We wanted to spend the complete trip settling in our homestay tucking into the delicious food and drink gallons of hot coffee. But then we thought why not have a look outside as well. It wouldn’t be fair to the land if we didn’t see what it offers.
Secret sunset point
One hidden perk of staying at Sabyatha was that they took us to a secret sunset point. We drove over an unpaved unmarked narrow road and then climbed up a small hill top to reach the viewpoint. We were spellbound with the view. The overcast sky was closing down towards the horizon when the pale golden streaks of sunlight broke through the grey ceiling. As the sun played hide ‘n’ seek overhead, down below a hundred shades of green stretched far. Starting at our foothills the grassy plains, paddy fields, bush covered mounds and groves of trees spread out till they touched the giant hills in the distance. It was a sight to behold. And the cool breeze made the experience surreal.
Popular attractions (Mullayangiri, Kalhatti waterfalls, Bababudangiri)
The majority of tourist attractions at Chikamagalur are on the same circuitous route through Mullayanagiri to Bababudangiri. There are many trekking trails around the area too but we didn’t venture on that front in the rain. We drove to Sitalayyanagiri and then started to trek to Mullayanagiri. But was overcast and at this height soon the clouds descended upon us and we were engulfed on all sides by white. We could hardly see a few feet in front and halted our trek. It was windy. It was chilly. It was awesome.
The next stop was Jhari waterfalls. It was drizzling and we opted for the 4×4 wheel jeep ride to the falls. It was a roller coaster ride with every chance of falling out of the jeep if we didn’t hold. The waterfall was flooded with the water but was muddy in the rains. Water was freezing cold too.
The last destination was Bababudangiri which is a place of worship for Hindu and Muslim alike. It is like in a cave and quite a unique place to visit.
The highlight was the drive and the amazing viewpoint on the way to Bababudangiri. It was like a piece of land jutting out from the main body of the hill. The view was unlike any we had seen during our ride throughout. The passing clouds made it more mysterious and gorgeous at the same time.
In the end, we did get traffic around the main tourist points. But unlike our earlier experience, it was moving and we got in the clear soon. We realized it required a very experienced hand on the wheel while passing the vehicles like that and might have been tiring for the driver. So, maybe it was a good decision after all, to drive.
Pursuit of Devaramane
On our last day (well half a day as we had to return to catch our train), we decided to scale the top of Devaramane. It is a little-known hilltop towards south of Chikamagalur. We went past Mudigere and then the adventure began. Relying on the words of the locals on the street, we diverged from the path shown in the maps and took the other more travelled route (or so they said). Slowly the road turned bumpy and then we had no road at all. We again got back to the map and with little help from locals, we found the metaled narrow road. Apart from searching for the correct route, the drive was pleasant with beautiful countryside for a view. The metaled road took us winding through the hills lined with coffee plantations. The land and the leaves were fresh and bright after a recent shower. It was a sight to behold. With rain on our heels, we had to turn back before reaching the summit but the pursuit was worthwhile.
Touch of history
Chikamagalur is not just splendid treasure trove of nature. Exquisite examples of Hoysala architecture could be found just 30 and 60 km from the town at Belur and Halebeedu, respectively. The marvelous carving and unique structure is bound to take your breath away. Like they did ours. The temples are still places of worship and spending time here filled us with peace and serenity.
Do you have a story to tell about your Chikamagalur experience? Drop in a comment or send us a mail. We will definitely reply. All the interesting tales will be published in a special feature.