Shivanasamudra is probably the largest waterfall in the region after Jog Falls. The place is also credited for hosting the first hydroelectric project in India. Here, Kaveri splits into two, falls into a valley in two separate places called Gaganachukki and Bharachukki and re-unites downstream. A good lot of water falls down from both the waterfalls. Gaganachukki especially is a steep fall where water gushes down with great velocity. The two waterfalls are around a 15-minute drive apart and make beautiful picnic locations.
- Asia's oldest power station setup in 1908
The Kaveri river makes a sharp bend, on the left banks at this turn is the Talakad, also known as Talakadu. It is 45 km from Mysore and 185 km from Bangalore in Karnataka, India. A historic site, and archeological importance is that Talakad once had over 30 temples that today are buried in sand. Not only spiritual pilgrimage center but is a scenic beauty with vast spreads of sand.
The illustrious and powerful Western Gangas ruled from 350 to 1050 AD until they were overthrown by the Cholas in the 11th century. Talakad came under the Hoysala Empire in the 12th century. The Hoysala ruler built the impressive Vijayanarayana Chennakesava Temple at Belur. Subsequently, after the Hoysalas, the powerful Vijayanagara Kingdom rulers and the Maharajas of Mysore ruled the place.
The temples were submerged in sand. Among the temples of Talakad, the five Lingams believed to represent the five faces of Shiva form the Pancha Pathi are famous. They are Pathaleshwara, Maruleshwara, Arkeshwara, Vaidyanathee-shwara and Mallikarjuna temples. As a tribute to these five Shiva temples, a festival is held once every 12 years called Panchalinga Darshana, last held in 2006.
Doddamakali Camp is situated 6km upstream from Bheemeshwari. This place is as remote, rugged and as primitive as any place could be. Hugging the River Cauvery, the Camp is absolutely protected and riparian-sylvan in solitude and great for bird sightings. This place is an ideal locale for corporate team building and out outdoor exercises. This camp is 140 km from Bangalore via Kanakapura & Malavalli.
The ancient and sacred temple of Sri Male Mahadeshwara is located in South end of India, that is, it belongs to Chamaraja Nagar District, Karnataka State in India. It is a very popular & holy ancient temple, surrounded by 77 hills in the Eastern Ghats. The Lord Sri Mahadeshwara is believed to be the incarnation of Lord Shiva. It is a very famous Shaiva piligrim centre. The Lord Sri Mahadeshwara's miracles are beautifully sung by the village folk in Janapada Style. The height of the hill is about 3000 feet from the sea level. About 600 years ago, Sri Mahadeshwara Swamy came here to perform penance & it is believed that he is still performing penance in the temple's Garbha Gudi in the form of Linga. The Linga, worshiping now in the Garbha Gudi is a self developed one. Sri Male Mahadeshwara Swamy was moving on a tiger known as Huli Vahana (Tiger as a vehicle) & performed a number of miracles around the hills to save the people & saints living there.
South Indian states Karnataka and Tamilnadu border with famous historic town Mysore and Ooty hill station highway where the Deccan Plateau rises to meet the wrinkled folds of the Western Ghat Mountains and the Nilgiri Mountains. Between these two lies the famous and thrilling forest, Bandipur National Park.
Kabini is one of the most popular wildlife destinations of Karnataka, probably because of its easy accessibility, lush green landscape surrounding a large picturesque lake, and fantastic sightings of large herds of elephants. It is 80 km away from Mysore and 205 km from Bangalore, and comprises the south-eastern part of Nagarole National Park. Situated on the banks of River Kabini, this forest reserve is spread over 55 acres of forestland, steep valleys, and water bodies. Once a private hunting lodge of the Maharaja of Mysore, Kabini was a popular shikar hotspot for British Viceroys and Indian royalty. Now it is considered to be one of the best wildlife sanctuaries in Karnataka, famous for its spectacular wildlife and bird life.
Situated in the southern part of the Deccan Plateau, Mysore District is an undulating tableland, covered in parts by granite outcrops and fringed by verdant forests. From ancient times, this district has played a significant role in the history of South India. Mysore District is a popular tourist destination, offering several attractions ranging from the royal splendour of Mysore City and its fabulous Dasara Festival to exquisite temples, pilgrimage centres and scenic spots
Mysore city is at 770m above sea level and 140 kms from Bangalore. Also known as the City of Palaces, Mysore retains a quaint charm, that never fails to enchant.
