Long Drive From Bangalore to Mysore in Our #AllNewCreta

Yesterday, we went on a long drive from Bangalore to Mysore in our #AllNewCreta, bought in June 2020.

Long Drive From Bangalore to Mysore

We wanted to take our new Creta on a long drive since 2 months.

Since its a new car and that too an SUV, we were more than cautious all these days. All we did was to take our ‘Milo’ – that is the name our car :), on a short one day road trips in highways.

We did go once in Hassan road, and couple of times in Mysore road and several times to Kanakapura road to our regular cafe coffee day.

Well, its time we took the beast for a long drive from Bangalore to Mysore.

Why We Chose Mysore for Our First Long Drive

The main reason being, we are very much familiar with just 2 roads / highways starting from Bangalore.

One is Hosur road, leading to Chennai and Salem, where we have been on multiple bike trips and road trips to Tiruvannamalai, Vellore, Kanchipuram, Yercaud, Kumbakonam, Trichy, Tirunelveli, Madurai, etc.,

And Second, Mysore highways, leading to Mysore, further to places like Coorg, Wayanad, Bandhipur, Ooty, Chikmagalur, Mangalore etc.,

Due to pandemic – interstate highways lock-down, we were left with just one familiar road, that is Mysore highways.

Very soon we will be exploring many other roads such as Kunigal Highways and Hyderabad highways. We have covered Nandhi hills and Lepakshi in one day bike trip in Hyderabad highways, yet to explore further once this pandemic is over.

Our recent Hassan road trip in our #AllNewCreta

Many Other Good Reasons for Choosing Mysore Highways:

  • Well Paved Roads – A very popular highways (NH 275), now under construction for 6 ways road is a treat for anyone looking for long drive from Bangalore to Mysore, or Coorg or Wayanad.
  • Numerous Restaurant Choices – Throughout the highways, you have numerous choices of restaurants and coffee shops. Our new favorite is Drive thru McDonalds in Channapatna, where you get hot meals at all times. And the best part? It is a drive through. No time waste in dine – in.
  • Toll Fare of Just 65/- rupees – We all need a weekend getaway that doesn’t burn our pockets, isn’t it?. Trust me, Mysore highways doesn’t cost you much like Salem and Kunigal highways where you would be easily spending minimum of 250 rupees for a one way drive. Whereas, here, for a long drive from Bangalore to Mysore, you would be spending just 65 rupees. And if you choose Kanakapura road (NH 948) for the return journey, you would be spending only half of that money. Very gooood.

Best Drive in Restaurant in Kunigal highways

From our recent short raod trip from Bangalore, the best drive -in restaurant in Kunkgal Highways is Swathi Delicacy. Here is google map link – https://goo.gl/maps/TLXDeUxjxEFF3M678.

Taste their coffee alteast, its the best :).

Travel Time from Bangalore to Mysore by Road

Bangalore to Mysore distance is 150 kms from each other. The travel time from Bangalore to Mysore by road, was just 3 hrs. Fair good time with just pit stop of 10 mins (that too at McD’s drive thru) in a moderate traffic.

Ideally it would take about 4 hrs of drive for a skillful driver in an ususal weekend traffic. Whereas, it would take just 3 hrs of drive for a skillful driver in a weekday traffic. The toughest one is from Nice road until Ramanagara, after that it is usually a smooth drive.

We started by 8 am on a Sunday morning, after having a cup of black coffee at home.

(This is how to make best coffee at home, my all time favorite drink).

McDonald’s Drive thru, Channapatna, Long drive from Bangalore

By the time we reached “the frosting” cafe, it was 11am. Strectched legs, quenched thirst, ate pizza, clicked pics and chilled out for some time. After all the chillax, roamed the city until 2.30pm.

Entrance view at the frosting cafe, Mysore

Meantime had coffee at Ashirvaad grand pure veg situated across Grand Mercure hotel.

If you are wondering, we came to know this restaurant when we stayed in ‘Grand Mercure‘, just a week before outburst of Covid-19. While we stayed there, we came to this veg restaurant for the evening meal. We liked this veg restaurant in Mysore since then. And their best mysuru coffee too.

Instead of “frosting cafe”, last time we went to “The Old House” cafe. Love both their ambiance and food.

In fact we wanted to go to our all time favorite Green hotel with Malgudi cafe. It is one of the best cafe in Mysore. Unfortunately it was temporarily closed for the pandemic. Otherwise we would never miss their coffee and dessert for anything in the world.

best cafe in mysuru
The green hotel, Malgudi cafe in Mysuru

Around 2.30, we had lunch at yet another famous restaurant in Mysore for Biryani, called Hanumanthu Mess. It is rated one of the best non veg restaurant in Mysuru. And it is true. A small mess serving delicious non veg and biryani could be your favorite too.

We then leisurely started our Milo, to return back to Bangalore.

Returning Back – Long Drive Via Malavalli / Kanakapura Road

It is our thing, we always choose Malavalli – Kanakapura road (NH 948) for the return journey.

