Trekking

Avani Betta

Hike to Avani Betta

The vivid blue skies of Bangalore pushed me out of the cozy sanctity of my home towards this little known hillock in Avani. Just about 80 km away from the bustling city of Bangalore this site finds its name in the legendary tale of Ramayana. Yes, this hill, hidden far away from away from the casual tourists is said to be the location of the ancient ashram of sage Valmiki, who sheltered Sita during her exile, where she gave birth to Luv & Kush.

This is a two-part series I started writing it as one story, because they are so intimately intertwined, but the article got so big that it made more sense to break it up into two parts for ease of reading Avani is a tiny hamlet in the Mulbagal Taluk (group of villages) of Kolar district, just 80 km away from Bangalore The first part of my journal describes the history of Avani and the story behind the creation of the Ramalingeswara group of temples that lie at the base of Avani hill or Avani Betta as it is locally called After a thorough exploration of the 10th century Ramalingeswara temple,
Nachi Falls

Hike to Nachi Falls

I hike to the incredible cliff-diving Nachi Waterfall to witness its wild beauty. The Sanjūdō Pagoda in front of the falls creates one of the most beautiful scenes in Japan. The tall waterfall boasts the longest drop in Japan. One can drink the flowing spring water, supposed to have healing abilities, from the falls at the Shrine directly below.

Today I went back to Wakayama to explore Nachisan and capture the iconic view of Sanjudo Pagoda in front of the Nachi Falls or Nachi-no-taki as it is known locally After the exploits of my first outing on my own to Shirahama, I was much more confident today Shirahama was an amazing experience with the thrilling Sandanbeki Cliffs, the lovely Shirahama Beach and the most stunning sunset at Engetsu Nachi Falls ([那智の滝) in Nachikatsuura, Wakayama is one of the best-known waterfalls in Japan It is said to be the highest single drop waterfall in the country at 133 m The mountain is also popular for Kumano Nachi Taisha, Seiganto-ji Temple, Sanjudo
Uguisunotaki Falls

Hike to Uguisuno-taki Falls

Today I went on a hike to Uguisunotaki Falls, into the deep end of the Kasugayama Forest, surrounded by tall Pines, where even the Sun doesn’t dare to peep through.

I have been to Nara Park several times The ever popular Tôdai-ji temple and Kasuga-Taisha shrine are always crawling with inquisitive tourists, but today Mani & I wander beyond these cultural landscapes into the Kasugayama Primeval Forest The natural environment of Kasugayama is an integral yet invisible part of the shrines and temples in Nara Park The park is so large you could easily wander into the Primeval Forest, without even knowing it Kasugayama Primeval Forest is a primeval forest spread over 250 hectares, near the summit of Kasugayama It contains around 270 different kinds of trees Hunting and logging have been prohibited in the sacred forest since 841 CE As a
Wakakusayama

Hike to Mount Wakakusayama

I go on a hike to Mt. Wakakusayama. I lay on the soft green grass at the summit and promise myself to come up again at dusk, one day to catch Nara with its lights.

It was a lovely sunny day I packed my gear and headed towards Nara Park I didn’t have anything specific planned, just wanted to go over there and relax among the lovely deer herds Once I reached the Deer Park, I bought some senbei for the deer I was just wandering about when I noticed the alluring green meadows of Mt Wakakusa, just east of Todai-ji I find hiking to be one of the most relaxing and rewarding activities So I set off along the path up the beautiful hill The base of Wakakusayama - the young grass mountain Mt Wakakusayama is also known as Mikasayama or Mount Mikasa It’s
Mullayangiri Trek

Mullayanagiri Trek and Ridge Walk

In my search for peace in the wilderness, I head out on a trek to Mullayanagiri, the highest peak in Karnataka. With the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary only a few kilometers away, the area is rich in exotic birds and varied in wildlife.

