Navabashanam – Devipattinam
Navabashanam (Nava meaning nine and Bashanam meaning stones) is a Hindu temple located in Devipattinam. Devipattinam is an ancient coastal town and port located in Ramanathapuram district.
The temple is dedicated to the nine planetary deities known as Navagrahas followed in Hinduism. The temple was originally maintained and administered by the Sivaganga Devasthanam till 2012, until it was taken up by the Hindu Religious and Endowment Board of the Government of Tamil Nadu.
Location of the Temple
Navabashanam is a Hindu pilgrimage centre located in the Bay of Bengal. The image of the Navagrahas is located in a matrix arrangement in the waters. There is an entrance arch in the shores and a pathway of around 100 yards (91 metres) leading to the sanctum. A pathway and four stepways lead to the waters in four cardinal directions. The nine stones representing the nine planetary deities can be viewed depending on the water levels.
The place also has a temple dedicated to Devi, who is said to have killed the demon Mahishasura at this place.
Legend & History of the Temple
According to the legend associated with the temple, it is believed that Lord Rama (an incarnation of Maha Vishnu) performed the Hindu ritual of worshipping Navagrahas at Navabashanam, before taking a march to Lanka to rescue Sita from the demon King Ravana. Lord Rama is said to have made the Navagrahas out of clay and installed it at Navabashanam.
Timings & Festivals of the Temple
The temple is open on all days from 4:30 AM to 6:30 PM. The major festivals observed in the temple are Aadi Amavasai (July-August), Pournami day in the month of Aadi (July-August) and Thai Amavasai (January-February). Devotees throng the temple during these days.
This place is commonly visited by devotees who perform religious rites for their ancestors. It is also a practice to offer different types of grains specific to each of the nine planets. The temple allows the devotees to offer and do their own worship on the images of Navagrahas.
How to reach
Navabashanam is a popular sacred destination in Devipattinam which is located 66 kilometres on the East Coast Road and at a distance of 14 kilometres from the district head quarter Ramanathapuram. Ramanathapuram is well connected by road and rail to all major cities of the state. Madurai Airport is the nearest terminal, around 120 kilometres from Ramanathapuram. Tuticorin Airport is located around 125 kilometres from Ramanathapuram.