The mountains wrapped by lofty clouds are not a monopoly of just the Himalayas or the northern region of India. It is no surprise to us that one of the most beautiful places lies in the southern part of India and one such place that we are going to explore today through this article is Coorg- The Scotland of India. Absolutely one of the best holiday destinations in India, Coorg has a great misty kind of atmosphere throughout the year and is a perfect place for you to spend this vacation in. Surrounded by hills and coffee and spice plantations, you can feel the aroma blending perfectly with your mood as you explore the place in your itinerary. Falling in the Western Ghats of Karnataka, Coorg is so mesmerizing that it is also called by tourists the Kashmir of Karnataka.
Just to tell you, Coorg is the largest Coffee producer in India and so you will see coffee and spice plantations all spread all around the place filling the air with its aroma and making the terrains fun to look at while you go on with your itinerary. Coorg is also known as Kodagu by the locals and every location you have included in your itinerary will be reachable through the central point which is also the connecting point of all places and that is Madikeri. So now that you got the essential information, let us jump on to the exciting places that you can explore to narrate your exceptional experiences of Coorg to your people. The 10 most alluring places in the Scotland of India- Coorg are:
10 km away from Madikeri, Abbey Falls or Abbi Falls is a fascinating yet relaxing location for you to visit. Abbey falls is a 70 feet high cliff that you will have to climb through the 200 steps that will take you through the coffee and spice plantations to the top from where you get the view of the entire plantations around the Abbi falls. The best time to visit the Falls is the months between July and October when both the falls and the plantations around are in their prime and provide a transfixing view that you most probably would have seen ever before.
Till waterfall is located inside a private property but is still visited by a bunch load of tourists because of the serene view, its beauty, and the short yet memorable trekking of 200 steps through the waterfalls. There are also many places near Abbey falls that you can include in your itinerary for the day like the Madikeri Fort, Omkareshwar Temple, and Brahmagiri Hills.
Also a place of pilgrimage, Talakaveri is another most loved tourist spot which is 9km from Bhagmandala and 44 km from Madikeri. The special feature about Talakaveri is that it is situated at an altitude of 1276m on the slopes of Brahmagiri hills and is the origin of the Cauvery River, considered very auspicious in Southern India. You can climb to the top through a flight of steps cut into the mountains while you surround yourself with amazing landscapes with green meadows and hills sideways.
Pilgrims flood the summit because of the auspicious shrines Agasthyeshwar temple and the Vinayaka temple especially during October because of Tula Sankramana, a festival to celebrate the descent of Goddess Cauvery appeared on earth. There is also a spring of water from where river Cauvery is considered to first emerge and then vanish underground. In a nutshell, a perfect place for you to include in your shortlist if you are a devotee and enjoy such a religious place with air filled with devotion.
This breathtaking piece of architecture was built by Dodda Vira Rajendra on the occasion of his victory over the mighty ruler Tipu Sultan. This palace is quite deceptive if you consider the looks of it. A very plain and simple structure on the outside without any outstanding features but as you enter the palace, it just blows away your mind with its exquisite beauty of the intricate carvings on woods, paintings, and such fine detailing that is hard to forget once witnesses through your own eyes. The pillars of the palace have many unique geometric patterns carved all over especially the snakes depicted in a pattern known as Nagmandala.
This palace was used as a refuge by the Haleri Kings who were later overthrown by the British Raj. The entire palace was built such that there was always a threat looming over the royal family, the palace has tunnels and two dark basements to hide the king in case of any danger. I would just say, a place worth visiting!
Raja seat is called so because it was the favorite place of the Kodagu Kings to spend their vacations. Its outlandish beauty is probably the reason for it being their favorite. The hilly area is surrounded by a mellow garden from where you can enjoy the yellow rays pouring in at the sunset. There are many artificial fountains around a semi-circular pavilion just adds to the beauty of the Kings’ favorite place. There is a toy train ride available for your kid to enjoy and prevent from distracting you while just taking in the beauty of the clouds and the rays piercing them and falling on the ground. This is a must-visit place if you ever land in Coorg for your vacation.
