Recently , I ticked a place on my travel wish list which I so wanted to visit and that place is known as Yana Caves. These caves are located in the premise of a small village named Yana in Kumta which is near to Gokarna, Karnataka.
Monsoon is not that great idea to visit this place but even after much of difficulties I managed to reach to the top. Certainly, I am not going to discuss any history related to this place as this blog is more of based on my observation.
I was staying at MG rooms, which is near to Gokarna beach and from there the distance of Yana caves is approx. 55 km. So, I opted for a car rather being a nomad as I had only a day to explore places.
One can also opt for 3-wheeler auto, they will charge around Rs.1500/- per auto for trip to 4-5 places. In an auto only 3 people are allowed. Going from bus is also an option but for that you need to be punctual all the time because bus services here are quite rare.
Things to pack before going to the caves
- Sunglasses, sunscreen, mosquito & worm repellent , hat, umbrella.
- Keep raincoat, waterproof bag, plastic sheets, first-aid, lighter, pepper spray and Swiss knife.
- Wear waterproof shoes, keep extra pair of clothes.
- Do not wear white.
Trek to Yana Caves
Entering to this is completely free. Reaching to Yana Caves would not be that easy for few because one has to trek for 2km and then have to walk up 200 steps.
I assure you this might seems tiring but believe me the arena will keep you showing a magical show every minute. So, it will take around 1 hour maximum to reach to the top. While trekking few things you need to take care of which I am listing down below.
- At the very starting of the trek, you will meet a tailless black cat. Do not get into any superstitious story of ghost around . That cat will follow you up for 0.5km just because it knows tourist will offer something to eat.
- I was wearing slipper during trek as it was raining as I had no option but I would suggest you guys to wear waterproof hiking shoes and along with that if you could wear leech socks.
- Leeches, yes during monsoon especially this place is full of leeches. So, be very careful while going up or down.
- Walk in the middle of the path as leeches most of the time hide under shade and at the corners.
- Keep walking, don’t lean on trees, benches etc.
- Keep small packet of salt along with you. If in case leeches start making love with your blood just sprinkle salt on it, it will immediately leave the surface.
- Never try to pull out leech, if its already sucking your blood as it can make bleeding unstoppable.
- You can use leech repellent, sprays.
- On running water, you can not find leeches so you can be a water baby.
- Keep first-aid along. Particularly antiseptic.
One more thing, this trek has only one washroom is available there on half way.
Flora and Fauna
If you are fond of seeing variety of plants and small creatures then go ahead. This place is perfect for the exploration. As on the way to the top I met centipede, cat, snake, worms and obviously leeches. This whole forest is full of mosses, ferns, colocasia, berries and several other useful plant or trees. Do not try to eat any one it as it might be poisonous.
On the top
There are 2 hills one is named Bhairaveshwara Shikhara which is 390 ft in height and the Mohini Shikhara which 90ft in height where Shikhara” means “hill. The first one is open for general public whereas I didn’t see any way to Mohini Hill. At the bottom of Bhairaveshwara hill you will see a self-made Shiv Ling which is present in the Gangodbhava Temple.
Way inside to the cave is through the temple, so if you wish to enter the cave one needs to remove his/her footwear . You need to be very careful while stepping up as surface is full of algae ergo it makes it more slippery and no way to cop.
Rest the cave is not that huge, it will just take around 15-20 minutes to see and capture things. Visit to the temple is incomplete if you will not circle around the same through the caves.
If you want to sip in tea or coffee at the top or at the starting. Then, there you will find only a shop at the top and in the starting. Be little extra careful when trekking down. I unfortunately visited in monsoon which made trek 70% more dangerous. I had taken great care while putting even a step. A walking stick can help which you can get from the mother nature.
Overall, It was a really very unique and nice experience to cross several water streams and being a pebble walker. I indeed suggest all to visit this place to make yourself lost in the natural world for a while.
- I had a great company whole way, as I was travelling with my family and a very responsible driver named Sachin. So, for all who wants to explore Gokarna in a budget and that too in your own chariot then you can certainly call Sachin. As he is well- aware of every nook and corner of Gokarna. You can rely on his driving skills too.
Sachin – +91-9481204432 ( You can refer my name Shilpa, if needed)
Mentioned number of this person as many of you have asked me to keep sharing the information, contacts which can help them too to make their trips more interesting.
- No telecom network will work here.