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Pathanamthitta District

Pathanamthitta, a hilly terrain of pristine beauty is popular as the headquarters of pilgrim worship in Kerala. More than fifty per cent of the total area of this land of temples, rivers, mountain ranges and coconut groves is covered by forests. The district is frequented by visitors from India and abroad often for its water fiestas, religious shrines and the cultural training centre.

Pathanamthitta is bordered by the western Ghats on the east, Kollam district on the south, Alappuzha district on the west and Kottayam and Idukki District on the north.

Pathanamthitta is a combination of two words Pathanam and Thitta which mean an array of houses on the river side. This district was formed on 1st November 1982 in the interest of the hastening process of development. The total area of the district is 2642 sq. kms., of this 1390.73 sq. kms. come under forest.

Altitude: -
Temperature:(deg C) - Summer- Max 33, Min 24, Winter- Max 32.5, Min 22
Rainfall:379 cms
Best Season:October to March.

Places of Interest

One of the most famous pilgrim centres in India, Sabarimala is situated on the mountain ranges of the Western Ghats at an altitude of 914m above sea level and is accessible only by foot from Pamba(4 km).

This is the main halting point on the way to Sabarimala. It is also known as Thriveni Sangamam, the meeting point of three rivers. 

As a holy town, Pandalam is perhaps second only to Sabarimala. Sree Ayyappa, the presiding deity of Sabarimala had his human sojourn here as the son of the Raja of Pandalam. The Valiyakoikal Temple near the palace on the banks of river Achenkovil has been modeled on the Sabarimala shrine. Pilgrims usually stop here to worship before proceeding to Sabarimala. Three days prior to the Makaravillaku festival, the sacred ornaments of Sree Ayyappa are taken in a procession from Pandalam to Sabarimala. 

5 km from Pathanamthitta, the Rakthakanta Swamy Temple and the annual cattle fair held in the Malayalam month of meenam are the main attractions of Omallur. People from both within and outside the State participate in the fair.

8 km fromPathanamthitta, the goddess at the Bhagavathy Temple here is believed to grant boons to devotees and help them realize their dreams. The temple has beautiful wall paintings and artistic stone carvings.
8km fromPathamamthitta, the Kadamanitta Devi Temple is famous for the ten day long Padayani performances held in connection with the annual festival in April/May. 

11 km fromPathanamthitta, an agricultural region, Konni is rich in cash crops like rubber, pepper, coffee, ginger etc. It used to be a centre for training elephants. Konni is also known for its elephant rides and the Anakoodu where elephants are tamed and trained for work. 

Muloor Smarakam 
l2 km fromPathanamthitta, the memorial to Muloor, a renowned social reformer and poet; is located at Elavumthitta. 

Aranmula Parthasarathi Temple (dedicated to Sree Krishna) on the banks of the holy river Pamba attracts large crowds of devotees. The famed Aranmula boat race is held on the last day of the weeklong Onam festival. The Vijnana Kalavedi at Aranmula imparts training in the traditional arts like Katlaakali, classical dances, classical music, as well as Kalaripayattu. Foreign tourists stay here for long periods to get a first hand knowledge of the culture of Kerala. The Parthasarathi Temple here has fine murals from the l8th century.

The famous water fiesta (Aranmula Boat Race) is held during Onam (August - September). The snake boats assemble near the Sri Parthasarathy Temple before the grand procession. Each boat is 100 ft. long and accommodates 4 helmsmen, 100 oarsmen and 25 singers. The snake boats move in pairs to the rhythm of full throated singing and shouting, watched by an excited crowd. Arannrula kannadi: Aranmula is also famous for its metal mirrors, a unique craft which is not found anywhere else in the world.

Kodumon Chilanthiyambalam 
l5km from Pathanamthitta town, the water of the Chilanthikinar (well) in the premises of this temple is believed to cure skin diseases. Kodumon is also the birth place of Sree Shakthi Bhadra, author of Ascharya Chudamani. 

36km from Pathanamthitta viaVachoochira, the Perunthenaruvi waterfalls on the banks of the Pamba River is a favourite picnic spot for both domestic and foreign tourists. 

Manjanikara Church 
Mar Ignatius Elias III, the holy patriot of Anthiod while on a visit to India, died at this place in I932. His mortal remains are preserved at this church. Later this place developed into a pilgrim centre. The annual festival (ormaperunnal) is held in February. 

How to reach Pathanamthitta?

Air:Nearest sirport Thiruvananthapuram (119 km)
Nearest railway station: Thiruvalla (30km); Chengannu (28 km).
Road:Pathanamthitta is well connected by an excellent network of roads to all major towns in Kerala.

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