Last weekend, we had a chance to visit Jatayu Park, which is an hour away from Trivandrum airport. Jatayu Park is a massive nature park in Kerala. Jatayu Earth Center is the world’s largest bird statue or sculpture. The giant concrete statue of Jatayu was sculpted by Rajiv Anchal over 10 years at Jatayupara in Kollam District, Kerala. The colossal statue is spread over 65 acres of the multi-terrain landscape of caves, mountains, hills, and valleys. Jatayu Statue is 200 feet long,150 feet wide and 70 feet making it the largest functional bird sculpture in the world.
Radhika and I were thrilled to receive a world-class experience during our visit. Jatayu Earth Center is an example of eco-friendly and sustainable tourism. With strong vegetation, valleys, and hills, the natural aura of the place roar high even with the sculpture situated at the heart of the place. It’s easily must-visit place, if you are around Trivandrum.
Jatayu Earth Center is a concept brought up by the renowned filmmaker, art director, and sculptor Rajiv Anchal. In collaboration with the Tourism Department of Kerala, The Jatayu park project was started to promote mythology, adventure, and wellness tourism. Jatayu Earth Centre is a treat to the eyes as well as a sense of adventure for tourists.
Story of Jatayu and the importance of this place: Jatayu, in the Hindu epic, Ramayana, is the younger brother of Aruna and is a demi-god. He has the form of a vulture and is a dearest friend of Lord Rama’s father, Dhasharatha. In Ramayana, Jatayu tries to save Goddess Sita when he sees Ravana abducting her to Lanka. The personification of chivalry and valor, Jatayu risked his life to save Sita from the evil clutches of King Ravana.
After his wings were clipped off by Ravana, Jatayu lay down waiting for Lord Rama to inform him that Ravana has gone south. With the pain of Jatayu dying to save Sita, Lord Rama blessed the bird and performed his last rites. From that day on, Jatayu has been an epitome of bravery and stands for the empowerment and protection of women. The sculpture of this mythical bird at Jatayu Earth Centre sits at the spot where Jatayu took his last breath.