Chikmagalur – Day 2

Next day, we got up early and were ready in no time by finishing our breakfast provided by the hotel and started towards HIREKOLALE LAKE. We weren’t aware of this earlier but got to know from the hotel receptionist. It’s a half an hour drive from Chikmagalur and you will not know that the place exists (as we hardly saw any signboards of it) until the corner of it. It was drizzling when we reached there but we decided to move forward. As we reached halfway, the drizzle got heavier and we traced back to our car for shelter as there was nothing else we can hide from the rain. We were having talks whether to stay until the drizzle stops or move ahead for next destination but then suddenly drizzle got weaker and eventually it stopped. We stepped out and walked out to see the spectacular view of the lake. The weather was perfect which added to the scenic beauty. We were just in the awe of the place. We went around for a while and took pictures of this beautiful place.

As planned, the next destination was KEMMANAGUNDI, which had many places nearby. As we started towards our next place, we were stuck in traffic jam and amidst of all that, one of the car drivers hit us from back, damaging the car. I was furious, got down to inquire. The person explained the situation they were in (they were traveling to the cemetery for a funeral) and told us to follow them so that we can settle there. That was the mistake which we did because once we reached the cemetery, the guy flipped and told us to wait until they come back (which we had no idea when they will be back nor did they) or go and file a complaint with police. That left me agitated & fumed, wanted to damage his car on revenge but decided against it, as it would make me one like him. We left with a heavy heart to our next place. We stopped in between for a coffee sip at Coffee & Pepper (which has a cafe and also resort). The place looks very classy and for a change, I had ordered Cold Coffee and liked the taste so much that I placed one more. Rest of them chose hot coffee which made them refresh & active for the journey ahead.

KALLATHIGIRI FALLS, where water cascade’s down the hill and a small waterfall is formed in front of the temple. One can find an old Veerabhadra temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. It was too crowded when we reached there as families were bathing and doing rituals of their own. We visited the temple and headed towards Kemmanagundi wasting no time. As planned yesterday, we planned to go for a trek at Z-Point. We enquired and there was a group of local Jeep drivers who would take us halfway at a cost of Rs.300/- per person. We quickly finalized and hopped on the jeep, must say, it was completely off-road. After roughly 20 mins, the driver stopped and told us to follow the trail. As we started, we encountered SHANTI FALLS, passing which we would see the point where we were trekking to. As we kept trekking, it became steeper & steeper with the wind becoming heavier and heavier. I could hardly see any colors other than green (the grass), blue (the sky) and brown (the soil). It took us more than an hour to reach midway and everyone were numb as the breeze made more noise and the cold made the hands & legs freeze. We could hardly see each other as the fog was passing through us.

In between all the chaos, all of sudden was a streak of sunshine which brought up smiles on many people who were on the hill and faded slowly. We sat there admiring the nature and enjoying the view and feeling the air which was so fresh and enthusiastic. We were so lost that none of them had a check at the time. After some time, the weather changed drastically and we could see the bad weather approaching us, that’s when we decided to trek down. We reached back to our car in just more than an hour. Everyone was hungry to the core, we went to Krishnarajendra Hill station which has a hotel in it. We had our food and moved out as we had to head back to Bengaluru. Everyone was satisfied and also tired of the activity done in the day. This is my 4th trip to Chikmagalur but every time it was different. Always enjoyed coming to this place and always will. Looking forward to many more trips in and around the city.


Chikmagalur – Day 1

It’s been many months now that I haven’t been focusing on writing my travel experiences because of various reasons but as they say, “old habits never die”, so here I’m trying to put down one more journey we had taken. It was to CHIKMAGALUR with me, my wife, my brother, and Mr. & Mrs. Vijay. We started our journey late night in order to reach the place in time. We stopped somewhere after Kunigal and had wonderful food (Egg fried rice and Jeera rice) and continued our journey. We reached around 5 AM in the morning and quickly freshen up ourselves to reach Mullayangiri. The time was 9.30 in the morning when we reached and it was fog all around and we weren’t able to see hardly 100 meters. Forest department had closed the road due to heavy fog because of which we needed to walk for nearly 3 Kms to reach the steps of Mullayangiri. By the time, we reached the top it was 12 but it didn’t seem like it as fog covered all around and it was freezing like hell with a very cool breeze.

A temple resides on top of the hill which is small but feels very warm once entered. We spent nearly an hour on the top with many people taking photos of them and friends at many places. With the fog, our visibility was very less and the breeze made us shiver all the time but it was the moment to enjoy too. We headed back down and we were amazed to see the weather not change an iota.  We reached our car and headed towards Baba Budan or Manikydhara falls. We decided en route to visit Manikydhara falls first and then visit Baba Budangiri. The weather was not different here with many things in sameness such as greenery, fog, clouds and cool breeze. We were hungry when we came out of Baba Budangiri, so decided to have our lunch there. It was such a change to have lunch at a place where the food smells and taste different and the weather was at its best.

We checked the time and it was 5.30 PM which informed us to head back to our hotel. While driving back to the hotel, we saw this place called “Siri Coffee” and heard about its popularity for coffee. And me being a coffee freak cannot let that chance let go, so we decided to give it a taste. We relaxed for a while and ordered a couple of coffee and snacks. Must say, coffee did taste differently and I liked it. We finished our cup of coffee and got going from there. We reached the hotel, rested for a bit and went out for dinner somewhere nearby which was popular in the local. We walked back our way to the hotel and laid on the bed immediately as we were dead tired so that we can be fresh tomorrow.

Route Taken: Bengaluru -> Nelamangala -> Kunigal -> Hassan -> Belur -> Chikmagalur

Kms: 250+

Time taken: 5 Hours

Places Visited: Mullayangiri Peak, Manikdhara Falls, Baba Budangiri, Siri Coffee Cafe

Best Time to Visit: After rainy season (September-January)

Lunch at Malgudi Vatika

To visit this place was a long pending task which never got ticked off from our bucket list. Some way or the other, it was getting postponed even after multiple plans. It requires around 2 hours to reach Malgudi Vatika, which was on Mysore road from my home. Months passed by and the lunch date never happened.

It was a regular weekend again in Bengaluru where we got up late, had breakfast and were talking with my brother and another friend. All of a sudden, Malgudi Vatika popped up in my head. I asked my wife, brother and another family friend if they are up to visiting this place and everyone agreed to it. We freshened up quickly and were en route for the lunch. It was monsoon season and rain has just stopped when we reached the place. I expected the place to be big (as seen in online pictures) but to my surprise, it was smaller in size. We waited in the queue for the tables to be emptied. We sat outside near lawn and ordered a couple of starters to begin with, and then “Weekend Special Thali “.

It was very peaceful watching the drizzle making all the way to the ground traversing the wooden roof, entering into the half-cut pipe and falling on the planters attached to the roof. The food was served on a copper plate as like olden days. The food and ambiance were purely authentic in ‘North Karnataka‘ style. The drizzle stopped again as we finished our sumptuous meal and ordered a cup of tea which blended with the atmosphere outside. We clicked few pictures here & there and made our way back to home. It’s always satisfying to tick one off from the bucket list.