A spiritual Journey – Kollur and Kodachadri Hills
Brief description about Kollur
Kollur is one of the seven pilgrimages which were created by Parashurama. It is is situated at the banks of the river Sauparnika and surrounded by thick forest.
Kollur is north of Udupi (100 km from Udupi) and around 176 km from Mangalore Railway station. Here we see the famous temple Mookambika at the foot hill known as Kodachadri. The Sowparnika River that originates on the hill flows past the temple
My journey from 6th June to 10th June, 2015
6th June, 2015
My trip to these locations was not scheduled. On the 6th (Saturday) morning, I took the Coimbatore-Mangalore train at 6.30am and reached Mangalore around 1.15 pm. The hotel folks had organised a pick me up from the Mangalore Station. It costs around Rs.2700/- to get dropped in Kollur.
On reaching I checked in at Hotel Beena Residency at 4.15. It is a three hours drive from Mangalore Station to Kollur. Since I had stayed at this hotel last year, they were kind enough to give a room even though they were over booked being a weekend.
Mookambika Temple opening and closing details:
Morning: 5 am to 1.30 pm
Evening: 3 pm to 9.30 pm
After taking a bath around 5.30 pm I went to the temple. It is 2 mints walk from the hotel.
Being Saturday, it was slightly crowed. However, I managed to get into the temple and had a very good darshan. After darshan, by sitting inside the temple I recited Lalitha Sahasranam and Vishnu Sahasranam. It took 40 to 45 minutes for me to complete and I returned to the hotel.
Brief description about the temple
The skanda purana describes the glory of this holy place and how a sage named kola did penance here. Devi Adi Shakti, who vanquished the demon Mukasura, was praised by the devas as Mookambika. It is also said that the panchaloha idol of the Devi and Sri Chakra were installed by Sri Adi Shankara himself and he had also set up the methods for the various rituals and worship. . It is understood that many yogis and sages have performed austeritie at this holy place.
The temple houses a swayambhu lingam worshiped as the form of Shiv Shakti. The devoted accept that all three firms of shakti namely Mahakali, Mahasaraswati and Mahalakshi are housed in this sacred image of Mookambika. The image of the devi holds a conch and chakra and shown the hand gesture of blessings and freedom from fear. Onc can also see the images of Kali and Saraswati nereby the main deity. Also in this temple are enshrined images of Vinayaka with ten hands, Anjaneya. Virabhadra, Siva, and
It is quite difficult to get good food in Kollur as this being a small temple town. There are only two good places one being Mookamabika Palace and Beena Residency (where I stayed). Since the choice ares very limited, I had a nice dinner at Mookambika Palace and hit the bed around 9.30 pm.
7th June, 2015
Got up around 4 am and after completing my routine activities I went and stood in the line around 4.,30 am. By the time the temple opened, it was quite crowded being Sunday. Normally the temple is crowded on Fridays thru Sundays.
I entered the temple around 5.15 am and as usual had a very good darshan. I could stand in front of the idol for around 10 minutes. Thereafter I sat inside the temple and recited Lalitha Sahasranam and Vishnu Sahasranam. I got back to my hotel around 6.,30 am. Thereafter I managed to get some Kerala breakfast in one of the kerala hotels. After that I went and enquired about trip to Kodachadri Hills. Only jeeps are allowed to take one to Kodachadri hills. All such jeeps are parked in front of the Kollur Police Station and they take minimum 8 people in one jeep. If one hires the entire jeep, the cost works out to be Rs.2700 to Rs.2800/ otherwise the jeep people charge an individual an amount of Rs.350/- per trip. Hence I went and registered myself. After 10 minutes or so, they managed to get 6 more people and we left around 7 am.
Kodachadri hill is on Kollur-Shimogha-Bangalore national highway. After 12 kms, one needs to take a deviation at Nettur to Kodachadri hills. From this point, the base of the bill is around 2 km but this 2 km ride took around one hour. There is no proper road as this being through forest. It was very bumpy.
After reaching the base camp, we started our treak. It was very windy and misty. First temple we covered was Kalabharavi and a devi temple. Thereafter we visited one more a kali temple which is the moolastam (means original place where devi sat), I don’t know whether this true or not.
Thereafter we started the trek and it was comfortable for sometime. but after sometime, I found it very difficult. One point I thought I should be return to the base as the path was very narrow and windy/misty. Due to my enthu I decided not to surrender and moved on. Then we saw a small cave where we saw a ganesh idol and pooja being conducted on a regular basis.
While climbing I was thinking why did Adi Shankara has to come all the way here and did meditation. After struggling a lot I managed to reach the Shankafra Simhasna.
Located in the scenic western ghats, Kodachadri (1343 m) is around 14 to 15 km away from this temple. It is here the Devi Adi Shakti is said to have also appeared before Adi shankara . The stone seat called the shankara simhasana is revered by devotees who meditate near it to receive the blessings of the guru. Adi shankara is said to have meditated here.
