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Breath-taking tourist places to see in Karnataka this 2020
04 Feb 2020

 

Karnataka is truly the land of awe-inspiring natural beauty and rich culture located in southern India bordered by Maharashtra and Goa in the north, Andhra Pradesh on the east, the Arabian Sea on the west and Tamil Nadu and Kerala on the south. With a plethora of attractions to offer ranging from historical monuments, waterfalls, wildlife to food and culture, Karnataka has secured the position of the fourth most popular tourist state in the country. It expands from Belgaum in the North to Bangalore in the South and offers something for every kind of traveller.

The mesmerising beauty of Karnataka draws in tourists all year round, but the best time to visit Karnataka is considered to be from October through March.

Here’s a list of the few tourist places in Karnataka that should be on your travel list for this 2020.

Bangalore

 

vidhan-soudha

 

Situated on the Deccan Plateau in southern India, Bangalore is the capital city of Karnataka. Currently known as Bengaluru, people of various ethnicities reside here making it a city with a diverse blend of traditions, festivities and modernity. Owing to its recent upsurge in its café culture and pubs, Bengaluru attracts a huge crowd from across the country as well as abroad. Being the hub of IT development in India, Bengaluru is often referred to as the ‘Silicon Valley of India’.

There are several waterfalls, wildlife sanctuaries and rivers around Bengaluru just waiting to be explored. The city also has many lush gardens like the Cubbon Park, Fountain Park, Bugle Rock Park and Lumbini Garden. If you are looking for trekking or hiking at Bengaluru, Ramanagara, Nandi Hills, Narayanagiri and Savandurga are the places to be. You can also indulge in camping or fishing activities there for a rejuvenating experience. Apart from that, you can also check out Hard Rock Café, an elite pub that is quite famous for the live music performances by renowned brands.

The best places to visit in Bengaluru are the Lal Bagh Botanical Garden, Brigade Road, Bangalore Palace, Bannerghatta National Park, Wonderla, Skandagiri, Snow City, Innovative Film City, etc.

Best time to visit Bangalore

Bengaluru has a pleasant temperature throughout the year. Monsoons start by June and last till September, and the rest of the seasons are dry with unpredictable showers at times. The best time to visit Bengaluru is from November to March.

Getting there

It is convenient to reach Bengaluru by air at the Kempegowda International Airport, which is located at a distance of 40 km from the city. Bengaluru is well connected to many cities of India via railways and national highways.

Hampi

 

Hampi is an ancient city whose ruins can be found on the banks of Tungabhadra river in Karnataka. Surrounded by many ancient monuments, temples, bastions, bustling street markets, treasury buildings and the remains of the Vijayanagar Empire, Hampi is a delight for architecture and history enthusiasts and off beat travellers.

The city used to be the capital of the Vijayanagar empire around 1500 AD. Some accounts also indicate that Hampi was the second largest and populous city in the world at the time. In 1986, it was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site and with several efforts, the glory of the city has been well-preserved. Some of the major attractions at Hampi are the Virupaksha Temple of the patron deity of Vijayanagar Empire, the vibrant Hampi bazaar, the Virupappur Gaddi, the carvings at Vittala Temple Complex, the sacred waters of Pushkarani near the Krishna Temple, etc. Hence, Hampi should be on your list of the must visit places in Karnataka.

Best time to visit Hampi

Hampi can be best explored during the start of the winter season. The months of October and November offer pleasant days to tour around the ruins on foot or bicycle. This is also the time when the Hampi Utsav and the annual chariot festival are organised.

Getting there

As there’s no airport at Hampi, you can board the flight to Belgaum, the closest operational airport from the ancient city. Besides, Hampi is well-connected to Bangalore by road.

Mangalore

 

Mangalore-Harbour-entrance

 

The coastal town of Mangalore lies about 250 km west of Bangalore and is one of the most popular tourist attractions in South India. The beaches, temples, islands, sunrise and sunset points all make it a place worth exploring. In fact, you can plan to tour through the entire western coastline by making Mangalore the base. When you are at Mangalore, get ready to savour the scrumptious seafood and authentic Canara dishes of the place.