Mandapatti is around 20 km away from Coorg but is Madikeri’s most famous hilltop. But do you know what is it that Mandalpatti is most famous for? For the Neelakurinji flowers. Yes, we have these here too. For those who do not know about these flowers, the Neelakurinji is sweet and awfully beautiful lavender-colored flowers that bloom only once every 12 years but when they do, they cover the entire hilltop in bluish-purplish hue, much similar to the Lavender fields of Scotland. This piece of land situated at an altitude of 4050m is known as Mugilu-Pete or Mugilu-Peth which means Market of Cloud or Mist, that’s how enchanting this place is.
The trek to Mandalpatti is a treat to the eye and a dream for trekking enthusiasts itself. You can choose two ways- the first is the shortest trek to this place is from the Abbi falls junction but the second route is Makkanduru trekking route will take you slowly through the aromatic coffee plantations, numerous little waterfalls, and rivulets enjoying your drive on your way to the top.
Situated between Somwarpet and Madikeri, Kote Betta is the third highest peak of Coorg and also has some of the neelakurinji flowers on its hills. It is situated at an altitude of 5400km and its trek is about 7 to 8 km which will again take you through vivid coffee plantations. Kote Betta meaning Fort hill and is named so because the appearance of the hill is like a fort. This is a classic trek that every trekker loves- a combination of hilly terrain and the jungles along with some sophisticated plantations. There is also a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva on the top and the hill is supposed to be the one where the Pandava brothers spent a significant amount of their exile as per the locals.
Brahmagiri hill is one of the highest peaks in Coorg and is a classic trekker’s paradise along with a wildlife sanctuary spread across an area of 18 km on the hills. The peak is also adorned by the ancient temple of Vishnu known as Thirunelli temple which according to the mythology was built by Lord Brahma himself and the hills are also named after him. It provides a gorgeous landscape apart from opportunities for adventure activities like Bird gazing, trekking, camping, etc, and is a shutterbug’s dream. The best time to visit is during October to May when the entire landscape gets rejuvenated after the monsoon rains giving life to everything.
Honnamana Kere Lake
Honnamere mere is another natural marvel in Coorg and is the lake in the region too. This lake is surrounded by spellbinding mountains and a huge expanse of coffee plantations along the hills of Gavi Betta and Mori Betta. Interestingly, there are man-made caves present surrounding the lake. This lake is just nature’s exemplary beauty but also holds religious importance because of being named after goddess Honnamma. This lake sets a perfect backdrop for a family day-out like a picnic and what better activity to do with family than a picnic party on the lakeside surrounded by mountains giving you total feels of the valleys of Kashmir.
Another awe strikingly beautiful waterfall, Chelavara falls is formed by a tributary of Cauvery River flowing around the Virajpet-Talakaveri. This waterfall is also known as Embepare falls which means Tortoise falls because the gushing waters of the waterfall come crashing down on a stone shaped like a tortoise. There are many more amazing places around the waterfalls and it is not the only riveting vacay place. Other places that you can tour are Tadiandamol Campsite and park, Tadiyandamol hills, Nalknad Palace, Kakkabe Town market, Coorg Golf Parks, and Igguthappa temple.
Built in the last quarter of the 17th century and has passed on to various rulers of the time but later falling into the hands of the British. The Britishers renovate and made many changes in the architecture. The Britishers built an angelical church which is now converted into a museum showcasing the antiques of the land of Coorg. The fort also consists of a Ganapathi temple, a Mahatma Gandhi Public Library, and a district prison. The Madikeri fort is one of the most visited places partly also because of its accessibility because it is situated in the heart of Madikeri district from where people take transportation to go to different places to explore in Coorg.
So now that you know so much about it you would have also come to know that this part of the Western Ghats is an amazing place to spend many vacations in and you still won’t get bored of it because there is just so much to see and explore and get mesmerized by. You won’t ever run out of itineraries even if you run out of time and that is the best feature of any vacation because every place is a beauty in itself. Hope that you enjoy your time in Coorg to the fullest and it will be a delightful experience for you.