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Kudle beach, Gokarna: The Power of God, Love and Yoga

Kudle Beach, one of the five beaches in Gokarna, is an ideal spot for a traveler seeking peace and quietude. Bounded by hills on three sides, the beach is a complete recluse and remains deserted most of the year.

You must have heard it many times: “love is the answer.” Most times you would have let the words pass by, not fully understanding the meaning of it. In a small temple town in Southern India, lies a place called Gokarna, where you will find a quaint little beach called ‘Kudle beach,’ that truly embodies the spirit of love.

Let my words not deceive you, but magic does happen here. Once you have immersed yourself in the energy of Kudle beach, you will find love. The purest form of love.

European backpackers have been coming to Kudle beach for a long time. Some have been staying here for 25 years, living a normal life. You will also find Guruji’s, who possess the innocence of a three-year-old and a mind of a sage, that teach ancient practices of meditation and Yoga.

A day in the life of a Kudle wayfarer starts with a morning prayer, followed by yoga, meditation, making some home-cooked food, then indulging in their creative side (singing, dancing, painting, drawing, playing an instrument, pot making, making jewelry, sports of any kind, followed by meditation and yoga once again and a cup of chai to finish the day.

Kudle’s heartbeat is in worshipping Lord Shiva which thereby results in practising Yoga and meditation (Shiva’s daily practices), in the devotion of the Lord. While many travellers have set foot on Kudle Beach Gokarna over the years, not many come to seek peace in their hearts. Hence, people who stay here often complain that the sanctity of Kudle beach is being destroyed.

Be very careful of your intentions while coming here. If you come for worldly pleasures, the place won’t accept you. If you go in seek of love, Kudle beach will make your heart glow; and you will feel the magic happen.

Gokarna

Kudle beach. Photography by Shruti Devulapali

Kudle Beach: An Overview

Location Karnataka, west coast of Southern India.
Mode of Travel Train and bus. Flights are available to adjacent cities but there are no direct flights to Gokarna.
Best time to visit October – March, when the sun doesn’t burn you and the weather is perfect enough for a dip in the sea.

Shivaratri (The festival celebrating Lord Shiva) happens between February and March and that is when the place comes to life.

Weather The temperatures vary from 15 to 35 degrees.

Summers (April- June) can be very hot and the during the monsoon (July- October), there is an excessive downpour of rain, so both these seasons, while still amazing seasons to visit, can maybe dampen the mood a bit.

Nearest travel destinations Goa (About 3 hours) is the closest holiday destination from here.

Hampi and Murdeshwar are other places backpackers can travel to.

Safety The place is safe for women travelers and you find an abundance of them on the beach.
Accommodation Plenty of hotels, resorts, shacks to stay once you are at the Kudle beach. Prices range from affordable to exorbitant (400-2000)
Food From delicious Pizzas to a simple Indian Dal Rice, you will find Israeli food, European food and Indian food all around.



How to Reach Kudle Beach?

By Train The nearest railway station to Gokarna Karnataka is on Gokarna Road. From the train station, you can reach Gokarna city, which is 6 km far, by bus (10 Rs.) or by an Auto Rickshaw (150 Rs.)

The railway line which runs through Gokarna is the Mumbai – Mangalore route or the Goa – Mangalore route.

By Bus Karnataka has an abundance of private and government buses that come to Gokarna. Unless you are coming from Hubli and Goa, which are just 3 hours away.

You can take overnight buses (5-10 hour trips) to Gokarna from Mangalore and Bangalore, both closest cities that have airports.

There are maxicabs from nearby towns such as Hubli, Kumta, Ankola, Karwar and Bhatkal as well. All of these towns fall on the National Highway (NH-17).

By flight The closest airports are Goa (95 miles), Mangalore (145 miles) and Bangalore (323 miles)

Once you reach Gokarna city, you can easily walk to Kudle beach (like a true wayfarer), but if you are tired, you can take an Auto Rickshaw.

