Chikmagalur is a town located in the Chikkamagaluru district in the Indian state of Karnataka, in the foothills of the Mullayanagiri range. A town with a favorable climate and coffee estates, Chikkamagaluru makes a great tourist destination. It even features a wide range of accommodations, from the best homestays to luxury resorts. Read on to find out the things to see and do during your visit here.
1. Sringeri Mutth
Sringeri Sharada Peetha is a monastery, established by Jagadguru Adi Shankaracharya in the 8th-century AD. The monastery and pilgrimage centre are situated on the banks of the Holy River Tunga and is observed as one of the most sacred Hindu pilgrimage sites. Overlooking the Tunga River, the beautifully sculptured Vidyasankara Temple enshrines the Vidyatirthalinga. A consolidation of the Dravidian and Hoysala temple architecture, the exceptional feature of the temple is the twelve zodiac pillars, organized in a way so the sun beams on the pillar corresponding to the suitable month.
Typical of the Hoysala style, the temple structure stands raised on a high platform and is laid out on a circular star-shaped plan. Navarathri is the most significant festival in Sringeri, where special prayers are offered to Goddess Sharadamba at the temple for nine days along with a ceremonial procession taking place in the temple. Sringeri is well connected by road, train and air.
Sringeri Sharada Peetha
Address: Sringeri, Chickmagalur 577139, Karnataka
Website: Sringeri Sharada Peetha
2. Baba Budangiri
The Baba Budangiri range is a very prominent mountain range in Chikmagalur. The main peaks in this range are the Mullayanagiri and Baba Budangiri. Collectively, these peaks are known as Chandradrona Mountain Range as they naturally form the shape of a crescent moon. It is a picturesque destination with rich sightseeing opportunities. Baba Budangiri is recognized for its shrine to the Sufi Saint Hazrat Dada Hayat Khalandar, a pilgrimage site for both Hindus and Muslims.
There are three caves with three oracles buried here. To commemorate them, an annual ceremony is held in these caves. The combination of scenic beauty and the intriguing caves makes this place worth a visit. It was in Baba Budangiri that the first ever coffee in the India was grown way back in 1670 AD. During a walk among the coffee plants, especially during the spring, the air is filled with the fragrance of coffee blossoms, an experience to cherish.
Address: Baba Budangiri, Nagenahalli 577137, Karnataka
3. Hebbe Falls
Hebbe Falls is one of the most stunning falls in Chikmagalur. The beautiful waters drizzling on the lake surrounded by green forest and coffee plantation with its subtle aroma filling the air heightens the enchanting atmosphere. The Hebbe Falls delivers relaxation to the visitor and transports them to a whole new ecosystem. Visitors can enjoy a dip in the waters infused with herbs. Alike other spring falls in the region, the water stream is believed to cure skin disorders due to the herb and mineral enriched water stream. The best time to visit Hebbe Falls is early winter, when you can take advantage of trekking and camping while admiring the flora and fauna of the region. The weather is mild throughout the year, making it an ideal location to visit anytime of the year.
Address: Kesavinamane, Chikkamagaluru 577131, Karnataka
4. Kalhatti Falls
The Kalhatti Falls are where nature wraps you in its allure. Here you can experience the elements of nature as pristine, refreshing and charming as they come. The magnetism of this waterfall is apparent when you see it at close quarters. The surrounding regions of the falls are revitalizing and make for a refreshing round of nature walks, with numerous mountains and dense verdure in the background.
Not only is the Kalhatti Falls a place for enjoyment and relaxation, they are full of trekking trails as well. Trekking is a very popular activity around this region. There are impressive trekking trails that meander through dense greenery. Offering plenty of sightseeing attractions, the regions around the falls make for ideal locations for camping too.
Address: Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary, Manchethevaru 577129, Karnataka
Phone: +91 9611136042
Website: Karnataka Holidays
5. Kadambi Falls
Due to the naturalistic splendors of this enchanting region, the Kadambi Falls is a hill station to visit and admire. Feel the pristine waters touching your skin, relaxing your every nerve as they pass. Experience the purest elements of nature in a world that is enveloped in this amazing region. The Kadambi Falls enthrall visitors world-wide.
There are impressive trekking trails in this hill station, home to a dense woodland. Several wild animals are found in these jungles like leopards, tigers, Malabar barking deer, and jackals. Usually, these wild animals don’t come near human beings, however it is still better to stay in groups when trekking near the waterfall and its surrounding region.
