Gokarna is a small coastal temple town in South of India. Just couple of Hundred Kilometers South of Goa, the usual Beach place in India it was earlier known mostly for a Shiva Temple (Mahabaleshwar) and a mention in the Hindu Epic, Gokarna (or Gokarn which means Cow’s Ear), it was a town which was a pilgrimage for Hindus centuries ago. It wasn’t a very popular beach destination till the start of the year 2000 and so on. And it still isn’t. Locals didn’t use the beach much except for fishing but couple of decades ago, tourists mainly from Russia and Europe started coming to this place in order to find less crowded beaches and for a calmer introduction to Indian practises of Yoga and Meditation. Later, it gained popularity and small hotels and resorts started coming up. Indian domestic tourists also started showing up eventually.
Facing Arabian sea, it has few untamed beaches where even the road access is limited. One has to hike across a small hill to get across to other beaches. Although you may hire a boat for the same if you don’t feel like treading along hills which have superb views of the sea from top.
Since the beaches are mostly secluded and we went in a non-touristy-season, we got chances to view some delightful sunsets. We stayed at Kudle Beach Resort which had a vast expanse of open beach with hills on 3 sides. To reach the hotel itself, we had to park our car on top of the hill and then come down via a very small trek. To reach Om Beach, there was a good road available and from there on, the only way to reach other beaches, we had to walk.
There are 4-5 good beaches where one can relax and also enjoy some watersports.
70 KM south of Gokarna, there exists Murudeshwar. It is a Shiva Temple on the seashore having one of the tallest Gopuarm (Temple Entrance Tower) and a huge Shiva Statue facing towards the town.