Tales of tigers stalking plantations, verdant mist-shrouded landscapes, homes with shingled roofs dotting the countryside and a spicy table laid with unique dishes – if Coorg were to be summed up this would probably be a good way to describe the place. The land of the Kodava has fascinated the people of Bangalore for generations and it is one of the preferred road trip destinations – for all the right reasons.
Bangalore to Coorg by car is a journey of epic proportions. Via the NH75 it is around 270 kms. The flats of the high plateau slowly give way to undulating landscapes. Suddenly one is no longer flanked by farmland and highway towns. Once the cultural hub of Mysore is crossed, the hills looming on the horizon get closer, their undefined grey slowly changing into thick green forests. And then the road rises, it starts looping and twisting and Coorg begins.
The Many Attractions of Coorg
There are several attractions on the way. Bylakuppe is a recommended stop. This is home to one of the largest Tibetan communities in the world. The sight of oriental pagoda-style monasteries in the middle of South India’s forests is indeed surreal, but a beautiful one no doubt.
The town of Madikeri is where most people like to stop. It is a busy hub where one can step into some of the local eateries and bars and soak in the local vibe. They love their pork in Coorg – authentic pandi curry is a favourite for foodies who travel here. They also love their rum in Coorg – so one should be prepared to down a few while exploring the local watering holes.
Coorg is also home to the Nagarhole National Park. This is one of the most pristine wilderness areas in India. Famous residents include the aforementioned tiger, Asiatic elephants, leopards, Indian wild dogs and other rare endemic species.
Travel in Comfort and Style
To undertake such a vivid journey, a self drive car is recommended. Travellers have complete privacy and they can afford to make impromptu detours and stops. After all, Coorg is a land of surprises, so rigid itineraries are not the way to go.
App-based rentals like Zoomcar are becoming a favourite for well-informed travellers. Highlights include affordable plans, a wide range of hatchbacks, sedans and SUVs, and 24/7 on-road support offers much-appreciated convenience and security.
Apart from Coorg, there are many other mountain trips one can enjoy in Karnataka. Bangalore to Chikmagalur by car is another enjoyable affair. The streams, valleys, waterfalls and peaks of the Western Ghats will always provide a spectacular experience. Get the best seat, behind the wheel, and enjoy this grand theatre up close.