Edit Blog Post
Published: April 14th 2008
Coorg - or Kodagu as it is known by kannadigas is a popular destination for weekend retreat from Bangalore / Mysore / Mangalore.
It is different from other hill-stations in a way that it provides a lot of opportunities for home-stays.
Halli Mane Homestay: We also chose one such home-stay called Halli Mane (Halli = Village, Mane = Home). The home stay is located in Khushal Nagar (30 Km from Madikeri) and is a nice location in the middle of a farm. It would have been better to be in the middle of a dense jungle. The place might be difficult for people not going through their own vehicles. It is approx 2 Km from the town and the road is mud road. There are total of eight rooms in the building.
Good things- location, ambience, hospitality and it gives a feeling of an individual house of a village.
Not-so-good-thing: If you do not have your own vehicle - difficult to reach there. And for the ground floor rooms - the kitchen noise is perfectly audible early in the morning.
We reached Halli Mane in the morning around 8 - the breakfast was ready. We finished the morning routines and breakfast and started for the Dubare forrest.
It is an elephant training camp - located near Khushal Nagar. The approach is through river - means we have to take a ferry boat to reach the camp. If the river does not have much water then we can also cross it by jumping the stones (walking).
If you want to an elephant ride then only visit between 10am to 1pm. Otherwise try to visit early morning 8.30 or evening after 4.30pm. In the morning we can see the elephants getting fed and get to interact with them. And in the evening we might get to wash the elephants in the river. Or play with the calves.
List of restaurants/hotels in Khushal Nagar with contact numbers. We had lunch at Top-in-town. The food was ok - service was quick and the place was clean.
Our next stop was Nisarg Dhama. It is a huge park. Quite clean. Many monkeys. Vicinity to river where you can take bath - do water sports. Facility for elephant ride (somewhat less costly as compared to Dubare Forrest).
Elephant Ride @ Nisarg Dhama
Monkeys @ Nisargdhama
Monks @ Nisarg Dhama
Nyingmapa Monastery (Golden Temple):
We started from the Nisarg Dhama @ around 3.30. Our next stop was Nyingmapa Monastery. It is a very attractive looking monastery from outside and a place so peaceful from inside.
The main gate of the monastery
One of the temple
Golden Statue of the Lord Buddha
We ended our day here and returned back to the Halli Mane. Dinner was accompanied by a camp-fire and some Kannada songs. Dinner was not very good in general - the kannada cook must have gone out of the way to make some North Indian dish but could not succeed.
We started the day at 8am. The major attraction was the cow of the Halli Mane farm. Enthusiast from our team tried to milk the cow (at the risk of getting kicked in the face).
Milking the cow @ Halli Mane
A beautiful bug
After the breakfast - we started for Thalakaveri. It is some 75 Km from Khushal Nagar (46 Km from Madikeri). The sun was behind clouds and the air has a tinge of coolness we get when some adjacent area is getting heavy rains. Thalakaveri has surprisingly clean temple. Only the vish-kund is not much clean as everybody wants to wash their feet (and sins?) in it.
On the way back from Thalakaveri - the plan was to have dinner. We reached Hotel Mayura (KSTDC) at approx 2.30 and the place was a mess. The food was all over by now and all we could get was ghee-rice.
It was raining when we went in for lunch. But the shower had subsided by the time we started our journey towards abbey falls.
Abbey means water fall in Kannada. It is 5 Km from Madikeri town center and the road is quite bad. The fall itself is good but the area surrounding was overflowing with plastic/litter. There is no point cribbing when your own wife throws Tea-cups near a coffee plant
After a couple of group snaps near the hanging bridge at Abbey falls - we headed for the Raja’s Seat.
It is a place from where the Rajas (kings) used to watch the sun set. The view is admirably scenic. The added attraction (if you reach there by 5pm) is the musical fountain. Many would have seen musical fountains in Vrindavan Gardens of Mysore. But this one is very near to the main gate - means no need for a long walk to reach the fountain. They played four songs. Started with “Vande Mataram”, then one Kannada, then one Himesh Reshamiya and then one English.
07-Apr-2008 (Day-3): Today we want to leave for Bangalore. A couple of ladies from the Halli Mane staff helped us to get into traditional corgi dress
In traditional corgi sari
From left (ladies first): Ankita-Bhavik, Ritu-Sushil, Hetal-Achal, Hetal-Jaydeep, Jalpa-Prashant, Venu-Tuhin.
The group - minus the driver
On the way back to Bangalore - we took a detour and visited Somanathpur. It is one of the 13th century temple.
The archeological society of India (ASI) has maintained it well.
Next stop from Somanathpur was Shivasamudram.
The place is approachable from Bangalore by two routes. Mysore highway and Kanakpura road. Road is not well maintained if you approach from Kanakpura (April-2008).
We reached Shivasamudram quite in the evening around 6pm. The sun was setting and we tried to take a few quick snaps before the natural light was gone.
The water fall is good. And from the bara-chakki side you can even get into the water (at your own risk). From the other side (Gagan-chakki) all the falls are visible and overall it is a better scenic place. But the wire-fencing and the location is such that you can not get into water.
Finally reached back to Bangalore at around 11pm.
Tot: 0.057s; Tpl: 0.01s; cc: 12; qc: 24; dbt: 0.0278s; 1; m:domysql w:travelblog (10.17.0.13); sld: 1;
; mem: 1.1mb