“Where can we find a good Udupi Hotel?” my dad innocently asked a rickshaw wallah. He looked at my father quizzically. I pinged my Dad and reminded him that we are in Udupi and all hotels here are Udupi hotels. You only had to ask which is a good hotel for vegetarians.
Go to any corner in India and you will be able to find an Udupi restaruant. They are famous for the vegetarian cuisine that they serve and are supposed to be prepared in the Saatvik style, avoiding garlic and onion and at the same time not compromising in taste.
The credit for this goes to the Srikrishna Temple, which is the institution around which a sleepy little place started to develop. It is the cooks of this temple which was founded by Saint Madhava, leading proponent of the Dwaita philosophy, who later took the cuisine of the temple to around the world and made it famous.
Udupi is no longer a sleepy town. With nearby Manipal and the bustling beaches that wash its coasts, Udupi is a must visit place now.
Malpe Beach and St. Mary’s island
In the evening, I went to Malpe beach expecting a sleepy beach with very few visitors. Malpe was anything but that. It was bustling with tourists, watersports, roadside stalls and everything that could put Baga beach (in Goa) to shame. The winter being the season, Malpe has turned into a place where people from all nearby places pour in to enjoy their weekends. There were quite a few school buses from Kerala with children coming in to enjoy their annual tour.
I went to one of the roadside stalls (one among numerous) with live fish counters. Fresh fish with masala and chilly applied on it were kept in line and I just had to choose. I selected a fish called Kandai (Grey Mullet) which they fried immediately and gave. Having come from Nagpur, I was in mood for more. The mullet was very tastely fried. So I selected a bigger Chinese Pomfret and was bowled over by the taste.
I wanted to proceed to St. Marys island, which is also one of the Geological Monuments of India, however the ferry time was over.
Add Udupi to Your Must Visit Destinations
I intend to visit Udupi again. Coastal Karnataka has a life of its own and remains relatively unexplored by tourists from elsewhere. Udupi is home to a lot of places like Manipal Museum of Pathology and Anatomy, Kodi beach etc. It deserves atleast 2-3 days of attention. Add it to your bucket list and do visit it.