സൂര്യകാന്തിയും ചെണ്ടു മല്ലിയും പൂത്തു നിൽക്കുന്ന കർണാടക ഗ്രാമങ്ങളിലൂടെ ഒരു അടിപൊളി യാത്ര
- Published on: Wednesday, September 21, 2022
- ONE DAY TRIP PLAN FOR FAMILY
Gundlupet is known as the ‘Flower Pot’ of Karnataka and this gorgeous destination is known for its expansive sunflower and marigold fields. Here, one can witness a sea of yellow sunflowers blossoming on either side of the road with picturesque green hills as the backdrop.
The flowers have bloomed amidst the slight drizzle and have brought cheer to the farmers who are hoping for a good yield if the rains continue at this pace. Fortunately for them, there is no dry spell this year lest the flowers wilt and die.There are many farmers in and around Begur who regularly cultivate sunflower as the crop suits the weather. June-July is when the flowers bloom and the fields turn bright yellow with giant flowers and it becomes a sight to behold. The fields pull the commuters like a magnet who do not want to miss beautiful photographic and selfie moments under the flowers.
The National Highway sees tourists heading for Tamil Nadu, Kerala on one side and Mysuru on the other side on a daily basis. And many would drop by the sunflower farms to click pictures. Also, many visitors heading towards the Bandipur Tiger Reserve stop by the sunflower fields to click photos.
There are sunflower fields at villages like Hangala, Putthanapura, Kalligowdanahalli and surrounding villages on the way to Himavad Gopalaswamy Temple, a famous tourist spot and a pilgrimage centre.
Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta is a hill situated in Chamarajanagar district in state of Karnataka in India. It is of 1450 meters height. Its Latitude is 12.97°Ne and longitude is of 77.56°E. It is found in the midst of natural forest of wild animals and surrounded by thick woods. It is the highest peak in Bandipur National Park. It is a dense fog predominated by clouds all round the year. Peculiar, as it looks though natural, it is always seen covered with ice-like moisture resembling ice-clouds. It is a famous and risky tourist dot near Mysore.
There is a holy shrine of Lord Krishna called as ‘Himavad Gopalaswamy temple’, on the top of the hill which can be reached by vehicles on motarable road leading up to its gate. Here the term ‘GO’ means ‘cow’ ‘pala’ means ‘care-taker or protector’, ‘Swamy’ indicates god and ‘betta’ is ‘hill or mountain’. The deity is also called as ‘Venugopalaswamy’. ‘Venu’ means ‘Flute’, the favourite musical instrument of Lord Krishna. ‘Hima’ in Sanskrit is ‘ice’ and ‘Himada’ or ‘Himavad’ indicates ice-clouds.
This shrine was constructed in 1315 AD by king Ballala, of Hoysala dynasty and then came under management of Maharajas of Mysore, who were great devotees of Lord Venugopala. The front Gopura of temple is single-tiered, attached on compound of the enclosure. We see flag-pillar (Dhwaja stambha) and bali-peeta, where offerings to god are placed. We see a range of sculpture of Dasavatara (ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu) giving importance to episodes of Krishnavatara.
In the sanctum sanctorum (Garbha gruha) the icon of Lord Krishna is beautifully and attractively holding flute. While standing under the tree Lord Krishna is associated with his friends. All are enjoying dancing around Him. If you (You must) keenly observe His position in carved posture. You will be amazed to see His left big toe is resting on the right big toe. His consorts, Rukmini and Satyabhama together with cattle and His cowherd-friends are seen on right side of the panel. It is really wonderful!
According to local legend it was sage Agastya, who performed intense penance and sought blessings of Lord Vishnu to dwell in this holy hill. Because of its sacredness it is called 'Hamsa theertha', to mean ‘lake of swans’. Swan is the symbol of purity, knowledge, tranquility and salvation.
When I stood on the top of this hill, I was thrilled to enjoy the nature’s beauty and understood it as a point where the borders of three states Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu meet. Tamil Nadu lies on south, Kerala on west while I was standing at the tip point of Karnataka.
It is dangerous for visitors to venture to trek or move into forest as it is vital habitat of Tiger, leopard, Wild Dogs and other wild animals. Walking down beyond the temple premises is a punishable offense under the provisions of Wildlife Act 1972; so also trekking, partying, and dancing with music and so on. Simply go and come. Entry is permitted only between 8:30 am and 4:00 pm and visitors should return within one hour 30 minutes to the forest entry gate.
Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta is located at 90km southwest of Mysore on Mysore-Ooty road. From Bangalore (220km) there are two routes, one through Chamarajanagar and other via Mysore and Gundlupet. There are few seasonal KSRTC services to this hilltop. You have to go on your own vehicle or depend on private vehicle from Gundlupet. Practically there is no tourist facility. Road is open for traffic during daytime only. You should carry food and water as there are no shops near temple.