When my husband got transferred to Bangalore last year, we learned that there are number of places to visit near Bangalore and Coorg is one of the most sought after among them. So, as soon as we got settled, we started hatching our next traveling plan – Trip to Coorg from Bangalore. Even before the plan was finalized, we were joined by my brother-in-law and one of our cousins, making it the craziest family trip so far.
In this blog, I am sharing my fondest memories of Kodagu, along with some useful tips on how to plan a 3-day Trip to Coorg (Assuming you are already in Coorg) for 4 people.
Coorg- The Scotland of India
Talk about the most picturesque destinations of South India, and Coorg or Kodagu region finds place among the top contenders. Aptly nicknamed “Scotland of India”, the region is popular not just for its breathtaking natural beauty but also for its coffee, honey, spices, dry fruits, wines, and local jewelry called Kokkethathi.
Our 3-day Itinerary:
|§ Reached Coorg from Bangalore at around 12:00 pm.
§ Checked in a hotel at Gonikopal.
§ After having lunch at the same hotel, we set out to Iruppu Falls, where we spent quality time in the waters.
§ Returned to hotel around 6:00 pm.
§ Took a stroll in the local market after dinner.
|§ Check out our hotel at Gonikopal. Set out for Madikeri.
§ Check-in at our homestay.
§ Set out for day’s sightseeing.
§ Places visited:
o Abbey Falls
o Raja’s Seat
o Madikeri Fort
|§ Check-out from homestay.
§ On our return visited:
o Namdroling Monastery
o Nisargadhama Forest Park
Tips to Make a Cost-Effective Plan to Explore Coorg in Best Possible Way
Now, here is the most interesting part- how to keep your expenses under thumb? Well, in the box below are the key-takeaways followed by detail discussion of each point.
Pick the places that are in proximity:
Coorg is a widespread region. There are a number of sights to explore and get enchanted. However, if you are tight on your schedule and budget both, it’s better to decide which places you would like to visit the most. This saves a lot on conveyance.
Nestled among the lush green forest, Abbey Falls casts a spell with it sprinkling waters. The aroma of woods around makes it an idyll. The only thing we wished was to touch that gushing fall and feel it’s energy, but accessing the falls is not allowed. The area is well-secured with grill-fencing and you can admire the Abbey from a distance only. Abbey Falls is a major attraction in Madikeri and a must-visit place. With Abbey Falls, you can join Mandalpatti, Raja’s seat and Madikeri Fort in your visiting list of the day.
Save certain amount in your budget as Miscellaneous/Buffer:
At times, there awaits a surprise in your traveling plan. It is always good to add some extra moolah as buffer in your trip’s budget. This buffer can be used if needed anywhere later while traveling.
Mandalpatti was not part of our plan. It was our chauffeur, who suggested to visit it for the best view of Kodagu. I am thankful to him for suggesting this place to us. First, it was the breathtaking off-road Jeep journey (not for faint-heart people at all) and then this marvelous view from the top that made our day. You have basic facilities at Mandalpatti, but no staying options. Also, as the road (or no road at all) to Mandalpatti is under construction, you will have to hire a Jeep (do not forget to bargain) or a two-wheeler to make it to the top. Keeping a buffer in our budget helped us a lot.
Choose your locality of accommodation according to the places you wish to visit:
While researching the places to visit in Coorg, we found that the spots are at distances from each other and most of our time would go in covering the distances itself. In addition, the fares to cover these distances was making no sense to us. Hence, we divided our accommodation according to the places we wanted to see. This helped us save on time and money both.
Iruppu Falls was on the top of our list, as we wanted to feel the waters of the fall. It is one of the waterfalls in Coorg where going in the falls is allowed, otherwise bathing is banned at few other falls. So, we booked one of our accommodations in Gonikopal. Iruppu Falls is just 30 km from here and traveling to this place is much more convenient from Gonikopal. In addition, Gonikopal also offers you the best coffee plantations sights. On our second day, we stayed in Madikeri as visiting other spots was easy from there.
The popular localities to book decent accommodation in Coorg are Madikeri, Virajpet, and Kushalnagar. Apart from these localities, once can also stay near Bus Stand to access good connectivity to outstations, Gonikopal to enjoy the aromatic coffee plantations and Stuart Hill, which offers enigmatic views of the Western Ghats lush greenery.
Go for Homestays:
The culture of homestays has grown a lot in recent years. Undeniably, homestays are comparatively cheap than hotels/resorts and make you feel at home instantly. At least, this is what I experienced with my stay at Avyukta. The homely vibe took away all our day’s tiredness.
The one thing, which I would like to mention as one of my best traveling experiences so far was to learn the traditional method of cooking from our cooks at the homestay. Coorg is already famous for its spices, but it was here that I learned the art of using spices to make dishes more aromatic and delectable.
Almost every locality in Kodagu has some good homestays. However, before you book a homestay, check out its reviews and ratings at Google and other booking platforms. Make sure that it lies in a safe and residential region, if you are traveling the area for the first and are not well-aware of the place.
Breakdown of our major expenses in detail:
Hotel Prakash International for 1 Night-2 Rooms- 4 Guests)- 1000 INR
Avyukta Homestay for 1 Night-2 Rooms- 4 Guests- 1200 INR (Included Breakfast)
Taxi for 2 days- 2400 INR
Additional Charges Off-road Jeep to Mandalpatti- 1500 INR
One Time Average 400-500 INR for 4 People
- Abbey Falls- 15 INR/person |10-50 INR for vehicle parking (depends on the type of vehicle)
- Iruppu Falls- 50 INR/ person| 20 INR for vehicle parking
- Mandalpatti- 25 INR/person
- Nisarghadhama Forest Park- Entry Fee – 10 INR/Adult
Boating inside the park- 50 INR/Person
Elephant Ride- 25 INR/ Person
5. Miscellaneous/Buffer- 500 INR/person (This was actually used to hire Jeep to Mandalpatti)
Trip to Coorg from Bangalore can be one of those trips where your budget remains in your hand. You can wind-up the region at the most economical rate if you wish to or make it a leisure holiday destination- it all depends on how much you are willing to spend. I feel traveling on a budget offers a crude experience of the destination. It allows one to explore the maximum and become one with the place and its people.