|Talakaveri||Located near Bhagamandala atop the Brahmagiri Hill|
|Nisargadhama||Situated about 3 kilometers from Kushalanagara and approximately 30 kilometers away from Madikeri in the Kodagu District|
|Iruppu Falls||Located in the Brahmagiri Ranges at the distance of approximately 75 kilometers from Madikeri in Kodagu District|
|Abbey Falls||Positioned about 8 kilometers from Madikeri in the mountain ranges of the Western Ghats|
|Mallalli Falls||Placed at the foothills of the Pushpagiri Peak of Kumarparvata approximately 25 kilometers away from Somwarpet|
|Chelavara Falls||Located about 26 kilometers away from Madikeri and roughly 4 kilometers from Cheyyendane Village|
|Raja's Seat||Located at the western end of Madikeri|
|Dubare||Located at Kushalanagar in Madikeri|
|Honnamana Kere||Located at Doddamalthe in the proximity with the Sulimalthe Village approximately 6 kilometers from Somwarpet|
|Bhagamandala||Positioned at the distance of about 39 kilometers from Madikeri and 8 kilometers from Talakaveri|
|Madikeri Fort||Located right in the heart of the city Madikeri|
|Bylakuppe||Positioned to the west of the Mysore District along the State Highway no 88|
|Thadiyandamol||Stationed about 40 km away from Madikeri|
|Nalknad Palace||Placed near a village named Yavakapadi at the footings of Thadiyandamol Hills in the Kodagu District|
|Harangi Dam||Located approximately 9 kilometers from Kushalnagar Town close to the Hudgur Village of Somwarpet Taluk|
|Nehru Mantap||Situated near Raja’s Seat atop a hill overlooking the Madikeri Radio Station|
|Gaddige||Located just 1 kilometer away from Madikeri|
|Clock Tower||Situated approximately 32 kilometers from Madikeri in Coorg District|
|Somwarpet||Located in northern part of Coorg|
|Nagarahole National Park||Located Nestled in the Western Ghats at the boundary of the Wyanad District of Kerala|
|Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary||Located in the Somwarpet Taluka of Kodagu District in the state of Karnataka|
|Nagarahole National Park||Nestled in the Western Ghats at the boundary of the Wyanad District of Kerala|
|Talakaveri Wildlife Sanctuary||Located in the Kodagu District in the state of Karnataka|
|Omkareshwara Temple||Located right in the heart of the town|
|Padi Iggutappa Temple||Located in Kakkabe approximately 40 kilometers from Coorg|
|St Anne's Church|
|Dargah Sharif of Yemmemadu||Positioned at Yemmemadu near Napoklu in the Kodagu District|
Talakaveri, located near Bhagamandala atop the Brahmagiri Hill at the elevation of about 1,276 meters above the sea level and approximately 43 kilometers away from Madikeri is a ‘Kundike’ i.e. water tank from where the River Kaveri is supposed to be originating. Even though, except for the monsoon there is no permanent water flow visible from this spot. It is believed by the devotees that a small perpetual spring instigates from here, then flows underground and later emerges at the little distance away. River Kaveri is venerated as one of the seven sacred rivers of ‘Sapta Sindhus’ according to the Hindu scriptures. A small temple dedicated to Goddess Kaveriamma and two shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva and Lord Ganesha have been established in the proximity with this Tirtha Kundike or Brahma Kundike. The water flowing from this ‘Kunda’ is believed to be extremely sacred and sin cleansing.
Pilgrims frequently pay a visit to Talakaveri and bathe in the holy and ‘moksha giving’ water of this tank. As the legend goes, the Hindu Trinity; Brahma, Vishnu and Mahesh along with Lord Ganesha had appeared in front of sage Agastya at this place when the river Kaveri emerged onto the earth from the Kamandalu of the sage. On the day of ‘Tulasankramana’ that falls in the month of October, thousands of devotees gather at the Talakaveri and worship the water spring that abundantly gushes out of the ‘Talakaveri Tirtha Kundam’. They believe that at this time of the year Goddess Parvati arrives at Talakaveri and in her honor river Kaveri flows in profusion. Sanctified bath known as ‘Tula Snanam’ is observed at Talakaveri as well as on the banks of the river Kaveri on this hallowed occasion. Brahmagiri Peak is located just 365 steps away from Talakaveri from where one can enjoy the magnificent vistas of the surrounding landscape and the splendid Mangalore Sea.