Address: Kalasa Main Rd., Chikamagalur 577142, Karnataka
6. Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary
The Bhadra River flows through the sanctuary, hence the name, Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary. It is a protected area for wildlife, also called the Muthodi Wildlife Sanctuary, serving as a residence to many wild animals and birds species. The sanctuary is located between the Chikmagalur and Shimoga districts. Ornithologists accompany you to help you with the spotting of birds in the forest. There are even marsh crocodiles in this sanctuary, and you can spot them lying along the banks of small water bodies. Deciduous trees are found in abundance, reverberating with vitality.
However, the main attraction of the sanctuary is the large tiger population. Famous for its wildlife safari, the sanctuary offers private jeep safaris accompanied by forest officials, from where you can admire the majestic tigers moving with fluidic grace in their natural habitat. One can also visit the Kallahathigiri Mountain and admire the uninterrupted splendor of this place that is evident from the lush greenery that pervades the sanctuary. Every minute spent at the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary is super value for money.
Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary
Address: Chickmagaluru 577101, Karnataka
Phone: +91 08030178144
Timings: 6 am – 6 pm
7. Sri Veeranarayana Temple
Sri Veeranarayana Temple, an ancient temple built during the rule of the Hoysala Empire in 1104 AD, is a highly revered temple located at Kolanupaka in Warangal District. This shrine encloses Sri Veeranarayana, who is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. It’s known in mythology as the place where the Pandava Prince Bhima slayed the demon Bakasura and protected the village and its people.
The plan of the temple is unique, where the shrines face each other and are located on either side of a wide and spacious open hall, containing thirty-seven bays, and in the central is the shrine. The convoluted carvings on the walls of the temple are incredible and completely worth seeing.
Address: Belavadi 577146, Karnataka
Phone: +91 9035041518
8. Amrutesvara Temple
The Amrutesvara Temple was built in the Hoysala style, and is exquisite in design with the outer walls of the temple displaying circular ornamentation. This temple has a single vimana (tower) over the sanctum sanctorum. There is a closed mandapa (porch) in front of the shrine which leads to a big open mandapa. The tower over the square shrine displays carvings of tiny towers. The temple nose bears the Hoysala emblem of a Hoysala fighting a lion.
The inner mandapa of the temple is reinforced by brilliant pillars that have domes, which represent floral designs. On the outer walls of the open mandapa, 140 panels depicting the acts from the great Indian epics can be seen. On the southern wall, the epic Ramayana is displayed on 70 panels in an anti-clockwise pattern. While on other walls, the 25 panels portraying the scenes from the life of Lord Krishna are carved and the 45 panels depicting the scenes from the Mahabharata epic are intricately carved.
Address: Amruthapura 577228, Karnataka
9. Jamalabad Fort
Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing
Jamalabad Fort is an old hilltop fortification, located in the Kudremukh hill range. When impressed by the massive granite hill, Tipu Sultan decided to erect the fort and named it after his mother, Jamalabai. The fort is supposed to have been constructed over the remnants of an older structure. Jamalabad is a trekking destination and is reachable only via a narrow path, with around 1,876 steps leading up to the fort that are forged out of the granite hill. Inside the fort, there is an old tank to store rainwater and relics of a single cannon. The top offers good views of the neighboring scenery and the Kudremukh range.
At the base of the hill is a forest check post where visitors pay an entry fee. Visitors should carry plenty of water since there is no drinking water available on top. Entry to the fort is open between 6 am and 6 pm and overnight staying at the fort is forbidden.
Address: Nada 574214, Karnataka
Opening times: 6 am – 6 pm
Mullayanagiri is the highest peak in the state of Karnataka. The height of this peak is close to 2,000 m (6,562 feet) with amazing trekking trails. Nature walks at Mullayanagiri are among the best in the country. Without a doubt trekking at Mullayanagiri is a memorable experience that echoes in your soul when compared to other places to visit in Chikmagalur. At the summit, there is a small temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, with hundreds of Shiva devotees who trek all the way up to offer their prayers. The best time to trek in Mullayanagiri is in the spring season as the other season may not be conducive to memorable trekking experiences, due to the heat and heavy rains and storms.
Address: Mullayanagiri Peak, Pandaravalli 577130, Karnataka
Be amazed with wonderment
Situated amidst the dense and picturesque jungles of the Western Ghats, there are many places to visit in Chikmagalur, that will win your heart, help you relax and rejuvenate your senses to tackle the chaotic world. Visiting Chikmagalur temples instantly transports you to the world of the past. So plan a retreat to this beautiful place and be amazed by its sights.
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