Mangalore has a tropical climate. However, the mornings are not too hot to tour around, and the evenings are just perfect to relax at the beach and watch the sunset. Some of the best places that you can plan to visit in Mangalore are the Kudroli Gokarnath Temple, Panambur Beach, Ullal Beach, Mangalore Beach, Bejai Museum, Sultan Battery, Mangaladevi Temple, Someshwara Beach, Kateel Shri Durgaparameshwari Temple and many more.

Best time to visit Mangalore

It’s best to visit Mangalore in winter during the months of December to January. Compared to other times of the year, Mangalore has low average temperatures and humidity during this time. Remember to have water bottles, sunglasses, sun protection lotion and light clothes while you are walking down the streets or hitting the beach.

Getting there

Mangalore is a major port city in Karnataka and has its own airport, which is situated 15 km from the city centre. So, the fastest way to reach Mangalore is by taking a flight.

Mangalore is also well-connected to all major cities and towns of India by many super-fast trains. You can take a train to Mangalore and then hire a bus or taxi to reach the main city. If you are travelling to Mangalore from parts of Karnataka, you have the options of many state and private buses.

Mysore

 

Mysore-Palace

 

Mysore was the name by which the whole state of Karnataka was once famous for. It was formerly known as the capital of the ‘Kingdom of Mysore’ and is the birthplace of many ambitious kings. Mysore is revered throughout the world for its intricate and vibrant architecture and the flamboyant imperial heritage. The city’s reputation for its superior quality of incense, silk and sandalwood attracts visitors from all over the world and is counted among the best places to visit in Karnataka. It is also considered as the best place to practice Ashtanga Yoga.

Apart from that, the Chamundeshwari Temple on the highest peak of the Chamundi Hills, the verdant forests roads leading to Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens, the architecture of St. Philomena’s Church, the vivid paintings at Jaganmohan Palace are some prime attractions of Mysore. The city of palaces has many museums worth visiting as well, such as the Rail Museum, the Folklore Museum, the Regional Natural History Museum and the Melody World.

Best time to visit Mysore

The best time to visit Mysore is from October to February. The weather is pleasant and you can also witness the famous Dussehra Festival celebrated in the winter season.

Getting there

The connectivity to Mysore from many cities in India by road is quite good. Also, many deluxe, semi-deluxe and ordinary buses run to Mysore from Bangalore. The Mysore Junction is a prominent railway station of the South Western Railway in India. You can find many trains originating from various parts of the country and halting here.

Gokarna

 

Gokarna

 

The city of Gokarna is situated in the Uttara Kannada district of Karnataka. The name Gokarna translates into ‘Cow’s ear’ and is believed to be the place where Lord Shiva emerged in the form of a cow from the incarnation of Mother Earth. Scattered with temples all over the place, Gokarna is home to some of the oldest temples in Karnataka as well, such as the Mahabaleshwar temple. Gokarna draws in the attention of many travellers and foreigners with its beaches, waterfalls, the rustic towns and pilgrimage sites. The must visit beaches of the place are the Om Beach, the Half Moon Beach and the Paradise Beach. Tourists looking to try out activities like cycling and trekking should visit Yana, a small town with unusual rock formations situated in the vicinity of Gokarna.

Best time to visit Gokarna

Post-monsoon from September to December is the best time to visit Gokarna.

Getting there

The closest airport to Gokarna is the Dabolim airport of Goa, which is about 140 km away.

Ankola is the nearest railway station situated about 20 km from Gokarna. If you are planning to take the road, you can board a bus from Bengaluru, Mangalore, Hubli and other cities of Karnataka.

Coorg

 

Coorg

 

Commonly referred to as the ‘Scotland of India’, Coorg is the land of scenic hills, misty streams and the penetrating aroma of coffee. Coorg offers its travellers a luring and unique fusion of adventure, nature, history and delicious cuisines and is, therefore, a great addition to Karnataka tour packages. Apart from its scintillating beauty, the hill station is also famous for its rich culture and a local clan called the Kodavas, known for their hospitality and specialisation in martial arts. When in Coorg, take a look into their culture at the Madikeri Fort, be a part of their popular festivals of Keil Poldu, Cauvery Shankaramana, Huttari, trek to the Abbey falls and savour the handmade truffles. With entrancing mountains, cascading waterfalls, and a variety of flora and fauna, Coorg is indeed the perfect haven for tourists who are looking to escape the monotonous life of the noisy cities. Other places worth visiting in Coorg are the Iruppu Falls, Raja’s Seat, Tadiandamol Peak, Barapole River, Dubare Elephant Camp, Mallalli Falls, Mandalpatti, Nagarhole National Park, Namdroling Monastery, etc. Also, don’t forget to explore the dainty towns of Gonikoppal, Kushalnagar, Somwarpet, Pollibetta and Virajpet.

