Visit to Rameswaram – Part 1 of 3

Visit to Rameswaram – Part 1 of 3
(Devipatnam Nava Bhashanam, Uthrakosamangai and Sethukarai)

During the last week of May 2011, around 40 of our relatives had been to Rameswaram to conduct the Thila Tharpana homam from my in-laws’ side. Thila tharpana homam is mainly to let free the wandering souls in harmony that encountered unnatural deaths like accidents, suicides etc., It was a 2 day feat at Rameswaram at the cost of around Rs.70,000. We all assembled at Trichy by 6 AM, engaged a bus and visited Kumara Vayalur Murugan temple, Uyyakondan Thirumalai Shiva temple (both at the outskirts of Trichy), Thirumayam Perumal and Shiva rock cut temples (between Pudukkottai and Karaikudi), Pillayarpatti Karpaga Vinayagar temple (near Karaikkudi), took lunch at Devakkottai, visted Devipatnam Nava bashanamThiruppulani Vishnu temple (both near Ramnad) and reached Rameswaram by about 8 PM. The next day was the homam, visit to the temple and holy bath at the 22 theerthams. Some of us not directly involved with the homam returned that day while others stayed back to complete the poojas at Dhanushkodi and retuned the next day. It was a very hectic 2 day trip during the crowded summer season and we couldn’t visit Dhanushkodi and many of the other temples in and around Rameswaram. Since then I wanted to have another calm and peaceful visit to Rameswaram.

Then came my star birthday recently and just about 4-5 days prior we decided to do an ‘’Ekadasa Rudhra parayanam’’ at Rameswaram. Luckily, train tickets were available in RAC and immediately booked and arranged for the pooja. Since the children were engaged with the studies and office, only me and my wife took up the trip. We landed at Rameswaram by train at 4:15 AM, 30 minutes earlier than schedule. The pooja was scheduled at 3 PM in the evening since my birth star was coming only after 10 AM and so we engaged a car and started by about 6:30 AM to have a trip around Ramnad.

Pamban bridge

Rameswaram is an island and is connected to the main land only by the Pamban rail and road bridges. The far end of Rameswaram island is Dhanushkodi. So, to go out of Rameswaram, one has to pass through the Pamban bridge. It was India’s longest sea bridge for 96 years till 2008. The train bridge opens up in the middle when ships pass underneath. Interestingly, just a few hours before we started off for Rameswaram, we saw a news clip saying that the Pamban bridge was not repaired for the past 50 years and is in danger of collapse. They showed the cracks in the bridge!

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Night view from the train

Road bridge from the train Road bridge from the train (2)

Devipatnam Nava bashanam

First, we went to Devipatnam Nava bashanam, around 80 kms fom Rameswarma and 15 kms from Ramnad (you can directly go to Devippattnam from Rameswaram without touching Ramnad). The road was good and it took us a little more than an hour. It is a place where there are 9 Navagraha stones in the sea at about 100 meters from the shore and it is considered that Sri Ramar conducted Navagraha poojas here. In the evenings the sea water level is high and so most of the Navagrahas are below the water whereas in the mornings the sea water level is low and most of them are above the water level. Just opposite the Nava bashanam there is a Perumal temple and we met Sri Jagannatha Iyengar, an elderly person who conducted the sankalpam at the temple and also sent a person to accompany us to the Nava bashanam. There, the poojas were conducted for all the Navagrahas. Two of the Navagrahas were beneath the water level at that time. Altogether it took us about an hour there.

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Sadly the place is one of the ugliest, as is the case with many Navagraha parihara sthalams and the sea water is black in colour with the dirty remains of cloths and articles people leave as a pariharam. I myself was in doubt whether I washed off my sin there or collected from the remains of what people left out there!  – Sorry, I am unable to stop thinking that way – it was so dirty!

