Yermal – Temples of Tulu Nadu

Yermal is a village located between Padubidri and Uchila on the Udupi – Mangalore highway in Udupi District of Karnataka. It has an ancient and beautiful Sri Janardana Temple. According to the temple authorities, the main idol of Sri Janardana is supposed to have been obtained from the lotus hands of Sri Madhvacharya!

The temple also has the idols of Mahaganapati and Vaaraahi Gangapati. The Vaaraahi Ganapati idol was discovered by the temple people while on a mission on Vaaraahi.

Sri Janardana
Sri Janardana
Mahaganapati
Mahaganapati

 

Vaarahi Ganapati
Vaarahi Ganapati

The temple is in an extremely healthy condition and has been renovated regularly. Lots of spiritual activities, such as Rashi Puja, Nagamandala and others are regularly conducted in the temple.

The annual festival of the temple is held for a month during the Vrischika Masa. During this time, Bali Utsava is held during the second fortnight.

Garbha Gudi
Garbha Gudi

 

Tirtha Mantapa
Tirtha Mantapa

There are pancha bhutas that are being worshipped in the temple, including Rakteshwari and Dhoomavathy. There is a “Naga Bana” also in the temple premises where numerous naga kallu (stones) have been placed by the devotees. It is a very sacred Naga Bana.

Bhuta Sthana
Bhuta Sthana
Naga Bana
Naga Bana

The address of the temple is

Sri Janardana Temple, Yermal Village, Near Padubidri, Mangalore Udupi Highway, Udupi District, Karnataka – 574119

Temple entrance
Temple entrance

More photos of the temple can be seen here.

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Bola – Temples of Tulu Nadu

This is a placeholder article because when I visited the Mrutyunjaya Rudra Somanatha Temple at Bola on the Karkala – Udupi highway, the temple was closed. I spent some time waiting for the temple authorities to turn up, but had to get back after waiting a while. Someday I will get back and get inside the temple and collect more information. For now, all I have is some pictures taken outside the temple.

Bola temple
Bola temple
Temple entrance
Temple entrance
Entrance
Entrance
Katte
Katte
View from temple
View from temple
Naga bana
Naga bana
Naga katte
Naga katte
Scenery around temple
Scenery around temple
Scenery
Scenery

Pavanje – Temples of Tulu Nadu

Pavanje is one of the most well known villages in Tulu Nadu. It has a rich history associated with its temples and village itself. It is also one of the few villages in Tulu Nadu which has three well known temples. Pavanje has a Durga Parameshwari Temple and a Subramanya Temple but the most famous amongst the temples is the Mahalingeshwara Temple. It is the latter temple that I am writing about here.

The main deity of this temple is of course Sri Mahalingeshwara. The temple also has a Mahaganapati temple but the Ganapati idol is located outside of the main temple complex, just to the right. Such a placement is very rare in Tulu Nadu temples. In most other temples, the Ganapati idol is found right next to the main Garbha Gudi.

The temple authorities did not allow me to click the photos of the idols. But a photo was available in the temple office. Am reproducing the same in this article.

Lord Mahalingeshwara

Ganapati Gudi

The village Pavanje and the temple have a recorded history of more than 600 years. There are several inscriptions and other archaeological evidences of the temple in and around Pavanje. The Kings of the Hoysala kingdom and later the Vijayanagara kings were great patrons of this region. Several grants have been made to this temple by them. The grants made in 1397 A.D and 1438 A.D have been recorded through inscriptions at the temple.

Archaeological evidence

Inscription

The temple itself is built on top of a hillock right next to the Pavanje river. This river merges with Shambhavi river a little further down in Mulky and merges into the Arabian Ocean. The temple is constructed in typical Tulu Nadu style and offers a panoramic view of Pavanje and surroundings.

Garbha Gudi

Teertha Mantapa

The main Bhuta of this temple is Jarandaaya. The Jarandaaya daiva sthana is located at nearby Haleangadi. Other Bhutas include Rakteshwari and Koddabbu.