Nisargadhama situated about 3 kilometers from Kushalanagara and approximately 30 kilometers away from Madikeri in the Kodagu District is an island created by the River Kaveri. Famed as an incredibly admired picnic spot and a holiday retreat in the state of Karnataka, Nisargadhama Island is a favorite destination amongst the tourists as well as the locals. Spread over the total area of about 64 acres and enclosed by the Kaveri River on all the sides, this atoll is clustered with the thick foliage of bamboo groves and sandalwood & teak trees. A hanging rope bridge has been installed at this place that can be availed to access the Nisargadhama Island. The major attractions of the Nisargadhama Island include the Deer Park, Rabbit Park, Peacock Park, Elephant Ride, Boating in the Kaveri River, White Water Rafting, Orchidarium and a children’s playground. At some places where the water is shallow the visitors are allowed to enter the riverbed and enjoy bathing. The island also includes a guest house run by the forest department and also the treetop bamboo cottages where tourists on prior booking can spend night in the vicinity of the pristine nature. Reposing and rejuvenating in the midst of serene beauty of Nisargadhama is indeed a memorable experience for lifetime.
Iruppu Falls, located in the Brahmagiri Ranges at the distance of approximately 75 kilometers from Madikeri in Kodagu District is a fresh water cascade also popularly known by the name ‘Lakshmana Tirtha Falls’. Iruppu Falls derive their second title from the Lakshmana Tirtha River; the tributary of Kaveri that originates from this waterfalls. As the legend goes, Lord Ram on the mission of searching his beloved consort Sita traveled along the Brahmagiri Ranges with his brother Lakshmana. When Lord Ram felt thirsty, he asked Lakshmana to get him drinking water. At that time Lakshmana shot an arrow into the Brahmagiri from where the Lakshmana Tirtha River emerged. Owing to this myth, the Iruppu Falls are supposed to possess the powers of washing ones sins away.
Thousands of pilgrims pay a visit to the Iruppu Falls on the day of Maha Shivaratri and bathe in the holy waters of the Lakshmana Tirtha River. The Iruppu Falls those form the 170 feet tall drop can be reached walking through the forest trail that leads to the falls from the Brahmagiri Peak. On the root to the Iruppu Falls you will come across a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva erected on the banks of the river Lakshmana Tirtha. Aggrandized both as a picnic spot and a pilgrim destination, the Iruppu Falls are particularly visited by myriads of devotees on the occasion of Maha Shivaratri festival. However, the best time to visit the Iruppu Falls is monsoon when the cataract is flowing in profusion and the surrounding terrain teeming with fresh foliage appears exceptionally astonishing.
Abbey Falls, positioned about 8 kilometers from Madikeri in the mountain ranges of the Western Ghats is a stunning waterfall that descends into the River Kaveri. A number of rivulets bulging with the torrential rains, tumbling down the mountain slope at an enormous momentum and striking against the huge boulders making way through the gorges and ravines combine and form the Abbey Falls. During the rainy season the cascade is outpouring with plethora of water, while even in summer though comparatively reduced than monsoon, the waterfalls are affluent with bounty of water. The Abbey Falls are nestled amidst the private coffee plantations and spice estates of Madikeri. The way to the falls is narrow and passes through these aromatic coffee and cardamom plantations. The roars of the falls are audible even from the main road and while you are following the trail through the farms the cataract will suddenly appear in front of you.
The water gushing down with incomparable speed over the huge rocks into the calm pools against the backdrop of verdant woods of the Western Ghats is certainly a breathtaking panorama. The melodious chirping of the birds provides sweet background music to the thunderous roars of the waterfall. A hanging bridge built just opposite the falls provides an access to the Abbey Falls. Apart from that, a temple dedicated to the Goddess Kali is situated close to the cascade. As the water surges into the steep rocky valley, bathing at the Abbey Falls is not allowed. Moreover, loads of leeches are found inside the water. The most ideal time to pay a visit to this marvel of nature is the post monsoon and early winter season when the waterfall is abundant with ample water.
Mallalli Falls placed at the foothills of the Pushpagiri Peak of Kumarparvata approximately 25 kilometers away from Somwarpet is a spectacular water cascade which originates at the point where the Kumaradhara River takes a quick drop of over 200 feet. Celebrated as one of the most enthralling waterfalls of Coorg, the Mallalli Falls are located at the Bettadahalli Gram Panchayat in the Somwarpet Taluk. Perceiving the silvery Kumaradhara River surging through the valley into a chasm against the milieu of lush green mountains is definitely a feast for the eyes. The best time to pay a visit to the Mallalli Falls is monsoon when the water cascade, bursting in cornucopia ascends high and then gushes down with unsurpassed swiftness.
