Category : India
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Just while I was sipping a cup of coffee, editing images and listening to Coldplay, my friend called asking me to choose between Banaras and Coorg for a weekend. My urge for letting the clouds brush across my skin took me to the Scotland of India.
I had planned to write an article on ‘Things to do in Coorg’ but I now intend to incorporate the break-up of my expenses too. For obvious reasons- Delhi to Coorg under 10K, are you kidding me!?
Flight: INR 4200
The best way to reach Coorg is to take a flight from Delhi to Bangalore and then travel by road from Bangalore to Coorg which is around 250 km away. The original fare for the flight was INR 5400 but thanks to MakeMyTrip we got a cashback of INR 1200 on AMEX Gold Card. I suggest you keep looking for such deals on MMT Offer Page.
Accommodation: INR 1500
We stayed in a beautiful homestay on a walking distance from coffee plantations called CopperVilla. Until we checked in our rooms, our soul purpose for booking this villa was the view it offered but eventually it gave us a lot more than just the view. The rooms were spacious and attractive with a huge washroom.
Land Transport: INR 2100
Before commencing the trip, we did a lot of research about the local transportation. Our friends who have been there told us that finding local transportation in Coorg is hard and people usually travel by car. Consequently, we booked a Toyota Etios for 3 days which picked us from Bangalore Airport. It charged us INR 9/km and INR 300 for the driver each day. We reached Bangalore, went to Coorg, visited most off-beat places there (which is quite far from the main attractions) and came back to Bangalore Airport covering 810 kms. This sums up to INR 8190 which was further divided between the four of us = INR 2100
Food & Miscellaneous: INR 1800
Food in Coorg is very cheap. Average price for a meal is INR 400 for four. Yes, it is THAT cheap and yummy too. Even if you go to a good restaurant, your bill will be max INR 1300. (everything is in context of four people)
The best thing about having your own car is that you can go as far as you can and explore all the unspoiled places. Voila, we ditched mainstream places like Abbey Falls and Raja’s Seat and made our way to these beautiful places.
On our way to Coorg from Bangalore, we took a little detour to this splendid waterfalls which is around 60 kms before Madikeri (Coorg). It is highly recommended that you visit the falls in the morning/daylight as reaching there requires a short trek. Believe me, coming up is no piece of cake because the climb is too steep. But it is totally worth the efforts. Sink into the nature, enjoy the beauty, take a dip and have 2-3 hours well-spent.
Situated 18 kms from Madikeri, this place cannot be avoided if you are a nature enthusiast. To go there you have to stop 3 kms before. Don’t even think of taking your own vehicle as the roads are bumpy and rough. You can hire a jeep for INR 1500 which will double the adventure. I’d suggest to visit Mandalpatti in the evening to enjoy the mesmerizing sunset with a spectacular view.
Entry is not allowed after 6pm, so make sure you plan accordingly.
You can’t miss a coffee plantation tour in Coorg. This hill-station is home to one of the biggest manufacturers of coffee in India. Many estate owners provide a guided tour around their property to witness the verdant coffee fields. The tour includes the complete journey of coffee i.e. from a seed to packed powder. You can avoid to opt for a tour and choose to stay in a resort or a homestay situated in the middle of coffee plantations. Wake up early in the morning, walk down the hills, spend time with the coffee pickers and absorb the information yourself.
To explore the natural charm of Coorg, homestays are best for a delightful vacation. Escape the hectic city life and experience the essence of Coorgi lifestyle and culture. Taste the traditional cuisine have a unique dose of local culture.
Around 45 kms away from Madikeri lies the magnificent Chelavara falls. At the time we went, just 2 kms before, the road was under construction. So, we had to trek it down but thank god we did, because that walk was so damn beautiful! I am sure the roads will be open by now and you will only be left with 200-300 mtrs trek on a dense forest trail. There are two points to visit: One is above the waterfall which has a stream of water where you can spend time chilling with friends. Other one is the place beneath from where you can actually see the falling water.
As we were not aware of this, we kept walking in the same direction landing above the falls to this beautiful stream.
In Coorg, beauty of nature is not only enjoyed, but is worshipped as a way of life. This perfectly sums up my 3 days of ‘exploring the unexplored India’ in Coorg.