Etymology of Udupi
It is believed that the city has been named after the Tulu word ‘Odipu’ which is associated with a temple dedicated to Vadapandeshwara. Another version states that the name is derived from the Sanskrit words ‘Udu’ and ‘Pa’ which refers to stars and lord. Legends say that once due to the curse of King Daksha the moonlight got reduced. King Daksha’s 27 daughters, which signify the 27 stars according to Hindu astrology, were married to the moon. The moon then prayed to Lord Shiva for getting back its original shine and the latter pleased with moon’s devotion restored its shine. It is said that the moon and his wives prayed at the Chandramouleeshwara temple at Udupi and created a lingam which exists till date. Thus the name of the city Udupi means the land of the lord of the stars, the moon.
Geography of Udupi
Udupi enjoys a hot climate in summers while the winters are pretty cold. The summers continue from March to May and the average temperature reaches up to 40 degree Celsius. The winters span from December to February and the temperature range from 32 to 20 degree Celsius. Monsoon in Udupi continue from June to September and the average rainfall has been recorded to be 4000 millimetres with accompanied by heavy winds.
Demography of Udupi
As per the census of 2011 Udupi shelters a population of 165401. 49 percent of the population comprises males while 51 percent are females. The average literacy rate of the city is 93.89 percent which is higher than the national average of 59.5 percent. Male literacy has been recoded to be 86 percent whereas 81 percent constitute the female literacy. The population under 6 years of age constitute 8 percent. Prominent communities found here include Devadigas, Billavas, Bunts, Brahmins, Rajapur Saraswat, Goud Saraswat Brahmins, Shivalli Brahmins and Mogaveeras. Tulu language is spoken extensively in the city; however other languages such as Kannada, English, Konkani and Beary bashe are also used.
Economy of Udupi
Being a major city of Karnataka, Udupi has the highest average per-capita income in Karnataka and the poverty rate is quite low here. The economy of the city largely depends on fishing and agriculture, however small scale industries like milk cooperatives, cashew industry and other food industries are also prominent. The city lacks large scale industry. Udupi is also famed as an educational and medical hub and the world famous Kasturba Medical College and Manipal Institute of Technology are situated here.
Art and Culture of Udupi
Prominent cultural traditions of Udupi enlist Nagaradhane, Karangolu, Aati Kalenja and Bhuta Kola. Festivals like Christmas, Dussehra and Diwali are celebrated here with great vigour. Yakshagana is a popular folk art of Udupi. The grand biennial Paryaya festival is celebrated in the month of January. Other notable festivals celebrated in the city are Geetha Jayanthi, Narak Chaturdashi, Madhva Jajanti, Navarathi Mahotsava, Sri Krishna Janmashtami, Hanuman Jayanti, Madhva Navami, Ratha Saptami, Makar Sankranti and others. Sri Laxmi Venkatesh Temple in Udupi hosts the Bhajana Saptaha Mahothsava in August during which bhajans are sung continuously for seven days and nights. Rathothsava is another famed festival celebrated here.
Udupi cuisine is renowned all over the globe for its delicious vegetarian delicacies. Its origin can be traced to Krishna Mutt where Lord Krishna is offered diverse food delicacies every day with certain restrictions on ingredients. The combination of this variety and restrictions led to the invention of this cuisine by Shivalli Madhwa Brahmins who used to cook food for Lord Krishna. The food at the Mutt is provided for free. The cuisine utilizes seasonal and locally available materials.
Tourism in Udupi
The famous Krishna Mutt, dedicated to Lord Sri Gopalakrishna, is found here in Udupi. Sri Madhvacharya who propounded the Dvaita philosophy was the founder of Krishna Mutt in 13th century. The icon of the Acharya can also be seen in this temple. Sri Madhvacharya had handed over the administration of Krishna Mutt to his 8 disciples who established eight Mutts in Udupi namely Krishnapura, Shirur, Kaniyooru, Sodhe, Adamaru, Palimaru, Puttige and Pejavara to perform Puja to Lord Krishna, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. These 8 Mutts are collectively known as Ashta Matha which stand around the Krishna Mutt. There are also other well known temples in Udupi like the Ambalapadi Shakthi temple, Kadiyali Durga temple, Venkateswara temple and the Holy Mutt of Sri Raghavendra, a famous saint in the hierarchical order of Sri Madhvacharya. The Vadabhandeswara Temple dedicated to Lord Balarama is very famous here in Udupi. Karkala Jain temples, Bahubali statue and Moodabidri Jain temple are other tourist attractions of Udupi.