Once you are in Gokarna, it is easy to reach Kudle Beach. You must walk down through a pathway for around ten minutes near the parking. You can also reach Kudle Beach easily from Gokarna Beach or Om Beach.

Why Visit the Kudle Beach?

If you are searching for answers that are crippling your life, come to Kudle beach. If you are stressed, come to Kudle beach. If you want to escape the circle of depression, come to Kudle beach. This place has a healing effect on the heart of a true seeker. Kudle beach, to many, has been the light that they never let enter into their hearts.

Once you reach the place you are immediately immersed in hoardings and posters about Yoga and meditation classes. There are practices of Tai Chi and Qi Gong that are taught too.

You will hear a ‘Hari Om,‘ here and an ‘Om Namah Shivay’ there (both Shiva mantras). In complete devotion to Lord Shiva, there are people, who have been liberated, blessed; devoid of any worry and their faces radiate sheer joy and delight. The people there remind you, give you a knock on your head saying “Love everyone and everything is going to be all right”

If you are not coming to seek wisdom or run away from your worries, Kudle can be a friend too. Due to the relaxing nature of Kudle beach, you can let your hair loose and take ‘time’ firmly in your grip and give it a good whack to send it far away.

It’s a great place for readers and the quiet ones that never liked Goa.

Kudle Beach

Kudle’s heartbeat is in worshipping Lord Shiva which thereby result in practicing Yoga and meditation in devotion of the Lord.

Kudle Beach Accommodation Options

There are plenty of options if you wish to stay near the Kudle Beach. There are resorts, shacks, hostel dorm rooms, cottages near the beach. These can be booked well in advance online. So, whether you are a backpacker on a tight budget or someone who desires a more comfortable stay, you will find it all here.

Here are my top recommendations for budget accommodation in Gokarna. They have personally been tested. I will share the links from the sites that offer the most budget friendly prices for travelers –

Zostel Gokarna

It a is 8 minutes walk from the beach, it provides a garden and guestrooms with free WiFi. It also has a shared lounge. The property features a 24-hour front desk. At the hostel, all rooms are equipped with a wardrobe. The private bathroom is fitted with a bath or shower.

Hotel Nirvana Nature

It is 2 minutes walk from the beach, it features a garden and a terrace and provides free WiFi. A continental or vegetarian breakfast can be enjoyed at the property. The restaurant at the resort specializes in Indian cuisine. 

 
Shri Umamaheshwar Cottages

It is located very close to Kudle beach, is kept extremely clean by the staff. Lots of eating places nearby. The washrooms are slightly old.

 
 Hotel Gokarna International

The staff here speaks both English and Hindi and is quite friendly. Wifi is provided in common areas only.

 
City Stay

Good location. Friendly staff. Hygienic place. Cordial and most delightful hospitality from the owner, frequent follow-up on the facilities.

 

Things to do at Kudle Beach

Where do I even begin? Kudle beach manifests life and on the beach, you will find activities galore.

Here are some things you can indulge in:

 Yoga and meditations with teachers  and gurujis
Trek to adjacent beaches. There are five: Gokarna beach, Om beach, Half-moon beach, Paradise beach (also known as Full moon) and Belekan beach
Sports on the beach. Volleyball is fervent with football on occasions
 Some pretty badass Frisbee with some pretty badass Frisbee practitioners
Camp-fire at night
Music on the beach or certain cafes where musicians end up meeting. Evenings are the best to witness this spell bounding
Flea market on the beach where backpackers sell jewellery that they have made, Turkish coffee, give massages, read your fortune, and you can even find varieties of cake, come from across the globe.
Surfing (on good days). Gokarna beach, which is adjacent to Kudle has more surfers.
Evening and morning walks at Kudle Beach are very comforting. Watch the sun go down whilst listening to the soothing sound of waves.
Not to forget is the most important thing: Conversations! Let your heart decide whom you want to talk and each person will have a story. That story has the potential of changing your life. So, go seek.



