When it comes to planning a trip to South India most of the Indian's first choice is Kerala , and indeed its a one of the beautiful place , but in my short 6 days itinerary I will present you a different south India. Which is beautiful , peaceful , religious and full of cultural fragrances. So pack your bags and be ready to witness the rainbow of an Indian culture through a road trip. This itinerary starts from Karwar and ends in Bangalore. Route is as follows- Mumbai->Karwar->Gokarna->Murudeshwar->Udupi->Mangluru->Bangalore.
As it's a road trip and journey starts from Karwar so best way to reach Karwar is by train. Then hire / self drive a car further and at last reach to Mangluru and then board train for Bangalore. After reaching Bangalore you can fly back or can catch a train to your destination.
Approximate travelling cost is - 10000/- ( From Mumbai to Mumbai, and may change slightly depending upon your choice of mode of transportation)
What you can expect
Beautiful beaches (most of the time you will be driving parallel to coast line), delicious food , temples, festivals and fresh air.
Itinerary: Karwar(1 night stay) Murudeshwar (1 night stay), Udupi (2 nights stay))-( Bangalore-1 Night Stay)
Board the train from Mumbai early morning and reach karwar late evening ( It takes approximately 11-12 hours), in train do not forget to eat Banana Pakoda provided by Indian Railways. After reaching karwar check in and relax in your hotel. You can select hotel according to your budget. Some suggested hotels are Sterling Karwar and Citrus Karwar. For Dinner try Fish Food and South Indian Thali.
You can check out more stay options here.
Mornings in any South Indian town is incomplete without a cup of filter coffee and idly so start your day with healthy breakfast and explore some virgin beaches and monuments here. List of some tourist places are- Tagore beach , warship Museum, Karwar beach etc.
Next proceed to Gokarna, a small temple town on the western coast of India and which is one of the important Hindu pilgrimage center. Go-karna is approximately 61 km from karwar and is very famous for its clean beaches and temples. Its virgin beaches, beautiful old temples and specifically the om-shape beach will give your lenses enough work. Temple known as Mahabaleshwar Temple built in 4th-century and is having very importance place in Hindu religion.
What to buy- Visit local flea market.
Then proceed to Jog Fall, one of the highest plunge waterfalls in India, which is situated approximately 122 Km from Gokarna. Twisted roads , dense forest and cool breeze will make sure that you enjoy this 3 hour journey to witness one of the highest plunge water fall in India. If you are visiting in monsoon you can witness the gushing water.
What to See - View of water fall
Where to eat- Hotel Mayura , situated at Jog Fall view point.
After Jog fall proceed to Murudeshwar, which is almost 98 Km from Jog fall and takes approximately 2 hours. Murudeshwar is famous for its second largest statue of Shiva in the world and the Shiv temple.
As you will reach here late in the evening, you can witness the evening prayers and twinkling lights surrounding huge Shiva statue. Picture perfect location , prayers at the background and cool breeze will take away all your tiredness of travel. Feel the presence of divine Shiva blessing and go through the rich mythological stories during visiting beautiful carved statues. Then check in the hotel and relax. Next day explore the temple area and take some beautiful picture of architectural marvels made by man.
Where to stay- RNS Highway Hotel
Things to do- Murudeshwar Temple, Beach.
Next day revisit the temple and beach site to witness its beauty in day light.
Then process to Udupi, one more religious town and one of the best route in whole trip. Most of the roads are parallel to sea.
Wide coastal line and crystal clear water will give you feel of any foreign country. Get down any where to enjoy sun , sand and coconut water. After almost 2 hours journey you will reach to a very famous temple of Lord Ganesha known as Aanegudde Shree Vinayaka Temple at Kumbhashi. After taking blessing of Lord Ganesha proceed for Udupi.
Udupi is a religious town and having a significant importance in Hindu culture and the world famous temple of Sri Krishna Math is must visit dedicated to lord Krishna. If you are lucky you can also witness the religious festivals. For more details visit http://www.udipikrishnamutt.com/.
Where to Stay- You can check out more stay options here. Recommended is Hotel Shrikrishna Residency.
Where to Eat- Woodlands Restaurant
What to Eat- Pineapple Sheera ( Sweet Dish)
Visit to any place is incomplete till you know the actual culture of that place so I decided to visit a small locality known as Manipal. University situated here is one of the most famous universities in India, so do not miss the opportunity to witness the campus of this university as well as try to take help from any local to visit a traditional house, as I have done. Lush green back yards, spices gardens and a beautiful clean house will surely mesmerize you and if possible also have lunch with locals or in any traditional hotel like Pangala Restaurant, Manipal.
Then in the evening proceed to St. Mary or popular known as crystal Island. Its a beautiful Island and journey to this Island is as beautiful as this Island. You need to reach this place by a boat. The reason why this Island known as Crystal Island is because of its shining sand and natural basaltic formations. During sunset it looks amazing and you can capture some beautiful snaps here.
Then in late evening you can take stroll on any near by Udupi Beach.
After witnessing the natural beauty next day gain get ready to soak into the divine blessings from Loard Shiva and Lord Bahubali and proceed to Dharmasthala , which is again a very famous destination having religious importance. For more details click here.
Most unique about Dharmasthala is that it is run by Jain administration and its houses of the shrine of Shiva, Manjunatha, Ammanavaru, Chandranath and the Dharma Daivas. You may have to wait little bit to take the blessings as this place is full of devotees year round. After darshan do not miss to visit the Manjusha Museum and Shri Bhagwan Bahubali monolithic statue. Then take "Prasadam" ( Lunch).
After lunch proceed to Mangaluru, which will take approximately 2 hours. Take a quick break for evening tea and try Mangaluru specialty "Mangalore Bun" with your tea/coffee.Then board your train for Bangaluru, the last stop of your journey.
You started your journey from small town of Karnataka and will be ending in biggest city of Karnataka , Bangalore, also known as city of gardens. After reaching early in the morning check in into your hotel and explore this cosmopolitan city. Malls , Restaurants, Pubs , Metro everything will bring you back into a city life after a divine sojourn. You can visit various places listed below depending on your time and interest.
Things to see-
Venkatappa Art Gallery.
Tipu Sultan Fort and Palace.
Lalbagh Glass House
Bangalore Turf Club
Where to Stay- You can book any stay depending on your budget. Check some here
What to Shop- Sandalwood items.
What to eat- South Indian Thali but if you till now if are bored of south Indian food try any other food.
After sightseeing, late evening board your train or flight for your return journey.
I am sure you can not get so many variants in a single trip. So if you are looking to see the real India back your bags and get ready......till than Sayonara...........
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