Thursday, July 30, 2015

Tourist Spots in Virudhunagar District

Virudhunagar District close to Tirunalveli and Tuticorin of Tamil Nadu State has well known Taluks like Virudhunagar,Sivakasi,Rajapalayam etc.The district is famous for Fire Cracker,Printing,Matches,Hand loom and Power loom industries.
70% of Fire Crackers and safety matches made in India are from Sivakasi of this district.Sivakasi is also well known for its Printing industry.There are large number of Offset printing units in this place.30% of the Diaries made in India are from Sivakasi.
A great leader and Former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Kamarajar was from this district.Two Saint poets out of the 12 Azhvar poets, 'Periya Azhvar' and 'Aandal' were from this district.They were from the place Sri Villiputhur.
Church at Sri Villuputhur
Ayyanarkoil Forest area located 10 km from Rajapalayam has many streams, waterfalls,springs etc.Hiking in the forest area is fun.Rajapalayam water reservoir which supplies water to the city is an attraction that  functions naturally without using pumps.
Sanjeevi Hills which is a small hill in Rajapalayam is an attraction and there is a Muruga temple on top of this hill.During Rama- Ravan war Hanuman Swamy brought a whole  mountain from the Himalayas since he could not identify a medicinal herb on it to save the life of Rama's brother Lakshman, and this hill is a broken part of it is the belief.




Aruppukottai is a place famous for both handloom and powerloom weaving industries.
Bhuminathar Swamy temple, Tiruchali, is an important temple for the Shaiva sector.It is located 40 km from Virudhunagar and 45 km from Madurai.
Sri Villiputhur Aandal Temple
It is belonged to the 108 abodes of Lord Vishnu which are known as 'Divya Desam'. It is located in Sri Villiputhur which is 74 km from Madurai.The image of this temple tower is used in the Official Seal of Tamil Nadu Government.
The temple tower is 192 feet high and 12 tiered.The temple was constructed by Periyazhvar.The temple car which is used in the festival 'Aadi Pooram' is also a big attraction.
The idol of Lord Vishnu is in reclining posture and is shown as reclining on a 'Vatapatra' (Banyan tree leaf) and known as 'Vatapatra Sayee'.His consorts Bhoodevi and Sridevi are shown as attending him at his feet.The sanctum sanctorum has three doors through which the deity can be witnessed.
There is a large hall in the temple with numerous wooden carvings depicting scenes from the 'Puranas'.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Thiruchendur Senthil Aandavar Temple

Thiruchendur Muruga Temple which is situated at Tuticorin (Thoothukudy) is a majestic and beautiful temple and  is one of the main six abodes of Lord Murugan who is 'Subramanya Swamy'.His abodes are known as 'Padai Veedu' and out of the 'Six padai  veedu'(Aaru Padaiveedu) according to the importance this is the second one.Here the deity Subramanya Swamy is called as 'Senthil Aandavar' , 'Shanmugar' or 'Aru mugha Nayinar'.
The idol is in standing posture and is  depicted with his consorts Valli and Devayani.
This is the only Murugan temple situated on Sea Shore and the others are either on hill tops or in forest land.More over the other unique feature of this temple is that the tall, beautiful and majestic tower which is the 'Raja Gopuram' of this temple is situated on the western side where as usually it would be on the eastern side.
The deity of this temple is depicted as the victorious 'Muruga Swamy' after defeating the demon 'Soora Padma'.Demons like Simhamukha and Tarakasura under the leadership of Soora Padma conquered the abodes of celestial beings 'Devas' and  also  the Earth and were performing all kinds of evils against 'Devas' and humans.Lord Subramanya fought with the mighty demon Soora Padma and the war extended for six days.Lord Muruga ultimately vanquished the 'Asura'(Demon) on a 'Skanta Shashti Day'.Subramanya Swamy cut his body into two parts and one part became a peacock which he made as his 'Vahana'(Celestial Vehicle) while the other part which became a 'Cock' was transformed on his flag.
On all the 'Shashti Days' there will be tremendous gathering of devotees in this temple as like in  all the Muruga temples all over the world on those  days.
In this temple which is close to the sea there is a sacred well which attracts devotees and tourists alike because it gives 'fresh water'.The well is known as 'Nazhi kinaru'.
Brahmolsavam,Vasantholsavam,Vaikasi Visakham' etc are celebrated in a grand manner.
Tourists and devotees worship also at 'Valli Cave' which is situated 60 metres 
from the temple. It is a rock cut cave  and contains images of Valli and Dattatreya.The cave has also paintings which describes stories of Lord Muruga.