Chelavara Falls, located about 26 kilometers away from Madikeri and roughly 4 kilometers from Cheyyendane Village is one of the most enchanting water cataracts sited around Coorg. Popularly known by the nickname ‘Embepare’ by the natives, which in the colloquial language means a ‘Tortoise Rock’, the Chelavara Falls are stationed in the midst of the fragrant coffee plantations of Coorg Woodlands. Witnessing the water rolling through the emerald green coffee plantations is unquestionably a wonderful spectacle. An additional attraction near the Chelavara Falls is the ‘Choma Kund Hill’ placed at the distance of just two kilometers from here. Choma Kund enclosed with blossoming green vegetation and thoroughly covered with fog most of the times is an awe-inspiring locale to pay a visit to. And not to forget the bonus, the jade waters of endless Arabian Sea can also be observed from the Choma Kund Hill.
Raja’s Seat, which literally means ‘the seat of the king’ is a seasonal garden of flowers and artificial fountains acclaimed as one of the most sought after tourist spots of Madikeri in the Coorg District. The stimulating layers of verdant greenery, the rolling sequence of tall and short mountains garlanded with mist and the captivating panoramas of sun set against the backdrop of the multicolored canvass of azure sky is a vista that totally mesmerizes the visitors of Raja’s Seat. The place receives its name from the belief that in earlier times the kings of Kodagu used to spend their evenings in this garden with their queens enjoying the enticing prospects of the dazzling sun set. A small square structure of four pillars conjoined by arches and built in brick and mortar is situated in the garden amidst the pulchritudinous surroundings. This is the lovely spot where the Rajas must be spending time in leisure and recreation. Constructed on an elevated platform this square offers the compelling views of the valleys and cliffs laying towards the west of the garden.
The best time to visit Raja’s Seat is either early morning or the dusk time. At the dawn, the new born rays of the sun penetrating the cloak of the mist worn by the gorge beneath glorify the entire terrain and infuse life in every single element of nature. Where as, in the evening the setting sun and its diminishing golden light performs a ballet of colors on the platform of the sky and retaining its grandeur and splendor says goodbye to the earth with the promise of reunion. Nevertheless, sometimes due to the thick shroud of clouds it is not possible to witness the magnificent outlook of sunset or sunrise. Apart from its immeasurable natural beauty, the Toy Train beckons the children to the Raja’s Seat. An entry fee of rupees five is charged at the garden. One must relish the mouth watering bhelpuri and other chat available at the stalls nears the Raja’s Seat.
Dubare, located at Kushalanagar in Madikeri is a well known forest elephant camp settled on the banks of the river Kaveri in Kodagu District. Reckoned as a vital base for the elephants of the Karnataka Forest Department, Dubare Elephant Camp is a place where elephants for the Dussehra Festival of Mysore were trained. Presently these elephants are by and large used to provide joy rides to the tourists. The damp and deciduous woods of Dubare provide a home to a number of wild birds and animals. Other than the wild as well as tamed and trained Asiatic elephants other animals and birds frequently spotted at Dubare include sambhar, spotted deer, wild dogs, bears, gaur, leopard, tiger, crocodiles, venomous and non-venomous snakes, other reptiles, peacocks, kingfisher, partridge, woodpeckers and many more. Aside from the elephants training camp, the other attractions of Dubare include Nisargadhama, Veerabhoomi, Wildlife Safari, coracle ride and still water rafting.
‘Honnamana Kere’ is the biggest lake of Kodagu District located at Doddamalthe in the proximity with the Sulimalthe Village approximately 6 kilometers from Somwarpet. Highly venerated and held in high esteem as a sacred water reservoir by the natives Honnamana Kere has an interesting mythological background. It is said that Goddess Honnama gave up her life at this place for the wellbeing of the people. Commemorating this saga, a temple dedicated to the deity has been established on the banks of this sanctified lake. Every year on the occasion of the ‘Gowri Festival’, a special pooja is conducted and ‘Bagina’ which comprises the belongings of goddess Honnama is offered to the lake. Thousands of devotees of Honnama alight here on this day and pay homage at the Honnama Temple. Surrounded by rolling mountain ranges, verdant cliffs and elegant coffee plantations, the Honnamana Kere offers bravura spectacle to its beholders. Some years back a new temple was put up here in order to develop this pilgrim place of Coorg.
