Amritapuri Ashram, Kerala India
Located in the small fishing village Parayakadavu on the coast of Kerala, the Amritapuri ashram (also called the Mata Amritanandamayi Math) is one hour north of Kollam, 2.5 hours north of Trivandrum and three hours south of Kochi. Amritapuri is today a fast growing small city with about 3,000 residents. Everyone is always welcome to visit, whether as a regular long-term visitor, a one-day visiting tourist, or a serious spiritual seeker.
Amritapuri translates into 'Amma’s abode.' For many, Amritapuri is a sacred place. It is not only Amma’s main ashram, but it is also the very place where she was born and grew up as a child. The location is exactly where Amma’s parents’ old house used to stand. With time and as the number of people coming to see Amma and stay with her increased, the place started to expand. The lands around the parents’ original home were bought over the years whenever more space was needed.
The most special place is the old Krishna temple or the Kalari. It is the family’s original cowshed, which became the first place for Amma to sit and meet people. Later a few huts were built on the father’s original land, followed by the first small cement constructions. From 1988-1992, the Kali main temple was built. Amma used to give darshan there until it became too small for the growing crowds. Today, the large auditorium where the devotional singing takes place is where Amma gives darshan. It also serves as a large dining hall.
Over the years, Amritapuri has evolved in order to offer maximum basic comforts for any type of person. Many elderly people and even small babies from all over the world live in Amritapuri today.
Amma stays in Amritapuri for about 4 months every year. The best time to visit her are the months of August and September during which she usually stays there continuously. Amma usually travels outside of India in the months of April, June, July, October and November. From early December till the end of March, she usually goes on tours inside India, staying at the ashram in between. She is always at the ashram for Christmas and New Year. One should certainly check her travel schedule before planning to visit Amritapuri.
International devotees wishing to stay at the ashram need to register online. Taxi pick-up from the Trivandrum and Kochi airports can also be arranged online. To know more about staying in Amritapuri, please send us an email.
When Amma is at the ashram, she gives public darshans on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. On Monday and Friday, she holds a meditation and a question/answer session in the afternoon. Tuesday is the meditation day: Amma usually joins the meditating group late in the afternoon and offers the Prasad lunch herself to all those present.
The Indian tours
It is also always possible for international guests to be part of the Indian tours. The basic rules are to send us an email if you are not in the ashram before the tour, to be at the ashram few days before the tour starts, and to commit for the whole tour. Transportation, accommodation and food are provided. Most of the stops are at Amma’s branch-ashrams where her brahmasthanam temples are also located.
The usual tours in India are as follows:
- Just before Christmas, Amma usually visits the area of Calicut in North Kerala for about 10 days.
- In January, she usually goes on a South India tour for about 3 weeks (usually includes Trivandrum, Chennai, Madurai, Coimbatore, Pondicherry, etc.).
- From mid February onwards she usually does the North India Tour which lasts from 6 to 8 weeks (usually includes Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune, Mumbai, Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Delhi, Kolkata, etc.).
- Towards the end of April, Amma usually holds a 10-day tour in the area of Trissur, North of Kerala.