There is a Naga Bana associated with the temple and also a “Brahma Sthana”. In fact, the Naga and Brahma worship of Pavanje is very well known in this region.

River Pavanje

Temple Pond

Name: Pavanje Sri Mahalingeshwara Sri Mahaganapati Temple

Location: Pavanje, Mangalore, Dakshina Kannada

Dieties: Mahalingeshwara, Mahaganapati, Nagas

Bhutas: Jaarandaaya, Rakteshwari, Kaddabbu, others

Temple entrance

Naga Sthana

Address: Sri Pavanje Mahalingeshwara Mahaganapati Devasthana, Pavanje, Haleangadi Post, Mangalore Taluk, Dakshina Kannada – 574 146.

Contact: Snail mail

Annual festival: For eight days every year starting on Maha Shivaratri. The Jaarandaaya Bhuta Kola is held on the 9th day.

Nearby temples: Pavanje Subramanya Devasthana, Bappanadu Durga Parameshwari Devasthana

Temple Prangana

Specialities: During the annual festival, there is a custom that no other auspicious event should be conducted in the village. Though this is prevalent in many other villages, it is still very strictly adhered to in Pavanje.

Also, the villagers of Pavanje do not leave the village once the Jaatre starts. Even if they have to leave the village for emergency purposes, they make it a point to return before the temple flag is brought down on the last day.

More photos of the temple can be found here.

Nandalike – Temples of Tulu Nadu

Visiting Nandalike was a very interesting experience. I had not planned to cover this temple in my trip this time. I traveled a long way to visit and cover a Shiva temple located close to Nandalike. After searching that temple for over an hour, I discovered that it was closed. There was no one nearby and so I could not enter the temple. I was hugely disappointed. After spending some time looking for the temple folks, I gave up and starting driving back. On the way, I saw a temple arch to my right. My watch showed that I had about 20-25 mins of time before it got completely dark which meant no photos. I instinctively turned right and continued to drive in spite of encountering a very bad stretch of road for about 2 kms. In the end, I reached this temple and to my utter surprise found that this was a Shiva temple as well. Truly, my joy knew no bounds!

Nandalike is located on the Padubidri – Karkala highway and has an ancient and beautiful Shiva (Mahalingeshwara Temple)

Sri Mahalingeshwara
Sri Mahalingeshwara
Sri Mahaganapati
Sri Mahaganapati

It was only after landing at this place that I realized the great history and tradition of this place. In terms of folklore, history and legend, perhaps there is no other place that is as rich as Nandalike. One of the first things I realized is that I would be able to cover only a miniscule amount of what is available here. I instantly promised myself that I would come back here and spend more time to cover all the other important places. This article therefore, is only limited to the Mahalingeshwara Temple.

The temple is built in typical Tulu Nadu style and has “Gudis” for Mahalingeshwara, Mahaganapati and the Daivas. The temple has been renovated and is very well maintained. The priests and administrative heads of the temple were very co-operative and encouraging.

Garbha Gudi
Garbha Gudi
Theertha Mantapa
Theertha Mantapa

Nandalike has a huge number of Daivas. The speciality of this temple is that almost all the Daivas have their own separate abodes. In my next visit, I certainly plan to photograph those individual Gudis. The main Daivas are Uri-Brahma, Veerabhadra, Nandigona, Kumara, Abbaga-Daaraga, Khadgeshwari, Rakteshwari, Annappa, Kshetrapala, Bhutaraja and Gajamalla.

There is a lot of folklore and local legend associated with these Daivas. In fact, the legend has it that the Daivas came to Nandalike first and then they were followed by Sri Mahalingeshwara.

Prangana
Prangana
Enclosure for the temple well
Enclosure for the temple well

The main Mahalingeshwara Temple was established by the great Dvaita Saint Sri Vadiraja Swamy of the Sode Matha.

There is a Ashta Lakshmi temple nearby. The temple also has a Mahanagaraja Swamy Sannidhana right next to the Mahalingeshwara Temple.