Positioned at the distance of about 39 kilometers from Madikeri and 8 kilometers from Talakaveri, Bhagamandala; situated at the holy ‘Triveni Sangama’ i.e. the confluence of three rivers Kaveri, Kannike and Sujyoti is a highly treasured pilgrim destination of the state of Karnataka. On the occasion of ‘Tula Sankramana’ devotees congregate at Bhagamandala in large numbers and before heading towards Talakaveri bathe in the Triveni Sangama and perform rituals in the honor of their departed ancestors. A renowned temple of Sri Bhagandeshwara; supposed to be laid by a sage named Bhagamandala and dedicated to Lord Subramanya, Lord Mahavishnu and Lord Ganapati is placed close to the confluence of Bhagamandala. Bhagamandala derives its name from this Bhagandeshwara Kshetra only. The Bhagandeshwara Temple is built in Kerala order of architecture reflecting the temple style of Nepal. The wooden carvings at this temple are exceedingly praiseworthy and completely unsurpassed. The idol of Lord Subramanya enshrined in this temple is believed to be ‘Swayambhu’ i.e. self originated. Every day free lunch is served at the Bhagandeshwara Temple to its visitors.
Madikeri Fort located right in the heart of the city Madikeri was initially built by the King Mudduraja of Haleri Dynasty in late 17th century. King Mudduraja is the very prince who founded Madikeri in 1681 AD and named it ‘Muddurajanakeri’ which gradually became Madikeri. King Mudduraja also constructed a palace within the periphery of the fort. Years later, this fort originally built in mud was rebuilt in granite by Tipu Sultan who also rechristened it as ‘Jaffarabad’. In the year 1790, the fort went in the custody of Doddavira Rajendra and was revamped by Lingarajendra Wodeyar II in 1812-1814. Subsequently the Madikeri Fort was taken over by the British in the April of 1834 AD. Majestically erected over an elevated portion of land, the Madikeri Fort resembling the shape of a hilltop offers an all encompassing view of Madikeri. At the entrance of the fort to its north-east corner two life size masonry elephants guard the gates. The fort comprises of six circular bastions and three successive gates guarding the intricate and circuitous entrance. The Madikeri Fort houses a Ganesha Temple, a chapel, a small archaeological museum and a district prison. Presently, this fortress of Madikeri accommodates several government offices.
Bylakuppe, positioned to the west of the Mysore District along the State Highway no 88 happens to be the second largest Tibetan settlement existing outside Tibet. Established by Lugsum Samdupling and Dickyi Larsoe, this center of Buddhism in Southern India provides a home away from home to the thousands of Tibetan refugees who came to India in 1960s after the Chinese aggression and settled down here. Dotted with numerous monasteries, Bylakuppe is especially reckoned for its Great Gompa of Sera Je, Sera Mey, Namdroling Monastery, Sakya Monastery and Tashi Lunpho Monastery. Moreover, this place is also famous for its Golden Temple, Rangaswamy Temple, Ganapathi Temple and Ingalakere Lake. The Golden Temple of Bylakuppe that houses two 40 Feet tall statues of Lord Buddha (Padmasambhava and Amitayus) is the most cherished place of worship located in Bylakuppe.
Thadiyandamol stationed about 40 km away from Madikeri happens to be the highest peak in the district of Coorg and the second highest in the entire state of Karnataka. Standing 5730 feet far above the ground, Thadiyandamol peak is quite popular amongst the trekkers and adventure seekers. The trekking route inaugurates at the Palace Estate; the base camp of Thadiyandamol and the practiced trekkers conquer the crest in about 3 hours. The way that leads to the peak is bursting with leeches and trekkers are recommended to go prepared with salt or some other arm against them.
