Nestled amidst the vast Western Ghats, the hill town of Chikmagalur is one of the popular destinations in Karnataka for a tranquil retreat from the daily hustle of busy life. Renowned for its coffee production, this quaint town is blessed with lush greenery, cascading waterfalls, picturesque trekking trails, and mystical temples; a perfect getaway for the city folks and nature lovers.
How to reach:
By air: The nearest airport to Chikmagalur is the Mangalore Airport, at a distance of 110 km.
By rail: Nearly 40 km from Chikmagalur, Kadur Railway station is the nearest train station from the city.
By road: Chikmagalur is well connected by highways with all the major cities like Bangalore, Mangalore, and Chennai.
One of the most popular attractions in Chikmagalur, Mullayanagiri is the highest peak in Karnataka. Lush greenery, rugged rocks, misty weather — Mullayanagiri is a heavenly place to relish nature’s beauty. At a height of 1950 m, it remains covered with clouds, and cool breezes add to the already chilled ambiance of the peak. Offering a plethora of thrilling activities such as road biking, mountain biking, trekking, it is a haven for adventure seekers. The trek to the peak takes one through many landmarks like some caves, a stream, and a small temple. Mullayanagiri is the perfect getaway from the doldrums of daily life.
Surrounded by majestic mountains, Hirekolale Lake is a man-made masterpiece, built as a source to supply water to the town of Chikmagalur. Amidst the azure waters of the lake and gorgeous encompassing surrounding, the sprawling lake basks in the glory of nature. At the time of twilight, a huge crowd of tourists flocks to experience the most mesmerizing view the lake offers ever.
Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary
Housing a substantial population of tiger, the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary is spread across the western ghats. The lush green vegetation and lofty hills are a true pleasure for a nature lover. Kallahathagiriv Hills, Kemmannugundi Hills, and Bababuden Hills lie within the sanctuary. The Bhadra River, after which the sanctuary was renamed, flows through the lush forests.
Tigers, leopards, wild dogs, jackals, elephants, sloth bears, spotted deer, barking deer, mouse deer, wild boars, common langur, bonnet macaque, slender loris, and the Malabar giant squirrel are some of the mammals found roaming the dense jungles. Wildlife fanatics can avail the safari facilities in the sanctuary.
Kudremukh National Park
A paradise for both nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts, the Kudremukh National Park — from thrilling experience to blissful stay in the lap of nature, offers it all. Literally meaning ‘horse’s face’, it refers to a particular picturesque view of a side of the mountain that resembles a horse’s face. Rich in flora and fauna, tourists can indulge in a variety of activities. Numerous tracks passing through the rolling hills are perfect for visitors seeking some adventure. Surrounded by rich coffee and tea plantations, walk amidst them or sit back relaxed and witness the sheer beauty of the park.
Located around 50 km from the city of Chikmagalur, the Kalhatti Falls cascades from a height of nearly 120 m. The waterfall has its own place in myths. Legends narrate that a renowned sage prayed here for a long time and the water flowing here has healing powers of its own. A temple sits right beside the falls in honor of the sage. Visitors climb the slippery rocks leading to the waterfall to enjoy the cool, cascading water and enjoy the wilderness around the falls.