It is a mind blowing place. After reaching the place, I understood why Adi Shankara selected this place. After reaching this place, one could feel the high positive energy created at this place and feel the vibration.
After doing my prayers, we returned to the base camp. Immediately after getting into the jeep, the rain had started. Around 2 pm we reached Kollur. Since it was feeling hungry, I had a kerala lunch at Beena Residency. It was a very good Kerala lunch..
In the evening, around 5.30 pm after taking a batch I went to the temple for my evening prayers. It was crowded. However, I could manage to enter the temple without much problem. As usual did my prayers by reciting Lalitha Sahasranam and Vishnu Sahasranam. and returned to the hotel around 7 pm. Since the lunch was very heavy, I skipped my dinner and hit the bed around 9.30 am.
8th June, 2015
As usual got up at 4 am. After taking my bath I stood in the line around 4.45 am. To my surprise, there were 10 to 15 devotees in the line. Absolutely there were no crowd being Monday. After my prayers I reached back to my room around 7.30. Then the question was where to have the breakfast. Only option was to visit Mookambika Palace. Went had a good breakfast and returned the room.
Then I was debating within myself to stay one day( 9th June) at Udupi and have a darshan in the Krishna Temple which is very famous. I immediately called up and booked a room in Upupi Resiency near the bus stand otherwise I was supposed to stay one more day in Kollur. I too informed the hotel authorities at Kollur about my check out program.
Since there was nothing much to do after, I decided to have lunch in the temple itself. Every day the temple conducts ANNADHANAM in the morning and in the night. There is saying that “if one visit this temple, one needs to have the food in the temple itself. The food is treat as Prasadam”. This is the practice followed in all temples in this area of Karnataka. This includes Subramanya, Udupi, Dharmsala, and Annapurnaeswari temples. They start the lunch around 12 noon till 3 pm. I came to know that every day in the morning around 5000 people eat and in the night around 3000. The food was excellent. As per their custom, after serving rice, they serve rasam first, then sambar and then butter milk. They too serve payasam. Every thing is limited – no second serving.
After lunch I went to the room and took a break till 5 pm. Around 5.30 pm I went into the temple and did my prayers and was back around 7.30 pm in my room. Around 9.30 I went to sleep.
9th June, 2015
I was up at 4 am and packed my bag. Thereafter I went to the temple around 5.15 am. As usual did my prayers and back into the room around 7.00 am. After having my breakfast I left for Udupi. In fact I took a bus (8.00 am) from the Udupi bus stand for which I paid an amount of Rs.75/-. I took around 1.30 hours to reach Uduipi.
Around 9.30 am I reached Udupi. Since Hotel Udupi Residency was very close to the bus stand, it took five minutes for me to reach the hotel and check in. I was wondering what to do next. Then I happened to put on the TV and the news of Mr. Tomar, ex-Law minister of New Delhi was going on. I watched the TV till 12.30 pm. Thereafter I went for a lunch to a nearby restaurant. I had a North Indian thali and it was too good. Around 1.30 pm I returned to my room and took some rest means watching Mr. Tomar incident on the TV.
Udupi Krishan temple opens at 5 am and closes at 9 pm. Around 4 pm after taking a bath I left for the temple. It was a five minutes walk from the hotel.
It is a 13th century temple. This idol of Krishna in the temple was originally worshiped by Krishna’s wife Rukmini in Dwaraka in the Dvapara Yuga. The deity of Kishna shows Him holding the churning rod in one hand and a rope in the other, with a little smile on his face, reminiscent of the childhood activities. This is the place where the great spiritual teacher Madhvacharya was born and lived.
After reciting Vishnu and Lalitha sahasranam say around 6.00 pm I returned to the hotel. I hit the bed around 9.30 pm.
10th June, 2015
Got up as usual at 4.30 am and after completing my bath, I packed my bag. Around 7 am I had a quick breakfast and left for Mangalore station to catch my train at 11.45 am. I took the bus of 8 am and reached Mangalore around 10 am. It took around 2 hours to reach the station.
Around 11,45 my train left for Coimbatore and reached Coimbatore around 7.15 pm. While in the train, I took some good photographs of Arabian sea. There are some excellent beaches between Kasargode and Mangalore and Kasargode and Kannur.
While in the train, I had taken some photographs :
Overall it was a fantastic spiritual journey. The experience of 30 minutes near the shankara simhasana at Kodachadri Hills was fabulous. By this trip, I could knock off two items from my “bucket list” which are (1) reciting Lalitha Sahasranam in Kollur Mookambika temple and Vishnu Sahasranam in Guruavaoor Krishna Temple (during my last visit) and Udupi Krishna Temple. It was an excellent feeling after doing all these.