Link for Further reading about this temple:-Thiruchedur Muruga temple




Sunday, July 12, 2015

Thoothukudi

Thoothukudi which is also known as Tuticorin is a district of Tamil Nadu State, and the district headquarters is 'Thoothukudi town'.
There is a sea port and Airport in this place.It is well connected by buses and train to all parts of Tamil Nadu and other major places in India.
Thoothukudi produces India's 30% of salt and is the second producer of salt next to Gujarat.There are several safety matches manufacturing units in this place. There are  also ready clothes manufacturing units in Thoothukudi district. The place name 'Thoothukudi' means 'Dig and Drink' since there are no rivers in this district and well water was  largely used previously.
Hare Island
Hare Island lies adjoining the Tuticorin Port and is the largest island in the Gulf of Mannar which is a picnic spot for domestic tourists.
Holy Cross Church, Manapad




Church of the Holy Cross was built in A.D 1581 at Manapad which contain the true fragments of the Holy Cross.It is at Manapad that St.Francis Xavier landed in India for the first time.The relics of the holy cross was brought here in AD 1583 from Jerusalem.
Parks and Beaches
Tuticorin has several beautiful beaches like Harbor Beach,Manapad Beach etc and Parks like Harbor Park,Roche Park,Rajaji Park etc.
Kalugumalai
There are three rock cut shrines in this hill.Kalugu malai means hill of the vultures.This small town in Vettuvan Koil is a UNESCO world heritage site located in Kalugumalai which is 25 km from Kovilpatti of Thoothukudi district.
At the foot of the Kalugumalai large Urn-burial ground was found.
The Jaina Temple
The Jaina temple which dates back to the 8th century at Kalugumalai has large number of sculptures and paintings.There are images such as 'Bhagawan Parshwanatha'.
Vettuvan Kovil

The temple is made from a single piece of rock.Only the top portion of the temple is completed but it has entrance and a hall in which Ganapathi idol is worshiped at present.On the top part there are sculptures of Lord Shiva,Lord Vishnu,Lord Brahma,Lord Dakshinamurthy etc.
Murugan temple
Muugan temple, known as Kalugusalamoorthy temple at the foot hill of the Kalugumalai is made by excavating the lower part of the hill  and the external addition works are done.The main deity is Lord Muruga with his consort Devayani.There are also deities of Lord Shiva,Akhilandeswari,Vinayaka etc.
The hill top of the Kalugumalai offers spectacular view of the surrounding area.
Ettayapuram Palace



Opposite the Muruga temple is a small palace where Raja of Ettaivapuram lived.Here is where Tamil poet Subramanya Bharathiyar was born.
Panchala Kurichi
It is the birth place of 'Veera Pandya Katta Bomman' who was agreat freedom fighter.Kattabomman fort is built here in 1947.
Sri Ayirathu Enn Vinayaka Temple
This temple which is dedicated Lord Ganapathi is very famous as in this temple Aadi Shankaracharya recited his hymn 'Ganesha Pancharatna' before proceeding to Thiruchendur temple where he worshiped him with 'Subramnya Bhujangam'.
Our Lady of Snows Basilica
It is a famous Catholic Pilgrimage center dedicated to St. Mary.It was built in the 16th century and Lur Lady of snows(St.Mary) is considered as 'Yelu Kadalthurai yega Adikala Thai' which means Mother of refuge for the seven coastal villages'.The Church has the beautiful statue of 'Our Lady of Snows'.
St.Michael Church, Mudalur
Is one of the oldest churches of Thoothukudi district.The church tower is 193 feet high.
Megnanapuram Church
It is one of the famous churches and the tower is 196 feet high.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Tourist Spots of Tirunelveli District

