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Kerala Backwater

Rameswaram, Tamil Nadu

The holy town of Rameshwaram (also spelt Rameswaram) has a close connection with the pilgrimage city of Kashi (Varanasi) in northern India. According to the Hindu belief, a pilgrimage to Kashi is never deemed to be complete without making a sacred journey to Rameshwaram in Tamil Nadu. It is the gigantic temple of Sri Ramanatha that makes Rameshwaram one of the holiest cities in southern India. Steeped in mythology, the city of Rameshwaram has in many ways its associations with the stories and legends of the Hindu epic Ramayana. According to the Hindu mythology, Rama (the hero of Hindu epic Ramayana) worshipped Lord Shiva here after killing the demon king Ravana. Actually, Rameshwaram is an island city linked with the mainland at Mandapam.

Things to Do in Rameshwaram
While in Rameshwaram, you can get to Dhanushkodi, both a popular beach spot as well as a religious destination. Even if you are with your family and friends, you can look forward to enjoy some quality leisure hours on the beach.

Watch pilgrims in the act of ablution as they take a ritual bath in the temple lake at Agniteertham. A dip in the large lake at the temple is thought to rid people of all their past sins. The place also features 22 wells, each one of which has water of a different taste.

Shopping in Rameshwaram is a delight for all, so do not miss the opportunity. Whether you are looking for exquisite items of art and craft or other decorative items, Rameshwaram offers it all. There are a number of handicrafts shops around the Ramanathaswamy Temple.

Apart from handicrafts and decorative items, Rameshwaram is also quite popular for its silk sarees. So, ladies can have a great time buying some beautifully crafted silk sarees, known for their soft feel and texture.

In and Around
The biggest crowd-puller in Rameshwaram is the Ramanathaswamy Temple. Constructed on the lines of Dravidian architecture, the temple features elegant corridors and wonderfully carved and sculpted pillars. The history of the temple dates back to the 12th century AD. Non-Hindus are not allowed to gain access into the inner sanctum of the temple. At a distance of 12 km from the city is located the Kothandaraswamy Temple. Adamís Bridge, linking Srilanka with India, is another major attraction at Rameshwaram. The Gandhamadana Parvatam is the place where the footprints of Lord Rama are preserved.

Where to Stay
If you are on an economic budget, you can plan to stay at hotels like Hotel Maharaja, Hotel Venkatesh, Sriram Hotel Island Star and Hotel Tamil Nadu. Hotel Royal Park is a famous luxury hotel in Rameshwaram.

Rameshwaram Air/Rail/Road Link
If you want to undertake an air journey, you can first fly to the Madurai airport, at 154 km from Rameshwaram. Next, you can take the rail route or the state transport bus services to reach the island. Both by rail and road routes, Rameshwaram is quite well linked to the major destinations in and outside the state of Tamil Nadu.