Rameshwaram also known
as the Benaras (Kashi) of South India is located on Pamban Island separated
from mainland India by the Pamban channel and is about 50 kilometres
from Mannar Island of Sri Lanka. Pamban Island, also known as
Rameswaram Island, is connected to mainland India by the Pamban
Bridge. Rameswaram is the terminus of the railway line from Chennai
and Madurai. Together with Kashi, it is considered to be one of the
holiest places in India to Hindus, and part of the Char Dham
According to legend, this is the place from where Lord Rama built a
bridge Ram Setu (also known as Adam's Bridge) across the sea to
Lanka to rescue his consort Sita from her abductor Ravana.
The presiding deity here is in the form of a Linga with the name Sri
Ramanatha Swamy, it also happens to be one of the twelve
The Ramanatha Swamy Temple occupies major area of Rameshwaram. The
masterpiece of Dravidian architecture boasts of the largest temple
corridor in India.
11th President of
India, Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, hails from a fishing hamlet called
Dhanushkodi situated on this island.
How to Reach Rameshwaram?
Madurai is the nearest airport to Rameshwaram, which is located at a
distance of 163 km away from Rameshwaram. Madurai is connected to
many cities by air including Coimbatore, Chennai and Bangalore.
Airport - 148 km
Airport - 424 km
International Airport - 471
Rameshwaram (Mandapan station just 2 km away) is well connected by
rail with many south Indian cities including Chennai, Coimbatore,
Madurai, Thanjavur and Trichy.
Overnight deluxe super fast buses connect Chennai and Bangalore with
Rameshwarm, both cities are nearly 600 km away.The 2 km long Indira
Gandhi Bridge connects the island of Rameshwaram with the mainland
Chennai - 566 km
Bangalore - 578 km
Kanyakumari - 320 km
Karaikudi - 145 km
Chettinad - 156 km
Madurai - 170 km
Trichy - 237 km
Thanjavur - 244 km
Before Rameshwaram Temple Darshan
Firstly you should go to the seashore which is just located
of the temple, have to dip in the sea water and proceed to
the temple with the wet clothes. Thereafter you have to visit all the 22 theerthams that are located around the temple. Theerthams are shallow
waters of the sea extending upto some metres. There are 22 such theerthams in Rameshwaram. Hindus believe that a bath in all of
these theerthams will remove all the sins.
Once you have completed showering in sea and all the 22 theerthams,
you can go back to your hotel room and change your dress and
enter into the temple and pray to Lord shiva in the temple who is
the presiding diety.
Must See in
Temple - Temple is close to the sea on the eastern side of the
island renowned for magnificent corridors with massive sculptured
pillars lining it. The corridor is the longest in India. It is 197
metres long East-West, 133 metres in length South-North. The temple
has a tower ( Gopuram ) 38.4 metres high. The temple as it stands
today was built by different rulers at different periods from the
12th centuary AD onwards. The temple in 264 metres in length and 200
metres in breadth.
Agnitheertham - The temple is facing the east and the sea is
just 100 metres away from the main entrance to the Temple. The water
at this place is considered sacred and is known as 'Agnitheertham'.
The pilgrims bathe in this place before entering the Temple.
Dhanushkodi - The southernmost tip of the island Dhanushkodi
- was completely washed away by the 1964 cyclone. But the
Kothandaraswamy Temple here remains intact. It can be reached by
road from Rameswaram. it is beleived that Vibishana, brother of
Ravana of the Ramayanam, surrendered before Lord Rama at this spot.
The idols of Sri Rama, Sita, Lakshmana, Hanuman and Vibishana are
Satchi Hanuman Temple - This is where Hanuman said to have
delivered the good news of sita's well being to Rama with an
evidence choodamanai(Jewel) of Sita.
Sethu Karai -
This is a place 22 km from Rameshwaram where Lord Ram built a
floating stone bridge – the “Ramasethu”.
Temple - A kilometer away from the main sanctum sanctorum is the
Badrakali Amman Temple with Devi Durga as its chief deity.
Coral Reef - The waters around the island abound not only in
fish but also in coral reef for those who seek sun, sand and sea
Kurusadai Island - The Island lies to the west of the Pamban
bridge between the mainland and the island. It is a Marine
Biosphere, a paradise for the Marine Biologists and nature lovers.
There are a number of islands in the area around Kurusadai island.
It is about 20kms from Rameswaram via Mandapam. This island is under
the control of Tamil Nadu Fisheries Department and one needs special
permission to visit this island.
Annai Indira Gandhi
Bridge - The 2.2 km. length bridge connecting the Rameswaram
Island and the mainland is the longest bridge in India constructed
over a bay. It is also called as Pamban Bridge. The railway bridge
connecting the island is noted for its unique opening to pass the
ships through the sea.
Sea World Aquarium - The Acquarium lies opposite the
Rameswaram Bus Stand, with an assortment of underwater creatures in
their near natural habitat - the only one of its kind in the state,
and probably in the country too, filled with such varied marine life
Devi Pattinam -
A coastal village is also known as Navashabashanam. It is believed
that Lord Rama worshipped Navagraha here. The temple near by here,
is dedicated to Devi, who is said to have killed the demon
Mahishasura at this spot. Hindus perform religious rites for their
Uthirakosamangai - 72 KMs from Rameswaram is Uthirakosamangai.
There is an ancient Siva temple, where the presiding deity is carved
in Emerald. Annual 'Arudhra' festival in December attracts a large
number of devotees.