Multifarious matters to mind in Mangalore

things to do in mangalore
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A major port city of India and also as mesmerising a marvel of natural abundance and historic leanings, the identity of Mangalore is one dwelling across many a strands of the definite diversities that make it come forth as an existence in multiple musings. Here’s all you can do on your trip to this city of elements galore to round up a multitude of majestic indeed Mangalorean memories-

Be blessed by a first hand rendezvous with divinity at the Mangalore Dasara

If seeking out rich repositories of both culture and devotion alike is a goal too imbibed into your life values, then get set to be amply rewarded by a dual mix of the peace of religion and the glory of heritage at Mangalore’s more than century old Navarathri festival. Mangalore Dasara is an annual celebration that takes over the city in both visage and vibe for a period of ten days, simultaneously with the Vijayadashami festivities unfolding in other parts of the country. Organised every year by the Kudroli Shri Gokarnanatheshwara Temple encompassing a range of traditional folk expressions in culture and marked indeed by divine devotion towards the Navadurgas, the Mangalore Dasain shapes up as a grand spectacle worth witnessing in all its splendor.

Marked by a grand procession of the nine idols of Goddess Durga on the evening of dashami and ending the next day with the immersion after nine days of worshipping the Goddess with utmost reverence and in all ritualistic observations, the dashain festival presents a spectacular image in not just religious adherence but also in cultural expression. The procession itself is marked very prominently by flowers and decorative umbrellas on one hand and by a range of traditional musical instruments and folk songs and dances and narrations on the other. Spanning up therefore as an extravaganza of the arts and the beliefs, the Mangalore Dashain though is not exclusive to the Gokarnanatheshwara Temple. The temple at Mangaladevi, from which Mangalore derived its name, is another prime location where the festivities unfold in grand assertion. Equally popular is the corresponding celebrations that take place at the Sri Venkataramana Temple where the week long festivities take instead the name of “Mangalore Sharadotsava” or “Sharada Mahotsava”. Irrespective of the separate celebrations though, experiencing the vibe of Mangalore during this time of the year when the city is all decked up with lights and decor and has its spirits up and high with definite divinity permeating its aura is truly something not to miss out on.

Relish the true Mangalorean experience at a cashew nut factory

Exploring any place across such alleys where its fame lay is indeed one of the must do things whenever one happens to set foot upon its premises harbouring of a distinctive identity. And the city of Mangalore conjuring up the bulk of India’s cashew production and exports, it only is certain that any trip to this cashew haven needs to include a cashew factory tour in every itinerary. From witnessing first hand the intricate indeed process of the much loved nut extracted from its shell to its grading and flavoring into the final product of immense demand that it is, a visit to one of the many local factories that Mangalore sustains through its cashew trade is surely one of the more ‘authentic’ ways to experience the essence of the city. What’s more, one can even procure some of these famed and flavored cashew nuts right at their source to sum up even more genuine an exploration of Mangalore in its most exquisite tradition and taste.

Seek out the remarkable reds of the roofs at the Albuquerque Tile Factory

Among the many things that Mangalore has been famous for is one rather striking presence that standouts with its definite deliverance in both view and value. As the birthplace of tiles in India, Mangalore enjoys still a prominence with regard to its namesake Mangalore tiles that span out in themselves as an unmissable and unmistakable identity of sorts.

Made from hard laterite clay had been these red tiles that at one times marked indeed the rooftops of house all over the region, and even elsewhere across the country in their many a desirable features of durability and sustainability. As alluring in their aesthetics as well have been these pieces of tiles resplendent in a striking shade of deep red, occurring in as diverse shapes and sizes as need be, deftly customised by the most skilled of artisans and sourced therefore not just to different parts of India but also across the world, these unique assets of the Mangalorean kind continue to reside in as unique distinction alluding to their century old lineage in both tradition and modernity. In the oldest existing such tile factory of Mangalore, the fame of the red tiles go way beyond their architectural supremacy.

At the Albuquerque tile factory that has seen decades of crafting rooted in the red recurrence of the roofs, the claim to fame is also as reinstated in it being the only factory whose tiles are recommended for use in government buildings. Seeking out this remarkable reputation in redness while in the red tiled city of the country would for sure only rev up the experiences encountered along the pages of your travel diary.

