Thursday, November 1, 2012

Bylakuppe and Elephant bathing?!

Would never have thought that I could see a part of Tibet in Karnataka! But it does exist! Bylakuppe is home to two of the many Tibetan settlements in India, established by Lugsum Samdupling (in 1961) and Dickyi Larsoe (in 1969).  It is located to the west of the Mysore district in the Indian state of Karnataka. The twin town Kushalanagara is about 6 kilometers from Bylakuppe.


Bylakuppe is the 3000 acres of land that was leased out by the Indian Government to the fleeing Tibetans in 1961 and they are here to stay! It is the largest Tibetan community in exile with about 40,000 people in five settlements containing monasteries, kindergarten to higher level secondary schools, health care clinics, a hospital and a traditional Tibetan medical facility.


The most visited temple here is Namdroling (The Golden Temple)


Three beautiful larger than life gold plated statues look down at visitors above the altar.


The walls are adorned with colourful paintings depicting gods and demons from Tibetan Buddhist mythology.


The one thing that one must witness is the prayer of the monks. The harmony of their chants is enchanting.


The exterior of the new Zangdokpalri temple looks majestic with a majestic rainbow arch.
We are so used to being told not to photograph the idols in temples, that the ready willingness of the monks to let the idols in their temples being photographed is such a pleasant and welcome surprise.
If you wish to taste Tibetan food you can do that too! There are restaurants in there where you can indulge your adventuorous tastebuds.
All this was amazing alright but then due to shortage of time we missed going to Dubare Elephant camp that was just 40kms away. However this wonderful video by Godrej Cinthol has given a glimpse of what we 


missed. An elephant bath! So if you are ever going anywhere near Madikeri, do not forget to go to Dubare and bathe and be bathed by an elephant! Sure feels to be Alive is Awesome! Once you get back to your room use the real cool Cinthol soap to feel refreshed after the bathing with the elephants experience!

34 comments:

  1. Truly amazing post & photos. Thank you.

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  2. A grand post indeed! Loved it:) Thank you Deepak:)

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  3. Wow--Tibet down south!!! Incredible ways in which people move around and how culture spreads..loved the photographs...hahaha loved the elephant bath too, although I wish you had gotten dunked by an elephant!

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  4. I had no clue there was a place where I could do elephant bathing near Madikeri! Even I missed it :(

    Great pics btw :)

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  5. wow ! you just reminded me of my visit to this place some time back !

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  6. Nice post and lovely pics...Tibetan monasteries do have a peaceful and serene atmosphere...Have been to one at Manali!

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  7. Yes the Tibetan settlement is worth a visit. There is one at Mundgod also in Karnataka. Although I have experienced an Elephant ride on many occasions, I never thought of this kind of a bath. It never occurred to me. Beautiful post.

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  8. Wow! Would ride to this Kannada Tibet soon... :) :)D

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  9. Wow!! Never knew about this place... interesting post with lovely pics..

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  10. This is were i fell in love with the reds and the golds and the serenity of the Buddhist temple. Awesome place, wonderful post!

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  11. Good to see a post about this place. I have never been there but have always heard about it.

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  12. Thanks for the post! It adds to plural culture of India! I feel proud :)

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  13. Tibet in down south...haven't heard of it before! Beautiful pics with amazing details. Thanks for sharing, Deepak.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Panchali. Pleasure to share

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  14. Great. Now I can visit this little Tibet which is closer to home.

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  15. I am getting excited to go this place now...good description...

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