Mangalore is a peaceful, not so big yet fast developing city situated besides the western ghats bathed by the wind blowing from the arabian sea. Besides itself being a city with rich cultural heritage, lodging many industries and a harbour, it forms the central link to lots of other tourist destinations around. Probably the most important aspect of the city is its temples. The name “Mangalore” (actually Mangalapuram) is derived from the Goddess Mangaladevi, the deity of mangaladevi temple. The Kadri Manjunatheswara temple is one of the oldest temples in southern karnataka. The recently renovated Kudroli shree Gokarnanatheswara kshetra also forms one of the main tourist attractions. The processions held during dasara festival attracts lots of foreign tourists besides indians. So does the car festival of Shree Venkatramana temple.
From mangalore, one can visit the Sringeri temple, Kukke Subramanya temple, Kollur Shri Mookambika temple, Sri Manjunatheswara temple – Dharmasthala, Hornadu Shri Annapoorneswari kshetra, Moodabidri jain temple etc.
Apart from temples, the other most important aspect which is self evident in mangalore is its natural beauty. Although may not be a mind grabber, it does definitely possess a serene environment. The lush green fields, small rivers, hilly regions, coconut and arecnut plantations at the city outskirts contrast with the shopping malls, the busy traffic and the ever growing residential flats and market places. The main beaches include the panambur beach and thannerubavi beach in the port area, ullal beach, someshwara beach. The Bekal fort is less than 2 hour drive from mangalore. Besides the beach there is a zoo, a small water park and a lake, all in a place called pilikula, about 15-20 Kms from the center of the city.
Mangalore also forms the center for many educational institutions including engineering and medical colleges.