I think my favorite beach in India is Om Beach in Gokarna and surprisingly not in Goa. In case you’re wondering why it’s called Om beach, it’s due to it’s shape which is very similar to the Hindu religious symbol Om. Gokarna is a sleepy little a town in the southwestern Indian state of Karnataka and has sacred sites like Mahabaleshwar Temple, a shrine dedicated to the deity Shiva. The beautiful beaches, shrines and temples make Gokarna not only a famous hippie hangout for backpackers but also a popular pilgrimage place for Hindus.
Lazy Days In Gokarna
Spending a few days here sunbathing on the beaches, eating pineapple and doing yoga was not exactly a hardship. Although there was an ant infestation in my room but that’s about all the drama that occurred in gorgeous Gokarna, thankfully. I’m sooo drama free these days. On my first morning I met two ladies I knew from my yoga course in Kerala. We had breakfast together and then hiked to Om beach which was over a hill from Kudle beach (the closest beach to where I was staying).
Apparently Kudle beach has the charm that the beaches in Goa had in the 80’s (I wouldn’t know, I wasn’t born). It took about 20 minutes to get there and was so worth it, Kudle Beach is beautiful but Om Beach is where it’s at!
Om Beach Gokarna India
At Om Beach a group of us got together in Namaste cafe, we ate fruit, practiced yoga and I got invited on another bike trip to the south but I’d come from the south and was looking forward to Goa so I had to decline. I shared a boat back to where I was staying in Gokarna town just as the sun was going down. I’m quite glad about this because if you go back down the hill after dark there’s a chance you might get attacked by wild animals. Yeah really! The locals warn you about walking back to Gokarna town at night and the rickshaw drivers don’t want to take you after 8pm.
Planning a trip to Gokarna? Click here for the best places to stay!
Om beach is the most popular of the four beaches on the coast of Gokarna mainly due to all the budget backpacker huts lining the shore and tasty food shacks where you can buy beer. Also I must say that thanks to all the hippies that hang out here the weed available is apparently out of this world, like insane, like WTF is happening good. From Om Beach you can get a boat to Half Moon and Paradise Beach but make sure you bargain with the boat owners, they expect it and set their prices accordingly.
From Gokarna To Goa
Everyday I bumped into random people from my yoga course which was lovely. However I did try and find a quite bit of beach on my last day to get some alone time in and read my book. This wasn’t as easy as you might imagine but I’m really not complaining. I missed the Moon Party because my hot Indian John Travolta look-a-like met me in Gokarna and then we went to Goa together that same day. Sorry I couldn’t resist finishing this post with a very funky psychedelic cow picture…
Yes! I took this photo and then I made the sand pink and the sky green in photoshop with my amazing artistic abilities and no I don’t have anything better to do.
Let me know in the comments if you’ve been to Gokarna and if you liked it? Did it inspire you to create psychedelic cow art too? Share away!
Lonely Planet India: Check price on Amazon