Netrani Island: A gem of a spot in the Arabian Sea for nature lovers, adventure seekers

Kerala makes registration must for adventure tourism activities
The name 'Netrani' is derived from the Sanskrit words 'netra,' meaning eye, and 'ani,' meaning island. File Photo

We are all familiar with the heart-shaped lake and waterfall nestled in the lap of Chembra, the highest peak in Wayanad district. But how many of you know that there is a heart-shaped island in our country, right next to Kerala? Netrani Island, situated in the Arabian Sea along the picturesque coast of Karnataka, resembles a heart when viewed from the sky. Also known as Pigeon Island, it serves as a haven for nature lovers, adventure seekers, and those seeking a peaceful getaway.

Netrani Island boasts of a rich historical background. According to legends, the island was once a popular stop for traders sailing along the west coast of India. The name 'Netrani' is derived from the Sanskrit words 'netra,' meaning eye, and 'ani,' meaning island. Over the centuries, the island has witnessed the ebb and flow of sea trade, with a belief that it is watched over by the vigilant eyes of God, adding to the mystique of the land.

Travellers’ haven
Netrani Island is a paradise for travellers keen on an underwater adventure. It provides an amazing underwater world experience, located approximately 10 nautical miles from the coastal town of Murudeshwar in Karnataka. The coral island of Netrani features a diverse underwater habitat, and divers have reported sightings of orcas and whale sharks in the surrounding waters. Snorkeling is also a popular activity at Netrani Island, known for its amazing diversity and a wide variety of reef fish, including butterfly fish, parrot fish, triggerfish, and eels. Studies reveal the presence of around 89 species of coralfish here.

Things to see around
Murudeshwar, with its crystal-clear waters and white sand, is a must-visit beach near Netrani Island, providing the perfect setting for a relaxing beach experience. Stretching over 2-3 km, this beach is adjacent to Kanduka Giri and Murudeshwar Temple, offering facilities for various aqua tourism activities like jogging on the shore, swimming, parasailing, and boating. Tourists also frequent the Bajrangbali Temple on Netrani Island. According to the Vibhishana Purana, Lord Rama was worshiped here while Hanuman was on a mission to rescue Lakshmana.

Activities for visitors
Visiting Netrani Island is a great experience for both adventure seekers and those looking for a tranquil getaway. Dive into the crystal-clear waters for an unforgettable experience of scuba diving and snorkeling. Explore vibrant coral reefs and encounter a variety of marine life. Additionally, take boat tours around the island to enjoy spectacular views of the rock cliffs and coastline. Above the waterline, capture the beauty of the island through photography.

How to reach Netrani
Netrani Island is situated in the Arabian Sea, approximately 19 km from Murudeshwar. Access the island by boat from Bhatkal or Honnavar or by hiring a fishing boat from Bhatkal. October to April is the best period to visit the island.  

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