It is time of the year when Melkote (aka) Thirunarayanapuram assumes a lot of pride and crowd because the Lord of the town (Sri Cheluva Narayana Pillai) would be bedecked with a diamond crown and taken procession throughout the town. On March 19th I started from Bangalore to Mysore. Though I had to get down at Pandavapura station, I was in deep sleep and hence reached Mysore station and caught the return train back to Pandavapura around 5.45. A few of them in our team were coming from Chennai in Kaveri Express which reached Pandavapura at 6.10 AM.
After hiring an auto for temple visits en route to Melkote we started on our pilgrimage. The first stop was bathing ghat at Srirangapatna. Then worship at Srirangapatna temple. Hanuman here before the Lord is beautiful. From here the next stop was Thondanur. The Lakshmi Narasimha temple here on the hill is nice one and beautiful face of the Lord like a kid lion (cub). After having a visit to two other temples downhill of Sri Parthasarathy and Perumal temple, besides a view of Thondanur lake (which is famous since Sri Ramanuja times) we proceeded towards Melkote. The traffic was stopped at the perimeter of Melkote and we had to keep changing autos to reach inside the town.
We managed to get a locker in a Sri Ramanuja Choultry to store the baggages so that we can comfortably have darshan of the Lord. We then managed to get one darshan of the Lord Chelvanarayana Pillai amidst a long line rotating around the temple. Towards night after the first glimpse of Vairamudi, we waited outside the temple itself till 5 AM for Rajamudi. After looking both we came back to choultry. We then had a quick bath in Ahobila Mutt nearby and went to Sri Yoga Narasimha temple on the hill nearby. After completing the darshan, came down and found the bus to Pandavapura. I felt the bus travel from Melkote to Pandavapura almost similar to my trip from Pune to Pandharpur for strange reasons of weather and/or bus conditions.
We managed to get the train to Bangalore and reached Bangalore around 5 PM via Basava Express. Then after a quick visit to Roopena Agrahara Sri Lakshmi Narasimha temple, the Chennai bound team returned to Majestic to catch the onward train and I returned back to my home near Koramangala.