EP 3 - Dharmasthala to Mangalore | Karnataka Tourism

EP 3 - Dharmasthala to Mangalore | Karnataka Tourism

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Hello friends! Welcome to Visa2explore! This is your host, Harish Bali! Right now, we are at Dharmasthala. We spent last night at the Nethravathi Guest House. We paid Rs. 700 tariff for a room on double occupancy basis. It is 8 am. First of all, we are going to go downstairs and have our breakfast.

Since our room is on second floor, we have a good view of the street below. Right in front of the guest house is the Trupti Upahar Gruha (cafetaria). After our breakfast, we plan to spend the whole day here...

....starting with the local museum... ...and after this day-long journey, we intend to reach Mangalore by tonight. Mangalore is at a distance of 75 km from here. Harish ji is with us since yesterday. He is helping us plan and execute this journey.

What will you have for breakfast? One plate idli-sambar! And one plate of one idli and one vada! When does this cafetaria open in the morning? 6 am! 6 am. What is that other chutney? Nothing, same! It is same, alright. Solid! Very tasty! This idli is ultra-soft! The food is cooked really well.

How did you find it? Good? Nice! Though the number of tourists is limited right now, despite that, I can see so many people around. Weekends must be even more crowded? Yes, it is crowded! So, it is 8 am and we are going to leave here in another 10-15 minutes. The museum is nearby.

We are walking towards the Car Museum. Harish ji informed me that guest houses are the only accommodation available to stay in Dharmasthala. There are no private hotels around. Like this is a guest house, this is another guest house. Now, we will go in this direction.

We've just spent about 30 minutes, visiting the Manjusha Car Museum. Photography and videography, both are prohibited inside. They have an awesome collection inside.

There are a total of 50 antique cars in there and all are in working condition. Inside, we saw the older models of today's big brand names in automobiles. Some of the models were 70 or 100 years old as well. We saw older models of brands like Mercedes, Rolls Royce and even Chevrolet! I also saw 100 years old models of ambulance and fire brigade vehicle.

They've procured antique cars from countries like England, US. Each car holds in itself a long history, readable in the information given beside each model. Really amazing experience! So, whenever you come here, you must spend some time in this museum. The museum remains open from 8.30 am to 7.00 pm.

Now, where is the Elephant Shed? It is just a little further. Nearby? Yes! it is nearby. Let us go then.

So, we've reached the Elephant Shed as well. Wow! This place looks nice. This is a small elephant. It is a female elephant, just about 4 months old. And it stands with its mother and father.

So, this is the whole family! Yes, it is a family. Sir, we are about to go to Gomateshwara from here, it is just about 500 m from here. So, nearby! Yes, nearby! Let us go! This statue is known by the name "Bahubali Gomateshwara". It is 39 feet in height Reverred Dr. Virendra Hegde, the present 'Dharmadhikari', established this statue here in 1982. This statue is bathed in milk, etc as part of a ritual that is repeated every 12 years.

Alright! So, this photo outside the office is that of "Mastakabhishek" (ritual). Yes, this photograph is from the Mastakabhishek! Really nice! Now, where are we headed next? We will go to Venoor next. Venoor village is about 35 km from here. After traveling for about an hour, we've reached the Venoor Gomateshwara statue. We've parked the car downstairs. We will enter from here.

We've reached closer to the Venoor Shri Bahubali statue. We have with us the Manager of this place. Let me convey to you what I've understood so far.

If I make a mistake, please correct me! The statue in front of you was constructed in the year 1603. And the sculptor who erected the Karkala statue, made this one as well. The most interesting fact about this statue, which amazed me, is... ...that the sculptor of this statue had only one hand and one leg working in his body. He was disabled. So, with just one hand and one leg, he created this whole monolith out of a single rock. And he accomplished this whole task within 24 hours.

We are talking about the year 1603. After the statue was ready, it was brought to this place, from where? A place that is 5 km away. 5 km away! The statue was created at that place and it needed to be transported here. So, stone tires were carved.

To make these tires lubricant enough to roll, bananas were rubbed on to them. So, a lot of such tires were carved and the statue was placed atop those.... ....and gradually it mades its way here. All these details were shared with us by the Manager himself. What is the height of this statue? It is 35 feet in height. I felt really good coming here.

