed on the shores of this pristine beach.
Statutory Warning: Be prepared to face a number of animals roaming around, their urine and dung and numerous leftover cloth under the sea in case you want to go for a dip in the sea !!
Sri Ramanathaswamy Temple
The Ramanathaswamy Temple is the most notable historic landmark of the town. Located in the centre of town, it is dedicated to god Shiva. The temple is one of the 12 Jyotirlinga shrines, where Shiva is worshiped in the form of a Jyotirlinga meaning pillar of light.
It is believed that the temple was established by Lord Ram himself and later expanded by the Pandya kings to its current structure. This popular tourist attraction has the second largest pillared corridor in the world. The pillared corridors are a treat to the eyes. However, due to strict prohibition against mobile or any photographic gadgets inside the premises makes it impossible to capture the visual extravaganza of the interiors. I wonder how I see so many images in the internet though, given the strict regulations !
Tips: Keep all your belongings including sandals in your hotel room as there are strict rules to enter the premises.
Annai Indira Gandhi Road Bridge or Pamban Bridge
The Annai Indira Gandhi Road Bridge or Pamban Bridge is a cantilever bridge on Palk Strait that boasts of being the first sea bridge of India and connects Rameshwaram Island with the Indian mainland. The road next to the bridge allows one to get a clear view of this railway bridge and its double leaf bascule which can be raised to let ships pass underneath it. We couldn’t view it function though!
Former President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam’s House
A great soul, a unique human being with humility and love for everyone Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam lived in Rameshwaram. It was indeed a blessing for me to be able to see him live once when he visited the college I studied few years back. And then I had this opportunity to visit his home during my tour! The upper floors of the house have been convered into gallery showcasing the life events of Dr. Kalam. To be able to see that in itself is a memory I will cherish forever.
A small home, a few dresses, books, awards and old memories; that is all left in the house. It reflects his simplicity and humbleness. One can also meet his family who resides on the ground floor of the same house.
We were again requested to not click photographs inside which I abided by. Bought few books from the shop on the top floor.
Burial Place of Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam
While I felt extremely honoured to see the burial ground of Dr. Kalam but at the same time it was quite disheartening to see the condition of the area. Even after so much time of his departure from earth to heavenly abode, the construction was at a nascent stage. The government has not done justice to the soul of this great man. I just hope the condition has improved by now and that may we can see a superior memorial infrastructure as soon as possible depicting Dr. Kalam’s life and work and his contribution to this nation.
Whats the point of visiting an island if we don’t go for a boat ride right ? So, off we went to the sea and what a bliss !! Some amazing views of the sea and the sky got clicked in my memory as well as in my phone.
Off Beaches and Pictures
Going to the seaside and returning without pictures in itself is a crime.
So, this is how my experience of Rameshawaram, the island city went by. It was a bit of temple, a bit of sea, a bit of architecture, a bit of mythology and lots of aimless wanderings through the streets !! Topped that with numerous clicks. How I wish I could spend a few more days to explore each and every corner of Rameshwaram but I had to take a day tour to Madurai next and new voyages are always welcome in my list. So off I go to Madurai in my next post till then tell me how you liked this post and any interesting Rameshwaram stories if you have ever been there.
You may also like my travelogue to The Iconic Taj Mahal here
or to the Blissful Kanyakumari here
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Till next post,
Love and luck!!
P.S. All photos copyright @author