Ideally it is a parallel highways to Mysore highways, with less fancy road and far less traffic.

Not only that, we love that road for the greenery and agri land.

We were on this route couple of times when went on bike trip to Shivanasamudra falls, T Narasipura, Talakadu Tala Kaveri river and Somanathapura (Hoysala architecture) and Srirangapatna.

With our favorite music playing at the back, the return journey took us 4 hrs of time. Because, we stopped at many places to click pics, the most notable one was the thriving Kaveri river after monsoon.

We never had any interest to go sightseeing in Mysore. If you are travelling with kids, and planning to go sightseeing Mysore palace, zoo and botanical garden – then you need to be arriving Mysore at 10am. So that you would have sufficient time to look around places in Mysore in one day.

But, we always love to hangout in cafe’s instead of sightseeing in Mysore.

This time too, in our long drive from Bangalore to Mysore in our #AllNewCreta, we did nothing but chill out in cafes.

Glad we took our Milo for a long drive.

Tirukoilur Temple: Famous For – Ulagalantha Perumal Temple and Veeratteswarar Sivan Temple

About Tirukoilur TempleTirukoilur is famous for 2 Hindu Temples. They are Lord Vishnu temple named Ulagalantha Perumal and Lord Shiva Temple named Veeratteswarar.

Tirukoilur is very small town with good road and bus facilities for travel with decent restaurant options. Bangalore to Tirukoilur distance is 237 Kms (Tiruvannamalai to Tirukoilur is 37 Kms), whereas Chennai to Tirukoilur distance is 205 kms.

From our frequent trip to Tirukoilur temple from the year 2015, we have enough information to share to the readers. 

Hope this guide is useful to the the readers looking for Tirukoilur temple darshan timings, entry ticket, specialty about the temple, best place to eat etc.,

Tirukoilur Temple: Specialty and Darshan Timing

The famous Lord Vishnu Tirukoilur temple is called Ulagalantha Perumal Temple, also called as Thiruvikrama Perumal Temple.

The Specialty of  Ulagalantha Perumal Temple Tirukoyilur

  • One of the 108 Divya Desams
  • Thiruvikrama Perumal Holds Chakkaram in the right hand instead of the usual left and conch (sangu) in the left hand instead of the usual right hand.
  • This is temple is one of the “Pancha Krishna Kshetram”. You could see Lord Krishna shrine on your right as soon as you enter the temple. It is also said that we pray to Lord Krishna first before we enter the main sanctum.
  • The extreme divine beauty of Lord Vishnu with one his left leg on the ground and right leg on the sky. Inside the sanctum you could see Ambal kneeled at his feet on his right side. There is another Ulagalantha Perumal Temple in Kancheepuram, but this idol’s beauty is beyond comparison.

Facts You Need to Know about Ulagalantha Perumal Temple Timings, Ticket fare and Darshan

After so many times of visiting Perumal temple, we know clearly what time we needed to be there for immediate Darshan.

  • Be wise to visit the temple only at the “Darshan timings”:  The temple name board says temple opening timing is from 6.30 am to 12 noon and 4.00 pm to 8.30pm. Notice that it is the temple open time not the darshan timing.
  • We have not been to this temple as early as 6.30 am. But usually we enter temple by 11.45am, so we are first to darshan Lord Perumal soon after “uchi kala pooja” at 12 noon. Soon after this darshan, the temple closes.
  • And in the evening, if you reach the temple by 4.30, you are allowed to enter the temple but not the point beyond Kodi Kambam. There will be some guy sitting at this point restricting the entry of devotees until the evening pooja is complete.
  • Then devotees are allowed for evening darshan around 6.30 pm. So if you are early then you will be waiting until the pooja is complete.
  • Since this is a famous temple and Just an hr away from Aathi Annamalaiyar Temple – it is always crowded on all auspicious days. It is best to take 10 rupees special darshan ticket (more on auspicious days) when crowded.
  • You need to allocate 1 hr to 2 hrs for visiting this temple on crowded auspicious days. Otherwise 30 min sufficient on normal days like Sundays.
  • There is a point where the general que and the ticket que meets just before the main sanctum. This is where you can find “urchavar” idol on the right hand side – where you can do “archanai” (pooja ). Check in ticket counter for archanai tickets beforehand.
  • From this point devotees are allowed in batch of 10 -15 people inside main sanctum for Ulagalantha Perumal darisanam. You then exit the temple and head to Ambal Sanniti. Some people first pray to Ambal before visiting the main idol (not sure of the actual procedure). There are no special tickets to Ambal sanniti, you will be waiting in the general que however crowded it is.
  • Other deities in this temple are always remain locked (but sure can see them) except during brief pooja timings. Like Sri Lakshmi Varagan, Sri Lakshmi Narasiman, Sri Lakshmi Narayan, Sri Ramar sannithi etc., 
  • Lord Hanuman shrine is open on most of the peak timings.
  • You can make a donation or contribution to the temple welfare at the counter near the entrance.
  • There is good parking facility for 2-wheeler near both the gopurams of the Tirukoilur temple. But since there are lots of small shops, flower market and bus stand in the vicinity it is quite difficult for the 4 wheeler parking.

