People residing in a bustling city like Bangalore mostly greeted by a blend of traffic jam, smog and frantic work schedules. After strenuous weekdays, they often try to find themselves in the limb of tranquil mother earth and its comfy environs. This is where spending a relaxing time-off becomes such an urge for the people out there. If you are also one of them in the quest of invigorating escape within 185Kms reach from Bangalore, the soothing environs of BR Hills could be the place for you to hang around.
To make your weekend more relaxing and enchanting, here’s what BR Hills boasts for you:
Biligiri Rangaswamy Temple
BR Hills is eminent for its prehistoric attractions. Positioned atop the knolls, Biligiri Rangaswamy Temple or BRT is one such site, which has been a popular devout site in the province since last 500 years or more. The temple was set up in reverence of deity Ranganatha who has been depicted in standing position inside the temple. The architecture of this temple was done in conventional Dravidian style. The best time to visit the temple to catch a glimpse of the morning worship is from 7AM-8.30AM. Every April, the temple witnesses a huge footfall of Hindu devotees who flock here to attend the annual festival of lord Rangaswamy. One of the interesting things to observe in the temple is skin made pair of slippers by the local inhabitants, which is conferred to the lord as customary rituals.
Dodda Sampige Mara
This is undoubtedly one more alluring sites around the Biligirirangan Hills. Located nearly 5kms away from BR Hills, the key magnetism of this site is 2000 years old Champak Tree, which is around 33m high and 20m in breadth. Being positioned in the midst of a shrine, the tall stand religious tree is delimited by several lingams. If you go with the mythological beliefs the local people have, the base of Bhargavi River is said to be formed here in the trunk of this Champak Tree. Ample of visitors gather here on regular basis to pay their reverence to the holy tree. Dodda Sampige Mara is worth visiting on the eve of Maha Shivarathri when, the Soliga tribal perform a dance fire paying their admiration to the mother earth. Besides, the site entices plenty of tourists in the month of April when an offbeat blend of reddish and yellow coloured flowers can be spotted in the locality.
Rangaswamy Temple Wildlife Sanctuary
Spread with an area of nearly 540 sq km between Tungabhadra and Kaveri rivers, Biligiri Rangaswamy Temple Wildlife Sanctuary or B.R.T Wildlife Sanctuary is popular for its rich diversity of wildlife and endemic species of flora. This place has grabbed maximum attention of travellers in 2011 when the Karnataka Government affirmed the site as a Tiger Reserve. Today, B.R.T. Wildlife Sanctuary is an abode to more than 110 species of butterflies, around 20 species of reptiles and nearly 250 species of birds. Some of the key wild attractions amidst the jungle are tigers, elephants, panthers, four-horned antelope, lesser cats, chital, gaurs and bears.
These are the three key attractions to explore when in BR Hills. However, the fun amidst the breath-taking hill station doesn’t limit your delight only to these destinations. In addition, there are several other activities that can also evenly be rejoiced in BR Hills. Some of the enticing activities to take part in the hills include angling, trekking, birding, boating, camping and rafting.
Besides, if you wish to have a close vista of some super vigorous wildlife in the forest, the BRT Jungle Lodges & Resorts Authority caters you a thrilling opportunity to enjoy the Jungle Safari. The best time to visit BRT Wildlife Sanctuary is from October to May. This is the time when both the lush bush and the wildlife become livelier and appealing to visitors.
How to reach there
By Air: For travellers outside Bangalore or Karnataka, the best way to reach BR Hills is by air. Though, there is no individual airport in BR Hills, yet availability of three nearby airports makes it quite convenient for air travellers. The nearest airport is Mysore Airport, which is situated nearly 76Km from BR Hills. Other two nearby airports are Coimbatore Airport (around 186 km) and Bangalore International Airport (around 220 km). All these airports are well-connected to the major cities in India. From airport premises you can hire a cab or take a bus that travels till BR Hills.
By Train: No direct train is there to reach BR Hills from Bangalore. Hence, the best option is boarding a train from Bangalore till Chamarajanagar, which is the nearest railway station to BR Hills (around 40 Km). From Chamarajanagar station, hire a cab or take a bus for BR Hills. Two important trains from Bangalore till Chamarajanagar station are Bengaluru-Chamarajanagar Passenger Train and Tirupati- Chamarajanagar Fast Passenger Train. However, depending on the train and route, the travel time may vary from 5-7 hours. Another option is via Mysore Junction.
By Road: If you are planning to travel by road, various regular KSRTC buses are available from Mysore and Bangalore. You can hire a cab as well from these places to reach BR Hills. From Bangalore, the driving distance can be travelled approximately in 5 hours. On the other hand, from Mysore, it is about 2 hours drive till BR Hills. If you are travelling by car, the best route is via NH 209 that will take you through Kanakapura, Kollegal and Chamarajnagar.
Places to stay:
If you want some comfy hotels for a night stay around the hill, you will get the same in Chamrajnagar area, which is nearly 40Km from the hills. Nevertheless, the hotels in this area are quite expensive.
Some of the nearby hotels are listed here for you:
#Rajathadri Hill Villa
Yelandur Main Road,B.R.Hills
Chamrajnagar, India 571441
#K.Gudi Wildness Camp
P.O Kyathadevarayana Gudi,
Chamarajnagar, India 571313
#Hotel Vana Vihar
Melkamanahalli, (Bandipura) Mysore-Ooty Road,
Gundalpet Taluk, Chamrajnagar India 571126
Image courtesy: Google