Near the temple is the house of the local rulers, the Heggades and the Pergades. This is known as the “Chavadi Aramane”. The descendants of this family reside here even to this day and oversee the smooth functioning of the temple and festivals.

Chavadi Aramane
Chavadi Aramane

The temple is located amidst lush greenery. In fact, two sides of the temple are surrounded by a beautiful moat. The pond belonging to the temple is also extremely well maintained.

Temple pond
Temple pond
Moat around temple
Moat around temple

Name: Sri Mahalingeshwara Temple

Location: Nandalike, Udupi, Karnataka

Dieties : Sri Mahalingeshwara, Ganapati

Main Bhootas : Uri Brahma, Rakteshwari, Abbaara – Daaraga, Veerabhadra, Annappa, others

Temple administrators
Temple administrators

Address : Nandalike Sri Mahalingeshwara Devasthana, Naalku Sthana – Nandalike, Karkala Taluk, Udupi District, Karnataka – 576126

Contact : (08258) 316485, Palace: 268347, Temple : 248346

Annual festival: From Shukla Dvadashi in Meena Masa (around Feb-Mar) to Krishna Panchami. The last day is the grandest day during the Jaatre.

Nearby temples: Belmannu Durga Parameshwari, Nandikur Durga Parameshwari, Bola Mrutyunjaya Rudra Somanatha, Inna Mahalingeshwara, Mundkur Durga Parameshwari

Pilichamundi Daivasthana
Pilichamundi Daivasthana

Specialities: The chavadi (hall) in the nearby palace is a very revered place. During the annual festival, disputes between locals are settled here in the presence of the Pergade/Heggade family elders. People lying here are known to have encountered great mishaps in their lives.

The palace has a rich history of its own. The place is definitely worth a visit as a tourist destination, in addition to a spiritual center.

Another highlight about Nandalike is that the great 19th century Kannada poet Muddana was a native of this place.

More photos here.

Belmannu – Temples of Tulu Nadu

Within Tulu Nadu itself, one of the most fascinating regions, especially when it comes to Temples, is the Karkala taluk of Udupi district. Just along the Padubidri – Karkala stretch, there are tens of ancient and fascinating temples.  In my earlier visits to the region, I had covered a few like Palimaru, Mundkur, Inna and others. This time, I visited another of the beautiful temples in this stretch – the Belmannu Durga Parameshwari Temple.

Belmannu is a small village that lies almost exactly midway between Padubidri  and Karkala. It is about 12-15 kms from Padubidri after turning right on the Mangalore – Udupi highway at Padubidri. Belmannu has a Durga Parameshwari Temple.  The temple is located at the village Belmannu and one has to turn right at the village and travel a short distance to reach the temple. The most fascinating part of the temple is its location. When I was driving to the temple, I almost felt as if I was in the middle of a thick jungle. The amount of greenery surrounding the temple is unbelievable. As a matter of fact, the Durga Devi of Belmannu is known as “Vana Durga” or the “Durga of the Forest”!

Sri Durga Parameshwari
Sri Durga Parameshwari
Sri Ganapati
Sri Ganapati

Along with Sri Durga Parameshwari, the temple also has the idol of Sri Ganapati.  The temple has an amazing serenity about itself that is quite unique. The temple structure itself, looks to have been renovated a few years ago and looks very good. The Prangana is very huge and is fairly well maintained. The priests of the temple are always from the Bhargava Gotra.

Garbha Gudi
Garbha Gudi
Tirtha Mantapa
Tirtha Mantapa

Information about the temple and its history was not easy to accumulate, partly due to the absence of the temple administrators during my visit, but I hope to obtain the same some other time. The main Bhuta at the temple is Rakteshwari. In addition, there are also many other Rajan Daivas at the temple.

