Malpe is a sea port and a fishing harbor, about 6 km from Udupi. When we reached there, we could see hundreds of fishing boats and some ships at the harbor displaying colorful flags. The whole area of course was stinking of fish; it’s another thing that the smell of fish is almost like a perfume to me. There is also a modest shipyard where a ship was under construction and a Coastguard vessel was waiting for repairs.
On the tourist map, other than being famous for its harbor, Malpe is also important because it’s the boarding point for the ferry to St. Mary’s Island. St. Mary’s Island, allegedly named so by Vasco da Gama on his voyage to India is a special place. Made of igneous lava rocks, this island was formed due to sub volcanic activity 88 million years ago when Madagascar, still attached to India, began its drift towards Africa. A testimony to that event, the island has columnar lava rocks in clear hexagonal pattern, the only similar rock formation being the Giant’s Causeway in Ireland. This island has been accorded the status of a Geological monument by the Government of India.
The last lag of our journey was the Kaup beach. Lying on the highway between Mangalore and Udupi, it boasts of a beautiful sand beach and a lighthouse. By the time we arrived at the beach, it was late evening and the place was pretty crowded. There were a few shacks with open air bar selling liquor but we chose to stay clear of those areas for the time being. There were also provisions for adventure watersports like speed boats, banana boat etc, but again we were out of time so no go. We chose to go up the light house and have a view of the surrounding. It was an old lighthouse with spiral stairs. The view from the top of the sunset at the Arabian Sea was breathtaking. Too bad we had to leave now …
Malpe and Kaup, Flickr Photoset