May 15, 2017
If you are looking for a day long road trip close to Bangalore, then BR hills and Shivanasamudra Falls would be a perfect choice for a picnic day trip.
Shivanasamudra Falls on Kaveri river is 3 hours drive from Bangalore on the way to Mysore. It’s a bluff type waterfall and a hydroelectric power station was setup in 1909. The view is spectacular from the opposite ridge where Karnataka tourism department have constructed staircase and a small watch platform for an 180-degree view. Vehicle fee is collected by the forest department to enter the view platform.
Few kilometre upstream on the other side of Kaveri is barachukki falls. You have to cross the river to reach barachukki. Don’t miss the beautiful old stone bridge on the way.
There is a lot of small tributaries and small waterfalls in this region. Gangachukki is one other fall close by, often leading confusing among travellers with barachukki. There is few old temple on the way to barachukki, should be an ideal subject for your photo craze.
A coracle ride in barachukki falls or at Sivansamudra will cost you 100 INR per person.
Biligirirange Hills is another 60 km from Shivanasamudra falls. If you are starting from Bangalore, take the Mysore highway and drive till Ramanagaram to Chennapattana and continue to Maddur. From Maddur take a left turn to towards Malavalli. From Malavalli, drive towards Kollegal which is 35 Km’s from Malavalli. From Kollegal, proceed towards Yelandur which is 22 Km’s from Kollegal. From Yelandur, B.R.Hills is 24Kms. The distance between Bangalore and B.R.Hills is nearly 190Kms.
Biligirirange Hills was declared as tiger reserve by 2010. So, there is entry restriction ( 6 AM to 6 PM ) and you have to pay toll fees to enter the forest. There a village at the peak and bus service too available few times a day. There’s forest guard all over the reserve patrolling and watching all side roads. So you can’t do any adventure activity inside the forest. You can visit the Biligirirange Temple at the peak and stroll around for a better view of peaks and plains. Since it’s around 1000+ MSL, coffee is grown in a small area here and you can buy Jackfruits, Pomelo and Avocado for cheap price here.
Karnataka forest department has a jungle lodge around 18 km from the peak down south and travelling beyond this place is not permitted. You can get fresh forest honey in the shop run by the forest department and safari service is available.
There’s no shop near the jungle lodge. So pack your food stuff for a picnic and don’t leave any trash behind. BR hills are plastic free zone. We spotted wild boars, barking deer, captive elephants, spotted deer close to the jungle lodge. If you are lucky, you might spot the big cat too.
Bangalore - Mysore Highway - Ramanagaram - Chennapattana - Maddur - Kollegal - Malavalli - Yelandur - Biligirirange Hills