Do you want to clear your head and lose your anxiety in the wilderness while also getting in some exercise? Do you want to take the road less traveled? Well then, trekking is the activity for you! Feeling adventurous and bold? I certainly hope so, because today we are going to take a trek through some of the best trekking places in Karnataka!
1. Kudremukh Trek
Imagine yourself in a place surrounded by beautiful flora and fauna. You see a peacock spreading its feathers and a deer running in the opposite direction. You look around to observe misty valleys, grasslands, streams, and rolling green hills. That is the experience you will receive trekking in Kudremukh. Located in Chikmagalur, Kudremukh should be any nature lover’s go-to destination for trekking in Karnataka.
2. Tadiandamol Trek
If you are up for a challenge, then the Tadiandamol Trek, the trail to the highest peak in Coorg is perfect for you. This breath-taking journey will include grasslands, shola forests, and waterfalls. It is one of the best trekking places in Karnataka, especially for beginners just starting, and is appreciated for its marvellous and well-maintained track.
3. Hampi Trek
Turn to the back of a fifty rupee note because our next destination is the UNESCO World Heritage Site: Hampi. There are various trekking routes in Hampi of which some of the popular ones are the Hemakuta Hill Trek, Matanga Hill Trek, and the Anjaneya Hill Trek. This trail is particularly an amazing option for anyone who wants to explore the heritage of this town that possesses a charming mystique.
4. Baba Budangiri Trek
Located in the mountains of Chikmagalur, it is also called the Dattagiri Hill Range, due to the shrine’s believed connection to Guru Dattatreya. This trail gets its charm from the beautiful kurinji flowers that can be found in the hills of the Nilgiris and the overall serenity of this place and can be a brilliant destination for experienced trekkers.
5. Kodachadri Trek
Situated in the Shimoga district of Karnataka, the Kodachari Trek remains one of the most popular trekking spots in Karnataka. The quaint trail of Kodachadri involving paddy fields in villages, forests, and grasslands, is what makes it a unique and memorable experience. If you’re lucky, you might even spot some rare species of animals such as the Malabar Langoor and Indian Rock Python.
6. Dandeli Trek
The serenity of Dandeli, combined with the rich flora and fauna of the place truly makes you feel at home in nature. Kavala Caves trek, Kulgi-Nagzari Valley trek, and Potoli-Shiroli trek are some of the various trails there. Apart from trekking, Dandeli offers various other adventures as well.
7. Mullayanagiri Trek
Mullayanagiri, the highest peak in Karnataka, poses quite a challenge for trekkers due to its steep nature and is also regarded by some as ‘Mini Himalayas’. The journey may be difficult but what makes it worth it is the view at the top where you take in the beauty of the Western Ghats.
8. Anthargagne Trek
Anthargagne (meaning ‘The Ganges of the Deep’) is another incredible place for especially religious trekkers who want to climb this hill, surrounded by volcanic rocks. Considering that there are no options for accommodation, people who want to explore this trail can go for a night trek after pitching a tent.
9. Kemmanagundi Trek
This trail, known for the stupendous beauty of the mountains, valleys, and pristine gardens that can be witnessed on the way, is particularly suitable for beginners. One of the major attractions of Kemmanagundi is the infamous view from the Z point, which is a photographer’s dream come true. The various waterfalls on the way such as Shanti Falls, Hebbe Falls, etc. are a must-see.
10. Nandi Hills Trek
An introductory course to trekking: Nandi Hills comes to mind. This trail is very popular among kids, mainly teenagers who deeply enjoy the approximately 4 to 5-hour trail offered here. The sense of peace achieved by walking around in the lush green gardens and over the boulders is ineffable. And the view is the cherry on top.
11. Yana Trek
Rare formations of black limestone rocks have resulted in the formation of the enchanting Yana Caves. The walk through the forest is filled with greenery and is quite refreshing. It is considered by many to be the representation of nature at its best. The Apsarakonda Waterfall located nearby is also a sight worth seeing.
12. Madhugiri Trek
The Madhugiri trek is for daring and courage. One of the most famous among treks in Karnataka is the second-largest monolith in Asia and attracts tourists from all over the country. The must-see for this trail is without a doubt the rock dome, at the top of which is a fort.
13. Shivagange Trek
To describe the experience of trekking at Shivagange, only one word is required: Magnificent. It is approximately 2500 feet high and is a great trail for both beginners and experienced trekkers due to the presence of railings. The place is filled with scenery that is an awe-inspiring and truly rich history.
14. Maravanthe Trek
A beach and village located in Karnataka near Udupi, it also possesses an astonishingly splendid trail. The beach trek from Bhatkal to Maravanthe is around 35 kilometers and is ideal for beginners due to the absence of hilly terrain and will provide you with an adrenaline rush.
15. Charmady Ghat Trek
If you wish to appreciate nature’s pristine glory, then look no further for Charmady Ghat is the place for you. During this incredible journey, you can take in various waterfalls as well as tea and coffee estates. It offers you a variety of hills to conquer, some apt for amateurs and some for professionals, as per the steepness of the same.
16. Kunti Betta Trek
If you want to get in a short trek before proceeding further in your exploration, then the Kunti Betta trail which takes about 1 hour and 45 minutes is the one for you. The view of the sunrise is breathtaking and an experience you don’t want to miss. You can also opt for a night trek and camp around the warmth of a bonfire.
17. Kudlu Falls Trek
The Kundlu Falls Trek is a true example of how the end makes the journey worthwhile. The waterfall is amazingly beautiful. What makes it unique is that you are allowed to get comparatively closer to the waterfall and there is a separate shallow pool that is rare for such tall waterfalls.
18. Agni Gudda Hill Trek
One of the most famous choices for trekking in Karnataka, it has a truly picturesque peak. Agni Gudda translates to Fiery Mountain due to the hill’s volcanic tendencies. A little-known fact about this hill is that it has been used as a shooting location for various Bollywood and South Indian films.
19. Jamalabad Fort Trek
The hill-top forts built by Tipu Sultan acts as the main attraction of the Jamalabad fort. The trail is moderately difficult but the steps you climb will be awarded by the view at the top from where you can witness the surrounding scenic beauty and ranges.
20. Brahmagiri Hills Trek
It is a journey of about 350 steps from Talakaveri and takes around 3 hours. If you feel weary, then you can recharge yourself at the picturesque streams on the way. If you’re fortunate, you just might spot an elephant or a sambar with your pair of binoculars (Something that is recommended you carry to enjoy the full experience of trekking)
I am inclined to pack a bag and buy a ticket to Karnataka myself to get lost in the scenic beauty of these places and take a sabbatical from everyday life by partaking in the exhilarating experience that is trekking.