The Prakara
The Prakara
Another view of the Prakara
Another view of the Prakara

The annual festival happens around March-April and is held for 5 days. It starts on the day Sun enters Aries (Mesha Sankramana)

Name: Sri Durga Parameshwari Temple

Location: Belmann, Karkala Taluk, Udupi District

Main deities: Durga Parameshwari, Ganapati

Bhutas: Rakteshwari, many others

Temple entrance
Temple entrance
Temple arch
Temple arch

Address: Belmannu Sri Durgaparameshwari Temple, Belmannu Village, Padubidri Karkala Road, Karkala Taluk, Udupi District, Karnataka

Contact: Sri B M Krishna Bhat, Managing Trustee, Ph: 9241943581

Nearby Temples: Nandikur Durga Parameshwari Temple, Bola Mrutyunjaya Ruda Somanatha Temple, Nandalike Mahalingeshwara Temple

More photos here.

Greenery around temple
Greenery around temple
More greenery
More greenery

Athuru Bailu – Temples of Tulu Nadu

I know I begin almost every article on a Temple by saying its an “extra-ordinary” or “unique” temple 🙂 but trust me, that’s exactly what they are! As I continue my discovery of Tulu Nadu, my awe for this great great place only keeps increasing.

This time, I managed to cover Athuru Bailu, a tiny hamlet near Kinnigoli-Mulki. Athuru Bailu has an ancient Maha Ganapati temple. Believe it or not, this temple is actually just the God worshipped at the home of the Udupa family of Athuru Bailu! The sanctity of this place is so high that the nearby villages consider it as a temple. People who pass by the Udupa home, stop by, get into the ‘temple’, offer their prayers and only then do they move on.

Mahaganapati
Mahaganapati
Temple entrance
Temple entrance

The temple, its idol and the Udupa family have a recorded history of more than 700 years! Two Udupa brothers came down south from Kandavara in search of a better place to reside. They came along with their diety – the Mahaganapati. Local legend has it that when the two brothers were walking near Athuru, a cloud was following them to protect them from the heat. Villagers saw this and reported it to the local chieftain. He requested them to stay back in his village and asked them to choose any place they liked. When they came to the place where the temple is currently located, they found a mongoose and snake co-existing. They instantly chose the place and the temple has existed ever since.

Udupa House 1
Udupa House 1
Udupa House 2
Udupa House 2

Out of the two brothers, one of them settled down in nearby Bappanadu Sri Durgaparameshwari Temple. In fact, the Udupas of Bailu played a pivotal role in the establishment of the Bappanadu temple. Even today, during the annual festival of Bappanadu, a customary felicitation of the Udupas is done as a mark of respect.

Along with the Mahaganapati, Bailu also has the Panjurli Bhoota. It is believed that Annappa Panjurli Bhoota came down to Bailu from Dharmasthala when one of the Udupas had gone there for a visit. Trust me, the Panjurli of Bailu is one of the most powerful Bhootas in Tulu Nadu. Even to this today, during the Bhoota Kola, there is a segment when Panjurli ‘demonstrates’ his power by throwing the Udupas up from their seats and knocking them unconscious. No one except Panjurli is able to wake them up! Watch this youtube video to see what I am talking about.

Panjurli Sthana
Panjurli Sthana
Temple
Temple

The Athuru Bailu Udupa family is one of the most well known families of Tulu Nadu. They are the official astrologers for even the Kateel Sri Durga Parameshwari Temple! The almanac they bring out is the most widely circulated almanac in the entire Tulu Nadu region, and has been published for over 100 years now.

Name: Sri Athuru Bailu Mahaganapati Devasthana

Dieties: Mahaganapati

Bhootas: Panjurli, 2 other smaller ones

Address: Athuru Maagane Mahaganapati Devasthana, Shibarooru Post, Kinnigoli, Mangalore Taluk, Dakshina Kannada

Contact: Snail mail

How to get there: From Mangalore reach Mulki and turn right towards Kinnigoli. About 1km before Kinnigoli town, turn right towards Balavina Gudde. Athuru Bailu is about 5kms from this junction. Locals will accurately guide you to the temple once you take the turn.

More photos: Here

Specialities: “Appada Puje” is very famous in Bailu. Locals get this seve done very regularly. Appa is a special sweet dish, prepared for Ganapati in Tulu Nadu especially. In Appada Puje, a whole lot of ‘Appas’ are made and offered to Ganapati.

