Kanniyakumari, often written as Kanyakumari (also known as Cape Comorin) is a town in the Tamil Nadu state of India’s Kanyakumari District. It is the southernmost settlement on Indian soil, literally the “Tail of India’. The town is one of India’s very popular tourist destinations as well as pilgrimage centers.
The breathtaking coastal town has a coastline of 71.5 km and is geographically a cape. It bears witness to the confluence of the Bay of Bengal, Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean and offers unforgettable sights of the sunrise and the sunset to its spectators.
There are numerous Hindu legends extant, narrating the formation of the coastal town and many stories communicating the presence of the abundant native medicinal fauna in the region. For years, this location has served as a significant hub for art, culture, civilization, and pilgrimage. It was also a well-known trading and commercial hub. Islam arrived in the southern region of India through the sea route in the early eighth century AD, accompanied by traders and missionaries.
Christianity arrived in this area around AD 52 by St. Thomas, one of Christ’s twelve Apostles. Islam, Christianity, and Jainism have all made significant contributions to this town’s architectural and literary legacy. It was also ruled by the Cholas, Cheras, Pandyas, and Nayaks, who were powerful rulers in southern India. The Indian States Reorganization Act of 1956 combined Kanyakumari, which had been controlled by the Kings of Travancore in Kerala, with Tamil Nadu.
How to reach Kanyakumari?
The closest airport to Kanyakumari is Trivandrum International Airport, which is around 67 kilometres away. Aside from being well connected to India’s major cities, the airport is also well connected to a number of Gulf nations. From this airport, popular airlines like Air India, IndiGo, Jet Airways, Qatar Airways, Etihad, Oman Air, Air Arabia, and Kuwait Airways offer outstanding service. You may book a taxi or a cab to Kanyakumari from the airport for anywhere between Rs. 1,000 and Rs. 1,500.
Kanyakumari has its own rail station, with trains arriving from all across India. The Kanyakumari Express runs between Mumbai and Bangalore. Apart from that, the Trivandrum Central railway station is the next closest station, with connections to practically every Indian city. You can take another train to Kanyakumari Junction or book a cab to Kanyakumari city after you get to Trivandrum Central.
By driving or leasing a car from surrounding cities to Kanyakumari, you may experience the exhilaration of a lengthy trip. An excellent network of roads and highways connects Kanyakumari to the picturesque countryside of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka.
Tamil Nadu and Kanyakumari Road Transport Corporation provide frequent bus services to practically all of South India’s major cities. Between Kanyakumari to Bangalore, Trivandrum, and Chennai, there are premium, standard, and air-conditioned private buses to pick from.
When to visit Kanyakumari?
Between the months of October and March is the best time to visit Kanyakumari, since the weather will be pleasant and peaceful during this time. Yet here is a gist of activities you can choose to do if you are visiting during any other time of the year.
From June through September, Kanyakumari has its monsoon season. While there is little rain in June and September, the rain showers grow more frequent in July and August. Watch the sparkling green tint of Kanyakumari’s natural beauty and landscape if you enjoy the rain. Due to the fact that it is the off-season, you may get great deals at hotels and restaurants.
October to February is a fantastic season to visit the beach for sightseeing and other water sports. While there is considerable heat throughout the day, the nighttime sea breezes provide a beautiful sunset vista. The Cape festival, which attracts a large number of visitors, is also held during this month.
In Kanyakumari, the winter season begins in November, when there is no humidity and the weather is comfortable. The busiest tourist season is from December to February when the weather is pleasant both during the day and at night. The temperature does not get over 30 degrees Celsius because it is winter.
From March through May, Kanyakumari has its summer season. Though the weather in March is normally lovely, April and May may be hot, with temperatures rarely exceeding 35 degrees Celsius. Swimming and surfing are other popular activities during these months. Furthermore, the gentle winds ensure that the temperature remains pleasant and enjoyable for visitors.
The most widely spoken language in the town is Tamil. However, there is a significant number of Malayalam speakers as well. The people in the district speak in a Tamil dialect, completely different from that spoken in other parts of Tamil Nadu.
- Summer (March – May): Summer is warm and humid. April and May are at the zenith of summer, but it’s still warm and the temperature hardly goes beyond 26°C- 35°C. But the weather turns pleasing by sunset as cool breeze blows in from the seas.
- Monsoon (June – November): Kanyakumari experiences both the southwest and northeast monsoons, which bring sporadic to intense thundershowers. 24°C to 30°C is the temperature range.
- Winter (December – February): Temperature averages 23°C-31°C. The winter season is mild and enjoyable. The sunrise and sunset, which are such spectacular Kanyakumari attractions, are just about perfect under a clear wintry sky.
Fairs & Festivals in Kanyakumari
Kanyakumari celebrates a variety of festivals tied to their places of worship in all of its districts.
- The Suchindram Chariot Festival (January)
- Chitra-Pournima (May)
- The Cape Festival (October) – a great festival of dancing and music that involves a Triveni Sangam ceremonial bath
- Kalabham or sandal anointing festival (July-August)
- St.Francis Zavier’s Cathedral Festival (December)
Accommodation/Stay to prefer
There are a variety of wonderful places to stay, ranging from lodges to resorts, depending on your budget. Luxurious resorts may be found a short distance from Kanyakumari’s crowds. Here are a few to help you.
- Sparsa Resort
- Annai Resorts and Spa
- The Gopinivas Grand Hotel
- Hotel Sangam
- Hotel Ocean Heritage
- Hotel Seaview
Places to visit in Kanyakumari
The exquisite temples and monuments of Kanyakumari speak volumes about the creativity of the ancient Cholas, Cheras, Nayaks, and Pandyas who ruled these territories. Further contributions were made by mosques and churches established by maritime traders who entered India through the southern seaport, as well as by St. Thomas the Apostle, who founded a number of churches in Southern India. Here are some of Kanyakumari’s most popular tourist attractions.
- Thomayar Kovil
- Vattakottai Fort
- Vivekananda Rock Memorial
- Kanyakumari Temple
- Chitharal Jain Monuments
- Thiruvalluvar Statue
- Government Museum
- Padmanabhapuram Palace
- Our Lady of Ransom Church
- Tsunami Monument
- Mathur Hanging Bridge
- Thirparappu falls
- Pechiparai Reservoir
Cuisines to taste in Kanyakumari
- Idli, Vada, Sambar
- Appam and Stew
- Maravazhi Kilangu
- Coconut rice with avial (thick veggie curry)
- Pazha Bajji
Things to do in Kanyakumari
- Witness the sunrise and the sunset (On Full Moon evenings, it’s even more remarkable to see the sun set and the moon rise at the same moment)
- Take a stroll on the beach
- Attend the town’s unique fairs and festivals
- Take a dip in the Triveni Sangam (Bathing in the Triveni Sangam, the confluence of the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean, is said to cleanse you of all sins!)
- Go on a long drive on the beach road
- Take a cool shower under the Thirparappu Waterfalls
Souvenirs to buy in Kanyakumari
In Kanyakumari, seashells are the most popular souvenirs.
- Seashells and conches
- colorful beach sand packs
- palm-leaf paintings
- decorative wall hangings or bird nests made of coconut shells
- seasonings and nuts
- handicrafts made of wood and bamboo
- silk saris
- bronze statues of Gods