Shalitha Sasi recommends Amritapuri
You are sitting on the seashore, feeling the brisk winds, listening to the wild waves and watching the sun dipping behind a vast ocean, splashing ethereal hues across the sky as it goes down. The perfect sunset brings inner peace. At Amritapuri you can open yourself to the spiritual beauty of nature.
In case you’re wondering, Amritapuri is located on the western coast of South India, in the state of Kerala, described as ‘God’s own country’. It is the birthplace of Mata Amritanandamayi Devi, the spiritual leader who is fondly called ‘Amma’ (meaning mother). For some, she is the epitome of love and compassion, and devotees from all over visit the Ashram to receive Amma’s ‘Darshan’ (blessing). Many have even abandoned their materialistic lives to join it.
Amritapuri is an illustration of the ancient, Indian ideal where the whole world is one family.
The Ashram is situated on an island cradled between the Arabian Sea and the Kayamkulam backwaters. Whilst the ocean speaks of heavenly beauty and the wilderness beneath its calm surface; the lake transcends peace and tranquility. This is a place where you can detach from the busy world and discover the rhythms of nature. A breezy walk along the lake, the mesmerising sunrise and sunset, the moon casting silver ripples on the water, the mystery of monsoon clouds, the fluttering birds or the floating jellyfish – every moment is a source of immense pleasure. At Amritapuri, you can enlighten yourself with yoga, meditation, mythology, an ecology centre and other welfare activities. Whether you are a disciple, student or just a visitor, the air of Amritapuri can leave you feeling enriched and enchanted for life.
My favourite place
The beach because the ocean tells a million stories. It goes wild during the monsoon season with huge waves and heavy clouds gathering overhead.
The place bustles with cultural activities during Amma’s birthday, which is celebrated on September 27. Karthika festival is celebrated every month when the whole place is decorated with lamps in the evening.
Amritapuri teaches living a simple and meaningful life. As such, the accommodation facilities are not luxurious. However five-star hotels are within reach at the nearest town.
There are a lot of gift shops that promote handicrafts, embroidered bags, accessories, herbs and natural products. Books and CDs from the Ashram are also available.
Where to stay
Accommodation is available at the Ashram and is very economical. However three-star and five-star hotels are available in the nearby towns Karunagapally or Kollam.