15 Things To Do In Manipal

Things To Do In Manipal

Welcome to Manipal, a vibrant university town in Karnataka, India, renowned not only for its academic prowess but also for its diverse range of activities and attractions. Whether you’re a student, a visitor, or a local resident, the array of things to do in Manipal ensures that there’s never a dull moment. From serene nature spots and cultural landmarks to bustling eateries and markets, Manipal offers a unique blend of experiences that cater to every taste and interest. In this blog post, we will explore the top 15 things to do in Manipal, each guaranteed to enrich your stay and create lasting memories.

Things To Do In Manipal

  1. Explore the Heritage Village

Heritage Village in Manipal is a cultural haven, displaying a rich tapestry of India’s vast traditions and histories. This museum complex is not just a treasure trove of artifacts; it’s an immersive experience into the past. As you walk through the meticulously reconstructed traditional houses, each from different corners of Karnataka, you’ll feel as though you’ve stepped back in time. The guides are incredibly knowledgeable, offering insights that bring the static exhibits to life. Ideal for history buffs and families alike, spending a few hours here is like taking a quick course in Indian cultural diversity.

  1. Relax at End Point

End Point is a sprawling green space that offers some of the most breathtaking views in Manipal. This cliff-like endpoint of a plateau is perfect for early morning jogs, leisurely evening walks, or just a quiet time amidst nature. The panoramic view of the Western Ghats and the Swarna River provides a perfect backdrop for a relaxing day. There are also several well-maintained tracks for walking and cycling. Don’t forget to catch a sunset here — the sky’s vibrant colors make for a truly picturesque end to any day.

  1. Visit Malpe Beach

A short drive from Manipal, Malpe Beach is a beautiful coastline known for its golden sands and clear blue waters. This beach is less crowded than others in the region, making it an ideal spot for those seeking peace and solitude by the sea. Visitors can indulge in various water sports, take a boat ride to the nearby St. Mary’s Island, or simply enjoy a leisurely day sunbathing. The seafood available here is fresh and must be tried, especially at the local shacks that line the beach.

  1. Discover Manipal’s Educational Museums

Manipal is not just about natural beauty; it’s also a hub for educational excellence. The town hosts several museums, such as the Museum of Anatomy & Pathology and the Smrithi Bhavan, which are associated with the Manipal Academy of Higher Education. These museums offer a fascinating glimpse into the human body and the history of medicine. They’re not only educational but are designed to pique the curiosity of visitors of all ages. Whether you’re a student or a family with kids, these museums provide a unique learning experience that is both engaging and informative.

  1. Engage in Adventure Sports at Agumbe

For the thrill-seekers visiting Manipal, a trip to Agumbe is a must. Known as the ‘Cherrapunji of the South,’ Agumbe offers a host of adventure sports like trekking, rappelling, and rock climbing. During the monsoon, it transforms into a lush green paradise with streams and waterfalls at every turn. The area is also famous for its biodiversity, especially king cobras. For those interested in more serene activities, Agumbe provides opportunities for bird watching and photography, capturing the stunning landscapes and vibrant wildlife.

  1. Stroll Through Manipal Lake

Manipal Lake, also known as Mannupalla Lake, offers a serene escape from the bustling campus life. Surrounded by lush greenery, it is an ideal spot for birdwatchers and nature lovers. The well-maintained walking path around the lake is perfect for morning walks or evening strolls. You can also rent a pedal boat to explore the lake at a leisurely pace. The quiet, picturesque environment makes it a great place for meditation or simply unwinding with a book by the waterside.

  1. Visit Hasta Shilpa Heritage Village

Hasta Shilpa Heritage Village is an architectural museum in Manipal that preserves a variety of traditional buildings and artifacts that are significant to the region’s cultural heritage. Visitors can explore restored structures that showcase different architectural styles and eras from across India. The guided tours are insightful, providing a deep dive into the artistic and cultural significance of the exhibits. It’s a must-visit for those who appreciate history and architecture.