Whenever you travel in this region, you must visit here. Thank you Sir! Now we've come to visit a coconut oil unit with Harish Ji. This unit produces coconut oil using the traditional process. So, we will go in now. Let us go! I can notice a lot of greenery in the surroundings here. We are standing outside the unit right now and there are lot so trees, greenery on all sides.

There are, in fact, lot of coconut trees too. We have with us the factory owner, who showed us the unit and also shared some knowledge with us. So, you see there are lots of coconut trees around.

What happens is that the tender coconut remains on the tree for a period of 45 days. It is then harvested when it is in this form, completely dried. Once you open it, you will get this coconut from inside. It contains coconut water inside. So, the water is consumed and the leftover kernel of coconut is sun-dried like this.

The moisture element of coconut is evaporated because of the drying process. What is left is the oily kernel. After that comes the traditional method of producing coconut oil.

The dried kernels are pressed to extract oil first. The leftover kernels are shifted to a separate machine, which extracts some more oil out of them. This traditional method is called "Kachchi Dhani". Usually when we buy either mustard oil or coconut oil, we've been taught to pick the 'Kachchi Dhaani' oil. That is satisfactory in the sense that the oil is being extracted in front of his eyes.

What is the market price for coconut oil? Rs. 230 per litre! 230 rupees per litre. Ohh lovely! Just drink this water! Wow! I can have this water directly! Very good! I really like coconut water. Lovely, lovely, lovely! Now let us eat this as well.

So this coconut extracted from the shell, we will eat it with some gud (jaggery). Yeah! I've never tried this before! Trying this for the first time. I am really enjoying this combination! I am trying coconut and jaggery together for the first time. !

And this jaggery is really tasty. Sir this gud is ultimate. You must eat this gud with dry coconut as well. Try it with this as well and tell us which combination is better. If you eat this gud with dry coconut, you would not want to eat any other sweetdish after that.

You would want to keep eating it. Oh Man! Sir, I am highly impressed! Sir, we will take your leave now! We will move now. Thank you very much! Namaskar! After leaving Dharmasthala today morning, we've reached Moodbidri at 1 pm. We are going into the Padiwals Restaurant for lunch.

Shall we? Yes Sir! Is this a famous restaurant around here? Yes Sir! Basically, this dish is made of cabbage. It has very delicious flavors of curry leaves and mustard seeds. Ever since I came here, I've seen people prefer to eat rice with rasam more than sambar. Isn't it so? Yes Sir! This is a special achaar (pickle) made with Imli (tamarind). By God! What amazing taste! The taste of this rasam is beyond explanation! Uff! I've heard a lot of spices go into making this rasam? Yes! Too good! Harish Ji suggested that I should add buttermilk to rasam! This is something I had never even thought about.

So you say it will taste delicious! You should first drink rasam and enjoy its taste. After combining both, you will enjoy a new taste. The rasam is slightly sharp in taste, sour because of the tomatoes,... ...like it has the flavors of black pepper and Heeng (Asafoetida) as well. Lovely! So, here we go adding buttermilk to rasam! This is good! This has become a totally different drink, it is neither rasam nor buttermilk anymore.

It is a totally different taste. It is good to taste. Harish Ji, you brought us to the right place. It is fun! And I am feeling satisfied eating here. Mix vegetables Gassi (mix vegetable curry)! Ummm! Thank you! I asked them to show the raw form of one of the vegetables in this curry, Southekayi! Southekayi has been used in preparing the Gassi that I am eating right now. Its taste is amazing! There are two main things that I liked here.

Rasam and Gassi. Too good! Thank you! This wheat payasam is made of broken wheat. This is quite okay. But the main course that we just had, has impressed me very much, especially 2-3 things. Before we end today's lunch, I've ordered one more sweet dish for myself.

It is called 'Katmandige.' Did I pronounce it right? Yes, you did. Alright! So he explained to me that a very thin, almost translucent layer of rice batter on an upside down clay pot. This process is repeated at least 4-5 times more, with each layer covered in ghee before the next one goes on.

And it is served with Shakkar (sugar) inside. Ohooo, it is really soft! Yes sir, it is. Wow! So, these are the layers I was talking about. Here it goes - 1, 2, 3, 4, this one has 7-8 layers. Each layers has Sugar and ghee inside. Ohhoo! Katmandike! Wow! Good taste! The thing is it has lots of sugar in between the layers.