Soak in the exquisite gorgeousness of the sands and the sun along the many beaches of the city

Across the expanse of its landscape that classify as a coastal area, Mangalore dwells undoubtedly in some of the most picturesque beaches of India. Taking a stroll along these swathes of sand or frolicking about in their beachy allure therefore definitely counts as one of the most popular activities to indulge in while in the city. Pristine and popular in equal measure are the many beaches that lend Mangalore its prominence of the glorious golden sands, asserting the city of incredible history and heritage as also one nestled in the bounty of nature. The Panambur beach in particular stands out not just in its trail of the tranquil coastal glory but also in its distinction as being among the safest and best maintained beaches of India. Helped indeed by its locational prominence to the city, the Panambur beach also is a popular hotspot of numerous water activities and such other attractions. But the most exquisite exploration of the Panambur beach occurs along its alluring aesthetics of the sun setting on the horizon, manifesting indeed in finesse its prominence as among the more popular of beaches not just in Mangalore, but across the whole of Karnataka.

At par with the Panambur beach as far as popularity is concerned is also the Tannirbhavi Beach that boasts also of numerous other tourist attractions in the vicinity. Encompassing somewhat different a dimension of popularity happens to be the Someshwar beach at Ullal, named after the Lord Somanatha temple standing on the sea shore. Noted in the presence of its many a large rocks called Rudra Shile or Rudra Paadhe, the Someshwar beach is steeped indeed in the essence of Lord Shiva, establishing therefore an apt connect to Mangalore’s prominence as a city of tremendous religious character. Dwelling less on significance and more on their essence as being glorious indeed trails of natural beckoning are other beaches that allure every visitor to Mangalore to tread along their picturesque rendition of beauty that the city is. Be it the Mukka Beach gleaming in its myriad assortment of sea shells scattered all along or the Ullal Beach resident in its picturesque stretch of coconut trees, fishermen’s lane and spiritual abodes and historical monuments galore, Mangalore truly is a sight to savor and an experience enriching along the whole stretch of its coastal geography.

Find succour in spirituality across an immensely secular scape

Mangalore would not be ever the enigma that it is if not for its many a places of religious significance and especially its temples. From the Mangaladevi temple that lends the city its name to the century old Gokarnanatheshwara Temple that bathes Mangalore in the golden glow of the eponymous dashara celebrations and the historic Dharmasthala Sri Manjunatha Temple as well as the Kadri Manjunatha temple, that which houses the idol of Lord Manjunathaswamy called as the oldest of the South Indian Temples, there are ample of religious recourse to seek out one’s peace in within this city blessed indeed with the tranquil existence of divinity.

As prominent also are the many Christian places of worship, be it the architecturally magnificent St Aloysius Chapel, the Rosario Cathedral which happens to be the oldest church in Karnataka or the historic Milagres Church known also as the Church of Our Lady of Miracles, endowing upon Mangalore a spiritual legacy in terms of the heritage held in history. Exploring the secular character of Mangalore, that seats so in sync with the entire Indian identity would be only an experience in partiality if one does not seek out also the Islamic spirituality running along the Dargah of Sayed Mohammed Shereful Madani at Ullal or the Zeenath Baksh Jumma Masjid in Bunder that are also as prominent tourist attractions in their varied basis.

Discover uniqueness in elements of both history and modernity of an emergingly cosmopolitan city

History and heritage being what sums up the entire Mangalorean identity along different assertions of its being, running through every essence of its existence and manifesting in utter exemplariness as well, covering the coveted contours of the city without venturing into its archaic arena would never tell the travel tale in totality. There is so much to delve into in the past at this place boasting of a legacy and a lineage that is an amalgamation of history across all its expansive premise. The Sultan Battery watch tower in particular is the most prominent of such places that guard a rich repertoire of the history alluding to its illustrious constructor Tipu Sultan. Even beyond this steeping in utter significance, the tower also unfurls a breathtaking view of the Arabian Sea from atop, catering therefore to every segment of the touristry exploration. Housing also strands of the past but occurring along somewhat different lines of offering would be the quirkily named museum called the Aloyseum that charts instead such notabilities centering around the city’s many firsts.

sunrise-on-kayak-river-shambhavi
Source: KayakBoy

Despite its many a relics preserving indeed Mangalore’s dignified existence over the past, the city is also as remarkable in the presence of its modern day marvels. The port city is where one can get a more realistic getaway into the celestial world at the Swami Vivekananda Planetarium, the first 3D planetarium of India. Equally standout an experience would be exploring the Pilikula Zoo where cages do not confine the purveyors of the wild even as the peculiar sounding Surfing Ashram lends Mangalore an even more exclusive identity. The Pilikula Theme Park too asserts its uniquity in shaping up as one of the one-stop educational and recreational destinations in India by virtue of its showcasing of the rich native heritage and coastal culture of the people of Dakshina Kannada district. Add to such one of its kind expressions of immense uniqueness also features of the regular that dwells instead in the geographical fascination held by Mangalore courtesy its breathtaking billowing along the backdrop of the Western Ghats and here’s a curiously captivating city resident indeed in all the charms the world can ever offer in all its purview of universality.


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