Coorg, or locally called Kodagu, is one of the most prosperous hill towns of Karnataka. With the magnificent beauty of its natural climate coupled with a conducive weather, Coorg has evolved as one of the highly sought-after holiday destinations of Karnataka. For the romantic explorers, thrill-seekers, or planned vacationers, this quiet little hamlet has something for everyone. But the real experience of a place comes from the hidden treasures that it has up its sleeves and is only discovered by those who walk off the beaten path.
Coorg is well connected to all major cities in Karnataka by road and railways. You can reach Mangalore by flight or train and take a cab from Mangalore to Coorg and reach your destination in about five and a half hours.
Offbeat ways to explore
Forgo the tried and tested sightseeing, places of interest, and try some unique ways to explore Coorg.
Stay somewhere different
Your first step to a great holiday starts with great accommodation. Ditch the regular, touristy hotels and guest houses and look for a homestay, eco-cottages, or an adventure camp. You can also book one of the old, colonial bungalows or mountain cottages, rented out to tourists.
Go for jungle camping
For a group of friends or travel buddies, nothing can be more thrilling than camping up in a forest and experiencing Coorg’s wilderness at its best. Gonikoppa has the best camping grounds with basic facilities.
Get a flavor of Tibet
Be in for a pleasant surprise at Bylakuppe- Coorg’s only Tibetan settlement. Far from the Himalayas, right in the mountains of the Nilgiris, this Tibetan colony brings a different flavor to the local culture. Take a walk through the Tibetan market, or sample the lip-smacking Tibetan delicacies, amidst the ruling curries and coffee.
Explore the Chelavara Waterfalls
While the Abbey and Iruppu Falls are the most popular in the region, the Chelavara has been hiding in plain sight and attracts few tourists. Surrounded by lush greenery, the Chelavara surely makes for a stopover.
Go for a trek
There are plenty of trekking routes and trails to explore in Coorg. But the trek to Brahmagiri Hills is the most scenic. It’s a short trek of 9 Km from the Iruppu Falls and is good for both pro and hobby trekkers and hikers. The best time to visit is early morning and you will need a prior permission from the Forest Range Officer at Srimangala to explore the area.
Take a night drive
While everyone likes to travel in the daylight, it’s a different kind of fun to explore the hills at night in a Jeep. The safaris start around sunset and take you through the dense forests and mountains of Coorg. The journey lasts for a few hours or until midnight.
Stay at a coffee plantation
Most people take a tour of the local coffee plantations. But imagine waking up to the smell of freshly harvested coffee? There are many local, small plantations who offer a homestay so you can stay and experience the culture and take a free tour of the plantations. Sample organic coffee, local food, and more, all to your heart’s content.
Go for a micro-light ride
A trending activity around the world, Coorg is one of the few places in the country to offer this unique flying experience. You get to ride on a small glider-like aircraft that can touch up to 5000 feet above the ground. Nothing beats the experience of flying with birds and getting a bird’s eye view of the town below.