Madikeri -The Orange Hill Station
is the picturesque capital of Coorg, where time seems to have stopped.
Dotted with a cluster of red-roofed dwellings and a bustling bazaar,
the town situated at an elevation of 1525 m, has a charming old-world
feel. The 19th century Madikeri Fort with its stone ramparts now houses
the prison, a temple, a chapel, a small museum, and assorted government
offices. Raja's seat perched atop a hill, is where the kings of yore
spent many pleasant evenings watching the golden sunset.
Abbey Falls (9km)
Tucked away between private coffee and spice estates, Abbey Falls
offers a splendid backdrop for picnics. As you make your way past
stocky coffee bushes and tall trees entwined with pepper vines, the
falls make a sudden and dramatic appearance as they cascade their way
down steps into limpid pools to join the river Cauvery. These falls are
most impressive during the monsoons.
Iruppu Falls (85km)
Nestling beside the Rajiv Gandhi National Park (Nagarhole) and 48km
from Virajpet, Iruppu Falls presents a stunning sight during the
monsoon. From its humble origins in the Brahmagiri Range , the falls
plunge down 170ft. in two distinct stages. The never-ending music of
the falls and the hush of the surrounding densely-wooded forest make
this a great picnic spot. The Rameshwara Temple , located close to the
Lakshmana Theertha river, attracts a large number of pilgrims during
the Shivaratri festival. A forest trail leads from these falls to the
Brahmagiri Peak in Southern Kodagu .
Cauvery Nisargadhama (25km)
It is a breathtakingly beautiful riverine island carved by the Cauvery
river in the plains, 2km from Kushalnagar. It can be accessed by
travelling over a hanging bridge. Nisargadhama teems with lush foliage,
thick bamboo groves, teak, and rosewood. The sprawling 64-acre nature
resort has a deer park , orchidarium, and elephant and boat rides. You
can also picnic on the sandy beds of the river bank.
Set amidst the picturesque Brahmagiri hills is the source of Cauvery
river, with the Talacauvery Temple built around it. On Tulasankramana
day (October 17th) thousands of pilgrims flock to the river's
birthplace to witness the miraculous rise of the fountainhead, when
water gushes up from the spring at a predetermined moment. Steps lead
from the spring to the summit of the hill, commanding superb views en
This is the confluence of three rivers: Cauvery, Kanika, and Sujyothi.
Among many small shrines dedicated to various gods, the Bhagandeshwara
temple, standing in a large courtyard surrounded by Kerala-style
temples is the most impressive. Bhagamandala is known for its apiaries
and Kodagu honey.
A small town, reputed to be the largest producer of honey in Asia .
Iruppu Falls is 48km from here on the Nagarhole road. Close to the
Lakshmana Theertha river, the Sri Rameshwara Temple , believed to have
been dedicated to Lord Shiva by Lord Rama himself, is a place of
pilgrimage. It is a favourite haunt of picnickers and pilgrims,
especially during the Shivaratri festival.
One of the largest Tibetan settlements in South India , it is known for
its monasteries, handicrafts, carpet factories, and an incense factory.
The landscape is dotted 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 neighbouring settlement of
Bylekuppe is Tashi Lhumpo monastery, renowned as the seat of Panchen
15km from Kushalnagar. The reserve forest is famed for its amazing
variety of avian fauna, an elephant training camp, and angling
possibilities on the Cauvery.
Harangi Dam (38km)
Situated in North Kodagu , this dam is a beautiful reservoir, ideal for a weekend holiday.
For those who have a head for heights, Tadiyendamol, the tallest peak
in Kodagu, is a paradise. On a clear day you can view the distant
Arabian Sea and the enchanting beauty of the whole of Kodagu from here.
Situated in the heart of the Tadiyendamol range, in the village of
Yavakapadi , Naalkunaadu Palace was constructed by Dodda Raja
Veerendra, the king of Kodagu, in 1792. The palace, with its 12
magnificent pillars and walls adorned with beautiful carvings, tell
many a tale of yore. It is now being used as a camping site for
trekkers. Kakkabe, a small town 35km from Madikere, gives access to the
highest peak in Kodagu. Nearby Padi Iggutappa is the most important
temple in Kodagu.
Two of the best golf courses in Kodagu can be found at Pollibetta and
Madikeri. Madikeri has a smooth 9-hole golf course spread amidst quiet
and pastoral surroundings. Polibetta in South Kodagu also has a 9-hole
Valnur Fishing Camp
Located near Kushalnagar on the banks of the river Cauvery is the
Valnur Fishing Camp, where avid fishing enthusiasts can indulge in the
luxury of angling for mahseer. Fishing permits can be obtained from the
Coorg Wildlife Society. Valnur is also a haven for birdwatchers, with
innumerable avian species to be spotted and identified.
The Kodagu region is full of trekking trails. The best season to trek
is from October to the beginning of February. Simply follow the
mountain trails dotted with little shrines - some beside waterfalls,
and others on the banks of rivers. The other well-trodden trekking
trails in Kodagu are in the Brahmagiri ranges of South Kodagu , where a
forest trail leads from Iruppu Falls to the Brahmagiri peak. Another
interesting trail leads to Pushpagiri (1712m,) Kodagu's second highest
peak, which can be climbed via the village of Heggademane to the north
How to reach there
Mysore - 120km
Mangalore - 136km
Bangalore - 260km