Talacauvery ,8 km from Bhagamandala and 44 km from madikeri,is considered to be the birthplace of the sacred river Kaveri.
We(me and my friend) were staying at Madikeri at Bhuvan palace,a comfy budget hotel for travellers.As per the hotel manager,early morning is the best time to visit the temple.There are frequent buses from Madikeri bus stand to Bhagamandala and also direct buses to Talacauvery.We went by 6.15 am KSRTC bus from Madikeri.The weather was very cool.The road condition was good.Sharp turns through ghats.In case you have motion sickness,do carry a polythene bag.We reached Bhagamandala at around 7.45am(Ticket price Rs.50 per head).We got a private bus to Talacauvery immediately(Ticket price Rs.15 per head).On the way ,you get to see the scenic beauty of the Brahmagiri hills.
We reached Talacauvery temple at around 8.15 am.We enquired about the return bus.There was a direct bus at 9.15 am to Madikeri.
“This is a place of worship,Not a picnic spot”.This board will welcome you to the temple.There are instructions regarding maintaining silence,no permission to take photos of the kund and proper dressing.Minis/shorts are not allowed.Ample of parking space.You have proper shoe racks down the temple.You can leave your shoes over there without worry even when there is no one to safeguard your shoes.(That’s the beauty of South India:)).
We started climbing the stairs to the temple.The temple is very well maintained.Felt very calm and serene.At the entrance is the holy kund,where the Cauvery is believed to be originated.Touching the holy water in the main kund(kundike) is not allowed,however taking dip in the bigger one ,or bathing without soap and shampoo is allowed.
We climbed up few more stairs to see Swami Agastya temple with Shri Ganapati temple. As per the mythology ,Kaveri river was held in a Kamandalu of Sage Agastya. Lord Ganesha took the form of a crow ,tipped the kamandalu and toppled it. Out poured Kaveri which started flowing(Source:Wikipedia). The temple is fully made up of stones.Peaceful!
We saw a huge flight of stairs next to the temple.
We had not eaten food or drank water as we had to reach to the temple as early as possible.With bare feet,we started climbing the stairs to the top of the hill.We did not count:must be between 250-300.On reaching the top of the hill, we were little disappointed as it was a very small rocky place.However the panoramic view of the surrounding mountains made our day.Worth it!!
Obviously,climbing down was not an issue:P
When we got down the hill,we saw that the gate of kundike was opened.One monk was sitting ,silently praying.We got down,took darshan and touched the water:)
By now number of people had started increasing along with the heat.We got a direct KSRTC bus to madikeri which stopped at Bhagamandala for breakfast .It was a small house turned Dhaba.We were damnedest hungry.I had a delicious plate of 3 big fat idlis and one kadak chai– all for Rs.40.
With stomach full,we returned to Madikeri at around 11.20 am.