Road trip to Kemmangundi and Kudremukh hills

11:56 PM

Road trip to the hills of Kemmangundi and Kudremukh:

In our last visit to Chikmangalur we visited the Mullayanagiri and Bababudengiri hills, so this time we decided to visit the other two magnificient hills of Chickmagaluru Kemmangundi and Kudremukh hills. Kemmangundi was something which was planned in our previous trip, but due to its dry conditions in summer we had to skip it. This time we had planned in last weekend of July, Kemmangundi on day one and Kudremukh on the second.
Kemmangundi
Kemmangundi
On our way from Bengaluru we took the route through Arsikere to visit the 13th century Hoysala masterpiece, the Ishvara Temple. We reached the temple by 9am, and there were hardly any tourists but the temple is functional.
Isvara Temple, Arsikere - Star shaped shrine (left) and open hall dome (right)
Ishvara Temple, Arsikere - Star shaped shrine (left) and open hall dome (right)
The Ishvara temple dates back to 1220 CE built by the Hoysala Empire using soapstone. The asymmetrical star shaped shrine hosts the sanctum with the shivalinga inside.
Although the main architectural significance of the temple is its open hall dome, with its 16-pointed star plan. The central ceiling is of the open mantapa is carved elegantly and the exterior of the temple is decorated elaborately.
Elegantly carved central ceiling of the open mantapa dome
Elegantly carved central ceiling of the open mantapa dome
Unlike the more popular Hoysala temples of Belur and Halebeedu, this one is small but tranquil.
Isvara temple, Arsikere
Ishvara temple, Arsikere
Having spent decent time at the temple, we headed towards the Kemmangundi hills and reached the parking area by 11.30 am. It was raining most of the time at Kemmangundi. After parking the vehicle one can take a walk along the various view points and there is a kids play area with swings and slides.
Z-point as seen from Kemmangundi
Z-point as seen from Kemmangundi
Apart from this there is nothing much to do over here. Adventure seekers has two routes to take one is the Z-point and other is the Hebbe falls, both need to take a jeep ride followed by short trek. Since it was raining we skipped these and reached for the restaurant to have our lunch.
On our way back we stopped at the Kalhatti Falls, the actual falls are of a total height of about 400ft, the lower part is near the Veerabhadreshwara Temple which is the only easily accessible portion of the falls. Watch-out for the three elephants carved out of the rocks through which the water falls down.
Three elephants carved out of the rocks at the Kalhatti falls
Three elephants carved out of the rocks at the Kalhatti falls
The upper falls dropping down the chandra drona hills are very difficult to reach without any proper path to reach, although the upper part of the mighty Kallathigiri Falls are visible from the Kemmanagundi road near Kallathipura village.

On our final day we started towards the Kudremukha national park. Stopped at the Bhadra stop coffee shop near Balehonnur for a snacks break.
Bhadra river, Balehonnur
Bhadra river, Balehonnur
The drive from Balehonnur till Horanadu was very scenic. On our route stopped at multiple places to get glimpses of the beautiful Bhadra river which was otherwise playing hide and seek.
mushrooms at the banks of the river Bhadra
Mushrooms at the banks of the river Bhadra
Bhadra river, Balehonnur-Kalasa road
Bhadra river, Balehonnur-Kalasa road

We reached Horanadu Annapoorneshwari Ammanavara Temple for darshana well before the Mahamangalarathi which started at 1.30 we had prasada and then proceeded towards Kudremukha. Horanadu is also famous for shopping spices and dry fruits.
Bhadra river crossing at the Kalasa-Horanadu road
Bhadra river crossing at the Kalasa-Horanadu road
The drive from here towards Kudremukha is amazing with breathtaking views through the route. Kudremukha is actually a national park and there is nothing particularly famous as tourist spots inside the national park. But for nature enthusiasts it is a bliss with many rivers, cascading waterfalls, majestic hills, endless grasslands and think vegetation.
Samse Tea estates, Chikmangalur
Samse Tea estates, Chikmagaluru
Bhadra river bridge, Kudremukha
Bhadra river bridge, Kudremukha
Kudremukh-Sringere road
Kudremukh-Sringere road
We reached Kadambi falls in the late afternoon and since it was getting dark we skipped the Hanumanagundi falls. The major tributary of the Bhadra river drops from about 30feet through the rocks to form Kadambi falls which later flows through Kalasa and Balehonnur. The falls are popular because of its easy accessibility from the bridge over the Sringeri-Kudremukh main road.
Kadambi falls, Kudremukha
Kadambi falls, Kudremukha
There is no mobile network inside the National park and on all exit/entry points there are forest check-posts who note your entry and exit timings, you are not allowed to stay inside the national park.


Road condition and route for Kemmangundi-Hornadu-Kudremukh:
Bengaluru -> Nelamangala via NH4 - 30km - 4 Lane Toll road in Excellent condition
Nelamangala -> Channarayapatna NH75 - 120km - 4 Lane Toll road in Excellent condition
Channarayapatna -> Arasikere - Channarayapatna-Arasikere main road - 44km - road condition is good
Arasikere -> Birur - NH206 (Bangalore-Shimoga Highway) - 46km - road condition is very good
Birur -> Lingadahalli - 16km - road condition is good
Lingadahalli -> Kemmangundi - 18km - very scenic, road condition is good except for the last 3km which is extremely bad
Lingadahalli -> Chickmagaluru - 44km - road condition is good and very scenic
Chickmagaluru -> Hornadu via Balehonnur - 90km - road condition is good and very scenic (20km from Chickmagaluru after aldur ghat road starts)
Hornadu -> Kadambi falls via Kudremukh National Park- 39km - excellent Ghat road with many scenic view points

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2 comments

  1. Good information,
    शानदार जगह, यहाँ तो जाना ही पडेगा।

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