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A trip to Nandi Hills

  • Submitted by: Dr. Jagannatha Rao, India
  • Submission Date: 18th Jul 2009

A Trip to Nandi hills India is full of soul soothing and invigorating places and one can get rejuvenated even with a short stay in such places.

One such place is Nandi hills near Bangalore.

It is about 1470 meters above MSL. Our hopes of visiting Shri Amarnath cave dashed, as the Shiva lingam melted away. My wife and I were just looking for some place to be away from the maddening crowds and city ‘s chaotic environs. A hill station in rainy season! This was our theme. we have decided to visit Nandi hills. As it was becoming difficult to get the contact nos. and details of accommodation at Nandi hills we have decided to take a chance, as it was mid of the week and also supposed to be off season. But it is better to book in advance.

We have reserved our train ticket by Hyderabad Bangalore express to and fro to the nearest Railway station Doddaballapur, on the Hyderabad –Bangalore route. From here Nandi hills is about 27 km.

We reached Nandi hills on 30th July, 2008 around 4 pm and were welcomed by a heavy down pour and got totally drenched. As we got down from the bus we were told that the resort run by horticulture department (as well as Mayura pine top hotel run by KSTDC) is a kilometer away and need to be trekked.

We managed a double room in the horticulture guest house, known as Nehru Nilaya In Nehru Nilaya we got good food but no restaurant. We settled down in the room which was fairly good but can be made better with little attention. It was already dark. Though the rain had stopped it was still drizzling a bit and mist has engulfed the hills almost fully. The weather was inviting. I went out and brought some soft drinks and dry snacks to accompany the evening session. Lack of bar cum restaurant did not bother us any more. Room service helped us by providing the meals late in the night around 9.30 pm as generally the dining session closes by 8.30 pm or so.

We were woken up by the chirping birds and mild fragrance of the fresh blossoms. Even though it was morning 8am , Sun was hiding some where with mist hanging all around. A walk through the gardens and around the hill even for 4 hours was not tiring. An array of wild flowers, the sobering healthy breeze across all but filled us with new energy. It was pure relaxation and we spent time watching the nature in its entire splendor. Weather here also is not so predictable, like any other similar hill station. Another day of rest.

During this part of the season it rains in the morning and also during evenings. Total rain fall is about 150 cm in a year. Spell is for about half an hour or so. The lush greenery around with tall trees and shrubs continue to give the feeling of rain even much after the rain has stopped. Food here is reasonable and value for money.

There are some places to visit such as yoga Nandeeswara temple, Nellikai (amla in Hindi) Basavanna. These hills are source for many rivers such as Pennar, Palaar, Chitravati etc. But this place is recommended more for relaxing and enjoying the nature than for any pilgrimage or tourist attraction.

Now it is time for return journey full of energy and looking forward to another place of interest some time later. It was just a coincidence that we shared our exhilarating experience to a TV channel (TV9 Kannada and another Kannada channel, not sure ,could be Survarna channel) as we descended to catch a bus. We took the return train in the evening to be back in Hyderabad early morning next day and get back to our routine

Reservations can be done at Bangalore Lalbagh Horiticulture department office (phone no. 080 - 26573667) or at Badami house, Karnataka tourism office at Bangalore (phone no. 080 - 22352785). One can contact the Nandi hills offices and check for accommodation availability, but it cannot be reserved. Phone nos are Mayura pine top 08156 250906 and for horticulture guest house 08156 250801 . But for these two there are no other resorts available except a PWD guest house. The total capacity is limited to about 35 rooms all put together. So it is preferable to plan in advance.

Peak period is during summer months of April, May and June. Weekends are totally booked due to rush from Bangalore. There are more buses in the morning from Doddaballapur and Chikkaballapur between 9 and 11am .

Another way is to catch a bus to Hill cross roads, between Doddaballapur –Chikkaballapur bus route and from the cross roads one can get another bus or a jeep to drop you at the hill top, about 8 km away Horticulture guest house has 4 types of accommodation double room with attached bath ( Rs 260 per day), VIP cottage (Rs 550/-), independent family cottage (Rs. 550/-) and a VVIP lounge (1060/-).

Cottages are a bit away from the main building and room service is a problem with very lazy room service . VVIP lounge , there are only four suites and is recommended for its good view and spacious environs. This generally is booked at Bangalore, but can be given at resort subject to availability. Mayura pine top has a decent double room accommodation with good view