Other Tourist Places to Visit in and Around Tirukoilur Temples

  • In Tirukoilur: Veeratteswarar temple and Athulyanatheswarar Temple
  • Then Pennai River Bridge / Ponnaiyar river
  • Thiru Annamalaiyar temple, Tiruvannamalai town – from tirukoilur distance of 35kms
  • Aadi Thiruvarangam Temple – located 10 kms away from Tirukoilur on the way towards Tiruvannamalai town.
  • Villupuram
  • Pondicherry
  • Chennai

Above are the list of tourist spot near Tirukoilur, both short and long distances. Feel free to use google maps as a guide.

How We Reach Tirukoilur From Bangalore

Tirukoilur temples are well connected by roads from Bangalore, Chennai, Pondicherry, Krishnagiri etc.,

We take Krishnagiri – Chengam route to reach Tiruvannamalai from Bangalore.

Road trip: Bangalore To Tiruvannamalai

We start our bike trip from Bangalore on any Saturday morning around 7 to 8am. Stop to eat breakfast in Shoolagiri Krishna Inn right next to McDonald’s, the best restaurant in Bangalore -Salem highways.

We always stop at the same restaurant in all our bike trips, because we love the quality of food here. Also there is a McDonald’s and CCD for good morning coffee and neat toilet facilities.

Then we ride bike leisurely to Tiruvannamalai, reach around late noon after having lunch at Apoorva’s 50kms before Tiruvannamalai town.

Check in at the hotel, freshen up, ride to Annamalaiyar temple around 5pm for Darshan, then return back room around 8pm. Sometimes if we were not too tired we would stay back for the “Thiru oonjal sevai” darshan, just before the temple closes.

Road Trip: Tiruvannamalai to Tirukoilur

Following day, after long good night’s sleep we head to Tirukoilur temple, taking Tiruvannamalai to Pondicherry road. 

We love to see the blossoms in the agri field and riding bike among the countryside is our all time favorite.

If we are on a time constraint, we skip visiting Adi thiruvarangam and Veeratteswarar temples. We head straight to noon darshan in Tirukoilur Perumal temple, followed by eating good quality South Indian meals at Hotel Aarya’s for just 60 rupees (located just opposite to the bus stand where all the buses exit). 

You can also find some NV eateries – we never stepped there, our all time favourite is Veg restaurant Aarya’s. Must try “chukku kaapi” here. All kinds of South Indian breakfast items, lunch meals, chapati and parotta and in the evening chinese foods available here. So no worries fellas.

Next to Hotel Arya’s you can find medical shop and ATMs – just in case.

We love so much coming to Tirukoilur for Perumal temple, so we never missed coming here even on our 11-days long bike trip in the year 2017 and 2018.

This Is Where We Stay Usually

We usually stay in Sparsa Resort or Hotel Himalaya or Shree Sai residency in Tiruvannamalai. Eventhough little expensive on special days, I would rate Sparsa 5/5 for the room, food and ambiance. Shree sai is worth for the price with the inhouse Veg restaurant. Food and service is good here. We prefer Hotel Himalaya only when we run out of options. 

There used to be a french style bakery in Tiruvannamalai for good quality baked goods and for coffee.

Our bad that they are closed since 2019. 🙁

We came to know about this bakery when we stayed once (just once, we will never ever go back here) in Bose compound. Since then we were frequent visitors to this bakery in all our Bangalore to Tiruvannamalai bike trips.

Also there is little shopping area near and around Tiruvannamalai temple for clothes, jewels etc., And plenty of restaurants for veg, nonveg food and snacks choices.

Here sharing some pics from our trip Bangalore – Tiruvannamalai – Tirukoilur trip.

Tirukoilur Perumal Temple
Tirukoilur Perumal Temple
Ulagalantha Perumal Temple Tirukoyilur Darshan timings
Tirukoilur Perumal Temple Darshan Timing
Bike trip from Tiruvannamalai To Bangalore
Tiruvannamalai Temple Darshan
Tirukoilur temple Pondycherry road
Bike trip from Bangalore to Pondycherry road, Tirukoilur
Scenaries in Pondycherry road
Bike trip from Bangalore to Puducherry road, Tirukoilur
Bakers street french bakery in Tiruvannamalai
French Bakery In Tiruvannamalai – Our Bike From Bangalore to Tiruvannamalai Photography
French Bakery in Tiruvannmalai
Bakers Street French Bakery In Tiruvannamalai – Our Bike From Bangalore to Tiruvannamalai
Bakers Street French Bakery In Tiruvannamalai - Our Bike From Bangalore to Tiruvannamalai
Our Favourite Shop for Coffee – Cappacino, Espresso and Croissant in French Bakery Tiruvannamalai

Note

Just in case if you are wondering how we travel in bike such far distance with the luggages, here is the pic. This is how we pack our stuffs in the saddlebags to ride carefree. We also have a fuel tank bag for keeping mobile phone chargers, power banks, hand sanitizer, coolers, DSLR and scarfs to protect from pollution and dust.

