459. Trip to Rameswaram – II

After visiting  Ramanathaswamy temple at Rameswaram, we returned to our room and had lunch. We started immediately started for Danushkodi, by auto.

The auto driver was narating many interesting news about Danushkodi, while travelling.  Access to the place is through a bumpy ride of around 45  minutes. It is about 20 miles from Rameswaram. It is situated to the South-East of Pamban and is about 18 miles (29 km) west of Talaimannar  in  Sri Lanka. The town was destroyed during the “1964 Rameswaram Cyclone” and remains uninhabited in the aftermath. It is a nice place to visit for the historic point of view and it is really awesome to have the experience of being at a place all around the Sea. On the right, we have Indian ocean and on the left,  Bay of Bengal.  We got ashtonished to see the Ramaseethu stone which floats on water and used by Lord Sri Ram.  There are no trace of  Rama sethu, a mythological bridge constructed between Rameshwaram and Lanka to bring back Goddess Seetha. The sun rays casted silver streak on the waves.  The Dhanushkodi Beach is one of the few major attractions this quaint town has to offer. The white sand beach is mostly deserted.

Next, we visited Jada Theertham.  Around 3.5km from Ramanathaswamy Temple, on the way to Dhanushkodi Village,  Jada Tirtham is known among the Hindu devotees for the sacred pond. It is believed that when Rama was about to worship Shiva Lingam in Rameshwaram after killing Ravana, he washed his Jata (matted hair) in Jada Tirtham. There is a temple next to the pond of Jada Tirtham.

Our next place of visit is also connected with Ramayana. We can remember the mountain mentioned in the Ramayana from where Hanuman was about to fetch the medicinal herbs to save Laxman. Yes! It is Gandhamadana Parvatham which was carried by Lord Hanuman on his shoulders. This utterly pious and quaint religious spot is 3 km away from the centre of the town. A double storied temple of Lord Rama houses the imprints of his feet on a chakra. It is also considered to be the highest point in Rameshwaram, so you can have a birds’ eye view of the whole island from the peak.

Then, we visited Panchamuka Anjaneya temple. Highly revered by the Hindus, the temple of Five Faced Hanuman is only 2 km from the Ramanathaswamy Temple. It is believed that Hanumana revealed his five-faced form for the first time in this place. The statue of Lord Hanuman is smeared with sindoor and worshipped with utmost devotion. The temple here enshrines the statues of Rama, Laxman and Sita. There is a floating stone in the temple which is believed to have been used during Sethu Bandhanam as mentioned in the Ramayana.

Next, we moved to visit Kothandaramaswamy temple. An approximately 500 year old temple located at the southernmost tip of this island, Kothandaramaswamy Temple is yet another pilgrimage destination in Rameshwaram. The temple is very close to the sea and appears as an ideal place to trace the footprints of Rama. The temple here has the idols of Rama, Sita and Laxman along with Vibhishan. It is believed that Rama did the last rites of Pattabhishekam of Vibhishan in this place. The temple walls are scribled with the paintings depicting the same story.

Our next place of visit was Lakshmana Theertham. A sacred pond dug near the temple of Laxmana, Lakshmana Tirtham is a divine place close to Ramanathswamy Temple. The temple of Laxmana contains several instances of Ramayana engraved on its walls.

Jatayu theertham  is a memorial sort of construction which was built in memory of the great loyal eagle of Ramayana called Jatayu who informed Rama about Ravana’s misdeeds and abduction of Sita. He sacrificed his life while fighting with Ravana to save Sita.

Then, we saw Satchi hanuman temple. According to a popular event from the Hindu Epic Ramayana , this is the place where Lord Hanuman informed Lord Rama about the whereabouts of Goddess Sita (consort of Lord Rama, who was abducted by the demon king Ravana). As an evidence of her well-being, Lord Hanuman gave God Rama the choodamani (jewellery) of Goddess Sita.

We moved to Krishna Pranami Mangal Mandir. The sculpture at entrance  is spectacular. It is actually a Charity Trust maintained by private organization and it has a Krishna Temple and an art gallery inside it specially for visitors, pilgrims and tourists. Idols of Radha and Krishna are inside this temple. The art gallery audio, video sessions inside this temple. The Tale of Krishna and Avatars of Vishnu were depicted here. There is an electric moving statues inside the Ashram. This place Have a Electronic Gallery about Lord Krishna life stories through moving Robotics.

Our final visit was to Dr. Abdul Kalam’s residence. At present, his residence has been converted into a museum that stocks his childhood memoirs.  The place is ideal to get a glimpse into the extraordinary life of this simple man, right from childhood to his research days. Several pictures and awards of Dr. Kalam are kept on display in this two-storey building, which is maintained by his elder brother.

Finally, we returned to our room to take rest. I will continue to tell about my next day trip in my next blog.

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