Rameswaram is a town in Tamil Nadu. Rameswaram is a famous religious destination in the state of Tamil Nadu in India. The prominent town lies in the Ramanathapuram district of the state. The distance from Chennai, the capital of Tamil Nadu is 572 km.
Location of Rameswaram
The sacred town of Rameswaram is situated on Pamban Island. The island does not form a portion of the Indian mainland and it is disconnected by the Pamban canal. The distance of the holy town from the Mannar Island in Sri Lanka is approximately 50 km. Another name of Rameswaram Island is Pamban Island and the Pamban Bridge links the island to the Indian Territory. Rameswaram is also the last station on the railway track from Madurai and Chennai. Along with Kashi, Rameswaram is regarded as one of the famous sacred sites in India to the followers of Hindu religion. It constitutes the Char Dham or four most religious places of worship in India. As a result of this, it has turned into a vibrant religious hub.
GETTING INTO RAMESWARAM
Geographical Features of Rameswaram
Rameswaram is an island at the extreme end of the Indian isthmus and is nestled in the Gulf of Mannar. As stated by mythological stories, this is the area where a bridge was constructed by Lord Rama, which is called Adam's Bridge (Ram Setu) over the sea to Sri Lanka to salvage his wife Sita from Ravana who kidnapped her. Both the followers of Shiva and Vishnu come to this religious hub. Because of the religious importance of the place, it is named as the Varanasi of the South. The town covers a total area of 61.8 Km or 34 sq miles.
What makes Rameswaram famous?
The town is the birthplace of Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, former Indian President. He grew up in a tiny fishing village known as Dhanushkodi lying on this island.
The seashores of Rameswaram are known for their picturesque features. The stunning sea is tranquil and almost free of any waves. The sea waves go up to a maximum altitude of 3 cm and the sight appears similar to an extensive river. According to Hindu mythology, Lord Rama of the famous Hindu epic Ramayana offered his prayers to Lord Varuna, the sea god, to build the route to Lanka. Lord Varuna blessed him, offering an approval, stating that he will diminish the intensity of the sea waves in order to help him construct a stone bridge.
Climate of Rameswaram
The town features an arid weather with a considerable extent of humidity. The mean yearly precipitation of the town is 94 cm. The major volume of precipitation results from the Northeast torrential rain which takes place from the month of October to January. The temperature of the area measures between 30°C and 35°C. The maximum temperature registered was 37°C at Pamban station and the minimum temperature ever recorded was 17°C.
Demographic Features of Rameswaram
According to the census performed in 2001, the number of people living in Rameswaram was 38,035. Males represent 52% of the people residing in the town and females 48%. The mean literacy rate of the place is 72%. The mean literacy rate among men in the town is 77% and the same among women is 66%. About 13% of the people living in the town are below the age of six years. People use various languages like English, Tamil, Hindi and other North Indian languages.
Major Tourist Attractions in Rameswaram
The major tourist attractions in and around Rameswaram are as follows:
Religious places and shrines
The Ramanathaswamy Temple is a renowned place of worship for Hindus, which is devoted to Lord Shiva. It lies on the island of Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu, India. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is famous for featuring the most extensive corridor in the world. From east to west, the length of the corridor is 197 meters and from south to north, the breadth of the corridor is 133 meters.
The puja procedure at the principal temple can be categorized into the following:
Danushkodi or Dhanushkodi is the southernmost point of Rameswaram. It lies close to the eastern seashores of Tamil Nadu and is a tiny village. The length of this strip of land is 18 km and it has a width of about one km.
According to Hindu mythology, Lord Rama destroyed the bridge or sethu with one end of his bow when Vibeeshana, the brother of Ravana and his friend, urged him to do so. As a result, the name Dhanushkodi originated. Dhanush stands for bow and Kodi implies end. There is a saying that Lord Rama commemorated this area with one end of his legendary bow.
Popular Festivals in Rameswaram
Rama's reverence is celebrated from June 15 to July 15 in the month of Aani. In addition, two Bhrammotsavams are observed every year in Maasi and in Aadi. Vasanthotsavam, Navarathri Festival or Dussehra, Aarudhira Dharshna, Kantha Sashti, and Mahasivarathri are some other festivals.
Educational Institutions in Rameswaram
The town is home to the following schools and educational institutes:
There is a government hospital in the town and the Temple Trust Ayurvedic Dispensary also distributes medicines among travelers and poor people without any cost.
Places to stay in Rameswaram
Given below are the places where you can stay while touring this popular religious hub:
Food is excellent in Rameswaram.A number of "Marwadi Bojanalays"- i.e. semi-sponsored resturants for charity are available near the west entrance of temple where you can have good food at reasonable price. Except these semi-sponsored resturants, one good place is the Ram Nivas Mess. They specialise in Indian Chinese food and all the food we had there was amazing. They are a little slow but the food is definitely worth the wait. To get there you need to take a right at the temple when coming from the Bus Stand and walk about 50 metres. Gujarat Bhavan offers excellent homely meals as well. However, be prepared for a long wait time. When you exit the temple from the East gate and walk straight, around 200 metres towards the sea-shore you will find this place on the right hand side.
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