southern most tip of mainland India, Kanyakumari witnesses the meeting of
three oceans - Bay of Bengal, Arabian Sea and Indian Ocean. Besides being an
important pilgrimage centre of Hindus, Kanyakumari is famous for its sunrise
and sunset. It is noteworthy that the sands of Kanyakumari beach are
multicoloured which further adds to the beauty of the place. Due to its
proximity to the sea, the weather of Kanyakumari remains very pleasant
throughout the year.
Accommodation and connectivity
This southern most tip of mainland India does not figure in the air map of
the country. The nearest airport is at Trivandrum at a distance of 80 kms.
However, Kanyakumari is connected through broad gauge directly with
Trivandrum and many other cities. Kanyakumari is well connected through a
network of roads with most towns and cities of Tamil Nadu and Kerala.
Through road, the distance between Kanyakumari and Trivandrum is 86 kms.
A number of hotels and lodges have mushroomed in Kanyakumari over the years
to capitalize on the booming tourism market. As such, all categories of
tourists can be rest assured of a comfortable stay in Kanyakumari.
The Temples of Kanyakumari
Kumari Amman or the Kanyakumari Temple is the most visited temple of the
place. Located on the shore overlooking the ocean, the temple is dedicated
to virgin goddess Kanya Devi, a manifestation of Goddess Parvati. Legend has
it that Kanya Devi was to marry Lord Shiva. But Lord Shiva did not arrive at
the auspicious time of marriage. As such, the marriage could not be
solemnized and Goddess Kanya Devi chose to remain virgin for the rest of her
life. She started to bless devotees at the place as a virgin goddess.
Another interesting aspect is that the diamond nose ring of the deity
sparkles so much that it is visible even from the sea.
Sri Padaparai is one of the two rocks reaching out of the ocean. The rocks
are to the southeast of Kumari Amman temple. It is said that the footprints
of the virgin goddess are imprinted on this rock.
Vivekananda Rock Memorial
One of the prime attractions of Kanyakumari is the Vivekananda Memorial
where the great philosopher saint of India Swami Vivekananda had meditated
for a long time. Maintained by the Vivekananda Kendra, the striking memorial
stores many of Swamiji's memories. Under the aegis of Vivekananda Kendra,
classes on yogasanas and meditation are held regularly at the place.
Memorial has been built at that very place where Gandhiji's ashes were kept
for the people to pay their last respect before immersion. The memorial has
been built in the form of a temple in such a way that on Mahatma's birthday
(October 2), the first rays of the sun kiss the place where his ashes were
Some of the places to go for excursion from Kanyakumari are the Circular
Fort of Vattakottai (6 kms), Udayagiri Fort (34 kms), Suchindram(13 kms) and
Nagaraja Temple at Nagarkoil (20 kms). In the midst of a serene ambience,
activities of a religious and spiritual nature regularly take place in
Kanyakumari. Apart from the routine activities at Vivekananda Kendra, the
festivals celebrated here in a grand manner are Chaitra Purnima, Navratri
and annual festival of the Roman Catholic Church.