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KANYAKUMARI (Cape Comorin)

Kanyakumari is the ‘Land’s End’ of India. Here, the Bay of Bengal meets the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea and, at Chaitrapurnima (the Tamil name for all full moon day that generally falls in April), it is possible to enjoy the unique experience of seeing the sunset and the moon rise over the ocean simultaneously.

 Kanyakumari is also a popular pilgrimage destination and of
great spiritual significance to Hindus. It is dedicated to the goddess Devi Kanya, the Youthful Virgin, who is an incarnation of Devi, Siva’s wife. The pilgrims who come here from all over the country represent a good cross section of India.
Otherwise, Kanyakumari is highly over- rated, with its trinket stalls, a lousy beach and one of those places with megaphones at the end of each street which, during festival times, rip your eardrums apart between 4 am and 10 pm,

Picturesquely situated overlooking the shore, this temple and the nearby ghat attract pilgrims from all over India to worship and the bathe. According to legend, Devi did penance here to secure Siva’s hand in marriage. When she was unsuccessful, she vowed to remain a virgin (kanya). The temple is open daily from 4:30 to 11:45 am and from 5:30 to 8:45 pm, but non-Hindus are not allowed into the inner sanctum. Men must remove their shirts, and everyone their shoes, on entering this temple.

Next to the Kumari Amman Temple, this striking memorial stored the Mahatma’s ashes until they were immersed in the sea. It resembles an Orissan temple and was designed so that on Gandhi’s birthday (2 October), the sun’s rays fall on the place where his ashes were kept. It’s open daily from 8:30 am to 12:30 pm and 3 to 6 pm.

This memorial is on two rocky islands projecting from the sea about 400 metres offshore. The Indian philosopher Swami Vivekananda came here in 1892 and sat on the rock, meditating, before setting out as one of India’s most important religious crusaders. The mandapam which stands here in his memory was built in 1970 and reflects architectural styles from all over India.


This temple, about 13 km north –west of Kanyakumari at Suchindram, is noted for its ‘musical’ columns and its incredibly tall statue of Hanuman, the monkey god.


HOTEL SINGAAR INTERNATIONAL, (Government Approved) 3 Star

Mundanthurai is in the mountains near the border with Kerala. The closest railway station is at Ambasamudram, about 25km to the north-east, and buses run from here to Papanasam, the nearest village, from where you can catch another bus to the Forest Department Rest House.
As the name implies, this is principally a tiger sanctuary though it’s also noted for chital, sambar and the rare lion-tailed macaque. The best time to visit is between January and March, though it is open any time of the year. The main rainy season is between October and December. Tiger sightings are apparently extremely infrequent. 

KUTTRALAM (Courtallam)  
About 135km north-west of Kanyakumari at the base of the Western Ghats, the village of Kuttaralam is a popular ‘health retreat’ fro Indian families who come to stand and wash under waterfalls believed to be rich in minerals and capable of curing almost anything.
Of the nine waterfalls, the only one in the village itself is the 60-metre-high Main Falls, a five-minute walk from the bus stand. Its sheer rock face is carved with old Hindu insignia that is visible only during the dry months of January and February. Other falls, mostly accessed by shuttle buses, include the picturesque Five Falls (five km from town and the Old Falls, eight km away.
The nearest major town is Tenkasi, five km to the north, which is connected to Kuttralam by frequent minibuses.

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