Kanthimathi- Nellaiappar Temple


Arulmigu Nellaiappar temple which is an  ancient  architectural delight is  a twin temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and Parvathi Devi.Visitors are amazed by the golden lily tank,musical pillars,the hall of thousand pillars,rare jewels and abundant beautiful stone sculptures.The temple is located 2 km from the city.

Courtallam

Courtallam is well known as the 'Spa' of Southern India where several beautiful waterfalls and cascades exist which attracts tourists in large numbers.There are several health resorts in this place.
There are several falls,  mainly Main Falls,Five falls,Tiger falls,Old Courtallam falls, Senbaga falls etc in this locality.

Papanasam Dam



Also known as 'Thamirabharani river dam' and the catchment area is 147 sq. km.Boating is possible here.Dam is 10 km from Ambasamudram and is an hour drive from Courtallam.

Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve


It is located 15 km from Ambasamudram.Total area is 895 sq. km.It is second largest protected reserve forest in Tamil Nadu at an elevation of 1800 m in the Western Ghats.It is home to several animal and plant species and of course including Tiger.

District Science Centre


Located on the banks of Tamirabharani river, and is a unit of the National Council of Science Museums.

Museum

Located 2 km from the city situated on the Tirunelveli-Trivandrum road at Palayamkottai.




Sankaran Kovil


Dedicated to 'Sankaranarayana'  which is a combined manifestation of Lord Shiva and Vishnu.There are also two other shrines for Lord Shiva and Parvathy here.Sun rays fall on the pedestal of the deity twice in an year.

Papanasam Falls


The waterfalls is located at a holy place known as Papanasam where Lord Shiva and Parvathy Devi appeared before Sage Agasthya.The water falls is also called as 'Agathiar Falls'.Agathyar temple is  located nearby.This place is home to 108 rare species of medicinal herbs.The place is also home to several migratory birds and as a whole a picnic spot where there are rivers,dams,waterfalls etc.

Manimuthar Dam and Manimuthar Waterfalls

Manimuthar Dam is located 47 km from Tirunelveli and is an ideal picnic spot.
Manimuthar falls is located above the dam.The falls has a pond which is having 90 feet depth.This waterfall is 35 km from Tirunelveli city.

Manjolai Hills


Located on top of the Manimuthar dam and Manimuthar waterfalls is the beautiful hills where there are existing large area of tea plantations.The view of the surrounding landscapes is amazingly beautiful.

Kazhugumalai


Famous for the Vettuvar temple (Shiva Temple) and the rock cut cave temple.

Venkitachalapathy Temple


A perennial temple and the existing structure is 900 years old and is dedicated to Lord Vishnu.

Kappal Matha Church

A beautiful church which attracts large number of devotees and tourists.The church is dedicated to Mother Mary.

Karaiyar Dam


One of the biggest dam at Pothigai in Thirunalveli.Boating facility is there.Banatheertham falls can be reached by boating in the lake.




Sri Vaikuntam


Famous for the Sri Vaikunta Nathar temple which is located 30 km from Tirunelveli city.This is one of the 'Divya Desam' temple in India.


Senkottai and Thenkasi

Senkottai is a popular recreation center and Musthafa park and Muthuswamy parks are picnic spots.
Thenkasi is a beautiful place known as 'Varanasi' of South India.'Kasi Viswanathar' temple at Thenkasi is very famous.



Thirunelveli Halwa

Tirunelveli  is also famous for the sweet variety 'Halwa'.Like the 'Kozhikkodan Halwa' of 'Kozhikodu' in Kerala, Tirunelveli has several outlets of this popular sweet item.