IN PHOTOS: The Mesmerizing Rock Formations And Mysterious Legends Of Yana

The amazing and unusual rock formations of Yana not only make the place beautiful and unique but also have some interesting stories to share from Hindu Mythology.

Some legends are so interesting, they set a place apart from other tourist locations. Yana, a village nestling amidst the forests of the Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka is one of those places with a story to tell.

10815658_10202573089203006_2095550006_nPhoto Courtesy: Sreyas Thottarath

The story goes back to the demon king, Bhasmasura. He received a boon from lord Shiva which allowed him to burn the person by placing his hand over their head. Wanting to check the strength of his powers, Bhasmasur wanted to place his hand on lord Shiva’s head. Agitated by Bhasmasur’s act, lord Shiva left his abode and came to Earth to seek lord Vishnu’s help.


Vishnu transformed himself into a beautiful lady, Mohini, who tempted Bhasmasur with her beauty. Completely mesmerized by Mohini, Bhasmasur agreed to a dance challenge initiated by her. During the competition, Mohini cleverly placed her hand over the head and Bhasmasur, without realizing it, placed his hand over his head too. The fire from his own hands destroyed Bhasmasur and converted him into ashes.


It is believed that the fire and heat was so intense that it changed the limestones’ colour to black and devotees believe that the loose black soil and ashes around the rock formations act as a proof of the legend.


It is not just the amazing back story that makes this place unique, but also the scenic beauty and thick forest which sets Yana apart. If you love adventure, nature and trekking, Yana is the place for you.


The huge, unusual rock formations which hide many stories from the past and the amazing scenic views welcome you at Yana.


Two prominent rock outcrops known as the Bhairaveshwara Shikhara (120 meters high) and the Mohini Shikhara (90 meters high) composed of solid black, crystalline Karst limestone attract the most attention. The beautiful location also hosts many devotees because of the cave temple below the Bhairaveshwara Shikhara where a self manifested linga has been formed.


During Maha Shivaratri, the temple hosts annual festivities for 10 days. It attracts around 10,000 devotees on pilgrimage. They carry holy water to the cave from a nearby town known as Gokarna for performing the Maha Mastaka Abhisheka.


The people have requested to declared Yana as a National Natural Heritage Site due to its historical significance. It has also been suggested that the area should be protected under the Biodiversity Preservation Act 2002 as it a biodiversity hotspot of the Sahyadri hill range.


Watch this video to get a virtual tour of the amazing Yana –

Thank you: Sreyas Thottarath for sharing information and photographs about Yana. Rest of the photographs have been taken from the Youtube video.

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