Padmanabhapuram Palace is a historical palace located in Padmanabhapuram, which is now part of the Kanyakumari district in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. The palace was the residence of the rulers of the erstwhile Kingdom of Travancore, and is known for its unique architecture and intricate wooden carvings.
The palace complex is spread over an area of around 6.5 acres and comprises several buildings, including the main palace, a temple, and several other smaller structures. The palace was constructed in the 16th century AD by Iravi Varma Kulasekhara Perumal, the founder of the kingdom of Travancore.
The palace is made entirely of wood, and features several unique architectural elements such as a long corridor with 108 carved wooden pillars, intricately carved wooden ceilings, and large courtyards with beautifully landscaped gardens. The palace also houses several antique and rare artifacts, including traditional Kerala-style furniture, pottery, and royal portraits.
Today, Padmanabhapuram Palace is a popular tourist destination and is open to visitors throughout the year. The palace is also a popular location for film shoots, and has been featured in several Indian and international films.
The Padmanabhapuram Palace is open to visitors every day of the week except Mondays. The timings of the palace are as follows:
It is advisable to reach the palace well in advance of the closing time to ensure that you have enough time to explore the palace complex fully. Additionally, it is important to note that the palace may be closed on certain public holidays or during maintenance periods, so it is always a good idea to check with local authorities or the palace website for any updates on timings or closures before planning your visit.
Padmanabhapuram Palace is a historical palace with a rich history and many intriguing secrets. Here are a few interesting facts and secrets about the palace:
The palace is known for its intricate wooden carvings, which are said to be so delicate that a matchstick can easily pass through the carved holes.
The palace features a secret underground passage that is believed to have been used by the royal family to escape during times of war or danger.
One of the courtyards in the palace is home to a sacred pond called “Padma Theertham,” which is believed to have healing properties.
The palace complex includes a special room called the “Thai Kottaram,” which was built for the queen mother of the kingdom of Travancore. The room features intricate wooden carvings and is believed to have been used for religious and spiritual ceremonies.
The palace has a unique architectural feature called the “Clock Tower,” which is believed to have been constructed in the early 19th century. The tower features a functioning clock that is said to have been running for over 200 years.
The palace also houses a unique artifact called the “Mantrasala,” which is a room with walls covered in ancient wooden carvings depicting various deities and scenes from Hindu mythology.
These are just a few of the many secrets and interesting features of the Padmanabhapuram Palace, which continues to attract visitors from all over the world with its rich history, unique architecture, and intriguing secrets.
The Padmanabhapuram Palace is known for its unique architecture, which combines elements of traditional Kerala style architecture with Dravidian and Chinese influences. Here are some of the key architectural features of the palace:
Wooden Architecture: The entire palace complex is built using wood, including the walls, pillars, and roofs. The wood used in the palace is primarily jackfruit tree wood, which is known for its durability and strength.
Courtyards: The palace features several large courtyards with beautiful gardens and fountains. These courtyards were used for various purposes, including public gatherings, religious ceremonies, and royal functions.
Long Corridor: The palace also features a long corridor with 108 carved wooden pillars. This corridor is known as the “Poomukham” and is one of the most striking features of the palace.
Carvings: The palace is known for its intricate wooden carvings, which depict various scenes from Hindu mythology and other cultural motifs. These carvings can be found on walls, ceilings, and pillars throughout the palace.
Secret Passages: The palace is believed to have several secret passages and hidden rooms, which were used by the royal family for security and privacy.
Chinese Influence: The palace also features several elements of Chinese architecture, including a beautiful garden with a fishpond, which is said to have been inspired by Chinese architecture.
Overall, the Padmanabhapuram Palace is a stunning example of traditional Indian architecture, with unique features and influences from various cultures and traditions.
The Padmanabhapuram Palace has a rich and fascinating history that dates back over 400 years. Here is a brief overview of the history of the palace:
The palace was built in the 16th century AD by Iravi Varma Kulasekhara Perumal, the founder of the kingdom of Travancore. Initially, the palace was just a small wooden structure, but over the centuries, it was expanded and renovated by various rulers of the kingdom.
During the reign of Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma (1706-1758), the palace underwent a major renovation and expansion, which included the construction of several new buildings and the addition of several unique architectural features.
The palace was the primary residence of the rulers of the kingdom of Travancore until the capital was shifted to Thiruvananthapuram in the 19th century. Even after the capital was moved, the palace continued to serve as a seat of power and was used for various administrative functions.
After India gained independence in 1947, the palace was turned over to the government of Kerala, which took steps to preserve and maintain the historic structure. Today, the palace is a popular tourist destination and is recognized as a national monument by the government of India.
Throughout its history, the palace has played an important role in the cultural and political life of the region, and has been the site of many important ceremonies and events. Its unique architecture and rich history continue to fascinate visitors from all over the world.
