A journey from Bengaluru to Kollur is one that embarks a new beginning to your mind and soul.
Kollur is a small temple town in Kundapur Taluk of Udupi district in Karnataka. It is situated at a distance of about 38 kms from Kundapur town and about 457 kms from Bengaluru. Kollur also known as Kollapura, is the holy abode of Goddess Mookambika.
The place is believed to be one of the seven pilgrim centres created by Parashurama. The temple is devoted to the Mother Goddess unlike the other temples created by Parashurama. It is constructed on the bank of Souparnika river in the middle of a forest. Just in front of the temple is the Kodachadri peak, which is a delightful sight.
Kollur has always been a place that fascinated me each time I visit, a place which one does not get bored of! A place which helps you to give a new essence to one's life. Kollur not only fulfils your spiritual desires but also equally contributes to the adventurer hidden within oneself.
PC: Alex Ruddick
The trek to Kodachadri is something which mesmerises you by its splendour apart from the beautiful Goddess who answers all the prayers of her devoted ones irrespective of their caste, creed or religion.
Mode Of Transport
To begin with the journey from Bengaluru to Kollur, one can make use of the KSRTC buses and as well as the private ones or one could choose to drive down. I chose the KSRTC bus which embarks its journey towards Kollur from the Majestic Bus Stand.
PC: Google maps
There are two buses which ply to Kollur from Bengaluru, one at 8:30 PM and the other at 9:00 PM and would reach the destination at 5:00 AM and 6:00 AM respectively. The journey can be planned as a two day trip, or an ideal weekend trip. I decided to make it a weekend trip; the journey all set to begin on a Friday night bus to reach on Saturday morning.
Accomodation At Kollur
As you get off the bus, one can find numerous hotels which provide accommodation to the people, who come to visit the temple town. The stay can also be done at the accommodation facility provided by the Muzari department of the Government of Karnataka, which is very pocket friendly.
After a quick shower and a breakfast from the small hotel, I was all set to pay a visit to the beautiful goddess. Being a weekend, the temple was abuzz with devotees waiting patiently for their chance to enter the sanctum. After the darshan of the goddess as you step out of the gopura, one would easily notice the temple elephant showering blessings on the devotees. You can also find the Souparnika river flowing downstream.
When you head back to the hotel, you can hire a jeep for a nominal amount, which would take you to the beautiful Kodachadri. The jeep does not take you to the utmost top, but drops you off mid way after which, one would have to trek the remaining distance.
PC: Ashwin Kumar
There are different routes to reach the peak of Kodachadri and the difficulty varies highly with respect to the route chosen. As you reach the peak, one would simply be swept away in the beauty and serenity of the place. The hill is considered to be visited by people from time immemorial.
The Sarvajna Peetham is something that takes you back in time. It is the place where the great sage Adi Shankara used to meditate. A small temple like structure houses an idol of Adi Shankara. There is one more temple which is considered as the 'moolasthanam' or the origin of Mookambika Devi.
From this stop, it's around another 2 kms trek to the peak. Just below the peak, an almost vertical path leads to a small cave called Chitramoola, from where the Mookambika temple is visible. An iron pillar of about 40 feet length is erected in front of the temple dedicated to Mookambika, it is something similar to the historic pillars located at Dhar, Mount Abu.
There is a common belief amongst the devotees that this was the trident used by Goddess Mookambika to slay the demon Mookasura. One can choose to return to Kollur for the night poojas at the Mookambika temple.
Day 2 begins with the same routine, the temple visit and one can choose to stay back in the temple and attend the afternoon pooja as well, after which lunch would be served to all the devotees. This time can be used to meditate peacefully and surrender yourself completely to the goddess.
Post lunch you can hire a car and proceed to Murdeshwar, a temple located on the sea shore, with a huge gopura. It is also one of the largest statues of Lord Shiva. The temple houses the Athmalingam of Lord Shiva. After the darshan of Lord Shiva and some time at the beach and the adventure sports, it's time to return to Kollur.
Once you return. there is time for one more round of darshan of the mother goddess and then you bid adieu to her until your next visit. You can board the bus back to Bengaluru, which departs from Kollur at 8:00 PM and reach Bengaluru at around 5:00AM in the morning.
The journey would for sure function as a boost to one's life and you would being to feel a fresh lease of energy within your mind. One would always want to go back and visit the place again, or make sure you visit the place at least once in a year.