Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Mookambika Temple, Kollur

If you are a Hindu Malayali, the chances of you visiting the Mookambika Devi Temple at least once in your lifetime are pretty high. The temple may geographically lie in Kollur, Karnataka, but you will easily mistake it to be somewhere in the lush green mystic mountains of Kerala. The chances of hearing Kannada voices here are as remote as the sun setting in the east.
The presiding deity here is Goddess Mookambika, believed to be the manifestation of Shakti, Saraswathi and Mahalakshmi. This temple is also considered to be one among the Seven Muktisthala pilgrim centers in Karanataka along with Udupi, Subramanya, Kumbashi, Koteshwara, Sankaranarayana and Gokarna. Another significance of this temple is that Sage Adi Shankaracharya is believed to have perceived the idea of setting the temple here by installing the idol himself, some 1200 years ago.
The temple is situated at the foot of the Kodachadri Hills and on the banks of River Sauparnika. If you have a day to kill, you can consider a trek to Kodachadri peak. There are all-weather Jeeps that take you to the peak. We however kept this trek for a later date.
The Mookambika Devi is also a favourite for Vidyaramba. A lot of small kids are initiated into education  here by writing in a platter of rice. The temple can get really crowded in the mornings and late evenings, as there is a steady influx of devotees. So you might want to go during the "non-peak" hours.

Getting-there: 60kms from Murudeshwar. 420 kms from Bangalore. Buses are available from both locations to Kollur.

Must-Do: There's a clothes regulation here. You cannot enter the shrine wearing, shorts or three-fourths. Men have to be bare-chested.

My Rating: 6/10

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