Murudeshwar – Home to The World’s Second Largest Shiva Statue
In this article, we will look at another tourist destination in Karnataka with religious significance – Murudeshwar. Murudeshwar, named after an incarnation of Lord Shiva, is located in Bhatkut taluk of Uttar Kannada district, 165 km from Mangalore.
The prime attraction of this beach town is its Shiva temple. A famous landmark here is the world’s second tallest Shiva statue. The statue, standing at a height of 123 feet, took almost 20 years for Shivamogg’s Kashinath and several other sculptors to build.
Murudeshwar is a picturesque place that can be visited during anytime of the year. It is bound by the Arabian Sea and the rolling hills of the Western Ghats. The Shiva temple is surrounded by sea on three sides and presents a beautiful picture at sunrise and sunset. Two life-sized elephants made of concrete stand guard at the steps leading to the temple.
Beautiful carvings and statues adorn the temple complex. A mighty 20-storied Raja Gopura is also present in the complex. The entire temple, with the exception of the sanctum sanctorum, wears a modern look. The lingam is a roughly sculpted rock inside a hollowed spot in the ground. Entry into the sanctum is restricted for all devotees.
It is believed that Lord Shiva had declared that Murudeshwar, along with Dhareshwar, Gunavanteshwara, Shejjeshwar and Gokarna, will serve as the Pancha Kshetras of Shiva.
On a small hill nearby, inside the complex, is a huge statue of Lord Shiva in meditation. The statue is 123 feet (37 m) in height and took about two years to build. It was financed by businessman and philanthropist R.N. Shetty, at a cost of approximately Rs 50 million. There are other statues depicting incidents from mythological tales as well.
The huge fort located near the temple is believed to have been renovated by Tipu Sultan of Mysore. A major attraction here is the cave that depicts the story behind Gokarna and Murudeshwar. There are around 16 tableaus housed inside the cave and a narration clearly explains each tableau.
The Murudeshwar Temple is at a distance of 78 kms from the Gokarna Temple. From Sterling Holidays resort, Karwar – Emerald Bay, the Murudeshwar Temple is located at a distance of 121 km and from Goa – Villagio it is at a distance of 206 km.
Murudeshwar is located 455 km away from Bangalore and 165 km away from Mangalore. The temple can be reached via NH 206 and NH 17 roads from Bangalore.
This famous temple is easily accessible by road from Goa and Karwar with amazing views of the coastal areas enroute to the destination.
Driving directions from Karwar – Emerald Bay to Murudeshwara, Karnataka, India
View Driving directions from Karwar – Emerald Bay to Murudeshwara, Karnataka, India in a larger map