Papanasam, Tirunelveli

Visitor Information

  • Famous for: Scenery, Beauty, Adventure
  • Entrance Fee: No entrance fee for this public place
  • Visiting Time: Sunrise to Sunset
  • Visit Duration: About a day

Papanasam is a small, dainty village present in the Tirunelveli district of the state of Tamil Nadu. Located at about 45 kilometers from the main city of Tirunelveli, this village is a famed local picnic spot for its wide array of sights and tranquil ambience. Surrounded with lush greenery, the mountain area has got a dense flora with the Thamirabarani river flowing through it. The name Papanasam comes from Papneswarar, an incarnation of Lord Shiva present in the Papanasar Svamy temple, which attracts a lot of devotees of the Lord annually. A majestic dam, which has been built across the river, and the waterfalls in the region are great attractions of this locality. With such a plethora of activities to carry out, the village certainly is one of the best places to escape the busy hustle of life and get closer to nature.

Agastyar Waterfalls, Photo by Sankara Subramanian, CC BY 2.0

Traveler Tips

  • Keep your belongings safe near the dam, as there are a lot of monkeys in the area.
  • To visit the Manjolai hills, proper permission has to be taken from the Ambasamudram Forest Office as it is a reserved area.
  • Food facilities around the dam will not be very good.

Things to Do

  • Visit the deep forest area to view animals like deer and monkeys in their natural habitat.
  • Take a bath in the Agasthiyar Falls where the water comes down with a lot of force.
  • Pay a devotional visit to the ancient Papanasar Svamy Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva.
  • Carry out wildlife photography in the forests and also capture some shots of the architecture of the temple.
  • Visit the huge Papanasam dam which has been constructed across the Thamirabarani river for the water needs of the area, and enjoy the breathtaking view of the reservoir.
  • Get your adrenaline pumping by trekking through the thick forest area.
  • Enjoy boating which is permitted at times if the water level is high enough in the Papanasam Dam.
  • Bike riding to the top of Manimuthar Falls is another activity carried out by adventure junkies.
  • Try out a lot of local dishes within the locality to get a taste of the authenticity of the region.

Availability of Guides

Since this is basically a place where people come to unwind and relax, there is no necessity of a guide. Local tour companies do provide guides for a certain fee.

Best Time to Visit

Papanasam is a quaint location which can be visited throughout the year. But to enjoy thoroughly, visit during the months from June to September, as the climate is mild and pleasant while the water level in the dam and the falls are to a good level due to the rains which fall during the monsoon season.

How to Reach

The nearest airport is the Trivandrum International Airport in Kerala, at a distance of about 180 kilometers from the city while the domestic airport of Madurai is about 140 kilometers away. By rail, the city is connected by the Ambasamudram railway station which is about 5 kilometers away. This famous tourist spot is well connected by buses and cabs. Autos and cabs can be used in plenty to travel within the city.

Interesting Facts and Trivia about Papanasam

  • The name Papanasar of the Lord means the destroyer of sins, which later led to the naming of the village likewise.
  • The Agasthiyar Fall is so named as it is believed to be the place where Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi appeared before the great sage Agasthiyar.
  • The Shiva ling of the Papanasar Svamy temple is made totally out of Rudraksha.
  • The Papanasam dam was built during the reign of the British and covers an area of about 150 square kilometers.
  • The Thamirabarani river which flows through the region is so named as it has a high content of copper which translates into thamiram in the local language of Tamil.
  • The Manjolai hills present nearby is a part of the Kalakad Mundanthurai Tiger Reserve.
Banatheertham Falls
Banatheertham Falls, Photo by Arikrishnan, CC0 1.0

Nearby Restaurants

  • Chennai Restaurant
  • Singh bakery
  • Saravana Bakery
  • Sri Murugan Cafe

Nearby Attractions

  • Vaana Theertham
  • Servalar Dam
  • Kalakad Mundathurai Tiger Reserve
  • Banateertham Falls

A picturesque location with a multitude of activities to carry out and plenty of sights to see is what makes the spot such a success amongst the tourists visiting the region. The serene ambience of the place is such a change from the routine life that it makes people visit it time and again.

About Rohit

An architect by profession, Rohit Agarwal is a curious traveller, seeking out the minutest detail about the places he travels to, and that’s what one will find in his writings. His writings have appeared in various blogs, he’s currently trying to bring forth as many different places a traveller who shares the same level of curiosity like him would like to visit through his writings.

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