Home » South India Tourist Destinations » Kanyakumari
Kanyakumari is a beautiful town in the state of Tamilnadu, India. It is located in the southernmost tip of Indian Peninsula and is also called Cape Comorin. Kanyakumari is a place blessed with natural beauty like the blue seas on one side with the lush green Western Ghats on the other, and is hence popular with tourists.
Kanyakumari is also the place where the great spiritual leader Swami Vivekananda spent his days doing meditation upon near the coast. A memorial which is built in his honor is a must-see and can be reached using the ferry service available.
The very famous Kanyakumari Temple is the reason for the name of this town. The holy union of Bay of Bengal, Indian Ocean, and the Arabian Sea is a good excuse for tourists to visit this town.
The history of this place dates back centuries when Kanya Devi, a form of the Goddess Parvathi, was to marry Lord Shiva in this blessed town. But as the lore has it, Lord Shiva did not come on the wedding day and the uncooked grains meant for the wedding feast turned into stones and can still be seen on the shores.
The plants in this area are said to have abundant medicinal qualities and is still a place sought after by Ayurvedic doctors. In ancient days, the sage Agasthya, who was an expert in herbs used as medicine, is believed to have lived here. A small town is even named after him.
Kanyakumari is not only known for its natural gifts but also known for its rich art and cultural history. Trade and commerce has flourished over the years. Extravagant temples were built here by the king of Venad Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma, during the period of 1729 to 1758. The famous Battle of Colachel took place here between Maharaja Marthanda Varma who defeated the Dutch East India Company. Kanyakumari was known as Travancore, till their reign which ended in 1947, when India got its independence. Kanyakumari was then transferred to Tamilnadu from Kerala on Nov 1, 1956.
Since Kanyakumari is in the southernmost tip of India, the land is mostly hilly and uneven. Recently many commercial buildings and motels have sprung up along the coast to the benefit of tourists.
Fishing still is a popular profession with the locals. Shell craft and other tourism related occupations also take up a fair amount of population. Beautiful natural landscapes, historic and religiously important places are strewn around the town, making it a perfect tourist destination.
There are numerous places of tourist interest in Kanyakumari town and district but Kanyakumari is especially popular in India for its spectacular and unique sunrise and sunset. The meeting of three ocean bodies - the Bay of Bengal, the Indian Ocean, and the Arabian Sea makes the sunrise and sunset even more special. On balmy full moon evenings also called as Chitra Pournami, the moon rise and sunset at the same time on either side of the horizon.
Places to See:
The Kanyakumari Temple: The Kanyakumari Temple is mentioned in the Ramayana, Mahabharata, and the Sangam works Manimekalai and Puranaanooru and hence is popular for historic reasons. In the Temple is the black stone image of Kanyakumari which bears a lovely garland. The glittering nose ring on the goddess is visible from a distance and has a legend attached to it. The image of Kanyakumari was brought here and is said to have been worshipped by Parasurama, who is attributed with reclaiming Kerala from the ocean, and is also known for building several shrines.
Sanguthurai Beach: Sanguthurai is a beautiful beach/ resort and is extremely popular with the locals of Nagercoil, the reason being that the beach is only about 10 km from the city. Until recently no proper infrastructure was available on this beach. Facilities at the beach have been sanctioned by the district administration, like putting up a children's park, seating arrangements, open huts (Kudils) with Terracotta roofs and lighting. A project has also been proposed to put up a few shops for Women Self Help Groups at the site, which can put up stalls for the benefit of the on coming tourists at the beach side.
Sunrise can be seen in Kanyakumari at Bay of Bengal all year round and is breathtakingly beautiful. Same applies for the Sunset which can be seen throughout the year from view tower, except for the months of June, July and August.
Shothavilai Beach: Located just 10 Km from Kanyakumari, this is a beautiful natural beach in the district and has shallow water with sand dunes on the back ground. A view tower, rest shelters, kudils and stalls have been put up for the benefit of tourists. The approach coastal road is a very beautiful drive along the sea-coast and hence popular with tourists.
Distance from kanyakumari
Trivandrum - 85 km
Nagarkoil - 20 km
Tirunelvelli - 90 km
Tiruchendur - 90 km
Tuticorin - 130 km
Rameshwaram - 300 km
Courtallam - 131 km
Madurai - 245 km
Thekkady - 360 km
Kodaikanal - 360 km
Palani - 372 km
Ootacamund - 575 km
Cochin - 310 km
Coimbatore - 480 km
How to get there
Nearest Airport: The Nearest Airport is Trivandrum International Airport, 90 km away from Kanyakumari Town.
Nearest Railhead: Kanyakumari is directly connected by rail with almost all metropolitan cities in India.
Road: Kanyakumari is well connected by road network.
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