We are from Brahmavar, a beautiful town in the coastal district of Karnataka, Udupi. So, we get to drive from Bengaluru to Udupi frequently. Though Udupi is about 450 kms from our home in Bengaluru, we never got bored of the roads that lead to our hometown.
There are multiple roads to reach Udupi from Bengaluru and trust us, each one gives you a very pleasant driving experience. Whichever road you choose, you get to experience the three amazing geographical regions of Karnataka, viz, the Bayaluseeme region covering the plains of Deccan plateau, mesmerizing Malenadu region covering the Western ghats, and finally, the serene Karavali (coastal) region. The most known route is through Shiradi ghat which takes you through beautiful hill station Sakleshpur. The second route is through misty Charmadi ghat which gives you a heavenly drive through the green villages of coffee land of Karnataka, Chikkamagalur. The third route is through the peaceful Malenadu regions of Sakkarebailu, Mandagadde, Theerthahalli, and Agumbe belonging to Shimoga district. The fourth route is through the green curvy roads that pass through the coffee plantations of Chikkamagalur.
After relishing the beauty of all these roads, the fourth route became our most favorite of all. This time, we decided to visit Sringeri Sharadamba temple which is a popular temple in Karnataka. We started from home at 3.30 AM. Thanks to the less traffic of early mornings, we crossed Bengaluru in an hour and took deviation towards Hassan-Mangalore highway in Nelamangala and continued in full zoom on the well maintained highway. But, near Channarayapattana, the atmosphere turned totally foggy. It was still dark and the thick fog made the visibility to almost zero, which reduced the speed drastically. However, after some time, near Hassan, the fog density reduced and we continued towards Chikkamagalur. The road from Hassan to Chikkamagalur is not in very good condition. Be aware of the potholes which you may miss if you drive in high speed. On the way, you can also visit the popular Hoysala marvels of Belur and Halebeedu temples. By the time, we reached Chikkamagalur it was 7.30 AM. We had breakfast at Vishnu delicacy and started towards Sringeri at 8 AM.
This stretch of the route is our most favorite part of the complete trip. The road does not go through a plain boring wide highway, no concrete buildings on either sides of the road, and not many vehicles to trouble you from enjoying the drive. What you will have is a calm road which has twists and turns every 100 meters, endless stretch of beautiful green tall trees, pleasing coffee estates, closer view of cloud clad western ghats, lovely Malnadu villages in between, and an extraordinary weather. Overall, this green corridor makes you completely blend in nature. Both of us thoroughly enjoy the drive through this curvy road passing through places like Aldur > Balehonnur > Jayapura. In Jayapura, we took U turn towards Sringeri which is 20 km from here and because of narrow road, it took us few extra minutes to reach Sringeri.
Located on the banks of the river Tunga, Sringeri is one of the Taluk headquarters of Chikkamagalur district and is the sight of Sharada Peetha, the first mutt established by Aadi Shankaracharya in 8th century. The colorful and beautiful entrance tower welcomed us to tranquil temple campus consisting of Sharadamba temple, Vidyashankara temple, Aksharabhyasa hall, Sri Malahaneekareswara Temple, etc. According to the legend, Aadi Shankaracharya saw a cobra with raised head providing shelter to a frog from the hot sun. Impressed with the place where natural enemies had gone beyond their instincts, he stayed there for 12 years and established Mutt.
The Sharadamba temple is dedicated to Goddess Sharada, Goddess of wisdom and learning. Vidya Shankara Temple is an architectural marvel. Vidyaranya (Guru of founders of Vijayanagara empire Hakka- Bukka) has constructed this temple in the year 1338 AD over the tomb of his Guru, Vidyatheertha. It combines the general features of Dravidian style and Vijayanagara style with complex carvings on the walls. Another major attraction here is feeding the big fishes in the Tunga river. We also bought some puffed rice and fed the fishes and had fun.
- Sri Sharadamba Temple
6:00 A.M. to 2:00 P.M and 4:00 P.M. to 9:00 P.M.
- Sri Vidyashankara and Sri Torana Ganapati Temples
7:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. and 5:00 P.M. to 8:30 P.M.
- Sri Malahaneekareswara Temple
8:00 A.M. to 12:00 NOON and 5:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M.
- Other temples inside Srimath Complex
8.30 A.M. to 12.00 Noon and 5.00 P.M. to 7.00 P.M.
- Aksharabhyasa Timings
8.00 AM to 1.00 PM
After spending some time in the temple, we started at around 11.30 AM and proceeded towards our home via Agumbe. Agumbe is also a popular tourist spot of Karnataka. It is called the “Cherrapunji of South India” as it receives the second highest annual rainfall in India. It is also called as “King Cobra capital of India” as highest density of this snakes species is found here. Many episodes of the famous TV serial “Malgudi Days” were shot in Agumbe. Agumbe ghat road is around 11 kms and it has 16 hairpin bends which are very sharp and dangerous. After climbing down this serpentine road, we reached home at around 1 PM.
Below is the video log of our ride to this amazing temple. Please watch, provide your valuable feedback, and subscribe to our YouTube channel Steps Together.
- Route Travelled: BTM Layout > Nelamangala > Hassan highway > Belur > Chikmagalur > Aldur > Balehonnur > Jayapura > Sringeri >Agumbe
- Total Distance (To & Fro): 365 km
- Mileage (Car): 21 km/l
- Photos: Sringeri Album