Our state, our new year

Our state, our new year

New Year is almost upon us. And, there are plenty of fun options in our delightful state of Karnataka to ring it in.

Hebbe Falls, Chikkamagaluru

Yay! It’s that time of the year again when we’re ready to welcome the next year. With hope in our hearts and a prayer on our lips. Of a year that fulfils all our dreams, and aspirations. After all, what’s life without the hope of a better morrow, right? No wonder, we want a perfect end to the year, and an even more perfect beginning to the new year. No matter what your idea of celebration is, our state of Karnataka offers myriad opportunities to celebrate the occasion. From endless parties and beach destinations to hill stations and temple sites, Karnataka has everything on a platter for you.

Party animals

Let’s begin with party lovers. Well, if your idea of welcoming the new year is donning your party hat and dancing the night away with good food and spirits, then our dear dear Bengaluru is the place to be. With most streets in the city lit up for the occasion, and every restaurant, pub, club and resort vying with one another to lure the party animals of the city by planning on elaborate entertainment programmes complete with DJs, fashion shows, competitions, glittering dance floors, and the like, Bengaluru has you covered. This is not all. The city also hosts several live performances by talented artistes who join you in ringing in the new year. It’s time to rock, guys. And, of course, if you want to see the entire city coming together to celebrate the coming of the new year, then you can always come to MG and Brigade roads. Elaborate security arrangements and constant police vigil ensure that you have a great time. Welcome to the Bengaluru bash!

Nature lovers

If you are the types who love to ring in the new year in places that spell peace and tranquillity, then head to Chikkamagaluru and Coorg. Yes, these places offer you not just a quiet time, but nature at its best. Surrounding you with lush green mountains to warm your heart, they get you into that introspective mood that’s an ideal climax to 2018, and the classic commencement to 2019. Revel in the bounty of nature, smell the wildflowers all over, listen to the wind whispering the secrets of the universe, marvel at the wonders of creation… the choice is yours. Heed the call of wild, wild nature!

Beach bummers

Well! Beaches are for all those who want to combine both peace and playfulness in welcoming the new year. There are few pleasures as unsullied as sitting or walking along a clean sandy beach just before the sun comes out, heralding the dawn of a new year. No matter what you want to do on the morning of 2019 – sunbathing, shell collecting, swimming, or just watching the waves crash on the sand, then beach destinations such as Gokarna, Murudeshwar, Devbagh, Mangaluru, Udupi, Karwar, and Kundapur are for you. Do it on your own, with family and friends, or book a beach resort which plans your celebration for you. Beach bonfires are also quite popular nowadays. Remember, the secret to happiness can be found on a beach, in quiet contemplation with a view of the waves.

Om Beach, Gokarna
Om Beach, Gokarna

Temple hoppers

If thanking the Almighty for a year well spent, and praying him for a relaxed and peaceful 2019 is what you wish, then head to any of the holy sites in the State. Sringeri, Kollur, Kateel, Anegudde, Horanadu, Murudeshwar… the list could go on. Staying in the temple towns with their unhurried pace, experiencing the calm and quiet of the place, partaking in the temple prasada, visiting the many tiny shops around the temples, spending some contemplative moments on the banks of water bodies that are found in most of these places, and taking long walks with the shadow of the moon following you, you realise the year that’s just beginning spells hope. Yes, temple towns could be the answer to your prayers for a perfect beginning to the new year.

Charmed by the church

The joy of attending the midnight mass in churches on New Year’s Eve is unparalleled. Singing hymns in praise of the Lord, offering prayers, and thanking Him for all the good things in life can be an ideal way to mark the beginning of the new year. In Bengaluru, there’s The Holy Trinity Church and St. Mary’s Basilica, in Mysuru is St. Philomena’s Church, in Mangaluru is Milagres Church and St. Aloysius Chapel, in Karkala is St. Lawrence Shrine or Attur Church among many others in the State. Ushering in the new year in pious reflection could be the beginning of good times.

Wild, wild folk

Are you a wildlife lover? A birdwatcher? Or a person who’d love to spend the first morning of 2019 in the company of the beasts of the wild? Then head to the many wildlife sanctuaries of the State. From Bandipur, Nagarhole, Dandeli and Bhadra wildlife sanctuaries to BR Hills, Ranganathittu, Kabini and Dubare Elephant Camp, there are plenty of options that thrill you no end. Waking up to the chirping of birds, or the roaring of lions, and inhaling the fresh scent of unpolluted air, you will be left wondering what you are doing in a city that only offers you the blaring of horns, and dust and pollution. However, booking accommodation inside wildlife parks needs to be done in advance, so plan ahead and welcome 2019 in a wild, wild way.

B R Hills
B R Hills