India 2013/14 - Page 6
Riding my motorbike finally gave me access to areas that would be extremely difficult to reach with public transport.
Thanjavur featured the mos impressive of the Indian temples I had seen that far.
In the Thanjavur temple complex it's not just temples but also these two gigantic gates.
Detail inside the Thanjavur temple compound
What I really like on the
temples in India is the fact that they are living monuments. Not simply
museums, no, the temples are still in use for prayers, sacrifices and
religious activities performed by large crowds. Large complexes like
Thanjavur resemble small cities. Complete with shops and relaxation
zones where families sit together and have picnic.
South of Thanjavur is
another major temple city - Madurai. It would become the largest city
in India I would ride my motorbike through. And traffic is pretty messy
considering Madurai is a town with over a million population. However,
the temple in my opinion eclipses the one in Thanjavur, Madurai temple
wins the title of the most impressive temple I would visit on this
This photo shows only one
of the four massive towers of the circumferential temple wall in
Madurai. It is a celebration of colour, consisting of thousands of
small colourful statues. There are four towers around the temple, each
similar in size but showing different statues and scenarios. There was
no photography allowed inside the temple but you can imagine if the
outside wall is already that impressive, what would the actual temple
Detail of one of the gate towers of the Madurai Temple
It was New Years Eve and I
just made it to the location where I wanted to celebrate NYE -
Kanyakumari, the southernmost point of the Indian mainland, the 'tip'
of the Indian triangle if you want. On two small islands just of the
coast you will find this colossal statue of an Indian poet and a small
temple which is an important pilgrimage site. If you look close you
will see the crowds on the temple island whereas no one visits the poet
statue, even though I find the statue the more impressive site.
The southernmost town of India also features the southernmost cathedral.
This small rock outcrop is the actual point - the southernmost corner of mainland India.
The location offers fantastic views of the sunrise and the sunset. Both over the Indian ocean.