Coorg the most abundant hill station in South India which is situated 252 kms from Bangalore and 1525 m above sea level, in the state of Karnataka. Dense teak wood forests, lush green valleys of coffee plantations and mountain ranges make Coorg an exquisite location for the tourist. The coffee estates here produce some of the world’s best coffee. The location is enriched with rare species of flora and fauna, Steep hills, valleys and countless streams that flowing through them stuck trekkers and rock climbers. Tadiandamol, Brahmagiri and Pushpagiri peaks in Coorg are very challenging for the trekkers and the natural scenic surroundings of these peaks are really eye charming. Coorg is a spot for invaluable bird watch. The sheer beauty of the landscapes, the unpolluted fresh environments attract tourist in large number all-round the year. Coorg is considered as a mind blowing summer retreat for escaping from the hot summer days in downtown cities. Monsoon is also one of the best time to visit Coorg, many tourists arrive in Coorg in monsoon to enjoy the wild beauty during the monsoon. Coorg offers many exciting outdoor activities like angling, trekking and golfing for the adventures. It also furnish plenty of admiring facilities to the golf lovers with its three golf courses namely, ‘Mercara Downs’ in Mercara, ‘Coorg Golf Links’ in Bittangala, and golf course in Pollibetta.
Morning view, Coorg, Karnataka
Misty Coorg Morning, Photo courtesy Gopu P.( flickr.com)
Tourist attractions in Coorg
Mandikeri, the capital of Kodagu (also called Coorg) district is located in a beautiful hilly setting surrounded by the forested slopes of the Western Ghats. Madikeri is the picturesque town of Kodagu (also called Coorg), located in a beautiful hilly setting surrounded by the forest slopes of the Western Ghats. Covered with a chunk of red-roofed house and a bustling bazaar, the town, situated at an elevation of 1,525 m, has a charming old look. There are plenty of sight-seeing opportunities near Madikeri like the Madikeri Fort, Raja’s Seat, Raja’s Tomb, Omkareshwara temple and the Nisargadhama Forest in the town. A good place to visit the local eating joints for some typical Coorgi food.
Sunset at Madikeri, Coorg, Photo courtesy Vishal R.
Situated in the middle of Madikeri, this historic fort which was built in the 19th century, contains a museum, a prison, a chapel and a temple. The 19th century Madikeri Fort with its stone ramparts now houses the prison, a temple, a chapel, a small museum, and assorted government offices.
Nagarhole National Park:
The place derives its name from the twisting river – Nagarhole , meaning “snake river” – which flows through the park. Nagarahole has an astonishing abundance of wildlife, With over 250 varieties of birds, panthers, tigers, Asiatic elephant and flying squirrels, this park is made up of teak, rosewood, sandalwood, silver oak etc. The backdrop of the lofty Brahmagiri Mountains, the natural sounds of the jungle, the gurgling of streams and rivers, and the twittering of the birds make Nagarahole a memorable experience. Jeeps and elephants are available to tourists for transport in this Park. A summer is the best time to visit, when animals roam more freely in search of water.
Nagarhole National Park, Photo by Orange County Resorts
Abbi Falls :
Abbey Falls is an astonishing waterfall where the Kaveri River cascades down a rockface from a height of 70 feet. A hanging bridge has now been built across the gorge for best view of the falls. The falls can be reached by a narrow road from Madikeri. Cars can reach the entrance of these falls from where a downhill walk of 500 metres on slightly paved steps takes one to the waterfalls. One has to makes the way past stocky coffee bushes and tall trees entwined with pepper vines, the falls make a dramatic appearance as they cascade their way down steps into crystalline pools to join the river Kaveri River. These falls are most impressive during the monsoons.
Abbi falls near madikeri, coorg
Located around 50 kms away from Madikeri town and 20 kms beside the Nagarhole National Park, the Iruppu falls presents a majestic sight with waters cascading down from a height of 170 feet. Originating in the lofty Brahmagiri peaks; the falls become a part of the Lakshman Teerth River in the plains. The never -ending music of the falls and the hush of the surrounding densely wooded forest make this a great picnic spot. . The people of Coorg believe that bathing in the Iruppu Falls will wash ones sins away. The Rameshwara Temple, located nearby the falls, attracts a large congregation of devout pilgrims during the festival of ‘Sivaratri’.
The Omkareshwar temple:
This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, which was built in1820 and featuring a blend of red-tile roofed and Islamic -style domes. It has a mix of Islamic and Kerala architecture style. This template is located near Madikeri Fort.
