If you are looking for a hill station that has a bewitching effect on all your senses; Coorg is the place where you need to be. Originally known as ‘Kodaimalenadu’, Coorg (or Kodagu) is a magnificent hill resort in the state of Karnataka. Home to the martial clan ‘Kodavas’; Coorg highlights some of the most bountiful aspects of nature in its tiny realm. A land that is hemmed with rolling hills, misty valleys, vast acres of tea and coffee plantations, meandering waterfalls, piquant orange orchards and a variegated vegetation; the beauty of Coorg is undeniable.
Image: By Abhijitsathe (Own work) [CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
A place where one can witness the eternal embrace of beauty and serenity; Coorg remains a crowd puller throughout the year. You can gallivant through its winding streets and make a trip to an exotic village; visit a tea garden and sample a local tea concoction; or just angle beside a waterfall. Whatever you do, you can’t help but absolutely fall in love with the place. Apart from a landscape soaked with different hues of green and salubrious air filled with the mellifluous chirping of birds, Coorg also offers a plethora of tourist attractions.
Places to See in Coorg
Madikeri, the district headquarters of Coorg, harbors a lot of places that attract the tourists. Various seasonal waterfalls abound the place and large stretches of verdant plantations cover its valleys. A trip to Madikeri is a must, if you wish to experience the true essence of Coorg’s beauty.
This famous fort of Madikeri was built in the 19th century. A chapel, a temple, a prison and a museum are located within its premises. The museum also houses a lot of ancient relics like armors, paintings and spot arms. One can get a breathtaking view of the Madikeri town from this fort.
Built in 1860 by King Lingarajendra, this ancient temple is located at a distance of 1 km from Madikeri and is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Believed to be the oldest temple in Coorg, it houses a ‘shivalinga’ (consecrated stone) and is famous for its opulent architecture that perfectly blends the Islamic and Gothic styles.
A famous religious shrine of the place, Bhagamandala is located beside the shore of the Sangama River. Three rivers, viz. Cauvery, Sujyothi and Kannike, merge at this spot and form the famous ‘Triveni Sangama’. Built in the Kerala style of architecture, the temple sees a lot of religiously-inclined tourists.
Nagarhole National Park
This famous wildlife sanctuary was set up in 1955. Used as a hunting ground by the then Mysore rulers, the sanctuary now is home to a huge collection of flora and fauna. Tigers, bisons, elephants, peacocks and panthers are some of its many exotic wildlife. The place also acts as a resort and has lodging facilities.
Located 7 km from the town of Madikeri, this is a scenic waterfall located amidst a coffee-cardamom plantation. Water gushes from a height of 70 ft, and the fall attains its apogee of beauty during the month of November. With its verdure and freshness, the place is ideal for picnicking and bird-watching.
Considered as the birthplace of the river ‘Cauvery’, this major religious site is located at a distance of 44 km from Madikeri town. According to local beliefs, on the day of ‘Tula Sankaramana’; water of this spring gushes forth with an extra force. People from all over India visit Talacauvery, to take a holy dip in its water.
Coorg offers a wide range of accommodation choices to its tourists, in the form of hotels, resorts, bungalows and homestays. Both luxury and budget hotels are easily available; it being a famous holidaying destination. Most of its Hotels in Coorg are government-approved. Some luxury stays of the place are ‘Orange Country Resort’ and ‘Club Mahindra Resort’, which cater to business-class tourists and those looking for a deluxe accommodation. Bungalows (like ‘Spice Village’) also provide luxurious accommodation facilities for tourists visiting Coorg. Hotels like ‘Hill Town’ and ‘Rajdarshan’ are good options for tourists looking for moderately-priced hotels in Coorg, with all the necessary amenities.
How to Reach
The nearest airport is in Mysore, at a distance of 120 km. The second nearest is Mangalore (135 km), followed by the Bangalore airport (250 km).
The nearest railhead, at a distance of 55 km, is located in Mysore. It takes two and a half hours by road to reach Coorg from the railway station.
A well-maintained system of roadways connect Coorg to Mysore (120 km), Mangalore (135 km), Bangalore (250 Km) and other places nearby.