In fact, it is really a lot! It feels as if I am eating just sugar This concept is good! Yes, it is sweet, too much sweet! We've travelled about half a km from where we had lunch in Moodbidri. This is the Thousand Pillars Jain Temple. Let us go inside. We just came into the temple. We saw its beautiful architecture. This gentleman is one of the staff members of this temple.

During our discussion, he told us that there are a total of 1000 pillars in this temple. The highlight of these pillars is that no two of them are same in design. Each pilar has a unique design and each design is telling a unique story. Let me show you what he explained to me two minutes ago.

He showed us this pillar, on which you can see miniature sculptures of Lord Ram, Lakshaman, the monkey army. ...while Lord Ram was on his way to Lanka to get back Mata Sita. Each monkey is carrying a stone in his hands, which he is putting into the water to build Setu (bridge). If you look at this pillar from this angle, you see two horses. And if you place your hands like this, you see an elephant. There are about 1008 such pillars here. We went upto the first floor of the temple.

Entry into the second and third floors of this temple is prohibited. While we were paying obeisance inside, this gentleman told us that this statue belongs to .... ....the 8th Teerthankar (Jain deity). The name of the 8th Teerthankar is "Chandraprabha." Thank you very much! A few minutes ago, he told us that the Swami Ji of the temple is also present here at his ashram. So, we would go inside, meet the Swamiji as well. Om Namah Siddhevyah!! This temple is one of the most prominent Jain shrines in the world.

This temple was constructed between 1430 and 1496. This temple is constructed with 1008 pillars depicting various religious texts and scriptures. Since it is easier to say, the temple is famous as the "1000 pillar temple." t is spread across 3 storeys.

The ground floor is home to a 9-feet high statue of Deity,... ...made with the gold donated by about 700 Jain families. The Viceroy House in Delhi is copied from a portion of this temple's structure. The Viceroy House is now famous as the official residence of the President of India, Rashtrapati Bhawan. The temple attracts tourists not just from across India, but from across the world. The different parts of structure of this temple depicts various life teachings, which one should imbibe in daily life. The ultimate destination of human life should be salvation or Moksha, that is what this temple depicts.

I welcome you all to this beautiful temple. Mangalam Astu Shubh-Ashirwaad! We've reached Soans Farm. Here, we met Mr. LC Soan and his brother. First of all, they've served us this pineapple juice, which, he says,... ....has no sugar, no water, nor any kind of preservatives in it. We've been asked to enjoy this juice first and then visit the farm. Thank you! Really different taste, Sir! Though we drink pineapple juice often, but I've never experienced this taste before.

Really different! Sir told us this whole farm is spread over a 100 acres of land. He says we can visit on foot but that would take up a whole day. So, what they have here is a jeep safari. This guided tour costs Rs. 80 per person for an hour's duration. During this tour, they take you to the main parts of the farm and show you the crops grown.

So, we are now going to go with him and visit the farm for the next one hour. Shall we? So, we will be accompanied by his son, Mr. Vinod. As soon as we entered the farm, we saw this Chalta tree. I remembered that we had seen this tree in Assam as well, where this fruit is called O'Tenga. Chalta is "Elephant Apple."

Yes, this is Elephant Apple. They grow 50-55 varieties of bamboo on this farm. It is really commendable that you grow so many varieties in this area. Wow! That is Cocoa, one of the main crops on this farm. And it is used to make chocolate. This is? That is the teak tree.

Teakwood! Yes, teakwood! This is Jaiphal (Nutmeg) tree. The fruit of this tree is ripe for harvest during May-June. There is still time for that. This one is called the "pan-masala" plant or the mouth-freshener plant.

It is from Assam area and it is used as a mouth-freshener. It feels like I am eating a combination of Paan and Saunf (fennel seeds). Nice! This small tree here is called Balsa wood.

Since this tree grows very fast, its wood is soft and light. They use it in making aeroplane models and earlier, it was also used to make aeroplane furniture. Okay! How old is this tree? This is just around 2 or 3 years old. It has grown very fast! Very fast. He told me that this fruit is called Mammey Sapota.