Best time to visit Coorg

Coorg travel can be best enjoyed during the months of October to March. Generally, you can visit Coorg at any time of the year. Tourists flock in during the monsoon months from June to September to witness the beauty of the hills enhanced by the rains.

Getting there

Coorg doesn’t have its own airport. But you can reach the Mangalore or Bangalore Airport and then hire a bus or taxi to Coorg.

Sakleshpur

 

Sakleshpur

 

Sakleshpur is a small hill town situated in the heights of the Western Ghats of India surrounded by a number of tea, coffee and spice plantations. Along with the unparalleled natural beauty, the town also has many interesting man made structures, such as the ancient Manjarabad Fort constructed in the form of a star and the 600-year-old Sakleshwara temple lying on the banks of river Hemavathi. Adding to the beauty of Sakleshpur is the Bisle View Point from where one can get a panoramic view of the hills and forests and see as far away as the Pushpagiri, Dodda Betta and Kumara Parvatha Hills.

Sakleshpur is among the few places ideal for a one-day trip in Karnataka tour plan. However, if you plan to stay there longer, you can also visit other prime attractions including Agni Gudda Hill, Jenukal Gudda, Hadlu waterfall, Manjehalli Waterfalls, Pandavar Gudda, Temple of Halebid and Belur, Kukke Subramanya Temple and many more.

Best time to visit Sakleshpur

Sakleshpur can be visited at any time of the year. Being a hill station, the weather stays at a pleasant 22-23 degree Celsius all year round.

Getting there

There are many buses and trains that connect Sakleshpur to most of the cities of Karnataka.

Shimoga

 

Shimoga

 

Shimoga is a beautiful city situated along the banks of the Tunga river encompassed by verdant landscapes, palm trees and serene waterfalls. The city has a rich history of culture, religion, fine arts and traditions. The major venues of the city for cultural activities are “Kuvempu Rangamandira”, “Karnataka Sangha” and “Suvarna Samskruthi Bhavana”.

Shimoga literally means the “Face of Shiva”. The city gets its name from the Keladi rulers who believed that Lord Shiva drank the water of Tunga river.

Best time to visit Shimoga

The best time to visit Shimoga is from October to March.

Getting there

NH-206 connects Shimoga to Bangalore. Several buses run through the route from Bangalore and other parts of the State.

Murudeshwara

 

Murudeshwara

 

The holy city of Murudeshwara is situated on the Arabian Sea coast and is dedicated to Lord Shiva. The city has the second tallest sculpture of Lord Shiva in the world. The mesmerising sunsets on the Murudeshwar Beach and Aligadda Beach are a delight to watch. Tourists can also enjoy water sports and many adventure activities along the shores of the Arabian Sea. The Murudeshwar Beach also offers scuba-diving options for its tourists that is sure to leave them with enchanting memories

Best time to visit Murudeshwar

The best time to visit Murudeshwar is between October and May. The Mahashivaratri festival held here during February and March can be a spiritually rewarding experience for visitors.

Getting there

Murudeshwar can be conveniently reached by bus, train and air. Mangalore airport is just 133 km away from the city and several buses and trains are available from cities like Kochi, Mumbai and Bangalore.

Bandipur

 

Bandipur

 

Bandipur is a National Reserve in the state of Karnataka which is home to a wide variety of wild animals and birds. Lying a few kilometres away from Bangalore, the Bandipur National Reserve is among the most popular tourist places in Karnataka. While travelling through this reserve, one can spot grazing elephants between the lush green foliage as well as other endangered species of flora and fauna. Stretching across 874 sq. km, it is considered to be one of the finest tiger reserves in India. The reserve also has a treatment centre to take care of the health and breeding problems of the animals. Moyar, Nugu and Kabini rivers are some sources of natural water flowing through the place.

Bandipur National Reserve offers wildlife safaris and bird watching tours to its tourists. As it is situated at the foothills of the Nilgiris, many adventure activities like trekking, mountaineering and camping can also be enjoyed. Some of the best places to visit in and around Bandipur are the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Masinagudi and Gopalaswamy Betta.