Bike trip from Bangalore to Tiruvannamalai and Tirukoilur
Travel Duo Bike with Saddle bags and Tank Bag

We love visiting to Ulagalantha Perumal Temple whenever we go on road trip to Tiruvannamalai. Feel free to comment your experience in the comment box below.

Update September 2020

Now we bought #AllNewCreta in 2020, here is where we went our first long drive.

FAQs

How to reach Tirukoilur From Chennai

If you are planning to come from Chennai to Tirukoilur, you can either travel by road or bus or train. There are frequent buses from Chennai, Katpadi, Vilupuram and Puducherry. If you are taking train train from Chennai, then take any train from Chennai to Katpadi, then take Puducherry express (train No. 11005, leaves at 2.50 noon), reach Tirukoilur by 5pm. Take a local bus or auto to Ulagalantha Perumal Temple or to Veeratteawarar temple to attend evening pooja at either of the temples.

Bus station is located very close to Ulagalantha Perumal temple, where as Veeratteswarar Sivan Temple is located on Theni Pennai river shore. It is about 5 min ride from Perumal temple by bike.

How to reach Tirukoilur From Bangalore

Whenever we plan 2-day trip from Bangalore to Tiruvannamalai, we always plan such a way to visit Tirukoilur temples.

We start on Saturday morning from Bangalore to reach Tiruvannamali in the evening and visit Tirukoilur temples the next day before returning back to Bangalore. 

Again there are plenty of bus facilities from Bangalore central bus station and any major bus stops in the Bangalore city and also from Hosur to reach Tirukoilur via Tiruvannamalai. If you are taking any private volvo bus or KSRTC or TNSTC, board buses to Pondicherry, so you can get down at Tirukoilur.

My Travel disappointment story in Dubare Elephant Camp Coorg (Elephant Bathing timings?)

This is our story of travel disappointment in Dubare Elephant camp Coorg, 4 days of bike trip planned by my husband Rajesh to impress his Elephant loving wifey.

Have you ever traveled to a destination planned wholly based on the information mentioned in one of the travel websites, later realize that the information was not precise only after reaching that destination? Not only your travel plan is screwed, but the effort you need to put to cover the disappointment because your entire trip was weaved around that destination.

Well, read further to know how you can avoid the same mistake as we did. Also, find at the bottom of the article for other sightseeing places around Dubare.

Dubare Elephant bathing and feeding
Dubare Elephant bathing and feeding (Credit – travel blog)

About Dubare Elephant Camp Coorg

For those who do not know anything about Dubare Elephant Camp Coorg, it is explained as follows.

It is a nature camp situated by Kaveri river bed about 100kms from Mysuru, run by Karnataka Forest department with the aim of providing tourists/visitors memorable wildlife experience. As Dubare forest is home to many wildlife animals and birds, you would not only connect with nature, but also a thrilling adventure to feed, touch, play and bath the elephants.

Cool isn’t it?

Elephants are the main attraction here, as they are trained under naturalists (some are trained for Mysore Dussehra festival, now retired and used for the elephant safari in this camp), Jungle Lodges and Resorts have various activities involving elephants.

Basically, Dubare Elephant camp is for Elephant safari, Elepaht bathing and feeding, and Bird watching.

You could stay in the resorts in the dubare elephant camp or you could stay in Kushal Nagar or Madikeri or Coorg whichever suits your travel plan, budget and comfort.

Bike Ride to Dubare Elephant Camp

Since it was a 4 days trip, we chose to stay in Madikeri, so before reaching we decided to spend half daytime in Dubare, experience the unimaginable wildlife experience with the elephants.

I cannot even explain the happiness and expectation I had for this bike trip.

I, animal lover, Love watching Animal Planet and Sony BBC Earth over any other TV channels, especially watch Elephants at any given time. So, my beloved hubby planned 4 days bike trip from Bangalore to Coorg. On the way he had planned to take me to Elephant safari and Elephant bathing in Dubare Elephant camp. Because he knew I would travel any extent to at least touch the Elephants.

Here we are, around noon, started from Mysore, explored Nisargadhama temple before we reached the Dubare camp.

There were only very few vehicles in the parking area and to our happiness, we saw the passenger boat returning from the other side. Also we saw few adults and kids playing in the Kaveri river.

All signs are positive. So far.

We wondered where we would safe keep our bike saddle bags and a tank bag which has Laptop, SLR camera and other important stuffs. Looking around, saw a few commercial shops but doesn’t seem to be a safe place to keep our valuables. Clearly, we had not thought in advance about securing our baggage.

Meanwhile, leaving me with my thoughts about safekeeping the luggage, my hubby went to inquire the boat ride timings and fee to the Dubare Elephant camp situated across the river.

