Sathodi Falls: Karnataka’s Prettiest Jungle Waterfall - Be On The Road | Live your Travel Dream!

Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Sathodi Falls: Karnataka’s Prettiest Jungle Waterfall

Sathodi Falls - the pretty jungle waterfall of Karnataka

It is as pristine a location as it can be. The untouched forests of the Sahyadri mountain range of the Western Ghats form the background. And the massive backwaters of the Kali river forms your entry point. Somewhere in these mountains and forests start several small streams that join together to form Karnataka’s prettiest jungle waterfall.

This waterfall, about 50 feet tall, is called the Sathoddi falls and it is one of the more beautiful waterfalls in the waterfall district of Uttara Kannada in Karnataka. Starting near Kallaramane ghat, the gorgeous Sathodi falls flows into the backwaters of the Kodasalli dam, into the Kali river. Every bit of the waterfall’s journey is scenic and untouched and we can experience it’s journey from the time it tumbles as a waterfall to the time it joins the Kodasalli reservoir.

Photographing the beautiful Sathodi waterfall

A trip to Sathodi falls is not just about the waterfall, but about the entire journey. Once you turn off the Yellapur – Dandeli highway, pretty little plantation villages greet you before the rickety-rackety roads morph into jungle roads with tall trees and dense foliage. As you wind your way through these roads and curse their extremely poor quality, you cannot stop but admire the sounds and visual charms of mother nature here. As you keep admiring nature’s beauty, the forests give way to a stunningly blue water body with extremely comfortable concrete roads to its side.

Sathodi Falls - The prettiest jungle waterfall of Karnataka

This blue water body is the Kodasalli reservoir and thanks to the concrete roads, the experience from here becomes way more superior. Pretty soon, you reach the parking spot and the ticket counter of Sathodi falls and from here you travel the last kilometre on foot. Colorful butterflies, a wide variety of flora, giant squirrels, macaques and many other birds, insects and animals give you company during your walk. To me personally, the highlight of this 1 km walk has to be the millions of butterflies that throng this forest and keep fluttering from one branch to another.

The pristine jungle dirt track that connects Yellapur with Sathodi Falls

While you are mesmerized with the wild charms of nature, you hear a faint roar that keeps getting louder as you walk forward. Pretty soon, you see the cause of this roar and it is like love at first sight. Surrounded by tall mountains on one side and dense green jungle on the other, the Sathodi waterfall falls gracefully into a pool of azure. This single step waterfall, which falls gracefully during the non-monsoon season can don a very rough look during the rains. As I had gone right after the heavy monsoon rains of 2019, I could see the trail of destruction it had left behind in terms of broken tree branches, broken bridges, etc. Keeping the destruction aside, Sathodi Falls is as peaceful a location as it can be.

The first view of the Sathodi waterfall upon completing the trail

It’s herbal waters, its gentle roar, its forested surroundings and its short journey to the Kali river is a must-experience for all nature and waterfall lovers. This waterfall holiday in Uttara Kannada is not just any waterfall holiday, but one that is offbeat, untouched, a butterfly haven and one of Karnataka state’s prettiest jungle waterfall. Do visit it on your next trip to Uttara Kannada and let me know your experience in the comments below.

Families enjoying a waterfall holiday at Sathodi Falls

How to reach there:

It is best to have your own mode of transportation to reach Sathodi falls. Either a jeep or motorcycles are recommended as roads are in pretty poor condition from Yellapur to Sathodi. Sedans and other cars with low ground clearance are strictly not recommended.

The route from Yellapur to Sathodi Falls is as follows. Head north from Yellapur on the Yellapur – Dandeli road. About 2 kms from Yellapur and after crossing the Kalamatha temple, there is a road to the left leading towards Shivapura hanging bridge and Sathodi falls. The road winds and turns via Angod and Dehalli villages before heading towards Shivapura hanging bridge and Sathodi Falls. There are boards at most intersections pointing you in the right direction. The total distance from Yellapur to Sathodi falls is about 25 kms.

Sathodi Falls - one of the prettiest waterfalls of Karnataka

Best season to visit:

The monsoon and post monsoon season are the best times to visit this waterfall as that is when the waterfall is in full flow and the surrounding nature is lush and in abundance. Summers can be dry and a bit too warm. Winters are also a decent time to visit this waterfall though water flow might be a bit lower.

A myriad of greens and blues at Sathodi Falls, Uttara Kannada, Karnataka

Where to eat:

There is a small hotel near the Sathodi falls parking lot where basic meals are available, but one has to order in advance.

For a much wider range of food options and good quality restaurants, head to Yellapur, about 25 kms away. Hotel Shanbag and Hotel Indraprastha are two good options. Locals seem to throng to hotel Shanbag.

Entering the final destination on the Sathodi waterfall trekking trail

Where to stay:

The nearest place to stay would be Sathodi forest homestay about 10 kms away, but accommodation is usually basic. There are many other such homestays in the Sirsi – Yellapur region that offers a beautiful mix of traditional hospitality with great locations and delicious food.

If you prefer city hotels, opt for hotels in either Yellapur  (25 kms away) or Sirsi (85 kms away).

For luxurious stay options, look up properties at Yellapur, Dandeli, Ramanguli, Karwar and Gokarna.

Other nearby tourist attractions:

1) Shivapura hanging bridge – a suspension bridge that straddles the Kali river and that allows motorcycles to pass through

2) Kodasalli reservoir – a beautiful water body surrounded by the pristine Sahyadri mountains of the Western Ghats

3) Magod Falls – one of the most magnificent waterfalls in Uttara Kannada

4) Yana rocks and caves – massive limestone karsts that stand in the middle of dense greenery

5) Vibhooti Falls – a beautiful forest waterfall with its own natural swimming pool

6) Winding forest roads of the Artibail ghats

7) Dandeli – famous for river rafting on the Kali river, its tribes and its common great hornbill sightings

8) Anshi National Park – famous for sightings of the elusive rare panther

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