Best time to visit Bandipur

You can visit the Bandipur National Reserve anytime; just skip the monsoon season.

Getting there

The nearest airport is the Coimbatore airport located 84 km from the reserve. The Bangalore airport is 255 km away, but buses and taxis can be easily found from here. Bandipur is connected with several cities and states through railways. The nearest railway station to the place is in Mysore, which is 80 km away.

Kabini

 

Kabini

 

Kabini is a gem of South India. Although it’s a small place, tourists flock here in large numbers due to its mountains and valleys, wilderness, coffee plantations, fishing activities, etc. Kabini is a bewitching location that one must visit at least once in their lifetime. Whether you are a nature enthusiast, adventure seeker or someone who’s just travelling for leisure, Kabini offers the perfect weather, camping options and a host of other activities to fulfil your every travel need.

The Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary is the major attraction of the place. Once used as a hunting area by the Britishers, the sanctuary has several species of exotic fauna, flora and picturesque waterfalls. While touring at Kabini, take the jungle safari and enjoy elephant back rides. Visit the Kabini Dam and head out for a boat ride on the beautiful Kabini River. Kabini has many small handicraft shops where you can stop by and buy souvenirs for your loved ones.

Best time to visit Kabini

Kabini is an all-year-round getaway. If you are looking for wildlife visits, summers are great and monsoons are ideal to witness the lush greenery of the sanctuary.

Getting there

The Coimbatore airport is 127 km away from Kabini while the Bangalore airport is 200 km from there. You can then travel by road to visit Kabini.

Nagarhole

 

Nagarhole

 

Spread over the districts of Mysore and Kodagu, Nagarhole is abundant with waterfalls, forest stretches and temples. It is home to many species of wild animals like the elephant, wild bison, jungle cat, sloth bears, black-naped hare, four-horned antelope, pangolin, wild boar and many more. The forests of Nagarhole are inhabited by Jenu Kurubas, a Dravidian tribe from the Nilgiris.

The Nagarhole National Park forms a significant part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve and is spread over an area of 643 sq. km. Besides, you can also check out nearby places like the Iruppu Falls originating from the Lakshmana Tirtha River, Rameshwara temple and the small old town of Kutta.

Best time to visit Nagarhole

The weather throughout the year at Nagarhole is amazing, but it is better to avoid any kind of excursion during the monsoons.

Getting there

Mysore is the nearest railway station to Nagarhole. You can then take a bus or cab to reach the place.

Chikmagalur

 

Chikmagalur

 

Chikmagalur also goes by the name of the ‘Coffee Land of Karnataka’. The name literally translates as ' The Young Daughter’s Town’ as it was offered as a dowry to the younger daughter of Rukmangada, the legendary Chief of Sakrepatna. Chikmagalur is a haven for trekkers, thrill-seekers, explorers and nature enthusiasts because of the lush green forests set against the resplendent Mullayangiri ranges. You can find a lot of temples in the town, such as the Sharadamba Temple, Vidyashankara Temple, Amruteshwar Temple and Kodanda Ramaswamy Temple. As the town lies at an elevation of 3400 feet and is covered with sprawling tea and coffee plantations, tourists come here to experience the unique charm of strolling through the plantations. Also, don’t miss out on some of the most serene waterfalls of Karnataka like the Jhari Waterfalls, Shankar Falls, Hanuman Gundi Waterfalls and Kadambi Falls.

Best time to visit Chikmagalur

Chikmagalur has a cool and pleasant climate all-round the year and can be visited at any time. However, September to March is considered to be the best time to visit.

Getting there

You can hire a taxi to Chikmagalur from Mangalore Airport which is 113 km away. Many buses run to the place from cities like Bangalore, Mangalore, Hubli, Hassan, etc.

Winding up

Karnataka is not just a state, it’s a melting pot of unique culture, experiences and landscapes. It is blessed with majestic architecture, mega cities, exciting festivals, hangout zones, beaches and crowning destinations. Now that 2020 is already here and you want to shortlist a few places to visit this year, Karnataka must be on the list. Karnataka has several tourist destinations, some of which are popular all over the world and some are off the beaten path. So explore Karnataka this year and take a deep dive into the land of many worlds!

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