Here Comes The Unexpected Disappointment

Rajesh was told that the ride to the camp is closed at 11 am itself, and we were asked to come by 4.30pm.

Waiting till 4.30pm was not a good idea as we knew from our past experience (to Yercaud) that it gets dark soon in the hill stations. Hiding the disappointment I hoped on the pillion to ride to Coorg. It took me some time to get back travel mood forgetting the dreams I developed from the minute I heard about my hubby’s plans.

Had we checked and cross-checked in multiple websites and confirmed the entry timings to Dubare Elephant camp, we would have avoided the disappointment.

Well, some other time. We are bike riders, we could always plan next time.

Bye Bye Dubare Elephant camp.

We then had lunch, headed straight to Madikeri.

Apart from our disappointment, we absolutely enjoyed our smooth ride among the forests and hills. Thanks to google maps, we reached safely to Hotel Coorg International around evening.

Suggestions: Read this before you plan your trip to Dubare Elephant Camp

Well, here are some suggestions to the readers from my failed travel experience to Dubare Elephant camp Madikeri.

#1. Bangalore to Mysuru Bike trip

Day 1 (Bangalore to Mysore)

If you are going to travel from Mysore, then skip this section. For those who plan to travel to Dubare from Bangalore, continue reading.

Bangalore to Dubare camp distance is approx 260 km. As a beginners in long bike trip, we decided to split the kms to give enough time to rest. So we have decided to spend the night in Mysore (day-1) so that the next day we could reach before noon to Dubare (day-2).

And Remember, this was all Rajesh’s planning. All I was told was that we would be going straight to Coorg on Day-2.

Also, there was no point reaching tired and exhausted to the elephant camp, So we spent night in Ginger hotel, had dinner and roamed around Mysore.

It was a clean city with regulated traffic, with so many places to see in Mysuru. We decided to visit them in near future.

Read – The Best cafe in Mysore – Malgudi Coffee House

#2. Dubare Elephant Camp Coorg timings

Day 2 (Mysuru to KaushalNagar )

Distance from Mysore to Dubare elephant camp Coorg is just 100kms, so on day-2, we first reached Namdroling Monastery at 10 am after having breakfast on the highway.

In Kaushalnagar where the temple is located, you could see the monks everywhere in red/maroon attire in the temple, in the local shops and some are even running the local businesses.

You also have good toilet facilities in the temple parking area.

kaushal nagar - On the way to Dubare Elephant camp
Namdroling Monastery Images – TravelDuo Pics
Day 2 (KaushalNagar to Dubare Elephant Camp Coorg)

Kushalnagar to Dubare elephant camp Coorg distance is the just 15kms ride. Once you reach the entrance to Kaveri River, find a place to park vehicles and cross the river by boat.

As per other travelers reviews, it is not advised to walk across the river as the rocks are very slippery, so we planned to cross the river by boat.

We reached Dubare around noon, to our disappointment the boat ride was closed by 11 am itself, so we just stood there in disbelief.

We then decided to come back the next day from Madikeri to dubare elephant camp with the distance of 36kms via kedakal.

Dubare Elephant Bath Timings

Dubare elephant camp Coorg timings are 9 to 11 in the morning and 4.30 to 6 pm in the evening. Even though camp is open for visitors from 4.30 pm to 6.30pm, elephant bathing is available only in the morning timings.

If you are travelling with a partner or with family, especially on weekends, plan such as way so you could reach Dubare before 9 am, so you can effortlessly secure a place for parking and less queue for a boat ride to the elephant camp and elephant bathing as well.

Although Dubare elephant camp day visit timing is 9 to 11 am, you can spend extra time with family or have lunch in the restaurants.

According to dubare elephant camp reviews, food is available for visitors inside jungle lodges restaurant.

#3. Dubare Elephant Camp Entry Fee

Once you reach the entrance, park your vehicle at Kaveri river bed, cross the river by shared boat taxi or walk across to reach the camp (caution: water level and slippery rocks).

For the family of 4, with 2 adults and 2 kids, you will be charged 300/- INR for boat ride alone. Once after you reach the camp, you will be allowed to feed the elephants (10/- INR per food bag) and bath the elephants (100/- INR per person) and ride the elephant safari (100/- INR per person).

It is to be noted that during weekends, there is always a long queue for elephant feeding and bathing.

Below is the Dubare elephant camp timing and entry fee for both locals and foreigners- but it contradicts the information I mentioned above.

We collected the information straight from the parking ticket collector – believing that to be true – it is safe to reach the spot by 8 am itself.

If you are bored waiting for boat, you could play in the kaveri river – it is open for visitors all the times.

Dubare elephant entrance timing and fee
Dubare elephant entrance timing and fee

#4. Dubare Elephant Camp Jungle Lodges (where to stay and eat)

Dubare Elephant Camp is The Property of Jungle Lodges and Resorts Ltd, Govt. of Karnataka.

You could check their website here for more information on 2 days jungle resort stay and elephant fun activities.

