Melukote; a hidden paradise of Mysore, favored even by Bollywood
About 60 km from Mysore At a distance, we came out on a visit to a village which preserved and maintained the natural beauty and mythological sites in the lap of South Karnataka. Melukote, also known as Hill Station, is the best place which is situated at an altitude of 3000 meters above sea level. Many more shrines and ponds are located in the town. Melukote is home to the Academy of Sanskrit Research, which has collected thousands of Vedic and Sanskrit manuscripts.
However, this town has been transformed into a deteriorating one. The walls of the fort of the village have collapsed, but many treasures inside the fort are still seen giving testimony of golden time. There are many factors that add to its glory – the presence of a prestigious Sanskrit university, its strong connection with saint Sri Ramanujacharya, who lived here for 12 years in the 12th century, and the fact that the Bollywood movie Bhool Bhulaiya was shot at this very destination. Here are a few sites to help you get acquainted with Melukote before you land there.
Village with 108 Ponds
Most important is the Rajbiti ie Rajpath, where there are about 70-80 homes of 150 years old. In which the priests of the temples lives. One such road is Kannigalbethi, in which the Pandit lives. There are 108 ponds in the village, including small ponds, some of them are laddery. The story behind the ponds is also interesting. Like the austere cola that means big sister and little sister’s pond. It is said that there were two sisters in the village. In their name, his father made a pond, but on the basis of nature and karma, both of these ponds were fixed. According to local people’s belief, the actions of the elder sister were full of sin, so the water of this lake remained contaminated and the actions of the younger sister were good, hence the water of the pond is potable. Even today, people of the village drink water of Pond.
Trace the timeworn literature at ancient institutions
Established in 1978, the Academy of Sanskrit Research (ASR) is also nestled in Melukote, holding a history that goes back to the times of Ramanuja. Spread over 14 acres, ASR has schools which still practice the gurukul system of Sanskrit education as well as those with modern methods. Major research on ancient Sanskrit texts is also carried out here, alongside a library that contains 11,000 manuscripts and 35,000 books. Sri Vedavedantha Bodhini Sanskrit College, established in 1854, is one of the oldest institutions. The Sri Yadugiri Education center that provides cultural education to rural students and other colleges giving traditional education are located here, making the town a significant center of learning. Melukote is also known for its distinct handlooms especially dhotis, sarees, etc. There is also an artisans training center in the town.
The town of Melukote abounds in shrines and ponds. The holy tank of Pushkarani or Kalyani with the backdrop of Narasimha Swamy hill is a photographer’s delight. This is the largest pond of the town and has graced many movies with the captivating sight of its steps leading into the water and the mantapas built around it. The twin tanks Akka-Thangiyara honda and the Raya Gopura are must visits that will surely offer you pictures worth for your travelgram. 18 km from the town via Kere Thonnuru Road is the Thonnur Lake, an excursion site spread across 2000 acres that make for the perfect spot to enjoy the sunset.
When to go
There is no specific time you should visit Melukote as the temperature through the year is mostly similar and is a decent time to visit. However, you can avoid the summer months.
How to reach
By air: Melukote is around 68 km from Mysore Airport which is the nearest, and it is around 168 km from the Bangalore international airport.
By train: The closest railway station is Mysore which is at a distance of 51 km from Melukote. From there you can take a cab or a bus.
By road: Melukote is around 50 km from Mysuru and around 140 km from Bengaluru through Nice road. KSRTC buses are also available to Melukote but are not very frequent. You can get buses from Mandya rather.