Nalknad Palace, placed near a village named Yavakapadi at the footings of Thadiyandamol Hills in the Kodagu District is an ancient alcazar built by the King of Kodagu ‘Dodda Veerarajendra’ in the year 1792. This two storied edifice covered with a tiled roof and a crested dome is decorated with elaborate wood carvings and old paintings. Ornamented with a pillared façade and the courtyard bearing the statues of four bulls, this antique residence of the Maharajas of Kodagu is indeed an archetype of the architectural grandeur of the bygone years. Nalknad Palace has been a witness to the second marriage of Dodda Veerarajendra and the refuge of the last king of Kodagu, Chikka Veerarajendra. Chikka Veerarajendra; the son of Linga Rajendra was later sent to Benares by the British. Today, the Nalknad Palace is held as a protected monument by the Directorate of Archaeology and Museums, Government of Karnataka. Recently it was renovated by INTACH at the expenses of 2.29 million rupees. Presently a proposal has been made to convert the palace into a museum that would display the art and crafts of the Kodagu region and thus make the palace a leading tourism hub of Coorg. A noteworthy feature of this regal domicile is that a Kannada movie named ‘Shanti’ was shot around the Nalknad Palace
Harangi Dam or Harangi Reservoir, located approximately 9 kilometers from Kushalnagar Town close to the Hudgur Village of Somwarpet Taluk is a water reservoir created by a masonry dam built across the Harangi River; the tributary of the river Kaveri. This dam is swarming with water during the rainy season when it receives the maximum number of tourists. This quiet locus away from the hustle bustle of city life or any commercialized picnic spot is the perfect potpourri of beauty and serenity. Relaxing in the calm and composed ambience of Harangi Dam and enjoying the gentle breeze that passes by is truly an experience of lifetime. Typically, only a limited number of tourists pay a visit to this reservoir. Guest Houses are available at the Harangi Dam where one can spend night in the proximity with pristine nature and plethora of water. The reservation for the Guest House here can be made from the public works department. The tourists who are not planning to stay over pay a visit to the Harangi Dam before 6:00 pm as this is the time when the reservoir closes and further entries or exits are not permitted.
Nehru Mantap, situated near Raja’s Seat atop a hill overlooking the Madikeri Radio Station is a popular picnic spot of Coorg frequented by the tourists to enjoy the staggering vistas of sunset and sunrise. Reaching the Nehru Mantap doesn’t call for any adventure and an easy climb of just 25-30 steps will get you to this hilltop. Nehru Mantap is positioned at just 10 minutes-walk from the Raja’s Seat. From here the mesmerizing prospects of the far flung mountain ranges enveloped with thick foliage and the surrounding terrains can be perceived. Nehru Mantap, endowed with infinite natural splendor is really a paradise for nature lovers and an inspiration for artists and poets.
Gaddige; ‘the Raja’s Tomb’ is a fascinating piece of architecture tremendously popular amongst the history as well as archaeology enthusiasts. Located just 1 kilometer away from Madikeri, this beautiful structure framed in Indo-Sarcenic order of architecture with a cupola in the centre and minarets at each end is one of the most sought after attractions of Coorg where the mortal remains of the Kodavad Monarchs, their court dignitaries and numerous other historical celebrities are preserved in several tombs. The one to the right is the mausoleum of King Lingarajendra constructed in 1820 AD by his son Chikkaveerarajendra. To its left lays the Royal Priest of the Kodavad Kings Rudrappa whose crypt was built in 1834 AD. Close by, two noble bureaucrats; Biddanda Bopu (who passed away fighting against the army of Tipu Sultan) and his son Biddanda Somaiah are entombed.
The Clock Tower of Virajpet situated approximately 32 kilometers from Madikeri in Coorg District is a noteworthy specimen of Colonial Architecture dated back to early 20th century. Erected right in the heart of the town Virajpet, this Clock Tower was constituted by Mukkatira Aiyyappa at the time of King George V’s trip to India. The foundation stone of this clock tower was laid by the then Chief Commissioner of Coorg; Sir Huch Daly on 5th February 1914. Presently, this Clock Tower of Coorg is regarded as the chief landmark of the Virajpet Town.
Somwarpet is a panchayat town and a taluka place located in the north-east region of Kodagu District. This small hamlet is particularly reckoned in Southern India for its coffee, vanilla and spice plantations. Some of the worth mentioning tourist attractions of Somwarpet include Beelur Golf Club, Malemalleshwara Betta, Kotebetta, Makkalagudi Betta, Mallalli Falls, Honnamana Kere, Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, etc.