As per online reviews, there is no more Jeep Jungle safari which you can confirm contacting them directly.

Otherwise, if you choose to stay outside of Dubare, you have plenty of options in Kushal Nagar and Coorg.

We chose to stay in Madikeri, in Hotel Coorg International, where we spent day-3 and had good time sightseeing Madikeri especially Raja’s seat and trek to Abbey falls.

If we had to travel from Madikeri, and Coorg to dubare elephant camp distance is 37 km. But we made our mind to explore Coorg to make the 2nd half of journey worthful.

When in Kushalnagar, we had lunch in Fish curry rice restaurant, which I recommend to non-vegetarians.

Overall, 4 days bike ride was a memorable experience.

As soon as I visit Dubare Elephant camp again, I will come back and share the experience here again with pics.

And don’t forget to leave a comment about your experience in Dubare Elephant camp.

Sightseeing in Coorg – List of Places

To Know how we spent our rest of the 4 days sightseeing in Coorg, Read here.

Other Places to see In and Around Dubare elephant Camp

  • Nisargadama Golden Temple (Namdroling Monastery) -Kaushal Nagar
  • Mysore – Famous Tourist destination – Mysore Zoo, Palace, Sri Chamundeswari hills, Brindavan garden, Tippu Sultan Fort etc.,
  • Visit Nagarhole National Park – Wildlife safari at 6am to 8am, so you need to be there earliest by 5.45 am for safari resgistration.
  • Srirangapatna – Sri ranganathar Temple.
  • Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary
  • Talakadu – Origin of Talakaveri, Play in the river, Visit famous ancient temples being buried under sand
  • Somanathapura – Chennakesave temple  – Ancient Hoysala Architecture under Archaeology department

Sum Up

If you are staying in Dubare Forest resort or Planing for one day trip to Dubare Elephant Camp – You need to make sure to be there before 8.30 am. Park Your vehicle, collect parking ticket (10/ – rupees for 2-wheelers), head to Kaveri river.

Pay 300/ -(For a family of 4) for Boat ride to cross the river, to reach the camp.

Once after you reach the camp, you will be allowed to feed the elephants (10/- INR per food bag) and bath the elephants (100/- INR per person) and ride the elephant safari (100/- INR per person).

Little extra money for the foreign individuals.

Note:

During Weekends it is best advised to be there at the entrance by 8.00am itself as there will be long queue for boat ride. Also you are not allowed to swim across the river, only bathing is allowed at this point.

Dubare Elephant Camp Timing

9am to 11 am – For Elephant safari, elephant bathing, elephant feeding and wildlife photography

4.30 pm to 6.30 pm – Only Elephant safari, wildlife photography

Please note all the details about Dubare elephant camp Coorg -entry fee, entry timing and activities, so you could plan your trip to Dubare accordingly.

Hoysala Architecture: How we visited 4 Different Temples Just in One Day

I am sure less introduction needed for the Hoysala Architecture Hindu temples in Karnataka.

These are unique architecture temples found only in Karnataka, majorly in Hassan district. All of them built by the Hoysala Empire, ruled between 10th and 14th centuries.

This is our story of “Hoysala Trip“, how we have visited 4 of such famous temples just in one day.

We went to this trip on 2nd October 2016 by train.

Hoysala Architecture – Overview and My Personal Observation

The “Hoysalas” who ruled between 11th and 14th centuries have built this unique – never can be seen anywhere in the world kind of architecture only in Karnataka. 

They have built small to large temples in Karnataka, dedicating to either Lord Vishnu or Lord Shiva.

The Hoysala architecture style is described as Karnata Dravida which is distinguished from the traditional Dravida, and is considered an independent architectural tradition with many unique features (Source Wikipedia). 

Hoysala architecture is popular for its attention to detail in their craftsmanship. Unlike the other Hindu temples, the outer walls surrounding the main sanctum are beautifully carved with the gods and goddess statues (called reliefs). 

They also depict the life and culture of people who lived in the 12th century, and also tell stories about Ramayana, Mahabharata and Bhagavata purana. 

The other unique feature of these temples are the zig zag patterns (star shaped look) of the entire complex. Including the platform on which the temple is built with 4 to 7 layers of star pattern, leading up the same zig – zag pattern until vimana (roof) of the temple.

While the temple is star shaped, the pillars supporting the temple are all disc shaped.

Sometimes, the combination of star and disc shaped are observed.

Depending on the size of the temple, the pillars (and the disc) sizes vary. For example, the disc in the Somanathapura, Belur and Halebid are larger than the other Hoysala temples in Arasikere, Javagal and Nuggehalli.

Personal observation

Although the Itagi Mahadeshwara temple is not under the category of Hoysala architecture in Karnataka, we have observed the touch of their art in their disc pillars. You can see pics here- link article.

Once what would have been a place for daily prayers and religious celebrations, is now standing still with the notable damages. All the Hoysala temples stand proud amidst all the damages on the statues and vimana; and also being enormously patient to the callous nature of the daily visiting tourists.

