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Manjunatheshwara Temple Kadri

The Manjunatheshwara temple of Kadri in Karnataka is one of the oldest temple of this south Indian state and a popular tourist destination of those who are looking to visit religious places from the pages of history. The temple has a unique square structure and is on the highest hill in this region.


The history of the temple dates back to 1068 AD. It is dedicated to Lord Manjunatha, considered an incarnation of Lord Shiva according to Hindu mythology. The temple has a bronze idol of the deity that’s considered the oldest among such idols in South Indian shrines. The temple also houses idols of Lord Vishnu, Ganesha, Shasta and Goddess Durga Parmeshwari. The Gomukha Ganpathi idol is one of the key attractions here.

The place where the temple is situated was known as Kadarika during ancient times. Buddhism was practiced here till the 10th century. The beginning of the Natha Pantha saw the decline of Buddhism, but the people down the years continued to refer to the place as Kadri and it has stuck ever since.

What the Legend Says

Legend has it that Parashurama prayed to Lord Shiva to settle down in the Sahyadri where he too lived and vanquished the Kshatriyas. Lord Shiva agreed if Parashurama did penance at Kadali temple. Parashurama threw his axe into the sea to please the Lord and created a place for his atonement. His act satisfied Lord Shiva and he appeared in the form of Lord Manjunatha along with Goddess Parvathi, making Kadri His Home.

The Legend of the Seven Ponds

There are seven ponds in front of the temple which are in fact the Saptakothi Mantras of Shiva according to legend. Other key attractions are the beautiful garden surrounding the ponds and Gomukha, the natural spring on the rear side of the temple. The water from this spring flows into the seven sacred ponds. Devotees purify themselves with water from these ponds before entering the temple precincts.

What to Look for in the Temple

The idol of Manjunatheshwara is in the shape and form of Shivlinga but with a human face. The beautiful tower is in the east side of the temple while the entrance to the main shrine faces the north. A dual corridor goes round the main shrine. The outer corridor is massive and without ceiling and houses many shrines including those of Ganesha, Durga and Ayyappa. It also has a rare shrine of Saneeshwara with the crow.

The temple tank is located near the holy tree and just a few yards from the tree is the beautiful Shiva shrine which is a key place of attraction and devotion. It has numerous copper idols are also found. Devotees also pay homage to the temple of beautiful Ganesha shrine and the free-flowing Kasi Bhagirathi teerth nearby are a major attraction for devotees.

How to Reach

By Bus

The temple is just four kilometers from the main bus stand in Mangalore and can be reached by bus or private car or taxi.

By Rail

The nearest railway head is Mangalore Railway Junction.

By Air

Mangalore Airport is the nearest to the temple.

Related Image

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