Known as one of the most holy places created by saint Parashurama, the Kukke Shri Subrahmanya temple is arguably one of the most popular pilgrimage centres in the southern state of Karnataka. Perched on the banks of the Kumaradhara river, legend has it that the divine serpent Vasuki and other snakes took refuge under Lord Subrahmanya at this holy place.
It is believed that Lord Subrahmanya has merged with serpent king Vasuki here and is hence worshipped in the form of a snake.
It is, therefore, believed to be the ultimate place where one can obtain salvation from any kind of “Sarpa/Naga Doshas”. It is an extremely sought after place for performing poojas such as “Ashleshabali” and “Sarpa Samaskara”. The temple is located about 280 km from Bangalore and the nearest airport is Mangalore. Situated about 60 km from Kukke is the famous temple of Sri Manjunatha dedicated to Lord Shiva in the temple town of Dharmastala.
Apart from the Kukke Subrahmanya temple, there are several other places including other temples that one can visit while here. The Adi Subramanya temple is located in close proximity to the main temple and is dedicated to Vasuki and Adishesha.
The Sri Samputa Narasimha temple is located within the main temple premises and is managed by the Subrahmanya mutt. The Biladwara cave is on the way to the main temple and is believed to be the place where the Serpent God Vasuki took shelter to avoid facing Garuda.
Another significant temple is the Abhaya Mahaganapati temple that houses a 21 feet monolithic statue of Lord Ganesha. Adjacent to it is the Vanadurga temple which is managed by the Subramanya mutt. Shri Someshwara Swamy temple, Agrahara is yet another quaint temple dedicated to Lord Shiva in Subrahmanya. One can get a full view of the Kumaradhara river from this temple complex.
Early mornings when the vibes are serene and totally calm, are perfect to visit this place. The placid waters and the greenery all around make for the perfect picture.
Apart from temple hopping, the market near the main temple is vibrant and is a must visit if you are fond of shopping for local goodies.