Karnataka tourism has never failed to awestruck us with its beautiful destinations which are maintained so impeccably, purely for the tourist's satisfaction and southern glory. We had already drenched ourselves back into the Jog falls of Shimoga which had left a good impact on our travel diaries. But this time we again travelled to Shimoga to experience something new and to share with you people.
Our journey was destined for two days and one night so we decided to mark all the places and divide them accordingly.
●Our first day÷ We had halted at a decent hotel only for resting purpose as our main aim was to explore places rather than spending most of the time relaxing.
Our breakfast was laid sharp at 8 when the stimulating aroma of idli sambar , wada, puttu caught our nose with refreshing flavoured tea. We had our own private vehicle so commuting was burdenless but if you're opting for local transport then auto rickshaws and cabs are always ready for your service.
After a 30mins drive from Shimoga we reached the Sakrebyle Elephant camp which is a ecotourist spot. The dense canopy of trees and small ponds with fresh air and gigantic elephants with baby elephants are delightful to eyes. We got to play with those domesticated elephants, fed them and also bathe them. After that a wonderful elephant ride was waiting for us which reminded me of "hallum dullam,hathi challam" poem of my school days.
After spending some time with those friendly giants, we trekked ourselves to the Tyavarekoppa lion and tiger sanctuary. Unfortunately, we couldn't spot any wild animal but atleast we could do some bird watching and photography there.
Our next destination was Mangadde island where the famous Mangadde bird sanctuary is located. It is said that more than 5000 species of birds are seen here among which Darters, Median Egrets, and Cormorants are seen in vogue. Trekking through this beautiful jungle and boating in the coracle boat rides to look closely at the birds just made our day!
After that we had a hearty lunch at a nearby restaurant which served us lip smacking traditional cuisine.
Then, on the banks of river Tunga is a magnificent Museum known as Shivappanaika Palace Museum which enchanted us by the rich cultural history, paintings, sculptures and temples. It's mesmerizing interiors and architecture bewitched us. We also spent some time at the beautiful lawn surrounding the Palace and then visited the kote anjanaya temple.
A tiring yet satisfying day was paving way for the exciting second day.
●Second day÷ We set out to Agumbe, a small hill station which is a two hours drive from Shimoga. Augumbe is considered to be the 2nd wettest region of India due to heavy rainfalls and innumerable waterfalls.
Though summers were on, we could experience the cool waters of kunchikall waterfalls and Onake abbi falls. Drenching and plunging into the pools of these waterfalls surrounded by lush green forest area and big rocks consumed our half day in a 100% positive way.
After the lunch, we were all set for some adventure at the Sita Nadi where the fury river was inviting us to raft along it's strong currents of crystal clear water. The river rafting was so amazing and thrilling that anyone could give up in the middle but we made it through! After all, it was worth the risk!!!
Then we all made our way to the famous Gopala Krishna temple which is a 14th century old temple and has 108 steps, each with a different name of Lord Krishna. After paying homage, we straightway took a turn to the beautiful sunset point to watch the panoramic view of the sky. Munching onto the hot snacks with cold winds swaying our hair, some giggles and loads of photographs in our camera, we hopped back into our car. I made a smiley on the wet window and waved Shimoga goodbye and thanked the roads for the beautiful journey and nostalgic filled memories.