Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India

Tripoto
Photo of  Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India 1/3 by Akash Chauhan

Chamrajnagar, a district south of Bengaluru, is an ideal weekend getaway spot with many waterfalls and dense forest ranges. We started our adventure on a Saturday morning from Bengaluru. The first stop on our list was Chunchi falls.

The road to this fall was pretty decent, we made sure to leave by 6.30AM to beat the city traffic. Crossing Kanakapura town we moved onto Kanakapura-Sangam Road and took the deviation towards Chunchi colony. After a drive of 3 hours, covering around 100KM, we reached the village at 9.30AM.

Photo of  Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India 2/3 by Akash Chauhan

A small hike up and down the hills nearby lead us to the perfect view point for Chunchi falls. The hike to the falls was filled with scenic gorges and grasslands.

Photo of  Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India 3/3 by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

After enjoying the gushing flow of water at Chunchi falls we started for the next stop in our journey, the much-awaited sangam of Kaveri and Arkavathi rivers at Mekedatu. The beautiful name of this place has a folklore attached to it. It is believed that lord Shiva disguised as goat escaped from the claws of a tiger by leaping across a narrow gorge formed by the river Kaveri. The tiger could not replicate this feat and the gorge has been growing wider apart since(majorly due to erosion by river Kaveri!!!). Hence the name ‘Mekedatu’ meaning goat’s leap in Kannada.

Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

The trip from Chunchi falls to KSDTC guest house in Mekedatu was around 15KM. The location is filled with posters of many unfortunate events that happened here, providing a strict message to follow the orders of the authorities for your own safety. We found a great spot for a cold dip in this sangam of the two great rivers. The refreshing flow of the rivers massaged away every tired muscle in our body. After the dip, we waded across the river to see the much awaited Mekedatu falls. This detour was a futile attempt as we could not see the falls since the officials had shut the way due to some recent accidents that happened over here.

Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

After the refreshing plunge in the Kaveri we quickly changed into dry clothes in the clean changing rooms provided by the KSTDTC guest house. The swim consumed most of our energy and we were famished beyond belief. We treated ourselves with the most delicious fish fry, sold in one of the many stalls outside this tourist attraction.

No time left to relax, we headed to our next stop, the Bheemeshwari forest camp for the night. The Karnataka state government has strict rules and does not let any vehicle past the forest check-post after 8.00PM. The gorgeous open grasslands and the compelling light of the setting sun made us pull over for a fun photo session.

Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

The road from Mekedatu to Bheemeshwari was just blissful, forests on the right and the river Kaveri flowing on to your left. After a mandatory stop for that evening Chai at Muthathi on the banks of river Kaveri we entered the uphill climb towards Bheemeshwari forests.

Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

The dense trees on either side induced a perceivable dip in temperature. Keep an eye out for deers and the occasional fox that come out onto the road here. We reached the forest camp around 6 PM. We stayed at the guest house set-up by the Karnataka forest department here. The whole package included a campfire, three-time meal, a morning trek to the view point and a boat ride into river Kaveri at a price of ₹2000 per person.

After a steaming cup of hot tea and delicious "upma" for breakfast the next day, we started the hike to the viewpoint. We were being led to the viewpoint by a 12-year old kid, it was a fun-filled hike to the top. We walked through some shrubs and had a steep climb uphill near the end.

Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

The scenery from the top of the structure at the end of the hike is picturesque. The view of the Kaveri river nestled in between the deciduous forest ranges is sure to take your breath away. After spending an ample amount of time at the top we reluctantly decided to climb back down.

Photo of Bheemeshwari Adventure & Nature Camp, Muthathi, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

After reaching back we went for a coracle ride in river Kaveri. The 360 degree stunts of the coracle in the river surrounded by the greenery give you a unique and satisfying experience. It was a feeling of becoming one with the beautiful nature that enveloped us.

Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

The guest house had nice facilities with hot showers, but who needs a hot shower when you have a whole river flowing in front of you. We jumped into the cool flow of Kaveri again for a refreshing dip. Following which we enjoyed some of the activities in and around the guest house compound.

Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan
Photo of Mekedatu, Mahalli, Karnataka, India by Akash Chauhan

The natural greenery and cold dips in river Kaveri are sure to leave you with a refreshed and recharged mind. It is must try for a great weekend trip, until the next one…

This blog was originally published on 'Two days with nature'

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