In my search for peace in the wilderness, I was finally able to force some time out from my work schedule, to go on the trek to Mullayanagiri, the highest peak in Karnataka I had been planning this trek for some time In fact, I was all set for this trek in November 2014, but had to cancel it at the last-minute  Mullayanagiri is located in Chikmagalur, Karnataka, some 280 km away from Bangalore With the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary only 15 km away, the area is rich in vegetation and varied wildlife We started from Bangalore late in the night at around 11 pm The travel time to Mullayanagiri is around 4 hours At the base of Mullayanagiri, there is wildlife outpost It was early dawn and since the wild animals use the area as
Gokarna Beach Trek

Gokarna Beach Trek

This weekend I head out on a trek to the rocky cliffs along the coastline of Gokarna. The trek covers four of the most gorgeous beaches located to the south of Gokarna starting from the southern-most Paradise Beach and moving northwards towards Half Moon Beach, Om Beach, Kuddle Beach and finally ending at Gokarna Beach.

[su_progress_bar style=”thin” percent=”30″ text=”Difficulty Level – Easy” bar_color=”#ed97db” fill_color=”#cb0e6b” text_color=”#000000″] This weekend I head out on a trek on the rocky cliffs along the coastline of Gokarna Gokarna is located along the Arabian Sea at the ear-shaped confluence of two rivers, the Gangavali and Aghanashini, around 580 km from Bangalore Four of the most gorgeous beaches are located to the south of Gokarna Our trek route was to start from the southern-most Paradise Beach and hike our way northwards towards Half Moon Beach, Om Beach, Kuddle Beach and finally end at Gokarna Beach Gokarna means Cow’s ear There is an interesting piece of story behind how this place got this name Legend has it that after a vigorous penance by Ravana, Shiva
Kuntibetta Night Trek

Night Trek to Kunti Betta

Kunti Betta consists of two rocky but easy to climb hills that towers over a picturesque lake. It is said the Pandavas ended their exile of 14 years here in Pandavapura. Night Trek offers a unique experience from the hilltop with the Moon shining over the lake.

After the amazing experience of Savandurga Night Trek last weekend, I had to yield to this weekends Night Trek to Kunti Betta Legend has it that Kunti Betta consists of two rocky but easy to climb hills that towers over a picturesque lake The nearest town is Pandavapura, a panchayat town in Mandya district, located approximately 130 km from Bangalore It came into prominence during the Mahabharata period It is said the Pandavas ended their exile of 14 years here in Pandavapura It is also here that Bheema, one of the Pandava brothers slayed Bakasura, a demon who used to terrorize the local villagers The Hills derive their name from Kunti, the mother of the Pandavas The Journey The skies were much clear today My pick-up point
Savandurga Trek

Night Trek to Savandurga

Savandurga Night Trek was one of the most memorable treks I have been to. It is challenging, but also fulfilling and to add to it, the Hill is the largest monolith in all of Asia

Savandurga is an amazing place for a photo-op but Whoa! the fort of “death” and that too on my first trek!! History of Savandurga Located at a distance of 64 km west of Bangalore, Savandurga is reputed to be the highest monolith in Asia It comprises two looming granite hills, Karigudda, the Black Hill and Biligudda, the White Hill, both around 4000 feet tall Historically, the hills find a mention in the records of the Hoysala period in the 13th century In those times it was referred to as Savandi hills Later during the reign of Hyder Ali, this hill served as a fort prison from where it was said there was no escape

Photo walk at Devanahalli Fort

Devanahalli Fort is one of the rare forts in Karnataka to be built on flat ground. Because of this very structural weakness it has seen many rulers since the 1500’s. Today this heritage site lies in ruins from neglect and apathy of the government and in danger of being over-run by the local residents.

Today I visit he birthplace of Tipu Sultan for a photo-walk For all the sad things he did, he also did some good things A tale written in blood Devanahalli is a small town on the outskirts of Bangalore not more than 40 mins away on the NH7 Highway Devanahalli Fort is one of the rare forts in Karnataka to be built on flat ground Because of this very structural weakness it has seen many rulers since the 1500’s The fort was originally built in 1501 by Malla Byre Gowda, son of a refugee from Kanchipuram in

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