the road not taken at Horanadu

Horanadu temple

Originally uploaded by common man.

The Annapoorneshwari temple at Horanadu is quite famous.

We arrived at Horanadu yesterday night and witnessed the Mahamanglaarthi at this temple at 21:15, a beautiful event with a LOT of lighted lamps. The darshan – where you can walk past the diety (in this case, Goddess Annapoorneshwari) as with all big temples, the priest urges anyone who tarries for more than a few milliseconds to keep moving. Food and accomodation is provided at the temple. Accomodation must be quite a nice experience with big long lines of pillows, carpets and bedsheets all arranged by just two servers in a very short time, yet they were doing it unhurriedly and meticulously.

However we stayed at a nearby lodge. This morning I was taking a walk with my sister amidst the very foggy hillside.

We were walking along the main road in the direction of the temple, and there was a small tar road, at the curve. There are countless times I’ve lived by Robert Frost’s Road Not Taken, and this was one of those times, so we ventured in to explore this small road.

The whole district of Chimagalur is really beautiful, lots of green foliage everywhere. Also this particular road, it had rained, so everything from the road to the flowers and the leaves and the tree trunks – all had this strikingly wonderful lustre to it. Along the way we came across a little boy and picked up a chat with him. He was a polite, soft spoken kid who along the way, spoke of a small temple, and showed us a little mud path turning off from the road upwards (I was reminded of the little girl in the movie Tomb Raider every time Lara sees some jasmine flowers). He went on his way to his school I think – as it was Monday morning. (I had taken a day off)

We started walking up that path, and it winded around, becoming steeper along the way, and after a few minutes, we walked around a bush to reach a flat ground that had the staircase to this temple (see photo). The place and the temple was so undescribably beautiful that the photograph here does poor justice to it.

We walked up the staircase, and couldn’t help just sitting in silence for a mesmerised by the ambience. There was just the sound of birds including peacocks playing a symphony in the background. If this isn’t heaven, I don’t know what its supposed to be like 🙂 Vijetha would’ve loved it here as well (but she couldn’t make it to this trip). We soon went into the temple, the serenity was a stark contrast to the rush in the famous bigger temple. Maybe not many people even know about this temple. (Because later on in the morning when we went back with our mom (and when I took this photo) still there was just one family who was visiting). There was no hurry here and we could just meander around. When we spoke to the priest, I felt he was a very simple down to earth man. This temple has this beautiful natural green lawn around it where one can walk around it. Later on, came to know it was a very ancient temple.

In case anyone wants to try this out, at the curve with an unmistakable landmark – a grilled gate having two tigers in the grills which once one passes will find are the entrance to a helipad.

16 Responses to “the road not taken at Horanadu”

  1. bellur ramakrishna Says:

    This ancient temple of Goddess Annapoorneshwari has been restored and renamed as the Adi-Shaktyatmaka Shree Annapoorneshwari. The name Annapoorneshwari means “Feeding one and all”. As you’ve noted, all who visit this temple are provided with breakfast, lunch and dinner and place to sleep in the temple premises.

    The natural scenery around the temple is fantastically enchanting.

    Seeing the lovely picture, felt as if those tall trees are kissing the sky.

  2. M O H A N Says:

    Good narration sanjay!!

    This is on my wish list for quite some time…

    Calmness, control of mind symbolises the presence of the god and you have brought it out aptly in the post.


  3. Srik Says:

    I have taken this not much travelled road too..

    When I went there, it was raining from above, cloudy all over… no vehicles, no trespasses, absolute no hint of civilization, except for a tar road… just we and a few birds, and a few make-shift water falls alongside the road, from the coffee estates around, wet land, wet we!!

    I still remember it afresh…and the heavenly refreshment I got that day!! oh! a blessing!!

    Thanks sanjay for reminding me that day.

  4. Prashanth M Says:

    Beautiful narration, Sanjay! And you got an SLR?!

  5. Sanjay M Says:

    Thanks for the info Bellur, indeed feasting at these temples is a treat for their simple yet very fulfilling food. Also there are various ways in which one can sponsor meals for others as well. And really those tall trees were very elegant.

    Thanks mohan, prashanth for your nice comments!

    Srik, glad to read about your refreshing experience! 😎

    And yes, I did get a Canon Rebel XT (350D) + 18-55 kit lens from my sister and am just venturing into DSLR photography. I hope to write a more detailed review and put more photographs online soon!

  6. sia Says:

    ah!!! i could almost visialise the breath taking beaty of chikmagaluru dist. 🙂 and not to forget the lush green tea and cofee plantations.
    i have been to horanadu many times but never got a chance to explore the sorroundings. may be next time when i get a chance to visit, i would try to goto this temple u have mentioned.

  7. preethi Says:

    I had commented…but sadly it vanished … 😳

    I liked the narration of the “road not taken” experience..
    and I felt inspired to convert the photograph into a sketch and may be even a painting also 😛

  8. Neela Says:

    I had the same feelings when I visited kateelu devasthana some twelve years ago in dushera time. The fragrance of the flower decked temple is still with me.

  9. msanjay Says:

    so sorry about that preethi… I think I’ll add a note I’d made earlier into the comment template that reminds users to backup their comment into clipboard with a Ctrl-A Ctrl-C (select all + copy) before posting. Thanks its quite an honor… I’ll mail you the high res image.

    Hi Neela thats cool. Wondering where’s the kateelu devasthana. These ancient temples definitely have a distinct ambience.

  10. Neela Says:

    Kateelu is near udupi. It is like a small riverine island.The river is nandini I think(in shaapagrastha form).It is a Durgaparameshwari temple.

  11. Indu kumar Says:

    Thanks sanjay for informing about the ancient temple, I have been going to horanadu from last 20 years, but till date i dint knew about this., Thank you so much.

  12. msanjay Says:

    Thats nice to know that you found it useful Indu – am sure you’ll love this temple as well.

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  14. a common man ಸಂಜಯ » Blog Archive » weekend exploration of srikalahasti Says:

    […] road not taken at horanadu […]

  15. sarala Says:

    hi superb narration Sanjay………. Horanadu is one of the best place i like that place alot…….

  16. sarala Says:

    superb narration Sanjay……….
    Horanadu is my favorite place …..i like see the nature aroound that temple………..

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