Karnataka’s Coorg or as we know it as the Coffee Land of India, tops the list of the best offbeat vacation places in the country! The green hills, perpetually soothing weather, woody forests and hills of supple undergrowth, sunlight forming a canopy on the bushy paths of Arabica and Robusta coffee plantations, ripe cherries plummeting on every corner, an array of silver oak and rosewood trees all around the locality and an overwhelmingly warm and nutty aroma of every roastery roasting their precious beans, excellent wildlife, the ancient Karnatic heritage and culture is what makes the for the magic Coorg.
In terms of locations, there are endless places like the Irruppu waterfall, Namdroling Monastery, Omkareshwara temple, Talakaveri, Raja’s Seat. The Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, Mallalli waterfalls, Chettalli, Tadiandamol Peak, rivers like Barapole, Harangi, the entire Somwarpet range, Dubare Camp, Chelavara waterfalls and more.
However, when in Coorg, making a list of things to do would actually help you with creating an unforgettable trip!
Bathe Elephants at the Dubare Elephant Camp
Located at Kushalnagar, this is one of the most authentic and iconic experiences to relish in Coorg. Camping with the elephants comes with a bare minimum cost of approximately 700 rs. This is one of the most active animal shelters in the entire Madikeri area. Exceptional care is taken to take care of these animals as well as create a bond between them and the tourists. It is located just by the riverside, where the mystic elephants stand. Bathe these loving creatures, take as many pictures as you can and make memories for a lifetime here at Coorg.
Go for Trekking on Coorgi Hills
While at Coorg, it would be a major loss to miss out on the mountains. And what better way to discover them than by walking through them! With perfect climates and hills ranging in perfect altitudes, these hills are perfect for mountaineering sports for all ages! From amateurs to trekking experts, there are routes for all. The entire Western Ghats range here is used for trekking to reach gorgeous hill tops and witness amber sunsets with lush forests all around. Choose famous locations like Tadiandamol, Kodachadri, Kumara Parvatha, Mullayanagiri, and Brahmagiri, connect to the trekking experts there, go for stargazing and let the landscape of Coorg amaze you thoroughly!
Coffee tasting among endless greenery
Those nature walks are actually blissful and prove to be of great use! With costs as low as 200 rupees this is a blessing exclusive to Coorg. India’s Coffee Land stays incomplete if you do not take one of the nature walks. There are ample plantations that even allow tourists to do the coffee cherry handpicking for them. Yes, you get to pick ripe coffee cherries with your own hands and later witness the whole farm-to-cup journey of south Indian coffee. It is quite the treat for coffee aficionados and tourists generally.
Camping by riverside jungles
Over the past few years, camping in Coorg has become a viral spot of beauty in all social media platforms. With the millennial and Gen-z wanting to escape and unplug in the woods while not feeling totally detached, camping in Coorg has become a hotspot. Just set up your tent, take a book you love, your warm cup of South Indian Filter coffee and experience bliss in the middle of mellow forest fires and camp mates. Sounds like quite the adventure! Stargazing is also a popular and surreal experience at Coorg. After a happening and hectic day, at night, you can look up at the clean, pollution free Coorgi sky and find your constellations.
Indulge in traditional Coorgi cuisine
A mixture of traditional Karnatic cuisines, Coorgi cuisine is already pretty famous in India when it comes to savouries, pickles etc. Hence, keeping an entire day packed for a food tour is not a bad idea! Coorgi cuisines focus on meats, forest produces, rice, and rice based staples. It is a must for one to try the local cuisines like pork curry or pandi curry with Kadambuttu or steamed rice balls, Noolputtu or string hoppers with chicken or mutton curry, local gourds and pumpkins with akki roti. The heritage style of eating and refreshing flavors provide a a breath of fresh air.
Heaven on Coorg at the Home-stays
The brilliance of Coorg is only outshined by the Kodagu hospitality. With prices starting from as low as 600 rupees, these home stays are also often located amidst the coffee plantations. Often, tours and workshops like wine tasting workshop, coffee tasting workshop etc. make for a truly memorable and enticing treat here. If you are lucky, you might also get to see a traditional Kodagu wedding, which is one of the finest treasures of the culture. These home stays offer traditional Coorgi cuisine, walking and sightseeing tours around the soft hills and moors.
Take a holy dip at Talacauvery
This is one of the traditional places of Coorg. Talacauvery marks the beginning of the famous Kaveri River in Coorg. This river is considered holy by numerous South Indians and people go to plant their wishes here. Take a holy bath at the origin of the river with many other pilgrims and cherish the spirituality of Coorg. The location is considered to be a spot for the Goddess Kauvery. Right now, Coorg’s Talacauvery becomes a famous hub for people during cultural and religious festivals like the Tulasankaramma festival.
A taste of Tibetan Culture in Coorg
There are several temples in Coorg already, which you can visit to see the hybrid of culture and religion. The Golden Temple however, is simply eye catching. Coorg is recorded to be the only area in Southern India with a Tibetan community thriving here. Take a trip to the Namdroling Tibetan monastery and be a part of the quiet and humbling Tibetan culture and rituals. You can visit the Bylakupe region. Taking your children is not a bad idea either as it introduces them to new cultures. End the trip with mouth watering Tibetan cuisines like the thukpa!