Sahasralinga and Marikamba Temple
After having a nice and deep sleep, we woke up to a pleasant cold morning. Our today’s plan included to cover the major attractions in and around Sirsi (Sahasralinga, Marikamba Temple, Banavasi, Unchalli Falls) and then, Jog Falls and Keladi Temple on our way back to Bangalore.
Since we had a long day to go, we quickly got ready and had tasty breakfast at the hotel where we stayed (hotel Madhuvana) and started at 7.45 AM towards our first destination, Sahasralinga. We reached there at 8.15 AM. The road to Sahasralinga was amazing with dense green forests on both the sides. Little bit of drizzling and very less traffic on the road made the route even more scenic.
- Parking fee: 20 Rs (four wheeler)
- Timings: 7.30 AM to 6 PM
Sahasralinga is a popular pilgrimage place for the people of Karnataka and it gets its name from the number of Lingas that you can see in the place. In Kannada, Sahasra means thousand. According to locals, there are around a thousand Lingas under the waters of the river Shalmala and on the river banks. You need to go a few steps down the parking lot to see these Lingas carved on almost all the rocks in the river. You can also see the Nandi (bull) built in front of many Lingas. This makes the place a unique one. The river flows through the thick forests of Malenadu and hence one can notice lush greenery throughout the year.
If you walk a little further from the parking lot, you can also find a beautiful hanging bridge. Walk on the bridge to experience the panoramic view of the river, the Lingas, and the surrounding beautiful nature. Since we went early in the morning, there were hardly any people and we could spend a peaceful time there.
We came back to our room at around 9.15 AM and checked out and headed towards the famous Marikamba Temple.
- Timings: 6 AM to 9 PM
- Parking fee: 20 Rs
Marikamba temple is dedicated to Goddess Durga and is present in the center of Sirsi town. The temple is also called as Doddamma temple. It is built in the year 1688 houses the idol of the fierce form of the goddess Durga with eight arms, riding on a tiger and killing a demon. The temple looks very different from the usual temple architecture. It looks like a very big house from the outside and the beautiful red paintings on the walls of this temple make it one of its kind. The interior of the temple is huge making it accommodate a large number of pilgrims. The Marikamba Jatra is held every alternate year in the month of February is said to be the most famous and biggest fair (jaatre) of Karnataka.
We spent time in Marikamba temple till 10.30 AM and then headed towards our next destination, Banavasi.
- Route Travelled: Sirsi > Sahasra Linga > Marikamba Temple
- Photos: Sirsi Album