I wanted to give a bit of background as to what made me start traveling and that would be my love for to see the whole world.
Life is too short and that we don’t know how long we have got, so we need to go out and enjoy life as much as we can and do what we love and not have any regrets, to never look back and say I wish I had done…..
As a child growing up, our family holidays were always within India, generally a week in my hometown village or somewhere one day picnic in Gujarat, mostly spiritual places. I don’t ever remember being jealous of friends going abroad, as a child who got travel sick, hated sand and was not keen when it got hot I guess it never was something I wanted to do!
When I first started going out of my city it was to Mahabaleshwar, Pune during my graduation tour and I then did a trip to New Delhi with my friends who suggested a tour for my next holiday, After this, I became addicted and saw a lot of places this way. Eventually though, doing 5 weeks a year was not enough and I knew it was something I needed to do full time.
My family and friends always used to tell me that traveling is something you do when you once set all your life with a good job or after you retire and they didn’t understand why I was doing it now and not waiting till later in life. 4 years into this journey I have come across coach loads of people who can barely make it off the coach to a viewpoint, never mind do a hike to see an even more amazing view and this just confirms to me every time that I made the right decision and when I reach retirement age, I can spend that time looking back at the pics of the amazing places I have seen and experienced. Living my life the way I do now is not something I will ever regret.
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 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 seafood and chicken. Due to the coastal region, every restaurant has a lot of seafood 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, 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 were very helpful.
I had darshanam 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 Keralite 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 MG 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 MG 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.