Where & What to Eat Near Kudle Beach?

There are plenty of eating options in and around Kudle Beach Gokarna. Cafes and shacks serve different cuisines including Italian, Chinese, Indian and Continental. Some of the best eating joints here are:

Café/Hotel Must Try Items
Little Paradise Inn Naan and Indian curries

Sea Food

Pizzeria Kudle View Wood fired Pizza

Prawns

Café 1987 Pancakes

Noodles

Namaste Café Prawns

Vegetable Sizzler

White Elephant Restaurant & Cottages Pizzas

Pesto Pasta

Kudle Beach

There are plenty of food options in and around Kudle Beach. Photography by Sanghamitra Konwar

Other Things to do in Gokarna near Kudle Beach

There are a few other places you must explore on your trip to Kudle Beach. Some of the best ones are:

Other Gokarna Beaches

Other than Kudle Beach, there are four other beaches in Gokarna including Gokarna beach, Om beach, Half-moon beach and Paradise beach. All these beaches are easily accessible from Kudle Beach

Tip: Don’t forget to carry your Sunscreen Lotion

Distances

Kudle Beach to Om beach – 1.1 Kms

Kudle Beach to Gokarna beach – 1.7 Kms

Kudle Beach to Half-moon beach- 2.4 Kms

Kudle Beach to Paradise beach- 2.6 Kms

Paradise beach

Paradise Beach is another beautiful Beach in Gokarna. Photography by Harsh Garg

Gokarna Mahabaleswara Temple

It is located at a distance of 1.6 kms from Kudle Beach
Gokarna Mahabaleshwar temple is the reason why a lot of Pilgrims visit Gokarna. It is the only Atma-lingam in the world that can be touched by the devotees. If you visit the temple, do read about the history beforehand.

A must visit for a Shiva Devotee

Timings:

6 am to 2 pm

4 pm  onwards

Tip: Choose the afternoon timings to avoid the heavy rush

Dress code:

Men – without shirt/ banian and either dhothi/ trousers can be worn.

Women – Indian wear

Kudle Beach

Gokarna Mahabaleshwar Temple houses the only Atma-lingam in the world that can be touched by the devotees. Photography by Nikhil Durge

Maha Ganapati Temple

It is located at a distance of 1.6 kms from Kudle Beach and very close to the Gokarna Mahabaleshwara Temple,
This is an ancient temple built in honour of Balal Ganesh who saved the ‘Atma Linga’ from Ravana. Visit it before visiting the Mahabaleshwara temple.

Shiva Cave Gokarna

Located at a distance of 0.7 kms from Kudle beach and are exactly opposite to Kudle Beach View Resort
Not many travellers visit or know about this place. The cave has a Shiva linga which is said to be built in 195 BC.

If you are scared of Bats, you should probably avoid as the caves. The caves are dark so carry a torch but don’t shine them directly on the Bats as it distresses them.

 Tip: If possible ask a localite to accompany.

Mirjan Fort

The fort is located at a distance of about 12 kms from Kudle Beach, off NH 66, between Gokarna and Kumta. If you have your own transport, you can stop on your way to Kudle Beach or Gokarna or your way back.

You can also hire autos from Gokarna to reach the Mirjan Fort.

This 17th-century fort signals the splendid military and commercial past. The views from the fort are amazing.

The place is secluded and you can spend a couple of hours here. Photographers would love the place.

Tip: Best time to visit is during the rainy season
Mirjan Fort

The 17th-century Mirjan fort signals the splendid military and commercial past. Photography by Pandhituraj

Kudle beach can life-changing effects on your thinking and personality. While I say this, there is, of course, the disclaimer that these are things that cannot happen to everyone and not definitely in a few days. It will take time (I’ve been coming here for 6 years), but this place will leave a mark. And you don’t have to be special, you just have to be open.

You find God here because God is love.

Happy wayfaring.

About the Author

Arjun Namboothiri


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