The Kukke Subramanya Temple in Subramanya village of Dakshina Kannada is a temple of ironies. Devotees from across the country come here to get rid of their Sarpa Dosa (Serpeant Curse). And yet this temple can into existence because Vasuki, the King of Snakes, wanted to protect his ilk from the wrath of Garuda. Vasuki earnestly prayed to Lord Shiva who sent Subramanya to Vasuki as a reward for his penance. Subramanya has ever since been worshipped as the protector of snakes. And that’s not the only irony. The temple houses a silver Garuda tower which is believed to be erected to protect devotees from the poisonous fumes of Vasuki’s breath. Another interesting tidbit about this temple is that devotees enter the courtyard from the back and go round to east-facing entrance.
Interesting tidbits and anecdotes and mythology aside, the Kukke Subramanya temple is a must-visit in the pilgrimage circuit of Karnataka and South India. The majestic Kumara Parvatha in the background, the pristine Kumara Dhara river flowing by the temple and quaint little temple town nestled in the Western Ghats is worth a visit. Subramanya is easily accessible from Bangalore, Mangalore and Hassan. Trekking enthusiasts and devotees arrive here in large numbers. Whether it’s trekking in nature’s lap in the most grueling way or getting rid of Sarpa Dosas from this life or the previous or just getting away from the monotonous city life to a relaxing weekend filled with devotion and nature’s abundant beauty, Kukke Subramanya is one of the ideal locations to fulfill your need.
Getting-there: Overnight buses are available from Bangalore to Subramanya town. There is also a railway station at Subramanya.
Must-Do: Take a dip in Kumara Dhara before entering the temple.
My Rating: 6/10