It was an official trip to Kerala University, Trivandrum but later it becomes exciting wandering trip. The destination in my itinerary of Kerala trip was Trivandrum or Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala. After Bangalore, I wanted to drop the anchor at Trivandrum mainly because it was near to Kovalam beach.
I left Bangalore at around 4:30 pm and reached Trivandrum International Airport close to 5:45 pm. The distance isn’t long; however, as I reached Trivandrum city, I booked Uber Cab and draw to the pre booked a hotel on MG road called “ Hotel Town Tower”. Tired out of the journey. I quickly checked into the hotel.
Though not luxurious, the rooms were decent with clean toilet. Only a few things were left to be done for the day, Food and sleep. Food at the hotels owns restaurant was superb. If you are nonvegetarian then there are plenty of options for sea food and chicken. Due to the coastal region, every restaurant has a lot of sea food varieties. That day I have fast so I order Kerala Parathas, Mix Vegetables, Dal Tadka and Jira-Rice. WOW! That’s a big menu, isn’t it?
My plan for next day was to attend University Conference up to 4 pm. After that, as I arrived late from the conference, I did not get to explore the city except a visit to the Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, an ancient temple situated in the city center as the devotees were brought to visit the temple.
Nobody knows, in exactitude, who built the idols in the temple and when it was built. The temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Ever since the discovery of vaults containing numerous treasures, the temple is under the spotlight for being one of the richest temples in the world.
The temple opens as early as 3:30 am and can only be entered during Darshan timings. For the Hindus, there is also a dress code to adhere. The men can only wear Dhoti (Sarong) whereas the ladies need to wear sarees. I somehow managed to survive the ordeal of getting into the temple. However, I must add that once, inside the temple, the atmosphere was really serene and uplifting. The temple has a huge campus and though there was a queue to go inside the sanctorium it was moving very fast due to very good arrangements made by the temple authorities. Even the priests and other staff was very helpful.
I had Darshan of Lord Padamanabhswamy in the temple and its feel amazing. What remains in imagination are the musical pillars, 500 pillared corridors famous for its sculptures and a large collection of temple mural paintings as well as golden mandap. And of course, the treasures!
There is a large clear pond called Padmatheertham, near the temple.
I had few vague memories from my earlier trip about a Hanuman statue inside the temple which is pasted with butter in the morning. The butter is removed off from the statute in the evening but, strangely, the butter does not melt during the whole day. This is strange because in the temperate weather of Trivandrum butter should melt within a couple of hours. I was explained by one of Kerelian devotee about the scientific logic behind this but now I do not remember it.
After spending a couple of hours moving inside the temple, buy a Prasadam, I came out and decided to walk on M G Road to have a feel of the city as well as to make good use of my time that was available to me. On my way to walk I have visited St.Joseph’s Metropolitan Cathedral Church. It took me close to 3 hours in my walk from one end of the street to the other end and back.
After finishing my walk on the M G road for about 3 hours in the moderate cool evening, I was dead tired at the end of it. I decided to retire for the day and came back to the hotel. Had dinner, slept earlier due to tired and then left for the Kanyakumari on the next morning train.