Trekkers gather around! This time we are going down to climb up. India offers tremendous trek trails for trekkers in the magnificent Himalayan Mountains. But let’s not forget the rocky, ancient Western Ghats in South India. The state of Karnataka is a world in itself as it has a lot to offer right from its rich cultural heritage to beautiful beaches, amazing landscapes and a mouthwatering trekker cuisine.
The trekkers Kodagu district in Karnataka also known as Coorg is filled with hilly terrains and coffee plantations. The charming town of Madikeri, also known as Mercara lies nestled in the verdant Western Ghats. Coorg is gradually gaining its popularity among tourists and trekkers. This small hill station is filled with green mountains, grey clouds and forests. The region also has many historical sites to cover in sightseeing. Starting off with:
Madikeri Fort is situated about 500 m from the Madikeri bus stand located on a hillock. The imposing fort was built by Mudduraja in 1618. The earthen structure was rebuilt by Tipu Sultan in granite. Later in 1933, the British renovated it by adding a clock tower and portico. The nearby Gothic-style Anglican church was built in its place in 1855. The church is now turned into a museum.
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❔Did you know❔
It is believed to be the land of Kodavas, who claim to be descendants of Alexander the Great and take great pride in their martial culture.
The Raja’s Seat is a seasonal garden occupied with flowers and artificial fountains. It is about 1km west from Madikeri bus stand. A spectacle of layers of greenery, chain high and low rise mountains attired with mist. The Raja garden was known to be loved by the Kings in the early days where they adored setting suns with their wives . The site also offers a toy train ride for children.
Abbey falls are located approximately 8 kms from Madikeri. A cascade of icy water slopes down endless slopes, making it a beautiful one day picnic spot. If you are looking for a spot to spend your day amidst nature, this spot is a perfect fit!
It would be a waste if this trek trail is missed out on by fellow trekkers. Tadiandanol is a mountain peak in Western Ghats which is among the top 5 tallest peaks in Karnataka. With an elevation of 1748 m Tadiandamol offers an amazing lush green landscape where you will be surrounded by white clouds. It is a 6 hour trek where one can trek anytime between 6 am to 4 pm. The starting point of the trek is Virajpet which is approximately 30 kms away from the mountain peak. It is advised to carry sufficient food and water. One can opt to take a local bus to Virajpet from Madikeri which is 32 kms away. The trek lies in the moderate scale in difficulty spectrum.
💡 Tip – There are lovely homestays and accomodations in Virajpet. One can commence their trek journey by having a hearty breakfast here. Littering at any point during your trek will not be appreciated as a measure to keep nature and its surroundings unharmed.
The best time to visit this absolute gem near Yevakapadi is during December to May.
The Namdroling Nyingmapa Monastery is known to be the largest teaching centre of Tibetan Buddhism. This monastery is located in Bylakuppe, the monastery is home to a sangha community of over five thousand lamas. There is a junior high school named Yeshe Wodsal Sherab Raldri Ling, a religious college and hospital.
Also, do not miss out on the coffee plantations spread all around Coorg. With its growing popularity and scenic view, the hotels and resort franchises have been increasing. Providing you with a perfect hill station experience and grounded coffee.
❔Did you know❔
Women drape their sarees with the pleats at the back. According to one legend, the custom originates from when a flood in the Kaveri turned around the sarees of women who were bathing in the river.
☆ Places Around Madikeri
Not even Dharamshala but Bylakuppe comprises the largest Tibetan settlement in India! It is 34 kms from Madikeri and is famous for dazzling monasteries. Especially the Great Gompa of Sera Je and Sera Mey, Namdroling and Tashi Lhumpo, famous for being the seat of the Panchen Lama.
Dubare Elephant Camp
This elephant camp is a unique eco-tourism destination. Once upon a time it used to serve the purpose of training Mysore Dasara Elephants. Today, Dubare Elephant Camp is a centre for study of elephant behaviour. Here a visitor can feed and bathe the elephants! In addition to the elephant training camp, Nisargadhama and Veerabhoomi are the other main attractions of the forest area. This camp is situated 36 kms away from Madikeri and the entry fee is 20 rs. The activities inside the camp, like boating and rafting, will have additional charges.
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