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3.4 /5 28 votes
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Best Time: Sep-Mar Read More

Ideal duration: 1 day

Nearest Airport: Mangalore Check Flights

"The town of Black Stones"

Karkala Tourism

Karkala is a quaint small town in the Udupi district of Karnataka. With great historical significance, it is blessed with several ancient temples and Jain basadis. Deriving its name from the word 'karikal' meaning 'black stone' it has an abundance of black granite in the area. The town also serves as an important religious centre for Jains and Hindus and has been declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

The town also serves as an important religious centre for Jains and Hindus and has been declared as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. Changing hand of power several times, it was the Pandya Kings who ruled the town for more than 300 years. Today, the town of Karkala is immersed in a unique and rich culture of various folk arts such as Yakshagana, a night-long dance and drama performances. Deriving its name from the word 'karikal' meaning 'black stone' owing to the abundance of black granite in the area, a trip to Karkala is bound to be an unforgettable experience.

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A treat for the soul and the mind

Karkala is a hub for art and culture, traditions and heritage. It consists of several historical monuments and landmarks. It is situated right in the foothills of Western Ghats due to which it has the advantage of offering a great scenic view to the tourists travelling to Karkala. Karkala is incidentally based on the way to many other tourist places like those of Kalasa, Horanadu, Kolluru, Mookambika, etc. A history of the Jain rule can be seen in the past of Karkala. The most famous out of all such places is the immensely tall statue of Lord Bahubali at Shravanbelagola. It was established by Chavundaraya and is fifty-seven feet tall. Karkala holds the celebration of Mahamastabhisheka of the statue of Lord Bahubali. This takes place every twelve years.

Karkala is a place of pilgrimage for persons of several religious followings. There also is a presence of ancient art and architecture that represents time dated back to that of the very ancient rulers. Padutirupathi Karkala and St. Lawrence Shrine are some of the very popular landmarks in Karkala. Karkala offers an amazing scenic view. There are also several lakes that can be visited during your stay in Karkala.

Restaurants and Local Food in Karkala

Karkala is a major Jain pilgrimage town, recently being increasingly flocked by tourists. You will find many restaurants there serving predominantly traditional Jain and Konkani/Malabari food. Being a pilgrimage, many eating joints serve vegetarian food only, however non-vegetarians need not be disappointed.
Some of the famous popular delicacies of the town are Potato Capsicum Upkari and Kulitha saaru with rice. Also do not forget to have tender coconut, with its cooling effect, a specialty of the place.
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One Day Itinerary

Day 1 - Start your day by going to see the statue of Lord Bahubali. Next pay a visit to the Yaksha, which is near to the statue. Post lunch, visit the St. Lawrence Church. You can enjoy your evening at the Ramasamudra Lake.
Day 2 - Visit the Veeramaruthi Temple and the Chaturmukha Basati. Go to the Matadha Kere in the evening.

Karkala Photos

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Holidify's Opinion

What's Great?

You get to experience a vast heritage of culture and traditions.

What's Not So Great?

May get a little crowded during festivals. Not very well connected.

For Whom?

This is the ideal destination for those who wish to experience a truly spiritual and cultural vacation.

How To Reach Karkala

Karkala is not very well linked by any mode of transport.

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Karkala Reviews

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Muhammed Salih 11 months ago
A small temple town located around hills is home to many architectural wonders. The Bahubali statue is one of the main attractions here and Jains from all over India come for pilgrimage there. A walk around Karkala will let you learn about temples, culture, and history of the town as most of them are at nearby distances.
Kumar Kislay 1 year ago
- While travelling during November or December, carry a jacket as temperature gets low.
- Make sure you carry a camera to capture the glorious past and beautiful architecture of the town.
- Carry proper trekking shoes while heading to Karkala as there is so much to explore in the city.
Nehad Zein 1 year ago
Karkala is a cozy little town tucked away amidst hills. The city features numerous treks and a lot of Jain temples, many of which are hundreds of years old. The town also features numerous statues, the biggest of which is the Bahubali statue. However, due to its secluded location, the town is a bit difficult to reach. The treks featured in and around the town are sure to make nature lovers very happy.
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