Kanyakumari is a small coastal town in Tamil Nadu state of India which is near the south-western-most Indian state of Kerala’s border. Being the southernmost point of the India where the Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean, and the Bay of Bengal have their rendezvous. However, the town also has a special mystical significance and is considered as the house of the virgin Goddess Kanya Kumari. It is also believed that Goddess Kanya Kumari has done amends there to get Lord Shiva to marry her. The town is a famous pilgrim destination for the devotees who make offerings at its temple.
Here’s the list of things to do in Kanyakumari as a traveller, and why you shouldn’t miss an opportunity doing them.
1. Visit Vivekananda Rock Memorial
Revered Indian poet and philosopher Swami Vivekananda visited Kanyakumari and spent three days meditating on a large offshore rock, where Goddess Kanya Kumari is said to have carried out part of her amends by standing on one foot.
To honour Swami Vivekananda, a memorial was built on the rock in the year 1970. Also, there is a carving of the Goddess’s foot on the rock. To explore the history of this place, add it to your list of what to do in Kanyakumari.
2. Bathe At Triveni Sangam
Triveni Sangam is the significant spot where the oceans merge. It is considered to be powerful enough and revered as well. It is believed that a dip in the water will wash away all the sins and offer liberty from the cycle of rebirth.
Even if you don’t want to contribute to the ritual after visiting the place, it’s still worth spending some time at this sole place and anticipating its spirit. Also, this is the best thing to do in Kanyakumari because of the tide and weather that will help you distinguish the oceans from each other, based on the distinctions in their shades of blue.
3. Watch the Sunrise And Sunset
Watching the sunrises and sunsets on Kanyakumari’s liquid horizon is one of the priceless things to do in Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu, and this will also provide you with an amazing view to your eyes. Experiencing sunrise alongside the Thiruvalluvar statue is the most splendid thing to witness. However, sunsets are mainly special on the full moon nights. On this day, you’ll be able to see the sun rising and the full moon setting together. For an alternative, to explore the panoramic view of the sunrise and sunset you should head to Murugan Kundram on a nearby hill.
Best Time to Experience: December to February.
4. A Day Trip to Padmanabhapuram Palace
Plan a day trip to the town of Padmanabhapuram. It can be one of the enjoyable and fun things to do in Kanyakumari with the regal heritage. It is located in Trivandrum. The main attraction to the region is Padmanabhapuram Palace. This palace is not a typical lavish palace but apparently, it is the largest wooden one in the whole of Asia that distinguishes it from the rest.
The craftsmanship and architecture of this palace are commendable, particularly the detailed woodwork on the walls and ceilings. The Padmanabhapuram Palace is spread over more than six acres of land and also it has a museum within the fort.
5. See Where Gandhi’s Ashes Were Kept
Mahatma Gandhi visited Kanyakumari several times. It is believed that some of his ashes were scattered into the sea there. Later, a memorial was built at the place where the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi were kept for public viewing, near the Kumari Amman Temple.
It is one of the other things to do in Kanyakumari as the architecture of the memorial look like that of the temples in Odisha. Its design is relatively unique and eye-catching. On October 2 i.e. Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday, the sun’s rays fall through a hole in the temple’s roof and onto the place where the ashes of Mahatma Gandhi sat in an urn.
6. Visit The Thiruvalluvar Statue
Thiruvalluvar statue is a towering statue of the famous Tamil poet and philosopher Thiruvalluvar. This statue stands on a smaller neighbouring rock at the coast of Kanyakumari. Entry to go inside the base of the statue is permitted to the tourists. However, climbing the stairs up to its feet will provide you with an amazing view.
7. Browse The Shops And Stalls
There are several fun things to do in Kanyakumari and one of them includes shopping at the stalls in this region. You can buy shells, handicrafts made from shells, painted shells, and products ornamented with shells as these shells lead the souvenir collection at Kanyakumari. You’ll find them at every shop available in the area. If you want to get a customized shell with your name engraved on it then you can also buy the one for you. Shops on the atmospheric Sannathi Street also sell lovely woven handloom saris which travellers buy.
8. Check Out Muppandal Wind Farm
Interested in knowing the facts about renewable energy? A trip to Muppandal Wind Farm can help you explore a lot more about renewable energy in this area. It is one of the largest onshore wind farms in the world and is India’s biggest source of wind energy.
Undoubtedly, visiting this place remains one of the best things to do in Kanyakumari as it will add many things to your knowledge. It’s an assorted gathering of turbines stretches for miles, inquisitively combined with the palm trees and banana plants. The fact that the turbines are supported and commissioned by private companies accounts for lack of uniformity in their designs.
9. Witness The Breathtaking Courtallam Falls
Courtallam falls are located in the middle of a Panchayat town in the Tirunelveli district of Tamil Nadu. They are popular in the state for its enormity as well as for their fierceness. This place is best suited for those looking to take a stimulating shower in the lap of nature. Visiting this place is considered as one of the adventurous things to do in Kanyakumari. Mountains and magnificent greenery should be enough to gratify the soul of a real nature buffs. However, the rocks behind the falls have been gnarled to form the exclusively shaped, honeycomb-like structures.
10. Learn The Historicity Of Vattakottai Fort
Vattakottai Fort is spread over an area of 3.5 acres and exploring the fort is among the top things to do in Kanyakumari. This fort really boosts the beauty of the southernmost state of Tamil Nadu as it rests on the coast of the Bay of Bengal. One side of the fort offers a panoramic view of the Bay of Bengal Sea whereas the other side is draped with the splendid hills of the Western Ghats.
The Vattakottai Fort was declared to be a threatened site under the Indian Archaeological Department in the recent past. The Administration has been making appropriate revamps to ensure that the site is conserved as well as qualified to accommodate the large chunk of tourists flocking in every day.
11. Feel Enlightened At St. Xavier Church
St. Xavier Church is a famous historical structure which was built by St Francis Xavier in the 1600s. It is believed that miracles have been witnessed to happen here since time immemorial. The sanctity, power, and spirituality of the church attract people of all faiths from all parts of the world.
A large number of Catholic pilgrims from as far as Ceylon, British India, and Malacca visited the annual festival at the St. Xavier church every year in the month of December to pursue blessings from the Lord. That tradition endures proclaiming its authority as a supreme habitat of the Almighty even to this day.
12. Visit Tsunami Monument
Visiting the Tsunami Monument is one of the other great things to do in Kanyakumari as it was built in the memory of all those people who died in the Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami which trembled the whole nation on 26 December in 2004. It is a unique monument situated near the southern shore of Kanyakumari and which was designed and built by architect B. Kanagaraj Cangan. The place also helps you to appreciate the value of human life and how precious it is.