Monday, May 11, 2015

The Padmanabhapuram Palace in Trivandrum

Kerala.This name when one hears what would flash through his/her mind are about Cool coconut groves,Lush paddy fields,Palmfringed beaches,Emerald backwaters,beautiful Hills with rain forests,Cool rivers and fabulous Waterfalls. But these are not enough.Kerala is also famous for many heritage Architectural Monuments.Recently I had an opportunity to visit one of them known as Padmanabhapuram palace,in Trivandrum.I have my close relations in Trivandrum( Thiruvananthapuram).so I made use of the visit to them to visit this Historical Monument also. This Palce is situated at the foot of the Veli hills.The palace belongs to Kerala at present and is being maintained by the Archaeology department of Kerala. As per the information got from the site from guides,the palace Was built in the 17th Century.The palace is understood to have been rebuilt by the the then ruler of Travancore marthanda Varma.He was a great devotee of Shri Padmanabha ,a form of Vishnu,and hence the name Pamanabhapuram Palace.It is also gathered that In the 18th century the Capital of Travancore was shifted to Thiruvanthapuram and lost it's old glory. The Palace is situated inside an old granite Fortress.The palace still continues as leading example of traditional Kerala style of Architecture. The artistic form of paintings in the 108 room of the palace would make any one stop for long time to admire the talent behind them. There is one dining hall which could accommodate2000+ people at a given time. However,this room is always kept locked.Those who are desirous of seeing the room will be allowed with special permission by giving the key to the guard.Similarly the prayer rooms ion which superb paintings are available to watch are also kept under lock& key. Even the ceilings of the rooms are intricately carved with floral paintings. On one of the walls ,there is one special painting of an ONAVILLU ,a ceremonial bow offered to Lord Vishnu in the traditional Recining pattern on the occasion of Onam.Yet another interesting artifact is the sword placed in front Of the idol of Lord Vishnu in the prayer room. This Palace is one of the best picnic spots to visit particularly when you visit Thiruvananthapuram.Usually ,all the visitors to Kerala do visit Trivandrum because of it's Temple culture and Kovalam Beach. But this Padmanabhapuram Palace which one should not miss is far away from Trivandrum city& many miss it owing to ignorance of the place and because it is being excluded from the list of places to be visited while in Trivandrum city. Whenever one visits Trivandrum ,it is always ideal to have a person with local knowledge accompanied with him. So next time when you visit Kerala make a point to include this super palace in your list of places to visit Sreedharan Mundanat 11th of May 2015

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