Welcome to the ‘Ghost Town’ of Dhanushkodi

Welcome To The ‘Ghost Town’ Of Dhanushkodi

India is a land of charm. Its beauty is added with amalgamate of different cultures, religions, legends and so many unsolved mysteries. We can perceive so multitudinous unrevealed tales in this gorgeous land. Beauty in itself, India is truly called the Land of mystery and diversity; the home of architectural brilliance and supremacy. Numerous places in India are still hidden from the outside world. The technological giants couldn’t temper with its simplicity and authenticity. Dhanushkodi: The white sand beaches, azure sea, and a picturesque, peaceful vibes make it one of the most alluring yet sparsely known beaches in India.

Dhanushkodi, where mystery, myths, miracles synchronize with reality

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Dhanushkodi, an aerial view. Photo credit CC-by-sa PlaneMad/Wikimedia

Dhanushkodi is located in the Rameswaram district of Tamil Nadu. Rameswaram that is also known as the Pamban Island, is in the Palk Strait that stretches between India and Srilanka. Dhanushkodi is a place where we can see the marvels of nature and man become one. The place is not an easy place to spot; it’s well hidden from the tourist map. The journey to Dhanushkodi in itself is filled by mesmerizing views of Palk Strait. It has an unperturbed and composed shoreline. The place is an attraction in itself; its mysterious atmosphere and enchanting views add magic to the place. Bordered by the Indian Ocean on one side and the Bay of Bengal in other, this land used to serve as an important and valuable post not just for the traders as well as the pilgrims. During the ancient time, this town was the home of all kinds of amenities a traveler would need- hotels, dharmshalas, and shops. Ferry services were also available between Dhanushkodi and Ceylon (a town in Sri Lanka).

Dhanushkodi’s connection with Lord Rama

The mysteries attached to Dhanushkodi makes it more exceptional. The story dates back to the age of our history, Ramayana. Dhanushkodi means ‘end of the bow’. It is believed that Dhanushkodi was the spot where Lord Rama and his army built Ram Setu, also known as Adam’s Bridge across sea connecting Tamil Nadu and Mannar Island (Sri Lanka) to bring back his wife Sita from the clutches of Demon King Ravana. After Lord Rama rescued his wife, he destroyed the bridge with his bow and arrow. The images taken by NASA have confirmed that the stretch of land formation seen between Sri Lanka and Dhanushkodi is certainly man-made.

From a Glorious and Thriving town to a land of Silence   

Dhanushkodi, bounded by the Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal, was once a flourishing town with houses, schools, temple, church, a railway station, and a post office. This town was once known as one of the richest fishing belts, with more than thousands of people residing in this small ravishing city. It was preferred as a tourist spot for many devotees who used to come to visit the ancient temples and churches. But, all this came to standstill, on Dec 22, 1964, when this peaceful land was hit by a dreadful, massive cyclone that swirled across Dhanushkodi with strong powerful winds gusting up to 170mph.  Nearly 1,800 people lost their lives. The town that once was filled with locals, traders, holidaymakers was destroyed. The entire town was in ruins and deserted. All houses, structures were marooned, the high tide ruined the town and only memorials of glorious past remained. After this incident, The Madras government labelled the place as ‘not fit for human habitation’.

Dhanushkodi is often referred to as the ‘ghost town’ because if its remote location and tragic past. The place has an unearthly, unnatural eerie vibe that makes it more mysterious. With no basic facilities, the inhabitants who remained back here survive with a mystic collaboration with Mother Nature. Here reality mingles with mysteries, myths and miracles turning into a unique place to live in. Surrounded by saltwater, the availability of sweet drinking water from small pits that could be dug by hands itself is as another mystery seen here.

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Water hole with sweet drinking water at Dhanushkodi

The Town, leisurely, gently coming alive

With around 500 fishermen living in this isolated island, life has come to a halt for many years. The yearning for life and livelihood had driven them to survive in this isolation.

But after 53 years of silence, the land is slowly, leisurely and gently becoming zestful. It has started to appear on the radar of fearless, intrepid tourist who is on the lookout for an offbeat destination. The peace and poise, the pristine golden sand, the ruins of churches, temples are fascinating to many travellers.

The tip of Dhanushkodi gives a breathtaking view. It is the place of unification of two boundless oceans, the Indian Ocean and the Bay of Bengal. Moreover, the place holds multiple attractive ventures of adventures and attractions. It is a venue for the paradise of bird watchers, shell collectors, and sea lovers. Exotic migratory birds, rare shells that make us wonder about the craftsmanship of sea, the idiosyncratic colors of blending water make it unforgettable and unimaginative. The profound peace, silence and unparallel natural beauty make it as pretty as poetry. It is not definitely a famous tourist spot but it is definitely a place worth visiting for a unique lifetime experience.

Featured image: Alex Alderic Jero/Tripadvisor

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