Udupi is the most sacred pilgrimage in the country since time immemorial. The very name Udupi would delude anyone into a land of spirituality, devotion, and divinity with Bala Sri Krishna being the deity of the town. Udupi, also known as Rajata Peetha is popularly called as the ‘temple city’ of the state. The most populous tourist attraction or the holy avenues like the Udupi Sri Krishna Mutt, Anantheshwara Temple, St. Mary’s Island, Malpe Beach, Kaapu Beach etc are the most frequently visited destinations at Udupi, But surprisingly there many more hidden delights if you wish to explore the place more deeply. Let’s explore a few of them.
It is a village in Udupi Taluk. Pajaka is the place where Dvaita philosopher Sri Madhwacharya was born. None, but it was Sri Madhwacharya who has established the very sacred Sri Krishna vigraha (statue) at the Sri Krishna Mutt which Udupi is famous for.
Pajaka is considered extremely holy by the followers of Sri Madhwacharya called the Madhwas. The sacred pilgrimage Pajaka witnesses holy poojas, sacred rituals and reciting of the scriptures every day by the Madhwa Achary’s of the town. Some of the noted places to be visited in Pajaka are the House of Sri Madhwacharya, Vasudev Teertha, Uprooted Peepal Tree spot, Temple of Sri Madhwacharya, Tulasi Brundavana, Pravachana Mandira etc.
Shree Durgadevi Temple, Kunjarugiri
Kunjaru is a hamlet in Kursaal taluk near Udupi reputed for its sanctity owing to the celebrated Durga Temple. It is on a high hillock popularly known by the names Kunjarugiri, Durgabetta, and Vimanagiri. This potent Durga ivory here was installed by none other than Lord Parashurama. This is also a place where Sri Madhwacharya has shown to the world enormous miracles in his childhood seeking the blessing of this goddess Durga in the real form.
Kudumari Falls is in Chaktikal village in Kundapura Taluk of Udupi. The waterfall is situated deep inside the forest and one needs to walk all through the thick jungle to visualize its serenity. The waterfall is around a height of 300 meters. It stands amazingly splashy amidst the gigantic western Ghats and the breathtaking green lush. The best time to visit the falls is during monsoons.
Mattu beach, the not so popularised beach very close to Udupi is relaxed, secluded beach for swimming; also popular for walks, picnics & sunset views. Occasionally, one can even find surfers around these parts. The beautiful sunlight and sunset are awe-inspiring, and due to minimal visits from people, it’s rare to find someone spend over an hour here. It remains a perfectly calm spot to roll out a carpet for and read a book in any spot where one can find shade.
Malyadi a small town in Kundapur taluk of Udupi district which houses a sanctuary which is a congregation of birds resident as well as migratory. The Malyadi bird sanctuary is a blessing for bird lovers!. It has a diversified class of rare birds like the Whistling Teals, Purple Moorhen, White Ibis, Comb duck, Cormorants, and Darters etc. If you are a nature lover and you are at Udupi then this bird sanctuary is something that you cannot avoid visiting.
Mahalinga temple at Brahmavara
Brahmavara is towards the north of Udupi. As per mythology, it is “Lord Brahma’s Vara or Ajapura” and hence named Brahmavara. It is an ancient cultural center where you can find the Mahalinga temple, constructed in the 9th century. The wall of the temple is built on the laterite stones. There is an image of Gaja-Gowri, which has been kept in Navaranga, which perhaps belongs to the Hoysala period. Tourists can cruise the beautiful backwaters around Brahmavara on local country boats.
Swarna river banks
River Swarna at Manipal offers one of the most transcendental views of sunrise and sunsets. The very captivating glimpse of this on its banks is a real visual treat and is immensely tranquilizing to the eyes and mind. The riverside is perfect in case you are looking for some soothing time with oneself like sessions of yoga or meditation. Swarna river just glows like gold with the suns rays draping on her, just meaning Swarna in the real sense. Tourists at Udupi find it hard to resist taking a wonderful morning walk along the banks of river Swarna.
Backwaters at Sasthana Kodi
In the Sasthana village, Kodi is known for the serene backwaters of the rivers in and around the area. The backwaters formed mainly by River Sita and river Kodi are scenic places. The boats here can be used to enjoy the scenery and nature. It is simply a mesmerizing and enchanting experience to cruise through the serene backwaters. A boat trip across the backwaters enjoying the spectacle greenery around will leave you in a trans for sure.
Hasta Shilpa Heritage Village
This heritage village at Manipal near Udupi is a multi-dimensional cultural project which aims to restore and conserve the nation’s cultural wealth. The Heritage Village is managed by the Hasta Shilpa Trust. It is a culture park which procures exemplary historical monuments. Over the last two decades, the trust has relocated and restored 26 structures of immense architectural merit and fine craftsmanship. This is indeed a true gesticulation of deep respect and love to the spiritual and divine aspects. Also, it emphasizes to the world on India being the country of great culture, traditions, and history at all times.
Gomateshwar Statue at Karkala
Karkala is famous for the statue of “Gommateshwara” also known as the “Gommata”. This colossal statue is carved out of a single stone. After the Shravanabelagola epic monolithic statue, it is Karkala with the second tallest statue of Gomateshwera in Karnataka which is a height of 42 feet. One has to climb a few steps to reach the statue. The view of the statue is most magnificent endowed with a blissful aura in and around the place. One can also visit the abundant Jain temples, signs, and statues located in the vicinity.
Do visit these beautiful places to discover the hidden beauty they adorn the next time you are at Udupi. If you know any such hidden gems near Udupi then do let us know in the comments below.
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