Ganesha Chaturthi is an important festival celebrated in Bailu. The Panjurli Kola is held about 3-4 times a year on important ocassions.

The Nandini river flows very close to the Udupa home. Every day, the priest has to compulsorily take bath in the river and only then worship at the temple.

Kathelsar – Temples of Tulu Nadu

Kathelsar is a tiny tiny hamlet,  found on the stretch between Nellitheertha and Bajpe. There are probably, just a few tens of houses in this village. One can find a very ancient Vishnumurthy temple in this village. In addition to the main diety, there is also a Ganapati idol in the temple. The Ganapati idol is made of white stone and is significantly different from the idols found in other temples around here.

Sri Vishnumurthy
Sri Vishnumurthy
Ganapati
Ganapati

The temple is not really in a good shape at all. The priest’s family are doing their best to maintain the temple on a daily basis. But the temple could do with a lot of renovation and repair. It is sad to see such a serene place being neglected so badly, although this is not the only temple in Tulu Nadu which is facing such a situation.

Garbha Gudi - Theertha Mantapa
Garbha Gudi - Theertha Mantapa
Prangana
Prangana

The main bhoota worshipped here is Panjurli. Due to the lack of resources, the temple management conducts the annual festival for only one day – during the full moon day in the solar month of Vrushabha (around May-June).

Panjurli
Panjurli
Entrance
Entrance

Name: Sri Vishnumurthy Devasthana

Location: Kathelsar, Dakshina Kannada

Dieties: Vishnu, Ganapati

Bhutas: Panjurli

Address: Sri Vishnumurthy Devasthana, Kathelsar Village, Bajpe Post, Mangalore Taluk, Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka

Contact: Snail mail

How to get there: Reach Bajpe from Mangalore. Take the road to Nellitheertha (Kateel road). Kathelsar is mid-way on this stretch.

Annual festival: For one day – Purnima in the solar month of Vrushabha

More photos: here

Kompadavu – Temples of Tulu Nadu

Kompadavu is a small village in Mangalore Taluk of Dakshina Kannada district. It is very close to Nellitheertha and Muchur. Kompadavu has a small and ancient Vishnu temple. The diety is actually called “Vishnu Murthy”. This temple has close links, in terms of its mythological origins to the Nellitheertha and Muchur temples.

 

Sri Vishnumurthy
Sri Vishnumurthy
Garbha Gudi
Garbha Gudi

According to the legend of the place, when Sri Durga appeared in front of Sage Jabali at the Nellitheertha cave, she bestowed a boon on the region and said that Shiva, Vishnu and Durga would reside in that region. Consequently, the Muchur Durga Parameshwari temple, the Nellitheertha Somanatha temple and the Kompadavu Vishnumurthy temple came into existence. The place is also known as Kovalapura in ancient records.

 

Prangana
Prangana

 

Theertha Mantapa
Theertha Mantapa

The temple is not in a very good condition. The worship, and rituals though, happens without fail. The archaka family which stays close by, is very dedicated to the functioning of the temple. The main Bhootas here are Vyaghra Chamundi and Rakteshwari.

 

Vyaghra Chamundi Bhoota
Vyaghra Chamundi Bhoota
Bhoota Sthana
Bhoota Sthana

Name: Sri Vishnumurthy Devasthana

Location: Kompadavu village, Mangalore Taluk

Main dieties: Vishnu

Bhutas: Vyaghra Chamundi, Rakteshwari

 

Outer prangana
Outer prangana

 

Temple entrance
Temple entrance

Address: Sri Vishnumurthy Devasthana, Kompadavu Village, Manjana Katte stop, Mangalore Taluk, Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka

Contact: Through snail mail

How to get there: From Mangalore, take the Moodabidri road. Cross Gurupura, Kaikamba and Ganjimatha. 3kms from Ganjimatha, turn left towards Niddodi. 4kms on this road, turn left at Manjana Katte. Drive 2kms to reach the temple. 