Nagarahole National Park
Nagarahole National Park, also popularly known by the appellation ‘Rajiv Gandhi National Park’ is extended over the Kodagu as well as the Mysore Districts in the state of Karnataka in the Western Ghats Nilgiri Sub-Cluster. This National Park, a part of the ‘Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve’ was acknowledged as the 37th ‘Project Tiger’ tiger reserve in the year 1999. Also classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Nagarahole National Park, together with Bandipur National Park, Mudumalai National Park and Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary makes the biggest protected wildlife area in Southern India. Nagarahole National Park, originally a hunting reserve of Wodeyar Kings of Mysore, was established as a wildlife sanctuary in the year 1955 and later promoted as a national park in the year 1988. Enclosed with the North Western Ghats moist deciduous forests, Central Deccan Plateau dry deciduous forests and sub-montane valley swamp forests, this national park is mainly covered with the foliage of teak, silver oak, rosewood and sandalwood trees.
The prime fauna that finds protected shelter in the Nagarahole National Park includes the mammals like tiger, leopard, bison, gaur, Asian elephants, wild dogs, jackals, mongoose, sloth bears, striped hyena, spotted deer, barking deer, sambar, four-horned antelopes, wild boar, Indian pangolin, Indian giant flying squirrel, red giant flying squirrel, Indian porcupine, etc. birds like white-backed vulture, greater spotted eagle, Nilgiri wood-pigeon, darters, oriental white ibis, red headed vulture, blue winged parakeet, Malabar grey hornbill, white bellied treepie, white cheeked barbet, Indian scimitar babbler, Malabar whistling thrush, painted bush quail, Sirkeer malkhoa, Indian robin, Indian peafowl, yellow legged green pigeon, etc. reptiles like vine snake, common wolf snake, rat snake, bamboo pit viper, Russell’s viper, common krait, Indian rock python, Indian monitor lizard, the common toad, etc and insects like ants, dung beetles etc. The Nagarahole National Park can be visited from 6:00 am to 6:00 pm and the tourists are taken inside the jungle in the safari vehicles run by the park. These safaris are closed during monsoon and during the mating seasons of the animals.
Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary
Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary located in the Somwarpet Taluka of Kodagu District in the state of Karnataka is a Wildlife Sanctuary set up in the year 1987 with an aim of providing shelter to some of the rare and endangered species of birds and animals of India. Functioning under the management of the Forest Department of Karnataka State, this Wildlife Sanctuary spread over an extensive area of 102 square kilometers is nominated as one of the essential ‘bird areas’ in the world. The Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary also comprises the Kadamakkal Reserve Forest and is flanked by the Bisle Reserve Forest and the Kukke Subramanya Forest. Kumaraparvatha and Pushpagiri are the two highest peaks located within the periphery of the Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary. The noteworthy fauna found in Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary includes Indian Giant Squirrel, Indian Wild Dog, Indian Hare, Brown Palm Civet, Sambar, Spotted Deer, Indian Muntjac, Asian Elephant, Gaur, Wild Pig, Stripe-Necked Mongoose, Mouse Deer etc. Presently, the Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is a proposed UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary
Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary nestled in the Western Ghats at the boundary of the Wyanad District of Kerala and the Kodagu District of Karnataka is located approximately 60 kilometers from Coorg and about 243 kilometers from Bangalore. This Wildlife Sanctuary derives its name from its highest geographical point - the Brahmagiri peak; which is about 1607 meters in its height. Mainly enveloped with evergreen and semi-evergreen forest, grasslands and shola forest patches, Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary is a conserved domicile of a large number of wildlife which consists of a great number of mammals, reptiles and birds. The mammals spotted in this sanctuary are: Tiger, Elephant, Lion-tailed Macaque, Bonnet Macaque, Nilgiri Langur, Common Langur, Leopard Cat, Jungle Cat, Gaur, Sloth Bear, Spotted Deer, Mouse Deer, Barking Deer, Sambar, Wild Dog, Wild Pig, Slender Loris, Malabar Giant Squirrel, Nilgiri Marten, Brown Mongoose, Common Otter, Civets, Pangolin, Porcupine, etc. The major birds sighted here are: Malabar Trogon, Black Bulbul and Emerald Dove while the foremost reptiles of the Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary include Cobra, King Cobra, Python, etc.
Talakaveri Wildlife Sanctuary
Talakaveri Wildlife Sanctuary located in the Kodagu District in the state of Karnataka and covering the total area of 105 square kilometers was established in the year 1987 under the governance of the Karnataka Forest Department. The most important species of flora found in the Talakaveri Wildlife Sanctuary include Artocarpus Lakoocha, Albizia Lebbeck, Mesua Ferrea' and Dysoxylum Malabaricum whereas the animals like tiger, elephant, mongoose, clawless otter, mouse deer and birds like Malabar Trogon, Broad Billed Roller and Fairy bluebird are spotted here.