The List of Hoysala temples we have visited in One day

On 2nd October 2016, we started our one day trip from Bangalore to Belur.

Now, to visit 4 different Hoysala architecture temples, we started boarding the train from Bangalore central railway station to Arasikere. 

First, get down at Arsikere Junction to Visit Ishwara temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva.

Second, after about 50 mins of bus journey to the Javagal Lord Lakshmi Narasimha temple, dedicated to Lord Vishnu.

These two are less popular temples among the Hoysala Architecture (link) situated close to the very popular UNESCO archaeological site of Halebidu and Belur.

Third, boarded the bus from Javagal to Halebidu, and finally, from Halebidu to Belur.

We returned home from Belur to Bangalore on the same day by train around midnight.

Here is the name of the temples we have visited

  1. Arasikere – Beautiful Hoysala Architecture For Lord Shiva
  2. Javagal – Beautiful Hoysala Architecture For Lord Vishnu
  3. Halebidu – Hoysaleswara temple (UNESCO site) For Lord Shiva
  4. Belur – ChennaKesava temple (UNESCO site) For Lord Vishnu
Places to visit in belur trip
Arasikere temple inside view
Places to visit in Bangalore to Belur trip
Javagal Lord Vishnu temple entrance
hoysala architecture in karnataka
Halebidu temple
famous temple images in karnataka
Belur temple

How We Planned this Hoysala Trip

This trip was well planned by me – the travel planner, about a week before we started the journey. 

Even though we were just “new-bees” just started testing the waters of travelling to the new places, I can proudly say that I did good job.

(Except for this one trip where we miscalculated the timing when we went on a one day bike trip to Hassan from Bangalore. We ended up riding motorbike in the dark night, read here to know more about our first ever adventurous night trip).

My hubby, Rajesh – the best companion, the best bike rider, sensible and sweetest person to travel with.

Mostly he never said no to any trips planned by me – and that is how we ended up making a long bike trip of 11 days in South India consecutively for two years in 2017 and 2018.

Like in other trips to TamilNadu temples, this time we didn’t have to consider the temple open and closing timings before we laid out an itinerary. Since all of these are tourist places, they are open from 9 am to 6pm (depends on the popularity of the temple).

Halebidu and Belur temples are under UNESCO, open even during afternoon timings until 5 pm everyday for tourists. 

So, we first decided to visit the less famous, small Hoysala architecture in Arasikere and Javagal in the mornings, and the two UNESCO temples later in the noon.

I considered several factors for planning this trip

  • I used google maps to calculate the distances between each stop, 
  • the time needed to travel by public transport, 
  • the minimum time needed to spend in each stop and 
  • the time needed for relaxation.

We just carried one backpack with water bottles, snacks, and toiletries enough for one day trip from Bangalore.

Though we didn’t plan this trip exclusively for the “Hoysala architecture” but it turned out to be one exclusive trip.

Conclusion

Hoysala Architecture, which was built by the Hoysala empire, is found only in the state Karnataka, India. When it comes to visiting famous tourist destinations, many people prefer going to Halebidu, Belur.  

Mostly they are popular among tourists for its marvellous architecture, and they are closely located, so both the temples are easily covered in one trip. Next to these two temples, many prefer going to Hampi – yet another cultural Heritage of Karnataka. 

For those who don’t know, there are plenty of tourist places in Karnataka which are not made popular among tourists. 

My personal request to the audience is to see all the other Hoysala temples in Karnataka, they too, are no less in Architecture and Beauty. 

Personal observation

I was surprised to see the resemblance of Hoysala architecture when we visited Trimbakeshwar temple in Mumbai. Major resemblance was the star shaped platform on which the temple is built and similar statue carvings on the outer wall –  a wall with a zigzag pattern – everything resembling the Hoysala architecture. Click here to see pics.

Lepakshi Temple From Bangalore: Two States, One Day, 300 Kms Bike Trip

We went on One day Bike trip to Lepakshi Temple from Bangalore. Our friends called us crazy to cover a total of 300 Kms by bike in just one day.

Lepakshi Temple From Bangalore – Distance and Route

On 5th November 2016, We went on One day bike trip to the very famous Lepakshi Temple in Anantapur District in Andra Pradesh district. After visiting Boga Nandeeshwara temple in Nandi Hills along the way.

Lepakshi temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to God Veerabhadra, widely popular by the name “Lepakshi” – a village located in Karnataka, 15 kms from Hindupur and 122 kms from Bangalore. The distance may vary a little based on the location you start from Bangalore. Lepakshi temple gained popularity for its historic importance and archaeological significance (especially for its floating pillars). 

We have travelled 165 kms from our home to Anantapur district in Andra Pradesh state, a long ride on just one way. 

This is how we went to Lepakshi Veerabhadra Temple from Bangalore, one of the most memorable one day bike trip in our life.