Omkareshwara Temple, Coorg
The Raja’s Seat:
This is a beautiful viewpoint in Coorg. This hilltop offers stunning views of the surrounding forests and the view of the sunset. It is said that the kings of Kodagu came to this viewpoint to see the panoramic view of their kingdom and spent their evenings.
View of Coorg from Raja’s Seat, Madikeri, Photo courtesy Avinash Bhat
It is situated at the confluence of 3 rivers (the Cauvery, the Kanika and the Sujyothi). Among many small shrines dedicated to various gods, the main temple, known as the Sri Bhagandeshwara temple, is constructed in a large, stone courtyard. It possesses pagodas and multi-layered roofs that have a reddish hue. Each pagoda ends in the form of a silver hood of a snake. The temple also hosts idols of other Lords, like Subramanya, Mahavishnu and Ganesh. Bhagamandala is also famous for its bee farming.
Talakaveri is considered to be the source of the river Kaveri. It is situated at the Brahmagiri hill. Talakaveri is situated approximately at a distance of 48 km from Madikeri. At the spot that is said to be the origin of the Cauvery, a tank or ‘kundike’ has been erected on a hillside. There is also a small temple at the spot, and the area is frequented by pilgrims. The river originates as a spring that feeds this tank that is considered to be a holy place to bathe on special days. The waters are then said to flow underground to emerge as the Kaveri River some distance away. On Tulasankramana day (October 17th) thousands of pilgrims flock to this place to witness the miraculous rise of the fountainhead, when water rise up from the spring at a predetermined moment.
It is a beautiful river island, the biggest of a cluster of five islets created by the river Cauvery. It can be accessed by traveling over a hanging bridge from the mainland. Nisargadhama covers with green floras, thick bamboo groves, teak, and rosewood. Located 25 kms from Madikeri town, this popular nature resort boasts of a deer park, orchidarium and elephant rides amid bamboo groves.
Cauvery Nisargadhama, Coorg
One of the largest Tibetan settlements in South India, Bylakuppe is spread over four regions just before Coorg. It is known for its monasteries, handicrafts, carpet factories, and an incense factory. This place is filled with several monasteries; the main ones amongst these are the Great Gompa of Sera Je and Sera Mey. The Mahayana Buddhist University is located at Sera. It also has an enormous prayer hall. The other important monastery in the neighboring settlement of Bylakuppe is Tashi Lhumpo monastery.
Tibetan settlements, Coorg , photo by Joydeep Mitra
Buddhist Monastery, Coorg, Photo courtesy Anupam Chatterjee
Dubare Elephant Camp:
The place is a good place for rafting amateurs. Dubare Elephant camp is a project undertaken by forest department and Jungle Lodges and Resorts Ltd. This camp has plenty of elephants which are trained under naturalists .The reserve forest is famed for its amazing variety of fauna, an elephant training camp and angling possibilities on the Cauvery. Elephant interaction in the morning time is the popular activity attracts hundreds of tourist daily.
Around 8 Km from the Madikeri Kushalnagar Road is the Harangi Dam. The Harangi River forms a huge reservoir that looks beautiful. It is a nice place for a picnic lunches and leisurely stroll.
Tadiyendamol, the tallest peak in Kodagu . The hill top offers views of the surrounding and also serves as a landmark to sea travellers. During clear days, visitors can view the coastline too. Rock climbing in Thadiyendamol Hill attracts a lot of sport lovers every year. Rock climbing is usually arranged between the months of September to May. The Nalnad Palace is located at the base of the mountain and is ideal for a stay.
Valnur Fishing Camp:
Valnoor fishing camp, is celebrated as one of the most exotic angling sites in the state of Karnataka. The destination is located near Kushalanagar, on the backwaters of the river Cauvery, nestling in the south-western part of the state of Karnataka. The place is a home to a few rare species of fishes. Some of the more common varieties of fishes that can be spotted include mapps, marals, eels and mahseer. Valnur is also a heaven for birdwatchers, with innumerable avian species to be spotted and identified.
Best time to visit Coorg
The climate of Coorg is very pleasant and can be visited during any time of the year. But the most ideal time to visit Coorg is between September and March..
How to reach Coorg:
By Air: The nearest airports are Mangalore 136 km and Bangalore 260 km.
By Rail: The nearest Railway Station to Coorg, located in Mysore is at 114 km.
By Road: Coorg is well connected with major cities like Mysore, Mangalore and Bangalore.