Dabbaguli: A lesser known Sunday getaway near Bangalore - Be On The Road | Live your Travel Dream!

Sunday, June 09, 2019

Dabbaguli: A lesser known Sunday getaway near Bangalore

Dabbaguli - A great offroading getaway from Bangalore

Cometh the weekend and a lot of us wish to run away from the chaos and traffic of urban Bangalore. I certainly do and head deep into nature where the air is cleaner, the sounds are lower and the pace is slower. If you do too, you will definitely find this article very interesting.

In this time of social media, I am pretty sure most of you are aware of the main weekend trails that lead you out of Bangalore. This one is totally off-beat!

Riding deep into the Cauvery wildlife sanctuary

Imagine this…country roads past Kanakapura (an hour from Bangalore city provided there is little traffic) lead you into the unpaved paths of Cauvery wildlife sanctuary via Ragi, Mulberry, Peanut, Castor and other lush farm land and charming villages. An hour of off-roading takes you to the banks of the Cauvery river right inside this wildlife sanctuary. And once you are at your destination, giving you company are wild monkeys, rich birdlife and may be even some wild elephants.

Pit Stop next to the Cauvery at Dabbaguli

As a thumb rule, the forest department does not permit vehicles entering the fragile zones of a wildlife sanctuary, but located here is a temple called Hollakare Dabbagulleswara that is revered by the people of the surrounding villages and hence people are allowed to visit till this point. And it is this temple that lends its name to this offbeat destination, which is called Dabbaguli (or Dabbagauli), which is actually located in Tamil Nadu. While 99% of the route is in Karnataka, it is at the last few kilometers that you actually enter the state of Tamil Nadu.

An off road ride by the mulberry farms of rural Tamil Nadu

A trip to Dabbaguli is a lot of fun, especially if you are into countryside roads, nature and a little bit of off-roading. If you reach really early in the morning, you might come across a herd of wild elephants and even if you don’t, you and your group might be the only people here at Dabbaguli with the exception of the temple priest. The huge trees, the temple and the Cauvery riverside offer the perfect environment to relax after a rough down hill unpaved path. It is not advisable to get into the Cauvery here, but one can simply soak in the simple offerings of mother nature, which we all seem to be missing in our cities.

A rural Tamil Nadu countryside moment

If you have carried with you a picnic breakfast or lunch, do watch out for the monkeys and do remember to carry your trash back. Once you are done relaxing here and have sought the blessings of the lord at the temple here, head back the same way, but this time spending more time at the villages, admiring the old mud houses, having cheerful conversations with the villagers and exploring the rich farm land, whose produce varies with season.

Farmers taking their peanut harvest near Dabbaguli, Tamil Nadu

For me, these small villages are as important an experience as the destination Dabbagauli as it is these farmers who feed our bellies in Bangalore. Do feel free to explore any of the many farm ways, but do ensure you do not trespass and if you wish to enter private property, do check with the farmer, who in all probability would be working in his farm during the morning hours.

Ragi harvesting near Dabbaguli, Tamil Nadu

If you feel adventurous and have time at hand, you can head all the way to Shivanasamudra cross crossing such beautiful villages. And enroute, there will be popular tourist attractions such as Mekedatu, Mutathi, Bheemeshwari, Galibore, etc. Or you could head the other way and ride all the way to Hogenakkal Falls further downstream on the Cauvery. And you will find many other beautiful countryside on the way.

An off road motorcycling trip to the countryside near Cauvery wildlife sanctuary

Whatever your plan might be, Dabbaguli and this part of the Cauvery wildlife sanctuary and the surrounding villages will blow you away with their simplicity and originality. The pack all the ingredients for an absolutely amazing offbeat Sunday trip from Bangalore. While getting away from the chaos of Bangalore is the main incentive, this hidden gem offers way more than you have bargained. Do plan a ride here the next available Sunday you have and experience it for yourself.

Colorful countryside houses, Dabbaguli

Key words of wisdom:

1) Carry a puncture kit with you as there are no puncture shops in the vicinity

2) Carry some food and water with you at all times

3) Stay alert for wild elephants

4) Stay away from the Cauvery as she is known to swallow people from time to time

5) Carry all your trash back to Bangalore so that we let this place remain pure for the years to come

A Cauvery Riverside pitstop at Dabbaguli

How to get there (route map):

Bangalore –> Kanakapura –> Kodi Halli –> Hunasanahalli (if you opt for the good roads, else you can bypass this location) –> Bannimukkodlu –> Mugguru –> Manchukondapalli –> Dabbaguli (Dabbagauli) on the Dabbagauli – Kottaiyur road in Tamil Nadu. The last stop would be Hollakare Dabbagulleswara temple located by the banks of the Cauvery river.

Rough distance:

110 to 120 kms. The last 15 kms would be unpaved roads.

Entry Timings:

As this place falls under the Cauvery wildlife sanctuary, the forest gate opens only at 8 AM and closes at 5 PM. There are no entry fees, though the person at the forest check post might note down your personal and vehicle details for his records.

Where to eat:

Most restaurants and shops are present only till Kanakapura. Once you turn into the village roads, you will not get anything more than a glass of water, a cup of tea and some packaged local biscuits. For breakfast or lunch plans, I would recommend Kanakapura city. Do ensure that you carry water and some biscuits with you just in case you get delayed.

Off-roading to Dabbaguli, Tamil Nadu

Nearby Tourist Attractions:

1) Mekadatu and Sangama: A narrow gorge after the confluence of Arkavathi with river Cauvery

2) Bheemeshwari and Galibore Fishing Camps: Stunning riverside fishing camps

3) Gaganachhukki and Barachukki Falls: Two mighty waterfalls on the Cauvery in Karnataka

4) Hogenakkal Falls: A wide array of waterfalls on the Karnataka – Tamil Nadu border

5) Talakad: Subterranean temples from the past

6) Somnathpur Chenna Keshava temple: Well preserved 12th century Hoysala era temple

7) Muthathi: Temple and nature reserve by the river Cauvery

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