Rameshwaram town situated in Tamil Nadu is one of the most sacred pilgrimage sites for Hindus and is also referred to as the ‘Kashi of the South’. Its temple has great religious significance as it is regarded as one of the four Dhams (most sacred pilgrimage sites) and is amongst the foremost twelve Jyotirlingams of India.
Rameswaram temple is considered to be one of the holiest temples in India and it was built in the 17th century although construction had begun in the 12th century AD. One of the finest specimens of Dravidian architecture, the temple has gigantic dimensions.Covering an area of 15 acres, it is 264 meters to the west and 200 metres north to south consisting of three prakaras. It has the largest temple
corridor in India running 1219 m in length and with over 4000 pillars. Each of these pillars stand at 3.6m of height and is constructed of granite with rich carvings worked on it. The gate tower or the ‘gopuram’ has an altitude of 54 m. There are innumerable shrines of other deities like Vishnu, Hanuman, Krishna, Ganesha and Subramanya as well as 22 sacred wells/bathing ghats or ‘tirthas’ within the temple and each well apparently gives a different taste of water. Devotees offer prayers after first bathing at one of these tanks.On the right side of the main shrine, Shiva’s consort Parvati has her own temple.
According to legends this is the place where Lord Rama offered prayers to Lord Shiva to atone for killing Ravana. Rameswaram temple has great religious significance and draws ardent devotees in large numbers throughout the year.