Sunday, January 31, 2016

Babia, the vegetarian crocodile in Ananthapur temple, Kasargod

Have you ever heard about the  vegetarian crocodile ? ! Have you ever thought that a crocodile can be a pet too ?!! You need to meet Babia, the crocodile to believe this.

We were coming back from Kasaragod towards Mangalore, when we saw the board 'Ananthapura 5.5 kms ' pointing towards right. When we drove towards the direction I didn’t expect anything much but a typical Kerala style temple. Travelling with the  little one doesn’t allow much to explore. All the time goes in attending to their needs. Anyways having my little one with me I was not in exploring mode as well.

When we reached the temple it was an odd hour of the day for any temple to be open for  visitors. We were told by the priest that the temple will be opened by 5.30 pm. We thought that is too much of time to wait and decided to satisfy ourselves by taking a walk through the temple corridor.

This temple of Ananthapadmanabha is  spectacular. It is located in the middle of the  kalyani ( temple pond) . Being  away from the town the temple complex is  very serene. This temple is supposed to be the origin of Trivdendrum’s Padmanabha temple. Water around the temple is green. We could see lot of fishes. We were about to return then the priest suggested us to see the crocodile.

Being from south India, I have seen fishes living inside the temple ponds. But never heard of a crocodile within a temple complex. Intrigued, we enquired more about it.

This crocodile is believed to be living in the temple pond from the last 76 years. It is considered and worshipped as temple’s protector. He lives on temple prasadam they feed every day after the pooja and hasn’t harmed anyone till now. He doesn’t even eat the fishes in the pond!!

Story doesn’t end here. He crawls up to another pond which is above the temple pond and about 300-400 meters away. Often he shuttles between these two ponds. When we visited, he had moved to other pond couple of days back. We walked up to the other pond which was also green and had lotus leaves all over. We tried to spot him for about 20 minutes. But no luck. By the time someone from the temple came and asked us, 'did you able to spot him? ' Looking at our disappointed face, he asked us to wait and started to call ‘sweetly’ as if he is calling some one dear. ‘Babia…. Please come up … They want to see you..  Please come up Babia .. ‘ 

Whoa!! Babia the crocodile came up. He didn’t fully come up though. But we could see his face under the water. He looked very calm. We were told that his body is 8 ft long but all that we could see was only his stout. After watching him for a while we started from the place amused and wondering how could he live on vegetarian food !! Sometimes there is no answers for such questions !!
Isn’t it interesting?? Ahh! My India is incredible with such mysteries!!! It is always a treasure trove. Travels, always unveils such unknown stories. If you are travelling towards North Kerala don’t forget to meet Babia.
Travel notes
- Anantapur lake temple is 5 kms away from Kumbla on the way from Mangalore to Kasargod
- Temple timing - 5.30 to 12.30 pm and 5.30 to 7.30 pm
- Plan this place  along with Kasargod

View from front - Ananthapura lake temple

Corridor connecting the temple in the middle of the pond

Rear view of the Ananthapura lake temple, Kasaragod, Kerala

Another pond 400 mts away from the temple pond

Babia, the crocodile .. Picture is not so clear as he was inside the water


  1. Must be a reborn saint. Long live babia.

  2. Have never heard of something like this! Quite interesting.Thanks for sharing!
    Cheers, Arun-

  3. Superb post, we enjoyed each and everything as per written in your post. Thank you for this article because it’s really informative, I Really like this site.

  4. Babiya is a "she' according to the temple least that was what he told us. Anyways we got to stand very near her and we took a couple of photos..

  5. "Great blog, it seems lots of effort and time was put into it. But its nicely written, reading this is effortless.
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