Place: Mondaikadu (Mandaikadu), Kanyakumari District
Location: Mondaikadu is situated in the sea coast,north - east of Colachel Port.
It is 22 kms from Nagercoil and 41 kms form Kanniyakumari.
Route: Nagercoil ----> Mondaymarket ----> Mondaikadu
Thiruvananthapuram ----> Marthandam ---->
Azagiyamandapam ----> Mondaymarket ----> Mondaikadu.
Situated on the seacoast near Colachel. ,this famous temple dedicated to Amman, dates back to the 7th century BC.
At first, it was only a mound. But divinity grew around this mound and it came to be known as Bhagavathy Amman.
According to local tradition, the area surrounding the temple was once a jungle known as ‘Manthaikadu’ – a pastoral jungle.
One fine morning, the locals, mostly shepherds, found a siddhar well versed in Asthama Siddha, performing puja to a Srichakkaram under a neem tree. He performed some miracles that astonished the poor shepherds.
His favourite miracle was to ask the shepherds to dig a hole in the ground and bury him. He would re-appear elsewhere. But when he did not re-appear they presumed that he had attained ‘mukthi.’
At the same time they noticed a mound was growing where he used to perform pujas .
Before long the mound attained divinity and around that divinity the temple has been constructed.
The Goddess is in the form of an ant hill about 12 feet in height and with five heads. Many believe that the sick get cured if they worship the Goddess.
A Devotee tying hip chain to his child
Open kitchen at the backside
Holy peepal tree
Devotees who offer worship also take a dip in the near by Arabian sea
The annual festival called Mondaikadu Kodai is being celebrated during the Tamil month of Masi (around March I week) for 10 days and is the main attraction at this place.
The temple, though small attracts a large number of people from all over the district, besides a regular flow of pilgrim from Kollam in Kerala State, about 160 kms., from Mondaikadu during the annual festival celebrated for 10 days.
On the way to the Mondaikadu Beach, we will notice Anantha Victoria Marthanda Varma (AVM) canal.
AVM canal was formed in July 1860 during the reign of Marthanda Varma Maharaja of Travancore state.
It was a scheme for connecting Thiruvanathapuram with Kanyakumari and thus extending the water communications to the extreme south of the country.
All the coastal villages numbering more than 20, including, Pozhiyur, Kollencode, Neerodi, Marthandamthurai, Vallavilai, Eraviputhanthurai, Thengapagttinam, Colachel, Kottilpadu and Mondaicaduputhur, all depended upon this resource for most of their needs, including navigation.
But today the purpose is no longer served
AVM Canal , a silent spectator of the past,present & ............?
Imagine a boat ride in the canal with a view of the Arabian sea........
Once a National Waterway of Travancore State, AVM Canal is shrinking day-by-day.
Lonely at the beach
With inputs from
Family & Friends
S.K.Venkatesh & G.Degaulle