Religion is as important to a person as his own physical and spiritual self. Human life is just a mixture of materialism and spiritualism. Material alone cannot meet the objective of life, which is to realize the presence of the ‘Superb Creator.’ But, it has been said that no religion or science can surpass beauty. One can experience both religion and beauty by visiting Kollam, in Kerala.
The most amazing architectural view of temples could be witnessed at the Kottukal Rock Cut Cave Temple that is situated 11 km away from Chandavamanglam The scene of the holy Ramayana, with Ravana, kidnapping Sheeta could be reminded at a huge rock at Chandavamangalam, named Jatayupara where the mythical bird Jatayu has been sculptured. It is believed, Jatayu collapsed on this very rock, while trying to thwart Ravana.
The best time to visit Kollam is December when the festivals of Sree Sastha Mandala Pooja and Trikalvanam are celebrated at Ariankavu which is 70 kms away from Kollam. Rameswaram temple holds rock inscription of Pandavan influence, dating back to the 12th century. The rock sculpture of the monster Vyala will keep the visitors astounded, particularly the children. Ochira Kali festival in June and the twelve day lamp festival known as Psanthrandu Villaku showcase the mock martial dance, standing in knee-deep water.
Mavvand, 10 km away from Kollam has special attractions for those having religious fervor. The most important of the nine temples, constructed by the Hindu philosopher Sree Shankarcharya is Subramanya Temple of Umavanallor. Another festive occasion is the Vishnu Mahotsavam, celebrated in the Sastha temple at Kulathupuzha, 64 kms from Kollam.
The vast fresh water lake is surrounded by hills on three sides and there stands Sasthamkotta, 29 kms away from Kollam, enshrining the most important Hindu pilgrimage. Asthamudi Backwaters, with its 8 arms channels and 16 km length finds its way through the Neeladkara estuary and gives a spectacular view of the nature.
Eco-tourism is a word that is emphasized in tour and travel industry. Thenmala, 66 km away from Kollam is India’s first planned eco-tourism project adjudged the best by the World Tourism Organization (WTO). Surrounded by deep forest supported by plantation of rubber and tea, Thenmala has a number of special features for tourists, such as leisure, adventure and culture zone, Sway Bridge, amphitheatre and musical fountain.
Waterfalls are the real ornaments that beautify the nature. But the Palaruvi Waterfalls, 75 km away from Kollam has something additional to magnify the beauty of nature. In fact, Palaruvi means stream milk. Water falling from a height of 300 ft, sparkles with the sun beam sparkling and dazzling, gives a whitish appearance of milk. The place is most suited for picnic, trekking to the water fall and taking bath in the river. Ashramam is known as Picnic village with facilities like Boat Cub, Children’s Traffic Park and a Yatri Nivas.
The religious plethora Kollam has a special effect on the devotees who go there to find the bliss of god, and the serenity for salvation, God blesses one who submits himself to Him, in totality and without reservation.