The birth place of Cauvery / Kaveri River is Talacauvery. It is nestled in the hills of Brahmagiri range near Bhagamandala, Kodagu district, Karnataka at 1,276 meters (4,187 feet) above sea level. A small tank known as Kundike has been built at the site where the water comes from a spring. Rituals and pooja are held at this place and the River is worshiped as goddess Cauvery. It is a pilgrimage center for the Kodavas.
From the small tank, the water disappears and appears as a river near Bhagamandala. There are other temples dedicated to Lord Agastheeswara / Shiva installed by Sage Agasthya and Lord Ganesha.
Avoid visiting this place during monsoons (July – August).
Parable says that, the Cauvery River was held captive in a Kamandalu (a container of sacred water) by Sage Agasthya. Lord Ganesha took the form of a crow and perched on the kamandalu and toppled it. Cauvery, happy being released started flowing from the hills in leaps and bounds.
You can climb up the Brahmagiri hill behind the Kundike to reach the peak. The view of the surrounding hills and valleys is splendid. It is believed that the saptha rishis (the seven great sages) meditated on this hill. On a clear day Kudremukh, Chamundi Hills, Wayanad and Nilgris mountain range can be seen from here.
The entire range of forests surrounding the area is known as Talacauvery Wildlife Sanctuary.
There is a rich treasure of flora and fauna to be discovered in this place. Trees are heavy with Moss and Orchids.
Flowers in various hues are in bloom all over the slopes of the hills. Ferns thrive in the wet atmosphere and presence of bugs, moths and bees complete this heavenly abode.
More about River Cauvery
The Cauvery River basin is estimated to be 27,700 square miles (72,000 km). Many tributaries like Shimsha, Arkavathy, Hemavathy, Harangi, Suvarnavati, Honnuhole, Lakshmanathirtha, Lokapavani, Bhavani, Noyyil, Amaravathy, and Kabini join Cauvery at different places. Starting from Talacauvery, the River traverses 765 Km to join the Bay of Bengal at Pumpuhaar in Tamil Nadu.
During its journey, the River has created 3 big islands and they are Srirangapatna, Shivanasamudra and Srirangam. Each one of these islands has temples dedicated to Lord Ranganatha / Vishnu and is an important SriVaishnava pilgrim center. There are many other interesting historical and pilgrimage centers near the course of the River. Cauvery has sustained agriculture and lives in these regions.
Two large dams have been built across Cauvery. One is Krishnaraja Sagar (KRS) dam with a capacity to hold 49 tmc feet of water in Karnataka and Mettur Dam also known as Stanley Reservoir with a capacity to hold 93.4 tmc feet of water.
Interesting places in the Cauvery Delta are:
- Shivanasamudra Waterfalls
- Hogenakkal Waterfalls
- Chunchunkatte Waterfalls
- Cauvery Nisarga Dhama
- Dubbare Elephant Camp
- Bheemeshwari Fishing Camp
- Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
- Brindavan Gardens
- Balamuri and Edamuri Falls
- Sangama, Gosai Ghat and Pashchima Vahini
Prominent towns / religious sites in the Kaveri banks:
- Srirangapatna – Adi Ranga
- Madhya Ranga
- Yadathore Arakeshwara Temple
- Tirumakudalu Narasipura
- Bhavani – Thirunana
- Srirangam – Anthya Ranga
Festival associated with Cauvery River
Kaveri Sankramana is a festival celebrated on Tulasankramana day in the month of October. This year (2010), it is on 17th October.
On this day when the sun enters Tula Rashi at a predetermined time, bubbles of water spurts out of the Kundika in Talacauvery. Thousands of people gather to witness this and to take a dip in the holy water. People partake in the tula snanam (Sacred bath in the Tula month) across the towns on the banks of the River Cauvery.
It is one of the important festivals of Kodavas. Kodava women on this day wear new silk sarees and keep a Cucumber or Coconut wrapped in red silk cloth on a platform and decorates it with flowers and jewelry like a bride. They worship this as goddess Cauvery and offer prayers. Betel leaves, Betel Nuts and Bangles are offered to the goddess. After the pooja / ritual, the women draw water from the wells and start to cook. On this day, the menu consists of Dosa, Kumbalakayi Palya and Payasa.
Type of place: Origin of River Cauvery
Situated: Coorg District, Karnataka
Distance: Mangalore – 194 Km, Bangalore – 310 Km, Mysore – 160 Km, Bhagamandala – 8 Km, Madikeri – 48 Km
Transport: Well connected by road. Nearest Airport is Mangalore and nearest railhead is Mysore
Facilities: Rest Room and Small Tea Stalls are available
Timings: 6 a.m to 6 p.m