I started my trip to Murudeshwara from Bangalore on a Friday night, taking a private-run bus to reach temple town directly. Located at a distance of 512 kms from Bangalore, taking an overnight bus journey is quite an inexpensive yet comfortable and safe option to travel to this divine destination. After reaching there early morning, around 7 the next day, I headed straight towards my sea facing hotel that I had booked in advance. There are all kinds of hotels and lodging options dotting the town and getting a good place for a short stay is not very difficult. I took an auto from the bus stand to reach my hotel, refreshed up and had a sumptuous breakfast. Enjoying the fresh morning breeze, I left for the famous Murudeshwara temple.
Tallest Temple Tower (Gopuram) – The tallest temple tower with an approx height of 249 ft of Murudeshwar had left me mesmerized by the beauty it encapsulates. Another really fascinating feature is the elevator facility at the entrance gate to reach the top floor of the gopura. Capturing the sight of the surroundings from a magnificent height and from the small hill - Kanduka Giri on which the temple is located is certainly a splendid and unforgettable memory of my entire trip. I was really awestruck by the sheer magnamity of the statue of Lord Shiva.
The legendary tale behind the construction of the Murudeshwara temple is associated with Hindu Epic Ramayana. When Ravana was carrying the Atma Lingam from Mount Kailash to Lanka, Lord Ganesh appeared before him and tried to trick him owing to which the Linga was put down on the ground at Gokarna. Ravana got angry when he understood Ganesha’s trick and tried to uproot and destroy the linga. Some of the broken pieces of Linga were thrown off and the cloth covering the linga fell at the Kanduka Giri hill- where the present day Murudeshwara temple stands.
Besides the religious significance of the Murudeshwara temple, the 360 degree views of the captivating surroundings from the temple make it worth a visit. The intricate carvings of the temple tower further lend an immaculate touch of beauty to the sanctity of the place.
Statue Park - After visiting the sacred temple, I headed straight to the Statue Park - another famous attraction of Murudeshwara. The gigantic statue of Lord Shiva, estimated to be of 15 meters height, standing tall right before my eyes was a sight to behold. While taking a stroll around the beautifully-landscaped park, I started clicking pictures, posing in front of the artificial waterfall-flowing over the rocks and boulders and stone sculptures to capture the exquisiteness in my camera lens forever.
Kadavinakatta Dam - Post the Statue Park Visit, I wandered about in the busy street and stopped for lunch at a small yet cozy restaurant serving delicious Udupi cuisine. In the afternoon, I decided to head to the Kadavinakatta Dam built over the river Venkatapur in the port town of Bhatkal. The green hills enclosing the dam and enveloping mist around the gushing waters of the dam makes for a surreal view. There lies a temple dedicated to Goddess Durga at the bank of the dam and I decided to spend some time there.
Shopping & Beach Fun at Murudeshwara - In the evening, I explored the by-lanes and busy streets of Murudeshwara and did some shopping of local stuff, buying pretty handicraft items and some indigenous jewelry. After a hectic day, I walked towards the Murudeshwara beach to watch the sun go down while taking pleasure in the inviting aura of the pristine beach. The sea waves splashing against the temple borders on all three sides enhance the aesthetic appeal of this pilgrimage centre further.