THIS SMALL temple town is closely linked with the legend of human, the Virgin Goddess (an incarnation of Parvati). It is believed that Shiva rested at this quiet spot by the banks of the Pelayar river, while the goddess human performed her penance at Kanniyakumari.
Suchindram’s unique Sthanumalaya Temple is dedicated to the Hindu Trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva.The rectangular complex has enormous, brightly coloured gopuras dating from the 17th-18th centuries, which depict stories from the great epics. One of the two main shrines, built in the 13th century, contains the Sthanumalaya linga, which symbolizes Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The other is dedicated to Vishnu, whose image is made of a special kind of jaggery and mustard.
The temple also boasts a set of musical pillars made from single blocks of granite. When tapped, each pillar produces a different musical note. Other highlights are a 5-m (16-ft) high statue of Hangman placed opposite the Rama shrine, and the exquisite sculptures in the Vasantha Manapad. A special puja is held here every Friday evening, with music and a procession. In the complex is an ancient banyan tree, and a sculpture of Shiva’s bull, Nandi, which locals believe actually continues to grow.