A short trip to Coimbatore and Isha yoga center.


Active Member
Hello Friends

My last post on the BCMT was on my trip to Nanded, Parli-Vaidyanath and Aundha-Nagnath when I was in Pune.
After coming down to Chennai (post-retirement) in Nov’2013 we were busy with the settling-down-issues.

However the travel-itch (or more the travelogue-writing itch) continued to bug me and hence we decided on a very short trip to Coimbatore.

During our preparations and actual pilgrimage to Kailash Mansarovar last year, we had heard a lot about Isha Yoga and Sadguru Jaggi Vasudev.
His teachings and yoga-system had fascinated us and we were planning to visit his Ashram at the foot-hill of the Velliyangiri Mountain about 30 Kms from Coimbatore.

Me and my wife enrolled ourselves for one Yoga course (Inner Engineering for Beginners) at Isha Yoga Center, Coimbatore to be conducted from 20/03/2014 to 23/03/2014.

Dhyanalinga (Courtesy Isha Fundation)

So this is a short account of what transpired during these three days.
Infact this log is just to register that we are alive and kicking in the travel-circuit, if not anything else.
As camera is not allowed in the Ashram premises, I had to shoot a few pics (where ever permitted) only on my mobile.
I have also utilized some pics (free download) of the Ashram and its important artefacts from the net (ishafoundation.org).
So don’t expect too much from this log.
This is just a short brief account of our tour, with all the limitations mentioned above.

We started off to Coimbatore and boarded the Shatabdi Express by 7.15 am and reached Coimbatore by 2 pm.
The journey was un-eventful as the train was running almost empty.
The food provided by the Railways was of just mediocre quality.
How the Railways maintain the same bland-menu on all their Shatabdi Trains is a mystery.:(

As we were given accommodation at the Isha Yoga Center only from 20/03/2014 morning, we decided to spend the day at Coimbatore.
In the evening we went around the main shopping area (Oppanakkara Street).
We also visited the famous Koniamman Temple, near Town Hall.
This Devi is the Patron-Deity deity of Coimbatore.

Koniamman Temple
Koniamman Temple.jpg

We also visited the Naga-Sai Temple in Saibaba Colony dedicated to Shirdi Saibaba.
It is one of the earliest temples for Saibaba constructed outside Shirdi.
After a sumptuous Dinner at the famous ‘Annapporna/Gowri-Shankar’ restaurant we went to bed early.

Morning we started off at 6 am.
Isha Yoga Center is located at the foot of the Velliangiri Mountains, about 30 Kms from Coimbatore Town.
There is a bus (14D) every hour from the Gandhipuram Bus Stand to the Isha Yoga Center.
We reached the Center around 7.30 am and walked into the huge sprawling campus.
The one thing that struck us was the lush forest-like atmosphere in the Ashram premises.
It was said that there were hardly a few dozen trees at this place about 20 years ago.
But once the construction of the Ashram started, Isha took up the task off planting more than 12,000 trees in the campus which is spread over more than 150 acres.
These huge trees today stand testimony to the ‘Project-Green’ initiative done by the Isha.

Check-in formalities were very simple and the volunteers guided us to our guest house.
The room was very neat with all basic amenities.
They had provision for AC in most of the rooms but we opted for the Non-AC room.

One thing we observed was that there were images off snakes everywhere.
Even the coat-stand was shaped like that of some inter-twining snakes.
Till the day we left the Ashram we could not get proper reason for this, but we presume that it has got something to do with the Kundalini.

Snakes, Snakes Everywhere :
Image of Snake at Spanda Hall Entrance.jpg

Snakes-at-Spanda Hall.jpg


Our program was to start after lunch at 2 pm.
So we utilised the morning hours to go around the huge campus and its magnificent land marks.

A brief summary about the structures in the Isha-Foundation campus :
The main attraction in the premises is the Dhyanalinga Temple.
This world’s biggest mercury-based Shiva-Ling measuring 13 feet and 9 inches was consecrated in 1999 after three years of intense yogic process of Prana Pratishta.
The Linga is housed in a Wonderful Dome-shaped Temple.
The entire dome was built with the help of nearly 2,50,000 Burnt-Bricks, mud-mortar stabilized with lime, sand and some herbal additives.
Huge blocks of granite were extensively used (eliminating the use of steel and concrete) in building this magnificent temple.
Surrounding the Linga there is a ‘Jalaseema’ a water-body which has a naturally cooling effect.
There is no regular pooja at the shrine.
Every pilgrim must maintain strict silence and sit in the Garba-Griha for a few minutes.
Ghee-Lamps and Lotus-Flowers are the main offering for the ‘Shiva’ in this temple.
Twice a day in the afternoon and evening the inmates conduct one pooja called ‘Naada-Aaradhana’ for the Dhyalanalinga.
Its more of a musical offering and is really soul-stirring to stay in the premises at that time.
Atleast 500 people could be comfortably seated around the Dhyanalinga inside the Garbha-Griha itself.
Supreme Peace and Bliss pervades the entire atmosphere.

