Karnataka is a vast state of India and a confluence of many cultures, legends and cuisines. One of the fine towns which is tagged “the temple town of Karnataka” is Udupi. Well ‘Udupi’ may ring a bell to you when it comes to food. For obvious reasons the the origins of the Udupi cuisine finds its roots here.
My travel to Udupi all happened due to a planned trip to the offbeat village of Agumbe, a little further from Udupi. With the plan of keeping it a short 3 day trip to Agumbe, Udupi was but just a stopover-But having a day in store my over curious brain thought why not explore what’s currently at hand.
Well for the place, Udupi is situated in the southwestern state of Karnataka in India- approx 430 kms from the major city of Bangalore and approx 70 kms from Mangalore. Udupi is well connected to all the major cities and town nearby and one won’t have much problems reaching here .
THINGS TO TRY OUT
- To begin with, the Udupi cuisine is one thing you shouldn’t miss. I’m sure you definitely must have come across restaurants in your locality named ‘Udupi.’ The staple Udupi cuisine consists of many of the basic South Indian dishes like Dosa, Idli and much more. The striking features of this cuisine is that it makes no use of Onion and Garlic as well as any kind of meat and fish. However they happen to use a lot of locally available veggies, beans and fruits. Good thing right!
- Malpe beach- This one is quite a famous beach in Udupi. For those water babies who just cannot end their trip without a beach visit, Malpe should be on the list. It’s a clean beach with gorgeous white sand. One can also enjoy some watersports here like parasailing, ski-ride, speed boats, etc
- St. Mary’s Island – These are a group of four islands and are also known as coconut island. These islands are most note worthy for their columnar basaltic lava formations apart from its obvious tropical beauty.
- Coin museum- Corporation Bank Heritage Museum- A trip to this museum will surely leave you in awe. On display are a variety of coins dating back to century old dynasties. This one left me enlightened on the history of the banking system in India as well.
- And of course the temples here are not to be missed. How can one do that while in the Temple Town, right? The famed Krishna temple, Chandramoulishwar temple, Anantha Padmanabha temple amongst the many should make it to your list of the must visit places in Udupi.
VISITING THE MOST FAMOUS-UDUPI SHRI KRISHNA MATHA
One of the must visit places or temples in the temple town of Udupi is the Shri Krishna matha, a temple around which the whole temple community of Udupi is based.
The temple is very ancient, being founded in the 13th century by Saint Shri. Madhwacharya. It’s dedicated to the child form of Lord krishna- Balkrishna and Dvaita matha. The legend I heard about the foundation of this temple was quiet interesting. The legend goes that Saint Madhwacharya found the statue of Balkrishna in a ball of sandalwood. It is believed that it is the same idol which was worshipped by Rukmini-the wife of Krishna and got washed away from Dwarka during the floods.
One interesting thing about this temple is that unlike the other temples, the devotees here are not able to worship the principal diety of the temple directly but is only done so by peeping in through nine holes from a silver plated window called the Navagraha Kindi.
The temple is usually thronged by huge number of devotees and people visiting Udupi make it a point to visit this temple. Many People especially come to Udupi as a pilgrimage to Shri Krishna temple.
As famous as the temple is, there are other temples within the vicinity of this temple. Just outside the temple there are lanes filled with stuff one could buy (mostly religious things) and get something home as souvenirs.
The true essence of Udupi is in this temple and it’s astonishing to see the devotion with which people come here.
HOW TO REACH UDUPI
By Air-Mangalore is the nearest airport and a private cab or state transport is easily available from there to Udupi.
By Rail-Udupi has its own railway station. And the main city can be easily reach by any local transport
By Road- Taxis, buses and state run buses are easily available. The town of Udupi can be easily gone around by road as well.
Every place we visit ends up holding a special places in some part of our heart. Visiting places such as Udupi, which holds the charm in their ages old traditions, the legacy in their believes and faith was quite some experience for me.