10 Best treks around Bangalore
Looking for the best treks around Bangalore? There are many beautiful places for trekking around a 100 Km radius from Bangalore that can be reached in 2 to 3 hours of drive. Bangalore, already located at a good height on a plateau, makes the relatively small hills around it pretty high up from the sea level. Most of these hills have either a fort or temple at the top. Sometimes both. Few need forest department permission as they fall under wildlife zones. Each hillock offers something unique and interesting. Few are good for first-timers and few are quite adventurous. One thing is common – that you will get to see some incredible views.
Here’s a list of top 10 places to trek from Bangalore:
|Destination||Distance from Bangalore||Activities||Difficulty level||Highlights|
|Skandagiri||65 Km||Night Trek||Moderate||Sun rising above the clouds|
Challenging night trek
|Makalidurga||60 Km||Day Trek||Easy to Moderate||Lake view from the top|
|Uttari Betta||90 Km||Day Trek|
|Madhugiri Fort||105 Km||Day Trek||Moderate to Hard||Fort exploration|
Self style bouldering
|Channarayana Durga||100 Km||Day Trek||Moderate||Challenging hike|
|Antaragange||70 Km||Day Trek|
|Easy to Moderate||Caves exploration|
Self style bouldering
|Kabbaldurga||70 Km||Day Trek|
|Kunti Betta||120 Km||Day Trek|
|Easy||Small climb, good views|
|Bilikal Betta||95 Km||Day Trek|
|Moderate||Real forest experience|
Chance to spot wildlife
|Savandurga||50 Km||Day Trek||Moderate to Hard||Toughest trek around|
Amazing views of Dam
Located close to it’s more famous cousin Nandi Hills, Skandagiri is one of the best trekking destinations around Bangalore. One has to pre-book it as only a limited number of trekkers are allowed per day. The popularity of this place among trekkers makes it difficult to get your slot. The trek path itself is quite exciting as it falls in a protected forest area. It passes through lush green meadows, huge boulders, and at times, thick forest. There are several boulders and mantaps standing on rocky pillars at the top. The ‘sunrise valley’ is usually carpeted by a thick blanket of clouds early in the morning. The sun rising above these clouds, that Skandagiri is famous for, can hypnotize you.
Makalidurga is one of the famous treks around Bangalore. The trek starts at the uninhabited railway track of Makalidurga village and needs prior permission from the forest department. Unlike Skandagiri, a night trek is not allowed here. Trekkers are only allowed post sunrise in the morning. There is a ruined fort with a temple at the top and plenty of areas to sit and enjoy your food like a picnic within a trek. The view frequently changes as you trek upwards and the view from the top is captivating with the combination of a beautiful lake, which appears in the shape of the South American continent, and the clear blue skies.
Uttari betta is another place for a night trek to witness a peaceful sunrise. Advantage of Uttari over some of the other hills is, it can be done in any season at any time of the day without any problem. The trek starts at a village, passes by man-made steps carved on rocks, crosses multiple fortified doors and structures through thick green meadows. There is a cave, a temple and a pond marked with – water is steep – at the top. The hike is just 3 Km and takes about an hour and a half. If you are trekking for leisure or a first-timer, then the easier treks like Uttari Betta or Kunti Betta suit you perfectly.
Madhugiri is a single hill and the second largest monolith in India (as they say). It offers amazing views of the surrounding landscape. This challenging rocky trek is good for thrill-seekers. Trekkers have to catch hold of specially constructed railings to climb up because of the steep climb. Since it’s mostly a rocky path, it gets slippery during rains. The trail welcomes hikers with aesthetically carved stones. There is a beautiful fort at the top and the views are unparalleled. There are lots of ruins and structures to explore along the path. One of the structures has a tiny hole to allow only a single ray of light inside a huge complex. Hiking up Madhugiri takes around 3 hours while climbing down takes just half the time.
A gigantic hill with fantastic views, Channarayanadurga is one of the most alluring hills to trek around Bangalore. One can get a good view of Madhugiri peak from the top, which is a similar trek. While Madhugiri is popular, Channarayanadurga is more offbeat. So if you do not want a crowd around, this is the better trek option. Added attraction here is the historical fort at the top which has many stories to tell. Few areas are steep and can get quite tricky to climb up. There is a huge Banyan tree overlooking a green water pond enroute the trek which is a good place to rest. You will get to see mesmerizing 360 degree views of tiny villages, ponds and numerous surrounding hills from the top.
A unique trek full of naturally formed mini caves and granite boulders, Antaragange is a hill where trekkers are needed to climb up rocks, jump, crouch and bend which makes it a delightful experience. Antaragange is translated as – water from inside – named after a perennial water source that springs out from a bull statue. After the night trek through volcanic rocks, one can spot a well lit-up Kolar town as you wait for the sun to rise. One way trek takes just about 2 hours. Beware of Monkeys that can seize on a minute opportunity to snatch any food item you display.
A well-known night trekking destination, Kabbaldurga is a monolith reaching a height of 3600 feet. It is a challenging trek of 3 Km with steep slopes and rocky trails. You can spot umpteen number of stars from the top as it is located in an undisturbed location. There is an old ruined fort to explore at the top. The dark ambiance and a tough terrain present quite a thrill for adventure seekers. The surroundings are usually filled with mist early in the morning and are quite picturesque. Other trekking spots like Bilikal betta and Savandurga can be seen from the peak on a clear day.
It is one of the easiest treks around Bangalore but the views are really pretty for a short hike. This is the only place above 100 Km from the city but a journey on Mysore Road which is good for travel makes Kunti Betta easily accessible within 3 hours. It is close to the Ranganatattu bird sanctuary where one can spot diverse varieties of migratory birds throughout the year. It’s a feast for nature and bird lovers. As for the trek, Kunti Betta has 3 hillocks side by side. Out of the 2 are trekkable. It just takes under an hour to climb up the first hill. The 2nd hill takes another 45 mins. It is one of the popular trekking places around Bangalore.
This place is actually part of the Bannerghatta wildlife sanctuary. It is one of the few treks with rich vegetation and greenery everywhere and needs forest department permission to do the trek. In fact, you will get to cross a few natural ponds and streams. One will get a true experience of trekking in the forest setting. Traces of wildlife like Elephant dung or Bear pug marks are frequently spotted by trekkers. Bilikalu means white rock. There is a huge granite rock with a small temple built under it. There is also a 4×4 jeep trail that leads to the top of the hill along with a separate trek trail. It takes about 2.5 hours to hike up, and 1.5 hours to climb down. The views are serene and undisturbed from the top.
Savandurga is the largest monolith in the country. It is one of the few places that gives trekkers the real satisfaction of conquering a mountain. The trek is steep at places and can test the endurance of people. Savandurga is probably the toughest hillock to trek around Bangalore. It’s better to start trekking after sunrise as the rocky terrain can get hot during the day. Better to avoid during rainy days. One can see the Arkavathi river flowing adjacent to the hill. There is a Nandi statue at the top where one gets to see amazing views of the Manchanabele dam that soothes your mind and relaxes your senses after a tough hike.
Sounds fascinating, isn’t it?
No more delay. Put your trekking shoes on!