As a family, we always try to make one trip to Mantralayam per year to get the blessings of Sri Raghavendra Swamy. This year was no exception. But this year, we had decided to add Nava Brindavanam to our list of places to visit.
Why Nava Brindavanam?
Nava Brindavanam is the place where the Brindavanams (or jeevasamaadhi) of the nine holy saints of Madhwa philosophy is located. It is located in a small island in the middle of River Tungabhadra.
Those nine holy saints of Madhwa philosophy are:
- Shree Padmanabha Teertharu
- Shree Jaya Teertharu.
- Shree Kaveendra Teertharu.
- Shree Vageesha Teertharu.
- Shree Govinda Vodeyar.
- Shree Vyasa Teertharu or Shree Vyasaraajaru.
- Shree Sudheendra Teertharu.
- Shree Srinivasa Teertharu.
- Shree Rama Teertharu.
The legend has it, that it was here where Lord Prahlada, son of Hiranyakashipu and Kayadhu, prayed to God to get rid of his dosha of getting his father, Hiranyakashapyu, killed by Lord Narasimha.
Later on, in Dvapara Yuga, when Lord Rama and Lord Lakshman passed through this river in search of Maa Sita, Lord Rama told Lord Lakshman to offer his Namaskara to this island as it is a very sacred place, one that will become an important place of worship in future.
Drive to Nava Brindavanam
The island is reachable only by boat from a place called Anegundi. This location is around 150-170 km (depending on the land route you take) from Mantralayam. It takes approximately 4+ hours to reach the Anegundi.
However, you can also reach this place from Hampi. From Hampi, it is only around 25-30 minutes drive by car to Anegundi.
We booked a cab and left early morning around 5.30 am. We also got in touch with a person in Anegundi, who helped us with booking a pooja at the temple.
Since the prohits at the temple perform pooja between 7.30 am and 9.30 am, we were advised to reach as early as possible. But since we started at 5.30 am we could reach only by 10.45 am.
Once we reach Anegundi, we took the boat to reach the island. There is no defined path to the place. So you need to walk a bit over the rocks to reach the place.
By the time we reached, the pooja was done. The temple prohits explained the importance of the location, and also explained a bit about the saints brindavanams located there. We offered our prayers, took some photos and then left for Mantralayam.
The main idol in the temple is a combination of Lord Hanuman, Lord Bheema, and Sri Madhwa. This type of an idol does not exist anywhere else and is believed to be installed by Sri Vyasa Theetra.
Sri Vyasa Theerta brindavanam is at the center, while others are situated around him. Sri Raghavendra Swamy is also believed to have visited this place and meditated here.
The entire island is quite calm and peaceful. The island does have monkeys so it is better to be careful with your belongings. Inside the temple, there is a big yellow circle drawn around the brindavans. You can do Parikarama outside the yellow circle but not inside.
Of course, on our way back we also visited Bichali temple, where Appanacharya brindavan is also located.
I highly recommend this place for anyone who is visiting Mantralayam.