Lepakshi Temple from Bangalore: Two States By Bike in One day

On our one day trip to Lepakshi temple from Bangalore, we first visited Nandi hills temple at Doddaballapur. Since we were frequent visitors this Nandhi hills – Boganandeeswara temple, and it is located on the way to Lepakshi, we stopped for a quick darshan here.

Soon after lunch we then rode for about 80 kms to reach Lepakshi village, parked our bike, across the small shopping street.

Well, at 3 pm, after a long bike ride in the sun, travelled across a state, to witness the beauty of the Vijayanagar empire’s architecture.

We spent about 2 hrs hours around the temple, clicking pics and hanging out, cherishing every moment possible. 

The main sanctum, was a small cave with many hindu idols, along with the Veerabhadra idol, there was a notable MahaKali statue, each idol speaking a history of its own. 

After a calm and quiet darshan, we headed back to Bangalore, reached home by 8 PM.

Overall it was a smooth ride in Bangalore – Hyderabad Highways. 

Read – Kolar is another best place for one day road trip from Bangalore.

One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Lepakshi Temple Entrance – Kodikambam
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Climb the stairs after Kodikambam to enter the 70 Pillars Vasantha Mandap (to see Hanging pillar)
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Lepakshi Temple Ornamental Pillars – Bharathanatiyam change of legs
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Lepakshi Temple
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple photos
Lepakshi temple photos
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Destroyed Kalyana mandap _ Lepakshi temple images
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Inside_ Lepakshi temple images
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Lepakshi Temple Ornamental Pillars
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Lepakshi Temple Ornamental Pillars
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Lepakshi temple photos
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Lepakshi temple images
One day trip From Bangalore _ Lepakshi temple images
Remnants of Kalyana mandap – Lepakshi Temple images
one day trip to Lepakshi temple - legendary temple
A Shivalinga Built By Cholas – Lepakshi Temple images

Lepakshi Veerabhadra temple – History, Facts and Temple Timings

These are the historic and archaeological importance of this Lepakshi temple – 

  • It is a majestic temple built on a vast area (called tortoise hill) with astonishing sculptures and paintings on the pillars and roofs. Famous for the mural paintings of Vijayanagara Kings. Of the 70 pillars in the Vasantha mandapa/ Natya mandapa, one of the pillars does not rest completely on the ground a.k.a hanging pillar or floating pillar.
  • a breathtaking single rock sculpture consisting of a seven hood naga wrapped around Sivalinga and a huge Ganesha idol.
  • the ruins of a “Kalyana Mandapa” with unfinished pillars. (There is also a story that it is not actually a Kalyana mandap, it was a Vishnu temple which was destroyed by human conflicts, the Vishnu statue then kept inside the main sanctum.)
  • Several forms of Lord Shiva idols can be seen – a majestic Kankala Murthi, Dakshinamurthi, Tripuranthaka or Tripurasurasamhara and Ardhanareeshwara
  • Lord Hanuman’s small mandap and Goddess Sita’s footprint and a waterhole nearby
  • A huge Nandhi statue, a guardian at 1km before the lepakshi temple

And Finally, about another speciality of this temple which is not mentioned anywhere in the internet and I have no supporting documents to support the following points mentioned by one of the local guides in Lepakshi is this – (correct if am wrong) 

  • This temple was said to be built around a Sivalinga statue built by Cholas, much older than this temple. (See in images)

About the Lepakshi Temple timing – 

  • Unlike other Hindu temples, this temple is closed by 6PM. It is open on all hours from 6 AM to 6 PM for tourists and devotees.
  • During our ride to Lepakshi temple from Bangalore, we did not find any proper restaurant in the highways except for the one we had lunch near nandhi hills. So there are hardly any good choices nearby Lepakshi temple vicinity. 

Although there are many blog articles written on visiting and their experience on travelling to Lepakshi temple from Bangalore, we didn’t read any of this. If we did, we would not have missed the famous “the hanging pillar” of this temple. 

To Know more about the history of this temple, you can visit this website for more information.

How We travel by Bike?

Like most people ask, we don’t hurt our shoulders by carrying any backpacks while riding motorbike. All I carry on me is a small sling bag to keep money and mobile phones.

So how do we travel free?

If it is just one day ride, we carry a tank bag. This is a convertible backpack, with magnet to bind to the bike, sits comfortably on the bike tank without falling off, so we ride carefree. On long bike trips, we use both tank bag and a saddle bag for more luggage requirements.

When we went to Talakona in AndraPradesh, we carried saddle bags since it was just a 2 days trip. Even tough it was just a 2 days trip, we wanted to carry saddle bags to accommodate as much as water bottles as we were travelling to a rural area. While we were there, we have been trekking to the famous Talakona forest and waterfalls.

When we went on 11-days long bike trip in 2017, we carried both tank bags and saddle bags. Saddle bag only for clothes and travel essentials, while the tank bag to accomodate electronics like laptop, DSLR camera, chargers and stuff.

For this trip – Lepakshi temple from Bangalore, we carried just a tank bag, to keep couple of water bottles.