GOKARNA – a piece of heaven on earth
Gokarna, a small town with the most serene beaches, is the ideal getaway for backpackers and travelers looking for a quiet and picturesque place to unwind.
When you think of vacation the first thing that hits the mind is a beach and Gokarna has been under the radar of travelers who don’t want noisy, crowded, and commercial beaches but are just looking for something calm, peaceful, and scenic way to unwind and rejuvenate.
This was a trip where the itinerary won’t be required and planning will be the least of your concerns, as the places you visit on the trip have a magic of their own that will leave you spellbound!
Let’s start at…..
We began our journey from Bangalore in the night to our first destination which was Jog falls, located near Shimoga. This journey with the team was the beginning step into a new adventure ahead and also it will be writing the first chapter in the book of memories. We reached Jog falls at around 5.am to witness the sun making its way from behind the magnificent waterfalls. Being the 2nd highest waterfall in India it is not just the falls that are an attraction but it is also a popular spot for bird watching. The falls were not in their full-throttle beauty at the time we visited but the view was satisfying and serene, nevertheless.
We started our day by heading to the Gerusoppa Dam, on the banks of river Sharavati. Here we had a small but fun trek to the backwaters of the dam and the view upon reaching was blissfully pure. It was the cleanest of freshwaters I’ve seen in very long. Nothing in this world would stop us from jumping straight right in and that was exactly what the team did and indeed had a splashing time. The dip was much needed to re-energize us as we journeyed towards the majestic Yana caves. A unique cave located in Kumta is formed out of black limestone and has two massive rock formations.
The vibe I got upon reaching the starting point of the trek was that I was definitely in for ‘some adventure’. So it was! The trek was amidst the thick green forest, dense foliage, and pretty little streams cutting the path. Oh! The trekking path has superb locations to click pictures. Upon reaching the bottom of the caves, you have the stunning sight of the gigantic Yana caves in front of you, which is worth the long trek. The Yana caves hold some popular legends of history which one should enlighten themselves with as it will give you an insight as to what makes this place so mystical. The trek to caves is a trekker’s ultimate destination.
P.S. – Do not forget to carry energy snacks. You will need them!
Finally, we were headed towards our main destination, Gokarna. And like I said, there is no itinerary or planning we required for this trip, so we happened to stop at Mirjan Fort, en route. This fort is located about 20 km from Gokarna. This is not a fort by a king. It is a fort built by the local queen of Gerusoppa in the 14th century. The fort, though dilapidated, stands tall and huge with amazing combinations of natural colors, making it the perfect location again, for taking pictures.
It is said that when you really want something the entire universe conspires it towards you. That was exactly what happened, we reached Gokarna right at the time of sunset. It was the ultimate picturesque view anyone would want upon reaching this destination.
The most thrilling and cool part of this trip was our stay at Middle beach in Gokarna. The location of the stay is just a way too’ beautifully elaborate’ to put into words. I never knew that staying in a tent would be the icing of this adventure and I would not miss it or replace it for any luxury.
The night is the best time of the day where we get to dive into silence, gaze at stars with the background music of the waves hitting the shore.
It was our camp night and the team prepared the perfect dinner for the ambiance. Some dishes should be eaten with the right people at the right time and in the right place.
That night we witnessed nature at its best, seeing the moon change colors, the sky changing, around it, it just couldn’t get any better!! To top it all off, bioluminescence, a natural phenomenon where a living organism produces and emits light. It is something one should see in their lifetime and not missed when you have the chance.
The next day was an early start, where we woke up to the sound of waves and saw the sun slowly timidly making its way upwards into the sky from underneath the tides. The perfect view to start your day.
So we began the next day trek towards the pristine beaches of Gokarna. Every beach we visited had something special to offer. Our first stop was, Gokarna main beach and one has to stop here to see the view of course but also the workmanship of the fishermen returning back to the shore after their hard work.
We trekked ahead to Kudle beach, a popular beach in Gokarna, surrounded by cafés and eating joints serving continental food. At this point the sun was shining bright, enhancing the scenic view around us. Our next stop was the Om beach.
The trek to Om beach offered us a lush golden landscaped hilltop on its way with the view of the sea on one side and a golden horizon on the other making it the perfect picturesque spot.
Upon reaching Om beach, the view from a point will clearly show you why it is called ‘’OM’’ beach. Looking at the view and just visualizing the symbol makes you believe that nature has its own way of telling stories and proving them.
There are a lot of activities that are available on Om beach since it’s the most popular beaches in Gokarna and crowded compared to the rest. So we decided to take the boat ride to Paradise beach, witnessing a lot of other beaches on the way and the lighthouse. As we reached paradise beach, it was sure that this place was definitely going to give us the feel of being in paradise. It was here that the entire team soaked in all the ‘Vitamin SEA’ possible, made some much needed tan lines, and let the sea hold us in its net of wonder forever.
Sometimes a little risk goes a long way……..
So was our visit to the marvelous Vibhuti falls. Little risky because of the time we had in hand. (Pssst…this was caused because we had a sumptuous meal like royals..)
Anyway, we smartly managed to make our way to Vibhuti falls, and trust me, it was worth anything in return. This was another spot that we just couldn’t resist and jumped right in. The scene was spectacular, accompanied by the pure pleasant sound of water. It was everything we needed to call it a day!
All good things have to come to end. So remember, those tan lines will fade, but the experience, lessons, and book full of memories will be the most valuable treasure you take back.
Take away lines….
· What is life without challenges!.
· “They say when a person is intoxicated his true self comes out, but personally it is when a person travels is when the true self is seen”. With Love, Aliya_Team Parikrama.