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Mangalore Dasara- A City in Festive Spirit

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The Mangalore Dasara have kicked off in a grand way on October 5, 2013 and for the next 10 days the city will be experiencing religious and cultural extravaganza. With major temples namely Sri Venkatarama Temple, Car Street, Sri Gokarnatheswara Temple, Kudroli, Sri Gokarna Math, Car Street, Sri Mangaladevi Temple, Sri Urva Marigudi Temple, Sri Venkataramana Temple, Dongerkeri celebrating this festival on a grand scale. Mangalore Dasara is considered to be the second best after Mysore. The city will be decorated with dazzling and sparkling lights everywhere in Mangalore, it is like a carnival for 10 days.

The rituals of Mahanavami Utsava had begun on October 5, 2013 and the idols of Sharada and Nav Durga were installed on the same day as a part of the festivities. Travellers can experience the famous Tiger Dance and The Bear Dance, which are the main attractions of Mangalore Dasara. These dance forms are typically performed by young artists and roam around the streets and houses of Mangalore. The dance is performed to honour Goddess Durga and this dance form attracts thousands of travellers from around the country every year. Other cultural extravaganza related to Navratri will kick off from October 10 and will last for three days.

There are two famous temples where Mangalore Dasara is celebrated with great pomp and fest. The century old Gokarnanatheshwara Temple also known as Kudroli Temple is the centre of attraction during the Navratri Festival. Gokarnanatha is the other name for Lord Shiva. The temple is 2 km from Mangalore city. The temple can be easily accessed from the city as autos are easily available. Navarathri and Shivarathri are the two big festivals celebrated at this temple.

Thousands of devotees from various states of India visit Mangalore to witness the splendour of Dasara and the century old Sri Gokarnatheswara temple which shimmers with golden glow. The temple has Gopuram (tower like huge structure) decorated with murals of various gods and goddesses. Murals depict the scenes from Hindu epics and legends.

The Mangaladevi temple at Bolara being the ancient which attracts devotees from all over India. Mangalore got its name from Mangaladevi. The Mangaladevi temple arranges for various cultural programmes such as folk, music, drama, plays on various themes and devotional songs. On the ninth day also known as mahanavami, a large number of devotees participate in the Rathotsava (Car Festival). The decorated goddess in mounted on the grand chariot and pulled with thick ropes. The procession (Rathothsava) is filled with various deities which are gloriously decorated with colourful lights and festoons.

Chariot of Mangaladevi

The citizens of Mangalore and thousands of devotees from various parts can witness the grand Dasara Procession finale on the day of Vijayadashami which is happening on October 14, 2013. Over the years the grandeur of Mangalore Dasara has attracted more travellers from around the globe. In terms of popularity, Mangalore Dasara is now being compared to Mysore Dasara.

How to Reach Mangalore During the Dasara Festival

Mangalore can be approached through NH-13, NH-17, NH- 48 by road. Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) buses are available from Mangalore to various other destinations within the state. Mangalore International Airport is located about 10 km from the city. Mangalore is well- connected by rail to other parts of the country like Bangalore, Mumbai and Chennai.

Where to Stay During The Festival Time

There are many staying options available to travellers in Mangalore. Mangalore has a large range of luxury and budget hotels for travellers to choose. Seeing the popularity of the festival, it is advisable for travellers to book hotels well in advance to avoid any last-minute hassle, as lot of visitors visit the city during Dasara festival.

Read more about: navratri, dasara, festival
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