This is just like Indian Chiku fruit, the only difference being, this is bigger in size. This fruit takes a whole one year to ripen. This is citron fruit, used to make pickles. It has a very thick flesh and it is bitter in taste. This is All Spice and its leaves are used to make good tea masala. You can also use it in cooking. Its flavor is a combination of clove, cinnamon and nutmeg. Okay! All in one! Ohh! Wonderful! This must be about 2 kg.

This is like slightly around 2 kg. We began our farm tour with Vinod ji but he had some work to do mid-way,... ...so we were joined by his uncle here. Sir, thank you so much! You guided us very well around the whole farm. Today I learnt that if you plant to come here in April, May, June or July months,.... ....you will get to see a large number of fruits and vegetables. For rest of the year, you can, of course, see seasonal fruits or vegetables. Nice visit! You need to spend 2-3 hours minimum at this visit. We spent 1.5 hours here.

We are now going to Karakala. How long will it take to reach there? Just about 15 minutes. We've reached Karakala. Since morning, I was discussing this visit with Harish Ji and he told me.... ....that he would take me to meet Mr. Radha Madhav. Since morning, we must have discussed about you at least 10 times.

We kept thinking and talking of you after every half an hour or so. Do you want to know why we were discussing him continuously? It is because he is an exceptional sculptor. We are standing inside his workshop, where he does his work. We are, of course, going to talk about some of these sculptures that he is making.

But before that, I would like to introduce this artist, as I was told about him. The statue that we saw in Dharmasthala was sculpted by his grandfather. How old were you when that sculpture was being made? I must have been around 10 years old.

I have been sculpting since 18 years of age. That was about 40 years ago. You have been working in this profession for the past 40 years.

This sculpture is that of Lord Vishnu. This is of Lord Keshav. This sculpture of the lord is accompanied by the statues of Shree Devi and Bhoo Devi.

Normally, Lord Vishnu holds Chakra in one hand and Shankha (Conch shell) in the other. That is the usual case. But I can sculpt 24 different variations of this. So, who are you making this sculpture for? I am making this sculpture for a temple located in Karimnagar, near Hyderabad.

This is how it looks from behind. This used to be stone surface before sculpting. First of all, we level the stone from this side. We also level the base of this stone. After that, we work along the central line, which is measured from the front side. After that, we finish this sculpture stage-by-stage.

Really good! Amazing Sir! Whenever you come to Dharmasthala, you can visit Karakala as well and... ...come to this workshop, watch this work closely and also meet this gentleman. The workshop is closed on Sundays. It felt good meeting you and watching your work at close quarters.

I am sure I will fall short of words when it comes to praising you. That is what I would want to tell you before we take your leave. We would definitely love to come back and visit you again.

You must come again. Harish Ji, thank you very much! You guided us really well through this tour. We wouldn't have enjoyed this tour so well, if you hadn't accompanied us. His vehicle is parked here so he would be leaving us now.

Whenever we will come to Mangalore again, we will meet you for sure. Sure Sir! Thank you! Thank you Sir! After travelling since morning, we've now reached Mangalore at 9.30 pm. We are at the Bombay Lucky Restaurant for dinner.

Their biryani is quite famous. So, let us go in and have some biryani. I've ordered for myself half plate Chicken biryani. With that, I ordered Chicken pepper fry, some curry and salad. The salad is dunked in buttermilk.

Since I wasn't too hungry, I ordered just half a plate, which has one chicken piece in it. This restaurant is famous in the area for its biryani. It looked less in quantity, but as you can see, it is enough for one person. In the biryani masala, spices are used in powdered form.

The usual flavors of green cardamom, etc are intact too. Overall, good taste! I am impressed with the taste of this chicken. Nicely cooked! This Chicken Pepper Fry is a famous preparation of this region. You will get to eat it commonly. Nicely cooked. Since it is pepper fry, the black pepper flavor is dominant, which makes the dish spicy.

Awesome! I really liked this Chicken Pepper Fry. This restaurant is open till 12 am. It is 10 pm right now and we are going to finish our food now. It is time to say bye to you. This is where I will end today's journey.

We will be spending tonight at the same hotel, where we stayed earlier... ...Fab Metro Heights, which is near the Mangalore Central Railway Station. We will meet again soon. Our tomorrow' journey will be available in the next episode. Bye bye! Thanks for your time!

2021-01-10 16:52

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