Make plans to make the most of your weekends and take a break from the hustle and bustle of city life! The best bet is that you can drive to most of these destinations.
Bangalore or Bengaluru, the capital of the southern state Karnataka is a boisterous city—which offers great career opportunities for those in IT (it’s after all called as the ‘silicon valley of India’) and has an amazing night life scene with great watering holes and clubs. However, the same work-all-week and party-all-weekend can get a little boring after a while. For those occasions, plan a trip to these nearby gems with your family, friends or partner!
Kodagu is rejuvenation guaranteed! You’ll have to book a trip to this wonderfully luscious region in the southernmost edge of Karnataka (bordering Kerala) to believe it! Hugged by evergreen hills, Coorg or Kodagu is blessed with emerald landscapes, acres of coffee and spice plantations and cooler weather. It’s great for trekking, birdwatching and even firefly watching (mid-March to mid-April).
Getting there: The 265 km drive can be covered in a little over five hours from the city.
If you want to spend a few days amidst magnificent monuments and royal heritage, head to Mysore! The World-Heritage-listed Mysore Palace is the main draw, but there’s so much more to discover in its famed bazaar street. It’s also greener than most cities and Brindavan Gardens are a must-visit during the evenings. You could also sign up for Ashtanga Yoga lessons from acclaimed schools—which attract many international visitors. Lastly, don’t forget to try some Mysore Pak—a decadent, ghee-soaked Indian dessert from one of the country’s most enchanting southern cities.
Getting there: Mysore is just a three-hour drive from Bangalore.
Once a private hunting reserve for the Maharaja of Mysore, Kabini today, has some of the top wildlife resorts in southern India. Kabini is a wildlife destination which has the largest population of Asiatic Elephants in the world! If you want your weekend getaway to be one with nature, a trip here would be THE perfect choice. One of the main attractions here is the Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary. You can get on a boat on the Kabini River to enjoy the scenic beauty all around you. West of the Kabini River is the 643-sq-km wildlife sanctuary of Nagarhole National Park. The lush forests here are home to tigers, leopards, elephants, gaurs, barking deer, wild dogs and common langurs, and some 270 bird species. The best time to view wildlife is during summer (April to May), though winter (November to February) is more comfortable.
Getting there: Kabini is roughly 245 kms from the city and can be reached in five hours.
One of Karnataka’s most beautiful hill stations, Chikmagalur is situated in the foothills of the Mullayanagiri Range. It has a lot of coffee plantations—so the air is always heady with the fragrance of coffee! Famous for its tall mountains, lush green forests, and its tranquil surroundings—Chikmagalur is a quick retreat for city dwellers throughout the year.
Getting there: The 243 kms can be covered in under four-and-a-half hours.
A short drive from Bangalore, Ramanagara is for adventure seekers and campers. There are many campsites that offer night camps under the star-lit skies. Day camps at Sholay Hills (famous thanks to the cult-classic Bollywood film Sholay, in which Gabbar used the hills as his hideout) are also popular. You can also head to Channapatna—a quaint town known for its wooden toys. It’s also a prominent region for growing grapes, and vineyards like Sula are open for visitors.
You can drive down to Nandi Hills for a day trip or visit strawberry farms in the outskirts of Bangalore as well. Check for any long weekends in the calendar and head to these destinations for a quick, and relaxing getaway.
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