A long time back, a Brahmin King abducted the wife of a brave, Rajput king. The Rajput king in-turn waged a war to bring back his wife. He built a stone bridge from the southernmost tip of today’s India to erstwhile Lanka. And the rest is well known. 🙂
The Rajput king fought the war & emerged victorious. Yes, he was no other than Lord Rama. And the Brahmin king that was killed in the war was Ravana. While this event happened many centuries ago, it became one of the most told stories that was passed on to many generations and in the form of the holy Ramayana as we know today.
The place from where the bridge was made still exists (allegedly) in today’s India. It’s called Rameshwaram, the abode of Lord Rama. 🙂
Rameshwaram is a small island with beautiful beaches and simpler people. The town is popular for its phenomenal temple, Ramanathaswamy that’s considered to be a major pilgrimage site for all Hindus.
Situated in Rameshwaram or Pamban island, this town is also popular for its first, one-of-its-own-kind cantilever bridge that connects Pamban island to Mainland India. 🙂
And boy, oh boy, what a beautiful bridge?! Built more than a century back, the bridge became functional in 1914 and stayed on number 1 ranking till the Worli-Sealink bridge came up in Bombay. There’s a railway track parallel to Pamban bridge too. Less frequent but a railway service is functional on that route connecting Chennai, Madurai and Rameshwaram on a circuit. Around evenings, it all congregates together to form a scene that’s unique in its own way.
The canvas and the coastline:
Some things are naturally beautiful and some are made beautiful. Around Pamban bridge, you see both – foamy, squishy clouds against the clear, Blue sky. And colourful boats spread across the sea along with a beautiful coastline with coconut trees and backwaters straight from a Holiday calendar. In these moments, we homo sapiens appear so insignificant and inconsequential.
If you like, you can go for boating or on a food exploration journey. Naturally the sea food is delicious over there. How do I know? Well, it’s a calculated guess. I am still a vegetarian. 🙂 🙂
Places to visit in Rameshwaram:
- Ramanathaswamy Temple – it’s believed that Lord Rama prayed to Lord Shiva to atone for his sins committed during killing Ravana. This temple has mythological significance and is also part of the four dham pilgrimage circuit amidst followers of Hinduism. The temple also houses one of the longest corridors in the world – absolutely splendid. You won’t have seen anything like that before
- Pamaban bridge – because it’s love ❤️. Or you can take your loved ones around and make memories with them amidst the various elements of nature: Sun, sky, sea and a cool, breeze
- Dhanushkodi – situated near Rameshwaram, Dhanushkodi today is almost in ruins. A cyclone in 1964 destroyed this inhabited town. Since then, no localities have ever gone back. But the place is still gorgeous. Flanked by Bay of Bengal on one side & Indian ocean on another, the route to Dhanushkodi beach is a sight to behold. Did you know how this place got its name?! Legend has it that Lord Rama used his bow’s (Dhanush) end (Kodi) to break the bridge (Ram setu). The same bridge that was used to reach Lanka to fight the war against Ravana. Hence the name! 🙂
The touch of danger and the rush of adrenaline:
During that cyclone of 1964, even the spectacular Pamban bridge could not stand stable and a part of the bridge got destroyed. Along with that, a railway bogie got turned over too and many passengers lost their lives. They have rebuilt the bridge (the railway tracks), repaired the damage but the incident remains unforgettable. Even today when you look at the ambitious railway track built over the sea connecting Pamban island to mainland India, it appears an achievement of a courageous mind.
Pamban bridge not only connects an island with the incredible country of India but also serves as a link that keeps all of us united and rooted in our mythology, religious sentiments and traditions. Whenever you visit Rameshwaram, do take a few hours off for Pamban bridge and puff your chest a little bit for you are an Indian.