Annual festival: For 4 days starting on Purnima (full moon day) in the solar month of Makara (around Jan-Feb every year)

Best time to visit: All through the year

More photos: here

Felicitation ceremony at Nellitheertha

Recently, the annual temple festival was conducted at Nellitheertha. The 5 day festival went off very well and thousands of devotees attended the festivities. One of the key highlights of this year’s festival was the felicitation held for Sri Subramanya Tantri, the “tantri” for our temple.

Tantris are a special class of Brahmins revered in Tulu Nadu. They are a small sect of Brahmins who hold the rights to perform/conduct Jaatres or annual festivals in temples. In addition, all the major religious events in the temple are conducted under their supervision. Tantris are extremely well versed in Agama Shastras and therefore know all the correct rituals and mantras in conducting temple worship. During the annual festival, the chief priest of the temple takes a backseat and works under the supervision/guidance of the Tantri.

Over hundreds of years, the families of Tantris has branched out and consequently, they take turns in every temple. Nellitheertha has always come under the supervision of the Tantris from “Yedapadavu” which is a small town about 10kms from the village. It is said that as soon as Lord Parashurama created the Western coast (Parashurama Kshetra), the Yedapadavu tantris were the first to hold the Kamandala!!

Sri Subramanya Tantri is one of the Tantris from the Yedapadavu clan and has been coming to our temple for over 30 years. Under his expert guidance, the temple has progressed immensely and is today considered one of the must-see places of Tulu Nadu. We decided to therefore hold a small ceremony to honor this great Guru!

 

Sri Subramanya Tantri and his wife
Smt & Sri Subramanya Tantri (my mother standing beside)
Sanmana Sabha (my dad on extreme left)
Sanmana Sabha (my dad on extreme left)

The chief administrator of the Ambalpadi Janardana temple, Sri Vijay Ballal, presided over the function. Sri Sri Lakshmi Narayana Asranna, the chief priest of Sri Kateel Durga Parameshwari temple, Sri Bhuvanabhirama Udupa, Sri Bhujanga Shetty and other dignitaries were present at the ocassion.

 

Sri Baggamajalu Subramanya Tantri
Sri Baggamajalu Subramanya Tantri

 

Sri NVGK Bhat reading the certificate
Sri NVGK Bhat reading the certificate

Yours truly got to propose the vote of thanks in the end!

 

Vote of Thanks
Vote of Thanks

Shishila – Temples of Tulu Nadu

Thanks to my friends Ananthu and Bharata, I was able to obtain information and photos of the Sri Shishileshwara Temple at Shishila near Dharmasthala. This article is with their kind permission.

Shishila is a small village about 32kms from Dharmasthala in Dakshina Kannada district. It has a beautiful Shiva Temple. It is believed that the idol, in the form of a Linga, surfaced on its own and was never established by anyone (Udbhava Linga). The temple is on the banks of the river Kapila (a small river which later merges with Netravati).

img_2321
Shishila Temple

 

Temple entrance
Temple entrance

The main deity here is Sri Shishileshwara. Along with this, idols of Sri Durga and Mahaganapati are also present. Due to Ananth’s visit during noon, the temple doors were closed and therefore the photographs of the idols could not be obtained.

 

Nandi
Nandi

 

Garbha Gudi
Garbha Gudi

The main bhootas in this temple are Pili Chamundi, Rakteshwari and Rudrandi.

Address: Sri Shishileshwara Temple, Shishila, Belthangadi Taluk, Dakshina Kannada – 574198

How to get there: From Dharmasthala, take the road towards Kokkada and travel 16kms. On the Kokkada-Shibaje road, turn towards Shibaje and travel a further 16kms to reach Shishila.

Contact: by snail mail

 

Bhutas
Bhutas

 

 

 

Inscription
Inscription

Sightseeing: There are many scenic places around the Shishila temple that is a nature lover’s delight. Kumara hill, Meena Gundi, Kavina Kana, Remnants of an old fort and other places are all very close to Shishila.

img_2342