Driving down on Kashmir to Kanyakumari highway was always on my list since I heard the song – “Kashmir tu main Kanyakumari ” North-South Ki Kat Gayi Dekho Doori Hi Saari”
This January finally we planned to hit the NH 44, the North-South Corridor of NHDP which is the longest national highway in India, to reach Kanya kumari.
Kanya kumari due to its geographical locations is a major tourist attraction along with its spiritual and meditation value
Kanya-kumari, which in Hindi means a young unmarried girl, is fresh and mesmerizing as its name. It was a drive from West Tamilnadu which took us approx 10 hours to reach this southernmost tip of India where the Bay of Bengal, The Indian Ocean, and the Arabian Sea meet. We love to drive and always start early morning to avoid traffic chaos.
So the planner was opened for 2 days and this is all one can see in two days visit to Kanyakumari-
The Swami Vivekananda Rock Memorial
Day -1 Evening we planned to hit the major tourist attraction of The Swami Vivekananda Rock. The memorial was built in 1970 in the honor of Swami Vivekananda. Although we had booked a hotel exactly near the Rock point so we had a nice view already from the hotel balcony, still physical feel was a must so we took a ferry ride to travel to the rock memorial which was a fun ride.
After reaching the Swami Vivekananda Rock didn’t feel like coming back, the atmosphere there was magical that surely holds back. The meditation hall is also known as Dhyana Mandapam is a bliss feel, I just didn’t feel like coming out of it. There is ample space outside also to sit, relax or meditate. We along with kids sat there in silence to meditate and it was refreshing.
The rock is considered as blessed and touched by Devi Kanyakumari blessings and one can feel the positive vibes there. The rock, the surroundings were filled with warmth and silence. It is said that Swami Vivekananda meditated on this rock before he left for Chicago address and attained enlightenment. The architecture of rock is modern yet conventional. Profile of Swami Vivekananda is inscribed on rock
The Thiruvalluvar statue was an added attraction. I was not much aware of this and Google helped me there and then to know that the tall stone sculpture which is 133 feet tall is of Tamil poet and philosopher Tiruvalluvar, author of the Thirukkural.
Sunset and Sunrise
Had heard a lot about sunset in Kanyakumari so how can one miss it, so we stayed there for approx one hour plus till sunset. That evening I was praying for an early sunset but as they say, everything happens on its own time.
Infinite Kanyakumari sea is a delight during Sunrise and sunset. It’s Breathtaking which is beyond words. I never wanted the sun to set and it stays fresh in eyes and mind for long.
Day -2 For sunrise my kids too got up at 0530 so we must not miss the view and it was worth every wait. This picture we took from Hotel terrace and it was like all hotel terraces had turned into view point at that time.
Plenty of hotels and accommodation just near the beach so make sure you book near by so all places are within walking distance.
Other places to visit near rock memorial once you are back from rock point are-
The temple is dedicated to Goddess Kanyakumari which is known as the virgin/ kuwari/ unmarried form/ incarnation of Goddess Parvati. It dates back to the historical tale where Lord Shiva was unable to marry Devi and she remained virgin and unmarried throughout. Men’s upper clothes are not allowed inside the temple. Shedding your inhibitions may be.
Kanyakumari beach called Triveni Sangam
My hubby is from Allahabad which is also called Triveni Sangam of three rivers called Ganga, Yamuna, Saraswati and this Triveni Sangam obviously had emotional and curious value for him. Triveni Sangam of Kanyakumari is where the Bay of Bengal, The Indian Ocean, and the Arabian Sea meet.
It is not exactly a beach as one would expect for sunbathing or water sports or playing or relaxation. It has a rocky shoreline and the sea is usually rough. The rocks are very slippery and one needs to take extra care while playing around.
A lot of hawkers will be behind you to buy stuff so just be careful. Do get a click from local photographer apart from your photography love. There are ample shops and stalls for food and other shopping near the beach.
It is the constructed near the Amman temple and is the place where the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi were kept for darshan before immersing in the sea. It was completed in 1956 and is said to have architecture thus that on October 2nd the sunrays fall exactly at the place where the urn was kept. Although we had gone in January so could’nt witness the architectural beauty. The area is very huge and the view from the top of the memorial is good, but nothing much inside other than framed photographs.
Another little-hidden spot in the same proximity is Vivekananda Temple.
The guruji is associated with Vivekananda Ashram and gave us a very detailed information about Swamiji. It was a peaceful place, a little hidden and very few people were sen around.
Near temple, we also visited the Government handicraft store and it was a good place to buy handicrfats items of bamboo, cane, and wood. Handmade soaps, coconut decorative pieces etc were good in quality.
We are vegetarian so Hotel Sarvana Bhawan was our best food outlet, they served hot piping sambar with dosa, vada, idli, rice. Clean and peaceful ambiance. to top it up we also enjoyed filter coffee and ice cream.
Day-3 we started again early morning for Madurai…. all in all, a great experience. The best time to travel is from November to March as this is the best time where Sunrise and Sunset both are visible with a spectacular view. Avoid the rainy season between June and August as beaches might not be accessible.
It may be known as Land’s End but for me, it was a beginning of knowing the more spiritual and more natural Tatwas of life. I carried along The book series – The complete works of Swami Vivekananda, a guide to religion and spirituality. Swami Vivekananda was an influential figure, a rational and liberal Hindu saint and this book and place is complete knowledge of inner self. I’m deeply touched by the lectures and teachings, the truth and the information he has shared. Would recommend a read to understand the what and why. Maybe this is the influence of Kanyakumari and specially Vivekananda rock I’m carrying along with me for future and I today thank that I’m born in this Beautiful magnificent country like India.
It’s a saying for Kanyakumari that one comes here to attain enlightenment and turn towards a new world.
This is my Sky post on travel ßeries.