Dhyanalinga (Courtesy Isha Foundation)

The next main attraction in the Temple-complex is the ‘Linga Bhairavi Temple dedicated to Shakthi.
This formless-form of the Devi is a unique structure housed in this temple.
There are variety of poojas being offered to the Devi like any other shrine outside.
However things are more organized here.
(no photos here)

Another attraction is the Theerthakund.
This is a deep immersion pool housing a Shivalinga (Mercury Linga) in the centre of the pool.
This entire structure is built of huge granite blocks and is situated 30 feet below the ground level.
The pilgrims have to remove their personal-dress and take the specially-given attire for bathing in this Kund.
The pilgrim first takes bath in the shower in the ante-room (soap is also provided) and then has to enter the chill-water which is about five feet deep.
Wading through the neck-deep water the pilgrims walk (Swimming is strictly prohibited) around the three Shivalingam and then come out.
It was indeed a thrilling experience.

Theerthakund (Courtesy Isha Foundation)


Another wonderful construction is the Spanda-Hall and its beautiful-garden.
This architecturally distinctive Spanda Hall is a huge 64,000 SqFt Pillar-less Meditation Hall.
Our program was conducted in this Hall only.

Spanda Hall (Courtesy Isha Foundation)
Spanda Hall.jpg

The foundation also runs a canteen which provides healthy food at affordable cost to all the pilgrims.
That day our Yoga session started after the lunch and ended at about 10 pm.
We went back to our cottages for a well-deserved slumber.

Yoga Session continued.
In the evening there was a visit to a nearby village inhabited by the Adivaasis.
Thanks to the ‘Modern’ amenities, we did not find anything ‘Aadi’ in these locations.

Today after our morning session we started off to the ‘Siruvani Falls in the midst of the Velliangiri Mountains.
We were taken in a bus till the entrance and then we had trek for about 2 Kms.
Since we reached the place by 9.30 am, we reached the falls well before the tourist influx started.
Despite the monsoon failure and the on set of summer, there was ample water in the falls.
We had a refreshing bath in the falls and the pool down under.

Siruvani Water Falls

We returned to the Ashram quite hungry for our yoga-lunch.

A word must be said about the food they provide for the participants. Coffee, Tea and milk products are not allowed for the participants.
Most of the food is served in its natural form (uncooked/unspoilt).
Fruits and Vegetables are provided in abundance.
Over all it was a wonderful 'Natural' gastronomic experience.

Today was the last day of the program and the schedule was very tight.
We did not have any time for outing.
Totally drained physically but refreshed mentally, we went to sleep by 10 pm.

We had to vacate our rooms by 9 am.
So went for an early bath at the Theerthakund and finished our morning darshan at all the Shrines.

After a heavy brunch we took the bus to the Railway Station to Board the Shatabdi Express to Chennai.
With this our Short but Sweet trip to Isha had concluded.

For more information on Isha check their website (Ishafoundation.org).
All the required information is available in these web-sites.
Great Trip..................
Great Yoga....................
Great Reason....................
Great Outing........................
Great Food or..........................
Heavenly Food............................
Great Routine.................................
Great Presentation..............................

Very nice start
Started >> then >> Finished !


Active Member
Great Trip..................
Great Yoga....................
Great Reason....................
Great Outing........................
Great Food or..........................
Heavenly Food............................
Great Routine.................................
Great Presentation..............................

Started >> then >> Finished !
Very nice start
Thanks you guys.
I know it could not be counted as a genuine travelogue.
But atleast I have my post published after a gap of six months. :grin:


I only heard about it. I'd really like to visit it. I practice yoga and such places inspire me a lot!


Active Member
Exactly. Thanks for your answer anyway. I am practising yoga online with yanva yoga for many years now and can clearly see a positive effect on my physical body, my mental state and the quality of my life in general. For the last couple of days i am thinking to do a yoga retreat in India and take my yoga journey to a new quality level.
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