Kukke subrahmanya Travel Guide

State Karnataka

110 km SE of Mangalore; 290 Km SW of Bangalore; 100 km from Madikeri

Kukke Subramanya Travel Guide

The road to Kukke Subramanya passes through the plantations of coffee and spice plantations of Shiradi Ghat. Meanwhile some awesome views of quaint scenes of hills, forests, valleys and gurgling mountain stream keep the travellers absorbed of the God’s natural beauty. Twenty two km before the Subrahmanya Temple a short stretch of not-so-well-maintained roads, amidst dense foliage of bamboo and oak trees and under cool climes, leads to the pilgrimage. The scene of the temple is as prepossessing as that of a postcard picture. 


Against the backdrop of Kumaraparvat in the Western Ghats, near the sacred river Kumaradhara, the winsome pilgrimage of Subrahmanya is located in the Sullia Taluk of Dakshina Kannada district of coastal Karnataka. 

Subramanya Legend and Myth 

Subrahmanya, the youngest son of Lord Shiva and Parvati, is the presiding deity of Kukke Subrahmanya Temple. The temple precinct doesn’t have any specific Subrahmanya statuette rather a snake representation of the deity. Subrahmanya Kukke shrine is considered to be one of the seven sacred sanctums of the Tulu country. Boasting of several mythological happenings, one such incident of Subramanya shrine is when Lord Krishna’s son was cured of Leprosy. Quiet interestingly, the idols of snake here is sheltered under a bamboo (Kukke in Kannada) roof after the worship. 

The shrine came into being when the Janamejaya vouched to decimate snakes of the hills of what is known as Western Ghats today, by performing a holy yagna (holy oblation). As a consequence of the Yagna the snakes of the regions were annihilated and the some of those lefts were picked up the Garuda, the King crow who is also the natural enemy of snakes. This in turn waged a fierce battle between Vasuki, the King snake and Garuda, when Rishi Kashyapa advised Garuda to pray Lord Shiva and seek Lord Shiva’s divine protection. Lord Shiva decreed that Subrahmanya would kill the asura Taraka and then live in Kukke, by the banks of Kumaradhara River and will be worshipped along with Vasuki. 

Kukke Subramanya Temple 

Temple Timings: 7 am- 1 pm; 3:30- 8:30 pm 

A day is more than enough to check out the shrine of Kukke Subrahmanyam and the near by temples and excursions. The nearest city of Mangalore, almost 3-hr drive from Sullia Taluk, and used as base for to journey down the Subrahmanya Shrine.

Subrahmanya Temple is constructed in wood and tile with a sloping roof topped with a brass Kalasa. The pilgrim centre of Subrahmanya welcomes the darshanarthis with immense natural beauty, and if not a spiritual sanctuary it must have been called as Spiritual Sanctuary. The greenery here soothes the body and mind. After the entrance is located the Dharamsamelan Mantapa, a huge banquet-hall-kind-of-a-room purposefully built for conducting spiritual discourses and cultural programmes. And right beyond that is located a huge pavilion. The shrine houses a gigantic-six-headed Subrahmanya on a peacock and two revered coiled, five hooded serpents as Mahasesha and Vasuki, one below another. 

Pooja and rituals at the temple 

Aarti: The Mahamangal aarti is conducted at 7:30 pm and during the noon time. Also, men are asked to remove their upper garments as a part of their daily ritual. 

Note: Mobiles and still videos are not allowed inside the temple. 

Rathotsava Festival is held in month of Feb every year and Nagapanchami is held in the month of August.

Every morning Nirmalayivisarjana Puja marks the beginning of the day in Kukke Subrahmanya which entails a pooja schedule of removal of last day’ s garlands removal. This is followed by Kolalu Sahasranama Archana. For those who come to pray for their progeny install snakes of stones to get their wish fulfilled. 

Adi Subramanya Temple 

Location: ½ km to the west of main temple 

Timings: 6 am to 6:30 pm 

The senescent temple of Adi Subrahmanyam lays in scenic leafage of bamboo plantations skirted by mountain all sides. Adi Subrhmanya houses ancient anthills worshipped as Vasuki; many devotees get a hand full of mrittika (soil) that is considered as sacred and officinal.

Latest Comment

We recently visited the Kukke Subrahmanya temple for the Sarpa Samskara. The ritual arrangements were very well done on both days in the yajnashala. But we do want to bring one point to the notice of everyone. While there are notice boards everywhere instructing that the purohits are not supposed to demand any extra dakshina because it is all included in the fee what goes on in the yajnashala is very different. They demand "dakshina" at least 3 times on the second day and when a man seated next to us put in Rs 10, he was told that was not enough. On the first day, we willingly gave the purohit a large dakshina. But on the second day when they resorted to forcing everyone we were really turned off. Also in the name of brahmachari puja little "brahmin" kids were made to sit and we were forced to give money to them. While people were throwing money into their laps and touching their feet these kids should have at least been taught to chant some vedic verses. Instead they were counting the currency and bundling it. It was such an ugly ugly sight ... what an unhealthy thing to teach to little children. These kinds of behaviours bring such a bad name not only to the temple administration but to Hindu rituals in general. I don't know if any one will even read this email comment and take some action but I SINCERELY hope they will for the sake of preserving the sanctity of this temple. If anyone who has gone through this experience feels this way please do take the time to inform the temple administration.
Posted on Mon, 23 Apr 2012 22:33:14

i have sarpa dosha.. i need a priest for sarpa dosha nivarana pooja in kukke subrahmanya. i want contact details of the priest. Mobile No needed.
Posted on Wed, 16 Dec 2009 12:22:14

Leave a Comment

Name Email
Book Hotel/Tour
(Above 12) (5 to 12)
Please enter your contact Information below
Interested in receiving Newsletters?
By submitting this form, I agree to receive call from Kiomoi representative.