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Gokarna: An Overview - Originally a Hindu pilgrimage site, Gokarna is also famous for its pristine beaches and craggy hills. Perfect for weekend getaways, it is the less commercialized and more laid-back cousin of Goa making this small town a regular nominee among avid travelers. This quiet town rests cozily along the west coast, in the lap of Karnataka and has emerged into a popular tourist destination lately.
Thanks to its golden beaches, undulating hills and some of the most ancient temples steeped in history and mythology, which has resulted in the division of the town in two sections- one that is for the pilgrims who come to Gokarna to seek Lord Shiva’s blessings and the other for the adventure aficionados and nature lovers looking for a peaceful beach holiday. To perfectly complement all the adventure, some fantastic hotels in Gokarna have emerged that take your holiday experience a notch higher.
Top reasons to visit Gokarna
Explore Gokarna and discover a fine mix of quiet, immaculate beaches and temples associated with fascinating myths and legends. However, this tiny town is famous as a pilgrim centre, but that does not make it a boring place. The beaches of Gokarna are one-of-a-kind in the country and are not too commercial with some of them a bit too secluded without a string of stalls and shops.
So if you have a thing for serene, blissful coast holidays, Gokarna can be your go-to escapade. Similarly, the ancient temples also draw in hundreds of pilgrims from far and near who come to soak in the mystic of the Indian mythology. Whether you are a beach person or are more into spiritualism, here’s our lowdown of the best things to do in Gokarna:-
• Beach trekking - Sounds obvious, right? But here is the catch that may seem ordinary at first, but is slightly different than what you may have thought of. As Gokarna is located amid a hilly terrain, the beaches lie on the other side of the hills. So when we say, beach trekking is one of the fun activities here, you literally have to trek up not walk to the beaches. Gokarna has five (5) major beaches- Gokarna beach, Paradise beach, Kudle beach, Om beach and Half Moon beach. Climb up the craggy hills and descend through a rocky landscape to reach the shorelines while enjoying the real excitement and fun of beach trekking.
• Temple tours - The main reason of Gokarna’s popularity, this tiny temple town is home to several ancient shrines that have a fair amount of history and reverence in the Hindu community. The Gokarna town houses the legendary Mahabaleshwar temple, the holy abode of Lord Shiva who resides here in the form of a Shiva Linga. Located in a serene and divine setting, the temple is associated with innumerable fables and myths and the deity of the lord is over fifteen hundred (1500) years old. While visiting Mahabaleshwar temple, also keep an eye for the other temples like Aadi Gokarneshwara temple, Koti Teertha, Ganapati temple, among others.
• Pamper yourself with a massage - Most of the resorts and hotels in Gokarna offer invigorating massage services, the Kerala Ayurvedic treatments being the most popular. The best way to unwind from the urban grind, opt for a regular body massage, a head massage or a foot massage, depending on your preferences while enjoying the sound of the thundering waves in the background.
• Relish local savories - Let the foodie in you unleash in Gokarna, relishing on the delicacies available in the beach shacks and local eateries. From traditional Indian thalis to authentic Italian cuisines, Gokarna offers unexpected options that will leave your taste buds in a food frenzy.
Where to stay in Gokarna?
• Kudle Beach View Resort and Spa - Located just five (5) kilometers away from the Kudle beach, the Kudle Beach View Resort and Spa is a four star property offering enthralling views of the beach. The resort is perched on a cliff so it can be reached by taking a walk uphill. The property provides airy rooms along with a rooftop restaurant, a spa and a swimming pool.
• Patang - Patang is one-of-a-kind beach property offering hut accommodation right on the sandy shores. One of the last resorts on the Ganga beach just before the road meets a dead-end. This luxury resort houses an open gazebo-style eatery that serves lip-smacking international cuisines including Italian and Mexican. This is on of the best hotels in Gokarna and is a must-try for every visitor.
• SwaSwara - Located near Om Beach, SwaSwara is a unique wellness resort set amidst vast green expanse, blooming gardens, lush lawns and the sparkling beach. Mainly known for its yoga, meditation and wellness classes, travelers looking for a quiet, laid-back and rejuvenating vacation can look forward to booking a stay at this property. The plush resort boasts of elegant cottages, a meditation hall and a swimming pool.
• Sanskruti Resort - Another gem located in the Om Beach, Sanskruti Resort offers breathtaking valley view rooms and cottages. Famous for offering exclusive Ayurvedic treatments, the resort has a brilliant spa, a swimming pool and a fine-dining restaurant serving international fare.
• Namaste Holiday Home - Formerly called Namaste Yoga Farm; the Namaste Holiday Home is an eco-friendly stay. It has exclusive rooms, cottages and even quirky accommodation like tree houses. The resort regularly conducts yoga and meditation sessions to offer a holistic experience of peace and sanctity amidst the glory of Mother Nature.
• Namaste Atithya - Namaste Atithya is a unique property offering different types of accommodation to suit different preference and budget. The property is one of the rare places in Gokarna where you will find everything from dormitories with shared bathrooms to stone cottages set in sylvan setting. While Namaste Café is best suited to travelers touring on a tight budget, Namaste Sanjeevini is for the opulence-loving globetrotter.
• Gokarna International Beach Resort - The ideal place for those looking for pocket-friendly staying options right in the middle of the city, Gokarna International Beach Resort provides world-class services at reasonable prices. Located bang on the Kudle Beach, this mid-range property offers airy accommodation with all the basic amenities with consolation views of the sea and the sand. The property also houses a yoga centre along with a multi-cuisine restaurant.
• Haripriya Residency - Feel at home at Haripriya Residency, a brand new facility fitting the term ‘Residency’ in every aspect. A homely accommodation in Gokarna, this place offers home-made meals and breakfast to the guests on prior request. The rooms are tastefully decorated with impeccable hygiene standards and all the rooms have private bathrooms. Other facilities provided by the hotel include free wifi, travel assistance, laundry services and more.
Types of Accommodation in Gokarna
What kind of accommodation would you like to stay in Gokarna? Yatra.com offers all types of accommodation to travelers according to budget, location and their preferences. Like a resort is known as a place for relaxation and entertainment, or a Villa is often described as a luxurious residence, an apartment is a serviced apartment for comfortable living or Home stay its kind of host family accommodation. You can also choose & book accommodation from list of resorts in Gokarna, best homestays in Gokarna, top villas in Gokarna and service apartments in Gokarna as well.