“Don’t listen to what they say, GO SEE.”
To begin this blog, I looked for an apt statement and nothing can be better than this. People travel and they tell stories, but why do you have to listen to them. Pack your bags, set your wings, travel the world and be a storyteller. No one would dare to stop you. Once it comes to exploring, India is the most beautiful country in the world. Indians as well as foreigners are tempted to visit Goa. But, do we know that Goa is not only about beaches. Just a few kilometers away from Goa, there are two destinations in Karnataka one would love to travel.
Murdeshwar – the land of Lord Shiva
Famous for the world’s second largest statue of Lord Shiva, Murdeshwar temple is located on the shore of Arabian Sea. The Murdeshwar temple is dedicated to Shiva and there is a 20-storeyed Gopura at the entrance of the temple. There is a lift inside the Gopura which takes you to the 18th floor in just Rs. 10/- From there you can enjoy the Arabian Sea view and the 123 feet tall Shiva statue. Temple is open all 7 days of the week.
Morning: 3:00 AM to 1:00 PM / Evening: 3.00 PM to 8.00 PM
How to reach Murdeshwar ?
Reaching Murdeshwar is pretty easy because of the various conveyance options available. One can travel by train or can also opt for a road trip.
- Murdeshwar By train: Murdeshwar railway station is connected to Mangalore and Mumbai. From the station, taxis, rental cars and buses are available which takes you to Murdeshwar. The railway station is just around 3 kms from the town.
- Murdeshwar By road: Reaching Murdeshwar by road is definitely a thrilling experience because of the natural beauty as well as the fresh air. There are private and state run buses from Mumbai, Mangalore, Udupi, Mysore and Goa which connects to Murdeshwar. You can also drive your own vehicle, book a cab or rent a car. It is nearest to Udupi, at a distance of 101 kms, it hardly takes 2 hours to reach Murdeshwar.
- Murdeshwar from Bangalore: It is 512 kms from Bangalore, but can easily be completed if you have good company.
- Murdeshwar from Goa: – Murdeshwar is just 200kms from Goa. It hardly takes 4 hours to reach, the roads offers abundance of scenic beauty. The best route from Goa is through Canacona, Karwar, Honnawar.
- Murdeshwar from Mangalore: it is a drive of just 3 hours from Mangalore. The distance of 156kms can be completed with zeal through Padubidri and Bhatkal.
Things to do in Murdeshwar:
There are only a few places to visit here. Murdeshwar is known for the temple and the statue. Apart from these two, one can visit the Murdeshwar Fort of Vijayanagara kings, which is near the temple complex. You can also go to Netrani Island, where they provide scuba diving. So you can enjoy some corals and colorful fishes underwater. City shopping is the best activity you can go for.
Gokarna is a small temple town in Karnataka. The Gokarna temple if dedicated to Lord Shiva also known as Mahabaleshwar. It is considered as an important stop for pilgrims, though the town is small but holds historical and mythological significance. It is one of the seven muktikshetras in India. You would surely love to explore this small temple town.
Gokarna Temple timings:
Morning – 6:00 AM to 12:30 PM | Evening – 5:00 PM to 8:00 PM
How to reach Gokarna ?
At a distance of 78 kms from Murdeshwar, this ancient place is worth visiting. Your Karnataka trip will surely be incomplete without visiting Gokarna.
- Gokarna from Goa: the nearest airport from Gokarna is Dabolim airport, which is 100kms away. So a drive from Goa is preferable because of the beautiful roads and if you are lucky, you might see a few peacocks or other species on the road.
- Gokarna from Bangalore: With a distance of 550kms, it is a 12 hour overnight journey to reach Gokarna. The Kochi-Panvel highway is just 9kms from the town.
Places to visit and things to do in Gokarna:
- Om beach– because of the unique shape of the beach through aerial view, it’s appropriately named Om beach. The Arabian Sea is a bit furious here, so it is suggested not to go deep in the water. You can sit on the beach and enjoy the breeze.
- Gokarna beach– walk a short distance from the temple to reach Gokarna beach. It is quite popular amongst the locals and pilgrims. Shivratri is celebrated with pomp and show on the beach. Though, Gokarna beach is a nice place to be at but because it is mostly crowded, cleanliness is not maintained.
- Kudle beach, Paradise beach and half-moon beach– amongst the 5 beaches of Gokarna, these three are less popular but are equally magnificent.
- Shiva cave-if you have time, you can visit the Lord Shiva cave near Kudle beach.
- Shopping– shopping in the town market is real fun. You can bargain and buy the best things.
Places to eat and rest in Gokarna:
Though there are not many options to stay and to eat, but you would really enjoy the low budget experience here.
- Prema restaurant, Gokarna town- though the restaurant looks quite shabby from outside, but you get amazing food here. Starting from pasta to Indian thalis, you will get mouthwatering dishes here.
- Namaste Café, OM beach- basically a beach shack, which gives an amazing view of the Sea, you can eat and relax as the sea breeze soothes your soul and mind.
- Hotel Shivaprasad- located in the main town, it is at walkable distance from the beaches and the temples, and it is a good option for stay in Gokarna.
- Namaste yoga farm-it is nice place to stay in Kudle beach. You can also enjoy yoga here.
- Be careful while going to the beaches in the evening, it is not risky but being careful is always a better option.
- Keep your valuables carefully, as these are crowded tourist places.
- Best time to visit are the months from October to March.
- Don’t trust strangers.
- Carry medicines, in case an emergency occur.
- Keep yourself hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
urdeshwar and Gokarna Image Gallery