Mysore was the capital of the Wodeyar dynasty, feudatories of the Vijayanagar Empire, who declared their independence in the 16th century and ruled in Mysore until independence, barring three decades when Haider Ali and his son Tipu Sultan wrested power from them. Mysore today, is a pleasant city with an old world charm, contributed by its broad shady avenues, well laid out gardens, fine buildings and a salubrious climate.
Located at about 140 kilometers from Bangalore and 15 kilometers from Mysore, Srirangapatnam is the biggest of the three islands in the river Kaveri. The island, five kilometers long and two kilometers wide, derives its name from the deity of the temple located on its western side.
The island has something for everyone. For those who are turned on by history, there are many monuments here spanning a thousand years. All the major dynasties of the South have left their relics and monuments here-the Hoysalas of the 11th century, the Vijayanagar kings of Chandragiri in the 17th century, the Hyder Ali-Tipu Sultan clan that came after them, and finally, the French and the British.
Pandavpura was named after the Pandavas. Myth has it that the Pandavas had halted in this town for some time during their exile. Mother Kunti of Pandavas liked the hillock and she made it her favourite getaway.
During India's pre-independence period the town was named as French Rocks. The town is located in the locality of two rocky hills.
Pandavapura town is encircled by attractive paddy and sugar cane fields. Agriculture is the chief business of the town. Other than agricultural products, one can also find handiworks and ayurvedic products.
Ranganthittu is located near the historic town of Srirangapatna at a distance of about 18kms from Mysore. It is a very small sanctuary, being only 0.67 km sq. in area, and comprises six islets on the banks of the Kaveri River.
Ranganthittu was formed as a result of a small dam across the river Cauvery in the 1600s. The Bird Sanctuary at Ranganathittu owes its existence to the world famous ornithologist Dr. Salim Ali who convinced the Maharaja of Mysore in 1940 to declare Ranganthittu as a protected area. Though not very large, it is home to a great variety of birds and a few reptiles. It is said that the sanctuary is a sight to behold during the nesting season of the birds from June to November. The sanctuary is home to a wide species of birds including cormorants, darters, white ibis, spoon billed storks, open billed storks, painted storks, white necked storks, egrets, herons, terns, swallows, kingfishers, sandpiper etc. There are a few mammals in the sanctuary like fruit bats, bonnet macaques, palm civets, common mongoose and common otters. Marsh crocodiles make up the reptile population of the sanctuary.
Sometimes, you must be blessed to be deceived. The gliding white objects in the background of clear blue skies in Kokkarebelluru will often be construed as a pack of snagged cotton flying aimlessly in the sky.
But those objects are something much more beautiful and livelier; they are storks which visit this tiny village on the Bangalore Mysore highway every year, much to the excitement of nature lovers. Kokkarebelluru is not an official bird sanctuary, but wild things don't live by rules! Every year, countless groups of trilling spot billed pelicans make an unannounced entrance in Kokkarebelluru, leaving as quietly as they had come after the season is over. Rules still do not apply for some living beings!
Sangam is the confluence of Rivers Kaveri (Cauvery) and Arkavathi. One more nice picnic spot along Kanakapura Road (NH209) formed around River Kaveri, it can be reached by taking a 33km deviation to the left, soon after Kanakapura, along NH209. A big arch is placed there to tell you the route.
About 16kms from Kanakapura you will reach a junction, to the right of which is Cauvery fishing camp. Go straight for Sangam. The last five kms to Sangam is an enjoyable drive through the ghat roads, with picturesque hills all around you. Water is not so deep at Sangam and is very clean, in spite of the huge crowd generally found here. But the surroundings is filled with litter and plastic. Its a pitty that a place like this is not kept clean.
After its confluence with River Arkavathi at Sangam, Kaveri flows through a deep gorge at Mekedatu. The gorge is deep and a maximum 30ft wide at places. Some other sections, the rock almost bridges the river so that a goat can leap across. Hence the name, Meke(Goat)Datu(Leap). A lot of strange looking rock formations and deep holes can be found here. To go to Mekedatu, one has to come to Sangam, cross the river and travel another 4 kms through a jeep track through the Cauvery Wild Life Sanctuary or along the Kaveri (Cauvery) river.
The area is covered by hills on all sides and its very unlikely that you can spot wild life here. A special bus ply between these two places almost every hour. Walking along the river is a very good option, but not so adviced for families, since there is usually a lot of crowd and booze parties along this river route. And not to mention the huge amount of litter and cow/human dung.