Nestled like a precious gem in the Arabian Sea, the Netrani Islands, also known as Pigeon Island, beckon travelers to explore their mystique and natural wonders. With a heart-shaped appearance from above, these islands off the coast of Karnataka offer a haven for those seeking adventure, tranquility, and a glimpse into the pages of history.
Netrani Islands boast a fascinating historical background, once serving as a vital stop for traders navigating the western coast of India. Legend has it that the name “Netrani” is derived from Sanskrit, meaning “eye island,” suggesting a divine watchful gaze over these scenic islands. Over the centuries, Netrani has witnessed the ebb and flow of maritime trade, contributing to its enduring mystique.
Geography and Biodiversity
Located about ten nautical miles from the coastal town of Murudeshwar in Karnataka, the Netrani Islands exhibit rocky terrain and vibrant coral reefs that have made them renowned for their rich biodiversity. The crystal-clear waters surrounding the islands teem with marine life, attracting diving enthusiasts from far and wide.
The underwater world of Netrani boasts a diverse ecosystem, housing barracuda, jacks, snappers, Indian bannerfish, groupers, eels, and an array of colorful fish. The coral reefs support butterfly fish, triggerfish, parrot fish, and shrimp. Divers have even reported sightings of orcas and whale sharks, adding to the allure of this underwater paradise.
Things to See
Shri Murudeshwar Beach, adjacent to Kanduka Giri and Murudeshwar Temple, offers a picturesque setting with crystal-clear waters and white sand. Spanning over 2-3 km, the beach is ideal for various water activities, providing a serene beach experience complemented by stunning views and cultural landmarks.
Things to Do
Visiting Netrani Islands offers a diverse range of experiences. Adventure seekers can embark on scuba diving or snorkeling expeditions, exploring vibrant coral reefs and encountering diverse marine life. Boat tours around the islands offer breathtaking views of rocky outcrops and coastline. Capture the islands’ raw beauty through photography and relish in the local cuisine of coastal Karnataka, savoring fresh seafood and traditional flavors. Netrani seamlessly blends adventure, relaxation, and cultural exploration into a single, enchanting journey.
How to Reach
Netrani Island, approximately 19 km from Murudeshwar, can be accessed by boat from Bhatkal or Honnavar. Alternatively, hiring a fishing boat from Bhatkal provides another scenic route to this hidden gem in the Arabian Sea.
Whether you’re an adventure enthusiast, a nature lover, or a history buff, Netrani Islands beckon with open arms, promising an unforgettable journey into the heart of Karnataka’s coastal beauty.