Omkareshwara Temple of Madikeri, located right in the heart of the town was built in the Islamic and Gothic styles of architecture. Constructed around a central water tank by the King Lingarajendra in the year 1820, this temple dedicated to Lord Shiva bears an interesting legendary background. As the tale goes, the King Lingarajendra had murdered a truthful and virtuous Brahmin of his kingdom in the pursuit of certain political ambition. The victimized Brahmin after his death became a ‘Brahmarakshasa’ and started haunting the king. Frightened and worried King Lingarajendra consulted a wise man in this matter who advised the king to build a temple of Lord Shiva to purify himself off the sin of killing a Brahmin. The king immediately laid a temple and enshrined a Shiva Lingam brought from Kashi. This temple was named Omkareshwara Temple after the completion. Exceedingly frequented by the devotees of Lord Shiva, the Omkareshwara Temple of Madikeri is a leading pilgrim destination in the Kodagu District. The temple is particularly cram packed by the devotees during the Mahashivratri Festival.
Padi Iggutappa Temple
Padi Iggutappa Temple, located in Kakkabe approximately 40 kilometers from Coorg was also established by the King Lingarajendra in the year 1810. Suspended on a hammock, this shrine bears an extended stretch of steep stairs that link the temple to its base. Ornamented with the balpeetha at the entrance and on the ceiling, this temple is square in shape. The holy statue of Lord Iggutappa is placed on a panipeetha. Following the festival of Holi, a special procession is conducted in this temple wherein the idol of Lord Iggutappa is carried in a grand parade. The best time to pay a visit to the Padi Iggutappa Temple of Kakkabe is Kaliyarchi Festival; the annual temple festival celebrated with incomparable pomp and enthusiasm. The Padi Iggutappa Temple is open for the ‘Darshana’ of the devotees from 5:30 am to 2:00 pm and from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm every day.
St Anne's Church
St. Anne’s Church, built under the patronage of King Dodda Veerarajendra roughly 220 years back is an extraordinary paradigm of Gothic Architecture in India. As the chronicle suggests, the Christians residing at Mangalore were forcefully taken to Periapatna by Tipu Sultan and converted to Islam. Some of them succeeded in escaping and sought refuge at Virajpet. The King Dodda Veerarajendra apart from providing them a shelter also built a church in the year 1792. Decades later in 1868 AD, the earlier church was brought down and a new tabernacle was rebuilt at the same place in the Gothic Style. This church is known as the St. Anne’s Church. The tower of this ancient church has two gigantic bells and a brass lamp gifted by Dodda Veerarajendra is still kept in the premises of the church. This brass lamp known as ‘Kuthu Bolucha’ amongst the locals still bears the inscription ‘V’ in Kannada wherein V stands for Veerarajendra. Moreover, the lamp also bears the words ‘Nalaknad Aramane’. In addition to that, Dodda Veerarajendra had also gifted the church a gold crown and an ornamental brass box, but they are not reserved here anymore.
Dargah Sharif of Yemmemadu
Positioned at Yemmemadu near Napoklu in the Kodagu District, the Dargah Sharif of Yemmemadu is one of the most sacred pilgrim destinations of the people following Islam. This Dargah, i.e. the holy tomb was built in the consecrated memory of Hazrath Sufi Shaheed and Sayyed Hassan Sakaf Halramir. Both of these Muslim saints arrived from Persia approximately 366 years ago and settled in India preaching religion and virtue. They had devoted their entire life to help and serve the needy and poor. An annual festival is celebrated at the Dargah Sharif of Yemmemadu that continues for 8 days when an ‘Urs’ is organized here in the hallowed memory of these saints. Millions of devotees pay a visit to the Dargah Sharif of Yemmemadu during this period of the year. Women are not allowed an entry inside the Dargah. Due to this reason, separate arrangements are made where the ladies can offer their prayers to these Sufi Saints. The Dargah as well as the Urs Festival are managed by the Yemmemadu Tajul Islam Muslim Jamaat. An orphanage and an Arabic Madrassa are also run under the administration of the Dargah. The Dargah Sharif of Yemmemadu, stationed nearly 35 kilometers from Madikeri can be easily reached by state transport buses or private taxis.