  1. Enjoy Local Cuisine at Student Eateries

Manipal is home to a diverse population of students from all over the world, which is reflected in its eclectic dining scene. The town boasts a variety of eateries that offer everything from local South Indian dishes to international cuisines at student-friendly prices. Places like Dollops and Snack Shack are legendary among students for their delicious, budget-friendly meals. Trying out the local cuisine, especially the coastal Karnataka specialties like fish curry, neer dosa, and chicken ghee roast, is a delightful culinary adventure.

  1. Shop at Tiger Circle

Tiger Circle is a bustling hub in the heart of Manipal, known for its shopping and entertainment options. From trendy clothing and accessories to books and electronic gadgets, you can find almost everything here. The area is also dotted with cafes and fast food joints, making it a popular hangout spot for students and locals alike. Shopping here is an experience infused with the youthful energy of Manipal’s student population.

  1. Participate in Local Festivals

Manipal is vibrant with cultural diversity, which is vividly expressed through its numerous festivals and events. Participating in local festivals such as Diwali, Dussehra, and the boat festival at Manipal Lake can be an enriching experience. These festivals are a spectacle of color, music, dance, and traditional performances. They offer a wonderful opportunity to engage with the local community, understand their traditions, and enjoy the festive atmosphere.

  1. Attend a Workshop at Manipal University

Manipal University is renowned for its wide range of workshops and seminars that cater to a variety of interests and academic disciplines. From robotics and engineering to art and literature, there’s likely a workshop that can pique your interest. Participating in one of these sessions not only enhances your skills but also gives you a chance to interact with students and professionals from around the world. It’s a fantastic opportunity to learn something new and get a taste of the academic vibrancy that Manipal is known for.

  1. Visit the Venugopal Temple

The Venugopal Temple in Manipal is a splendid example of contemporary religious architecture, adorned with intricate carvings and an aura of tranquility. Located within the campus area, this temple serves as a spiritual center for students and locals alike. Visiting this temple offers a peaceful retreat and a chance to witness daily rituals and special pujas. The temple’s serene environment makes it a perfect spot for meditation and reflection.

  1. Explore the Udupi Sri Krishna Temple

Just a short drive from Manipal, the Udupi Sri Krishna Temple is a significant pilgrimage site and a must-visit for anyone in the region. Famous for its unique idol of Lord Krishna that faces a window carved in the back of the sanctum, the temple attracts devotees from all over the world. The temple complex is also known for its dining hall that serves free meals to thousands of pilgrims every day, offering a taste of the local cuisine and a glimpse into the community’s way of life.

  1. Take a Day Trip to Karkala

Karkala is a historical town near Manipal, known for its monolithic statue of Lord Bahubali (Gommateshwara) which is a significant Jain pilgrimage site. The town is rich in heritage with numerous temples, basadis (Jain temples), and a beautiful natural setting. Exploring Karkala gives you an insight into the region’s Jain heritage and the architectural beauty of its ancient structures. The tranquil atmosphere and scenic beauty of the surrounding areas also make it an ideal spot for photography and relaxation.

  1. Enjoy a Nature Walk at Pilikula Nisargadhama

Pilikula Nisargadhama is an eco-education and tourism development project located within a short distance from Manipal. It offers a botanical garden, a zoo, and a golf course, alongside other attractions. Nature walks here can be incredibly refreshing, as the area is home to various species of flora and fauna. The park also has a lake where you can enjoy boat rides. It’s a perfect destination for families looking to educate their children about nature and conservation.


Manipal, with its scenic landscapes, rich cultural heritage, and vibrant academic atmosphere, offers a plethora of activities to engage visitors and locals alike. Whether you choose to delve into the history at Heritage Village, unwind by the serene Manipal Lake, or seek adventure in Agumbe, each activity promises a unique slice of this dynamic town. The things to do in Manipal are as varied as they are fulfilling, making it a perfect destination for travelers seeking both relaxation and adventure. So pack your bags, and prepare to explore the charm and beauty of Manipal, where every corner tells a story and every experience leaves an imprint on your heart.

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