A few kilometers from the city of Trivandrum, you will find the southernmost part of the Indian mainland, tapering into a rugged triangle. Or, what has been historically known as Kanyakumari. This tiny coastal town in Tamil Nadu is a site of immense religious, historical, and geographical significance. During the days of the British India Empire, it was called the Cape Comorin. The craggy landmass juts out into the Laccadive Sea, which merges into the confluence of the Indian Ocean, Arabian Sea, and the Bay of Bengal, making it an incredible viewing point.
From the religious perspective, the town was named after Kanya Kumari, an incarnation of Parvati (the divine goddess) in her virgin form. Legends say that Parvati performed the ultimate penance at this point, so she could be blessed with Shiva as her husband. This mythological reference has ever since made Kanyakumari a popular pilgrimage destination. Also, the confluence or Sangam of the three seas is considered holy and you would find people bathing here in pursuit of moksha and offer prayers at the Kumari Amman Temple, nested on the shore. But Kanyakumari’s religious significance is not restricted to only Hinduism and/or Hindu mythology. The town had also been an important center of Indian Catholicism, and the church of Our Lady of Ransom is living proof.
How to travel to and around Kanyakumari
The town is about 100 Km-drive from the city of Trivandrum and takes about three hours to reach. You can book a cab from Trivandrum to Kanyakumari and easily plan your travel. You can also choose from various trip options, depending on your trip itinerary, budget, travel agenda, etc. If you want to do a short day trip, you can take a one day cab, or if you want to spend some time in Kanyakumari for pilgrimage or otherwise, there are options for one way cabs as well. For a short trip of two or three days, you can even keep the rental car with you to take you around the historic monuments, ancient temples, and other significant landmarks in the town, like the Vivekananda Rock Memorial, Kumari Amman Temple, Thanumalayan temple, the statue of Thiruvalluvar, and many more. While you are here, you can also explore the interiors, which are known for gorgeous waterfalls.
Things you must do and see in Kanyakumari
Whether you are on a pilgrimage, a typical vacation, or a soul-searching trip, this quaint coastal town is sure to fulfill your curiosities. Get a top-rated and licensed car on rent in Trivandrum and explore the best of what Kanyakumari has to offer.
Vivekananda Rock Memorial
When the revered Indian philosopher and poet, Swami Vivekananda, was traveling around India sharing his teachings with his followers, he landed in Kanyakumari in 1982. During his trip, he spent three days meditating on a large offshore rock at the sea, right where Parvati was said to have performed her penance. Vivekananda attributed his transformation to the time he spent here. Later in 1970, a memorial was built to commemorate his dedication. The pavilion, with a life-sized bronze statue of the great leader, eventually became a landmark of the town. The rock sits in the water and you need to take a 15-minute ferry ride from the beach. Boats run from 8 am to 4.30 pm.
Statue of Thiruvalluvar
Another great poet and philosopher, Thiruvalluvar had immense contribution to the socio-cultural makeup of Tamil Nadu. To commemorate him, a memorial was made in 1979, on another rock on the sea, close to that of Vivekananda Rock Memorial. The ferries also make a stop at the statue of Thiruvalluvar if the currents are not bad or if time permits. You can also get off the boat at the base of the statue and climb to the viewing deck for breathtaking views of the endless mass of water.
Sunrise and sunset views
The confluence of the three seas makes for an inexplicable landscape view. The reddish, shallow water of the Arabian Sea, the greenish water of the Bay, and the dark, blue Indian Ocean renders a wonderful color play of nature, making you want to gaze for hours. One can easily distinguish between the three shades of the sea, making it a delightful sight. During high tides, the strong ocean currents create a stormy look, with waves crashing on the rugged rocks that line the shores. But if you want the best views of the sea, then visit during sunrise or sunset. And if it’s a full moon night, the sunset becomes extraordinary. The golden sun hides into the liquid horizon while the silver moon slowly rises on the other side, painting a picture that will never leave your visual memory for years to come. The best time to view sunsets is between mid-October and mid-March, but the peak times are from December to February. If you cannot make it to the beach, then opt for a hotel on the beach with uninterrupted sea views and enjoy the sight from the comfort of your room.
Neha Singh is a full-time writer cum blogger with a keen interest in making friends and penning articles on any topic under the sun. She believes in living life to the fullest and is on a constant lookout for new skills that she can acquire. You can check her blogs on Sosoactive.com
Date Of Update: 21 September 2020, 16:09