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RAMESWARAM

The sacred island town of Rameswaram at the extreme south-eastern limit of the Indian Peninsula, has one of India's most venerate temples. According to the Hindu epic 'Ramayana' Rama sanctified this palace by worshipping Lord shiva here, after the war against Ravana and is therefore held acred by both Shaivities also known as the Varanasi of the South.

Dhanuskodi :

8km from Rameswaram is the southern tip of the island called Dhanushkodi after Rama's bow. The boulders around are believed to be from the bridge that Rama's monkey army built to get across to the errant Ravana's Lanka. Devasted by a cyclone in 1964, all that remains here is an ancient temple and its idols of figures from the epic.

Erwadi :

(21 km) is a place of pilgrimage for muslims. It has the tomb of Ibrahim Syed Auila. An annual festival in memory of the saint is held every December.

Kurusadai Islands

The Kurusadai Islands west of the Pamban Bridge are of great interest to marine biologists as is the entire area around here. The gulf has been declared a biosphere reserve. The coral reefs are beautiful and home of lots of sea- creatures. Boat rides to the islands can be arranged from Mandapam.