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Every Year When Monsoon Season Arrives In India, This Church Undergoes A Haunting Transformation

Karnataka’s Shettihalli Rosary Church

This church is located in southwest India, on the coastline of the Arabian Sea. It is located just over a mile away from Shetthalli, which is located in the district of Hassan. The church has been standing since the 19th century when a group of French missionaries started building it for the wealthy British owners of the estate. It is unknown when the construction was completed, but it was the season during the 1860s.

Older Than It Is

Many people believe that the church is much older than it is because of the Gothic Revival architecture. This was an architectural style often used during the medieval period. The church had lancet windows, decorative patterns, and other decorations. This was much different than the neoclassical style that was often seen during the 19th century.


The church was in use for close to 100 years, until 1960. This was the year that work had begun on a reservoir and dam around the nearby River Hemavati. This project resulted in a startling transformation the church undergoes every year. This also resulted in the church’s congregation to abandon the church and find a new place to worship.

The Effects Of the Dam

Unfortunately, it wasn’t just the church that was affected by the building of the dam and reservoir. There were 28 villages nearby that were submerged by the water. Sadly, the locals had to abandon their homes and uproot their lives and their families to accommodate the new geography in the area. While some were angry about leaving their homes behind, it was for a good cause. Thanks to the dam and the reservoir, the people of Karnataka were going to have access to running water. Also, the local farmers would be able to irrigate their crops during the dry season. While all of the homes were underwater, you could still see the church. It is a constant reminder of the sacrifices that the villagers made in the 20th century.

Poor Condition

Thanks to the waters, the church, which was built with mortar and bricks, is now in poor condition. Today, 150-years after its construction, it is a crumbled shadow of its former self. The roof is caved in, and there are no stained glass windows left. Also, the pews are gone. While much of the church is in ruin, some parts are still intact. The nave and the alter still stand, and many other parts of the architecture have managed to remain preserved after all these years. By looking at the ruins, it is easy to imagine how amazing the church looked in its prime.

The Church Today

Today, the church is home to birds who bring fish back from the reservoir for their dinner. The people who weren’t sent running due to the flooding and still remain in the area claim that the church is haunted. Some people believe that these are just rumors, but the stories keep tourists coming for visits at night.

Monsoon Season

Another thing that brings tourists to the church in drones is what happens during monsoon season. Every year, the rains turn the church into something incredibly spectacular. The monsoon season occurs from June to September. Regions, including Coastal Karnataka and Malnad, experience plenty of rainfall during these months.

The Effects On the Church

Every year when monsoon season arrives in India, this church undergoes a haunting transformation. During monsoon season, you can expect something truly incredible to happen to the church. It becomes partially submerged underwater thanks to the overflow from the reservoir nearby. Seeing the church partially submerged is an astonishing sight. Tourists flock there every year, driving along uneven roads and through backwater villages just to get a look at it.

The Full Effect

If you want to get the full effect and witness the true majesty of the church, you should visit twice. The first visit should occur during monsoon season, between June and September when two-thirds of the church lies underwater. You should go back again between December and May when the water recedes, and the entire building is visible.

Help From a Local

If you are going to visit the church during the monsoon season, it is safe as long as you have help. You will need to hire a local to bring you to the ruins in a coracle, which is a small, light rounded boat that can take you right to the ruins.


Because the church has become such a huge tourist attraction over the years, you will have no trouble finding a place to stay. There are plenty of places to stay with all of the amenities that you need just 13-miles away in Hassan. To get to the church, you don’t even need a car. Buses run all day, or you can take a rickshaw for $8.50. It is easy to get there, and it is a place that you want to see at least once in your life.

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