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Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Coastal Odyssey: Gokarna Beach & Om Beach



The road journey that we had embarked on from Karwar to south of the the western coast was proving to be one of my best exploration adventure,I knew the beaches along the coast are very good but I had never expected to come across such quite,serene and enigmatic temple of SRI LAXMINARAYAN MAHAMAYA TEMPLE ANKOLA ( click on this link if you want to read about laxminarayan mahamaya temple) , Sitting at the steps near the temple I was all but in a trance, never wanted to take away my eyes away from such beautiful temple.


I was zapped by the beauty of this temple

Seeing me transfixed my wife tapped on my shoulder and said "Ab yehan rahkar sanyas lene ka vichar to nahi na" I smiled and said "Sanyas aur mai, arre abhi toh aur kitni manzile mera intezaar kar rahi hai " saying this we all moved into our car searching for the next destination, Koi Bola tha na ki aage beach hai....toh Chalo phir.It has began to rain again, but we were all enjoying every moment of it.


Idyllic and mystical drive



We again took to the highway NH17 and started moving toward south, the signboards were suggesting that our next destination should be Gokarna beach,Om beach, Kudle Beach.Actually we were given to understand by a local person that beaches were in a row along the coast so one can easily cover them all.It has started raining again and overcast climate is always so idyllic and mystical.






Coastal roads offer a spectrum of beautiful shades of nature that "yeh dil mange more ", I honestly wanted to get out of the car and enjoy the bounty of the nature 




Bounty of nature

but Oh, My time constraint ! and this thought actually reminded me of the beautiful lines of poem which  played out in my mind 

What is this life full of care
We have no time to stand and stare.






I know only one thing,

Manzilon ka kaam hai pukarna,
Aur Musafir ka kaam hai chalna,
Isiliya ,Mai toh chala 
Jider chale rasta.


Moving in towards the Gokarana beach

So taking a right turn from the Highway we moved on to the narrow lanes of village to take us to the Gokarna Beach and little ahead we saw this board leading us to the beach.





Once we reached the village the lanes kept getting narrower as some festival was going on. Gokarna is known to be a holy town. As one of the local said that this town has a historical reverence and the name is derived from Go (Holy Cow) and Karna (Ear). I for one takes these thing with a pinch of salt.Gokarna has some fantastic temples as my visit was short so I decided next time I will catch the temples.For now its only beaches.




Only beaches for me 

So Gokarna Beach here I come. I was told that Gokarna Beach is very secluded and lesser visited one, but surprisingly when we reached the beach I found it quite crowded.



Gokarna Beach, 
look out for the large numbers of tourist car parked.


Many tourist buses and car, probably from Bangalore or Kumta were there. In order to buy my peace of mind,I decided to go about exploring, where the crowd was sparse.


Mai toh chala jider chale raasta

Hence I walked along the coastal village, toward a small hill nearby.



Typical Coastal Village


We slowly started to move  towards the hillock which had a regular stairs leading all the way up , So just a gentle climb of 10 minutes and we were on top.

Catching the view as we were climbing

Once reaching the top we find there is a small temple and a viewing point which offers a good vantage point to have a amazing views of the beaches nearby.

Viewing Gallery




View of beaches nearby





Another view from the top

Standing atop the hillock we could see the extended coastline and at the farthest point I could see a small pink temple and I had now set my eyes to go and check out what it is.





So quickly we trekked down the hill and resumed our journey toward that pinkish temple at the end of the coastline. Luckily for us one can drive till that small temple.The thrill of exploring each nook and corner is such,that you come across things which surprises you.



Small temple in a small town

Entering through this gate I saw this lovely pool with some young boys diving and enjoying the cool waters.



Small pool in front of the temple
Now this is what I call cool surprise
Ram Temple
The view from behind this temple was also very nice,we sat on the rocks enjoying the cool breeze and watching sea water hitting out at the rocks tirelessly again and again


We enjoyed sitting on the rocks and enjoying the sea.

It was now time for us to move on to our next destination and it was Kudle beach and Om beach.


Kudle Beach
Actually all these beaches are very close to each other. In fact they appeared little further because the road takes a longer route. As we were moving through this serpentine roads the sky was again threatening us with an another downpour.

The gathering clouds

Some day I would love to trek along the coast and explore the the beaches, that would definitely be an experience.We didn't go down to Kudle beach instead only had the top view, we stood on the road and absorbed the beauty of the place before moving on to the Om beach. A little drive and we were standing at the entrance of the Om Beach.


Entrance of the Om Beach

Now this was interesting because in order to go to Om beach one has to climb down the stairs.We parked our car and started to move from this point to the beach below.

First view of the Om beach

This is the way to go down to the beach.


Stairs leading to the beach

Om Beach is so called because of the om shape of the beach.

Om shaped Om beach
Om beach is very popular among the foreigners, now that was what I was told of and it is very famous for booze party.  In the same breath I was informed to be very careful as the beach is full of drug addicts.As I had no plans to stay here so missed the opportunity to have the first hand experience. Talking of the beach , it was indeed very beautiful and the rocks had this peculiar colour.
  
Coloured Rocks



I was also informed that the police is very vigilant and they check the autos or taxi plying in, to check the tourist if they are carry drugs or narcotics. Luckily for me I didn't come across any such incident.



With such beautiful sight before you its hard not to spend some time clicking pictures and as they say a picture is worth thousand words , hence I shall be sharing few pictures now.






 

After spending some splendid time here with my daughter and wife and our lovely host Vijayji and his daughter it was time to move on to somewhere in the town of Mirjan. To explore another forgotten legacy known as Mirjan Fort  (Click on this link if you want to read our next adventure at Mirjan Fort)


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