Links: Location

Uthrakosamangai Shiva Temple

We then had our breakfast at Ramnad (14 kms from Devipattnam) and proceeded to Uthrakosamangai Shiva temple (17 kms from Ramnad). It was a very grand temple and took us more than an hour. The specialties of the temple being a Maragatha Natarajar in Sandal cover throughout the year, 3000 years old Sthala vruksham, Siddhar Kagabujander’s jeeva Samadhi under the Sthala vruksham and Manickavasagar’s close association. It requires a separate blog article and will do it soon.

Links: Location

Then we came to Thiruppulani, a Divya desam, around 10 kms from Uthrakosamangai. The road was being laid and so we had a very slow and bumpy journey. We had already visited this temple during our earlier visit and so proceeded to Sethukkarai, about 4 kms from there.


Sethu Karai or Aadhi Sethu is a pilgrim center and the primary sacred bathing spot in which Sri Ramar is said to have bathed and started the Floating Stone Bridge “Rama sethu” that further continued to Dhanushkodi in Rameswaram till Talaimannar in Sri Lanka. Nowadays, Kanyakumari is the southern tip of India but our earliest scriptures define Sethu as the Southern tip of Bharath from the saying “Aasethu Himachalam”. Again the Upanishads describes Sethu as Amrutha saisya Sethu: and the Vishnu sagasranamam calls it as Ousstham jaghatha: Sethu:, . There is a small single shrine Anjaneyar temple and the sea shore was deserted when we went there.

Links: Location

The Hanumar temple Praharam Left side Right side Straight view from the temple

Then we came back to Thiruppulani by about 12:30 but by that time all the shrines were closed though the temple was kept open. Had we visited Thiruppulani first and then Sethukkarai, possibly we could have covered both. We then returned back to Rameswaram and got ready for the poojas. The trip costed us Rs.2000 in a Tata Indica.

…continues in Part 2


  1. Rameswaram is also one of the major holy centers for Hindu believers. If you are a Hindu and you ever visit Rameswaram, there are few homams and rituals you should do. Otherwise, your trip to Rameswaram is incomplete One of the homam you should do is thila homam. Offering thila homam in Rameswaram has several benefits. It can remove pitru dosha from your horoscope and alleviate all your problems associated with it. Moreover, it will also give salvation for the souls of dead ancestors in your family.

    • Sir, I don”t know much about the lodging facilities there. Mr.Raghavan Sasthrigal booked a lodge for us very near the temple. Pls contact him informing about your requirements.

      • The phone no of Raghavan Sasthrigal is 97879 07782. It is given in a Note towards the end of Rameswararam Travelogue Part 3. There I’ve also given information on the home food facility available at Rameswaram.

  2. I second the opinion of Ms. Anuradha. It was much better with a clear water. Now what we see is a polluted one with the wall and tiles around. A jyothir linga sthala is maintained so poorly. People there show you all sorts of things and associate it with Rama or Hanuman.

    PS: A suggestion dear Mr. Raju, please increase the font size or accompany a theme which supports bigger font size. It will make reading a pleasure.

    • Hi,
      To increase the font size, click ctrl and plus button in your keyboard, the size of the fonts will become bigger

  3. devipattinam was much better till a few years back… when i first visited 10 years ago, there was no bridge or wall built around… we had to wade through the water to reach the navapashanam but it was worth it, because it was much cleaner then, since most of the fllth would be washed away by the water… last time we visited, they had done all this extra building work and completely spoilt the place! we didnt even step into the water this time, it was so dirty. it is a pity that we tend to mess up all our spiritual places in the name of prayer… and have completely ridiculuous notions of ‘beautifying’ a place!

    • Hi,
      Previously if people had to do pradakshana of the nava grahas, it was very difficult, because they had to do so by going into the sea,
      A noble muslim lady(counsillor i think not sure), she did build the construction for the welfare of the devotees who want to circumblate without going into the sea,
      Unfortunately, this particular point was missed, and since there was no way the sea water could go out, the entire area ended up dirty.

      without getting wet now people are able to go and worship the navagrahas even at night, just imagine. which was not possible a decade before.

  4. Devipatnam, every Hindu should visit place atleast one time during his lifetime. The navagraha and marriage doshas are automatically vanished. If any person has no dosha or no need, they may also visit and will definitely get a god’s blessings

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