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MY TRAVEL DIARY : Places To Visit In Rameshwaram , Tamil Nadu

Rameshwaram on the occasion of Panguni Uthiram

Sharat’s tRavelogue

One of the most auspicious days of the Tamil calendar. Panguni is the last month of Tamil Hindu calendar. On Uthiram day Murugan married his consort Devasena. This is the day when in Rameshwaram, the father, Shiva, takes the back seat. While his shrine was nearly devoid of devotees, his son Lord Murugan’s Sannadhi drew near stampede crowds with people walking bare feet for miles and waiting patiently in serpentine queues for the darshan and pay obeisance on fulfilment of their vows. Devotees pierce their bodies, especially their face, some even pull chariots hooked to their skin to mark their devotion to the lord.

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In Rameshwaram, Murugan’s Sannadhi is next to the Gopuram of the Shiva temple approachable from the Middle Street. Rameshwaram air was reverberating with only Muruga’s devotional songs. One simply falls in love with the energy in the air and feels rejuvenated. . Rameshwaram, ancient city of the Ramayana era, is famous all over the world as home to one of the 12 Jyotirlingas.

Shiva devotees and tourists, after visiting the Shiva shrine, always make it a point to go on the school-home-memorial trail of the city’s modern day icon, late Dr APJ Abdul Kalam. The late president of India studied in the Mandapam Panchayat Union Primary School, Rameshwaram No. 1. The school is less than 200 meters from his house, today called House of Kalam. Its address is 12/7, Mosque Street, Rameshwaram. The house and the street have become a major tourist attraction of the city. Dr Kalam was born on October 15, 1931, in this house. Once Dr Kalam moved on to join DRDO and ISRO his elder brother continued to live in this home for 104 years. The two floors house has become a museum dedicated to Dr Kalam’s life and times. It is managed by a trust — the Dr APJ Abdul Kalam International Foundation. Dr Kalam passed away on July 27, 2015. On July 30 he was laid to rest at Pie Karumbu in Rameshwaram. A memorial — Dr APJ Abdul Kalam’s Memorial — has been built on this burial site by the government.

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To turn this holiday/trip/tour from spiritual and academic pursuit to leisure and relaxation one must visit Kunddukaal beach on the Pamban Island. It is clean, calm and a beautiful shallow beach, perfect for the family of swimmers and non swimmers. One can also hire a boat to hop across to one of the 21 islands from here in the Gulf of Mannar. All these islands are a part of the national park chain and surrounded by coral reefs. Only on one island tourists are allowed. All islands are coral islands hence out of bounds for fishermen as well as public. The water channel between the island 1 and island 2 is 60 meters deep and is used by ships to and from Tuticorin and Chennai. A visit to the beach and the boat ride with a small halt on the island number 2 were part of an amazing experience. There is a guide to take you around the island explaining the vegetation. The island is also used as a research centre by the fisheries department. Mystery of floating rocks was also solved during the visit. Floating stones and rocks are chunks of dried corals.


Sharat Sharma

Sharat Sharma is an indefatigable traveller and explorer from Delhi. For Sharat, age is just a number because what matters is the indomitable will to get moving.

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