Inside the Padmanabhapuram Palace, visitors can explore a number of different structures and areas, including:
Mantrasala: This is a beautiful wooden hall with intricately carved wooden ceilings, walls and pillars depicting scenes from Hindu mythology. The hall was used for meetings and religious ceremonies.
Thaikkottaram: This is a special room in the palace complex that was used by the queen mother. It features beautiful wood carvings and is considered to be one of the most ornate rooms in the palace.
Nataksala: This is a large hall that was used for performing arts and cultural events. It has a raised platform for performances and beautiful wooden carvings on the walls and ceiling.
Council Chamber: This is a room that was used for meetings and discussions between the royal family and their advisors. It features a large wooden throne and a raised platform for the king.
Dining Hall: The palace has a large dining hall with a capacity of over 1000 people. It features beautiful wood carvings on the ceiling and walls.
Courtyards: The palace has several beautiful courtyards with gardens, fountains and ponds. These were used for public gatherings, religious ceremonies and royal functions.
Clock Tower: The palace has a clock tower that was built in the 19th century. It is one of the most recognizable features of the palace and is still functional today.
Overall, the Padmanabhapuram Palace is a beautiful and fascinating place to explore, with a rich history and unique architectural features that make it a must-visit destination for anyone interested in Indian history and culture.
The entry fee for the Padmanabhapuram Palace is as follows:
For Indian citizens:
For foreign nationals:
Note that there may be additional fees for photography and videography inside the palace complex.
Also, the Padmanabhapuram Palace is closed on Mondays and on national holidays. It is open to visitors from Tuesday to Sunday between 9:00 AM and 4:30 PM.
There are many tourist places to visit around Padmanabhapuram Palace. Here are some of the top attractions:
Kanyakumari: Located about 35 kilometers south of Padmanabhapuram Palace, Kanyakumari is a popular tourist destination known for its beautiful beaches, stunning sunsets and the Vivekananda Rock Memorial.
Thiruvananthapuram: The capital city of Kerala is located about 60 kilometers northwest of Padmanabhapuram Palace. It is home to many attractions including the Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple, the Napier Museum, and the Kuthiramalika Palace.
Vattakottai Fort: This 18th-century fort is located about 10 kilometers east of Padmanabhapuram Palace. It offers beautiful views of the sea and the surrounding area.
Mathur Hanging Bridge: This suspension bridge, located about 25 kilometers northeast of Padmanabhapuram Palace, is one of the longest and highest in India. It offers breathtaking views of the surrounding hills and forests.
Ponmudi: This beautiful hill station is located about 75 kilometers north of Padmanabhapuram Palace. It is known for its tea plantations, waterfalls, and trekking trails.
Varkala: This seaside town is located about 90 kilometers northwest of Padmanabhapuram Palace. It is famous for its beautiful beaches, cliffs, and mineral springs.
These are just a few of the many attractions that can be found in the area around Padmanabhapuram Palace. Whether you are interested in history, nature, or simply relaxing on a beautiful beach, there is something for everyone in this region of India.
The best time to visit Padmanabhapuram Palace is between the months of November and March, which is the winter season in South India. During this time, the weather is pleasant with cool temperatures and low humidity, making it ideal for exploring the palace complex and its surroundings.
The summer months between April and June can be hot and humid, with temperatures often exceeding 30°C, which can make it uncomfortable for sightseeing. The monsoon season between July and October can bring heavy rainfall and strong winds, which can also hinder travel plans.
Visiting during the winter season also offers the opportunity to attend some of the local festivals and events, such as the Navaratri festival in October, which is celebrated with great pomp and show in the nearby Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple.
However, it’s important to note that the Padmanabhapuram Palace is closed on Mondays and on national holidays, so it’s best to plan your visit accordingly.
Padmanabhapuram Palace is located in the town of Padmanabhapuram, in the Kanyakumari district of Tamil Nadu, India. Here are the different ways to reach the palace:
By air: The nearest airport to Padmanabhapuram Palace is the Trivandrum International Airport, which is located about 45 kilometers away. From the airport, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to reach the palace.
By train: The nearest railway station to Padmanabhapuram Palace is the Nagercoil Junction railway station, which is located about 15 kilometers away. From the railway station, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to reach the palace.
By bus: Padmanabhapuram is well-connected by road to major cities in South India. There are regular buses from Thiruvananthapuram, Kanyakumari, and other nearby cities to Padmanabhapuram.
By car: If you are driving, you can reach Padmanabhapuram Palace by taking the NH-47 or the NH-66, which connect the town to major cities in South India.
Once you reach Padmanabhapuram, the palace is located within the town and can be easily reached by foot, auto-rickshaw, or taxi.
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