Bylakuppe Namdroling Monastery (Mysuru - Karnataka)

From Magnolia Resort, Coorg, I was on my way back to Mysuru Jn to catch my train. I was told, a small diversion on the way could take me to Bylakuppe Monastery and I wanted to go there. So I set off at 9:45AM for my 2:00PM train. But only as I went I came to know it is not a small diversion but a major 33km re-routing! It was definitely a bad idea. I should have started atleast at 7AM if I wanted to cover Bylakuppe.... Bad planning!!! Anyways, from this route, there was no turning back, I had to take the route via Kushal Nagar anyways to reach Mysuru from where Bylakuppe is hardly 2km. This route took more than 1 hr extra than the usual route from Virajpet to Mysore which takes about 2 to 2.5hrs.
Finally I reached the monastery. It’s called the Namdroling Monastery. Its also called the Golden Temple and the locals (taxi & auto drivers esp) call the place so. When I was first told Golden Temple by the driver I wasn’t even sure if we were referring to the same place!!!

The Monastery was established by His Holiness Pema Norbu Rinpoche in 1963. It’s primarily an educational institute where Buddhist Teachings are taught towards monkhood. Men from all over the world come here to complete their Buddhist education here. I met a monk from Bhutan who was worriedly inquiring me about the health of Ms.J.Jayalalitha when I said I was on my way to Chennai (well, this happened exactly on the day she passed away!!!).

The parking is opposite to the main gate. Passing through this, its more like an apartment (staying area) for the monks. Further ahead is another passage beyond which is the Golden Temple. Unfortunately the temple was closed for renovation when I visited and I felt way too dejected. However, on the left is the Padmasambhaya Buddhist Vihara and quite a few people were going towards it, so I too went and I’m glad that I did.
Shoes aren’t allowed here but there’s a shoe counter the just outside. The hangings on the doorway are heavy wooden beads. Moving them with an effort and getting inside, I was just filled with awe!!! It was altogether a different location – in there, are 3 humongous Golden statues of Buddha… Its impossible to resist to temptation to just open the mouth in awe!!!!

The central one is the actual Lord Buddha we all know, the founder of Buddhism, born as Prince Siddhartha to King Sudhodhana and Queen Mayadevi, 2547 years ago.  He’s called Buddha Shakyamuni. He’s 60ft tall. On either sides are Guru Padmasambhasiva and Buddha Amiatyus. These 2 are 58ft tall and all 3 are made of Copper and gilded with Gold. All 3 are hollow inside and filled with scriptures, relics of great beings, small clay mould stupas, small statues etc. The entire wall is painted with several murals. 
Unfortunately all I had was exactly half an hour at the Bylaguppe, else I'd be missing my train. I didn't get to explore at all and I didn't even get to roll those prayer wheels!!! My guy had visited this place about 5 years back and he couldn't stop laughing when I told him later that I too finally visited Bylakuppe but didn't even see the prayer wheels!!!!!
P.S: Guess what, in this route, is a rather interesting road less travelled - a vintage cars museum!!! I was informed of this on a casual chat and the owner’s friend had actually discovered this place by chance when they spotted the direction board of the museum on the way from Dubare to the resort. And by the same chance, I too spotted the board. Unfortunately I had no time to visit this place. Or rather my choice was either to visit this or visit Bylaguppe. So I went there. I should have gone here!!! Doesn’t matter. Next time.....

To get there:
On Google Maps: Namdroling Monastery
From Coorg Madikere Bus Stand: 34km
From Mysore Jn: 88km
From Dubare Elephant Camp: 19km

Bhushavali N

An ardent traveler by passion. I am a wanderlust.. Read more about me here.

17 comments:

  1. Best laid plans, right?! Glad you still made the visit and shared your experiences and pictures. The room with the Buddha’s looks amazing and grand!

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  2. Great post! Mysore and Coorg are high on my list!
    http://www.docdivatraveller.com/

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  3. It looks timeless, magnificient; I am sure you spent good time!

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  4. What a colorful monastery. Looks very beautiful. Sometimes the road less traveled are the best destination you could ever take.

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  5. There are so many colours in this monastery, it's spectacular. I remember seeing the buddhist statues in Thailand, and being amazed by how huge they were. Sounds like it's the same here, 60ft tall is massive!

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  6. It must have been truly awesome to see the Namdroling Monastery in person. However, I don't think one cab resist the temptation to open one's mouth in awe. I believe it would simply drop instinctively and no one can prevent it from doing so!

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  7. The interior of this monastery looks beautiful. I think I would've gotten really frustrated with the directions if I thought my driver was taking me somewhere else haha. I guess you'll have to go back just for the prayer wheels :)

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  8. Oh there is Buddhist monastery near Mysore! I was not knowing it and this is really colorful and peaceful place. I loved the pillars, walls and ceilings as they are adorned with colorful paintings. Vintage car museum also?? I must say these all new for me and I must visit Mysore again.

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  9. The Monastery looks so beautiful and impressive and I it was definitely worth the 33km detour. You should definitely go back to find the prayer wheels and to spend more time there, half an hour is definitely not enough to take in all the history and beauty. The vintage car museum sounds like a great place to see as well.

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  10. Namdroling Monastery looks very Instagrammable, I can see why they also call it the golden temple. A vintage car museum in India would be a fascinating blog too, some of the motors the British brought over must be in there. I think this was a worthwhil diversion even if you could have set off sooner.

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  11. This place is so colorful. I love how you gave detail into the customs of visiting a place like this. Always good to know beforehand. If I ever go I'll be sure not to miss the prayer wheels.

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  12. I've been to Mysore once but unfortunately didn't get the chance of visiting the monastery. It sure looks beautiful and the colors are amazing

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  13. It would really be nice to visit monasteries like this. You can really learn much about their culture, heritage and tradition.

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  14. I didn’t even know about this place. Will make sure I visit it the next time I am in South India. I am a car enthusiast and would love to check out the vintage car museum.

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  15. I am an aspiring travel blogger! I found this blog very informative and helpful.

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  16. I didn't know about Bylakuppe Monastery before. Good that you have shared this post. I would love to visit whenever I travel this part of the country.

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