Dharmasthala Manjunatha Temple – 800 Year Old Famous Temple
Dharmasthala Manjunatha Temple is a 800 year old famous temple on the banks of River Netravati at Dharmasthala, a temple town in Dakshina Kannada District, India. The temple is also known as Shri Kshetra Dharmasthala.
This temple is famous for its Hindu and Jain deities. Lord Shiva is the main deity which is work-shipped here. Lord Shiva is known as Manjunatha at this temple and hence the temple got its name Manjunatha Temple. Theerthankara, a Jain deity is also work-shipped in this temple. Four Daivas; Kalarahu, Kalarkayi, Kumaraswamy and Kanyakumari are also work-shipped here.
Lakshadeepa festival is the main temple festival and is celebrated during November or December each year.
Monolithic stone sculpture of Lord Bahubalii, with a height of 39 feet and weighing 170 tonnes, is situated at a distance of around 1 kilometer from the Manjunatha temple. It was installed in 1982. You can reach hilltop where the statue is situated by climbing the steps or by car.
The Pergade family, a Jain family and belonging to Bunt sub-community, is the hereditary trustees of the temple. They are known as Dharma Adhikari (chief administrator). They are believed to be descendants of the creator of the temple. They are Feudal Lords and they still resolve civil and criminal disputes. The practice is called “Hoyulu”. The present day Dharma Adhikari is believed to be the 20th decedent of Birmanna Pergade and his wife Ammu Ballalthi; the first Pergade family members who built the temple.
How Do I Go to Dharmasthala Temple?
Dharmasthala Temple is well connected to other parts of the country by roads. Mangalore is the nearest Major Town. Yedamangala (YDM) and Kabakaputtur (KBPR) railway stations are the nearest railway stations at around 27 to 28 kilometers distance from Shri Kshetra Dharmasthala. Bajpe airport at Mangalore is the nearest airport at around 75 kilometers distance from Dharmasthala Temple.