Brief About Skandagiri Hills Trek
If you’re looking for an exciting weekend getaway near Bangalore, the Skandagiri Hills Trek is definitely worth considering. Situated just 70 km from the city, this trek offers a refreshing break from the urban chaos, allowing you to bask in the region’s natural beauty. Opt for the night trek to enjoy the enchanting experience of panoramic views under a starlit sky and a captivating sunrise.
The 8 km trail takes you through rugged terrain, past six concentric fortification walls, and up to the summit at 4429 feet above sea level. While the hike isn’t too challenging, be cautious with slippery grass and bushes, especially during the night. It’s best to avoid the Skandagiri night trek during the monsoon season. For a hassle-free trip, consider using shared transfers from Bangalore.
Skandagiri is also known as Kalavara Durga. It is an ancient mountain fortress located in Karnataka, and offers a serene environment away from the city. The day-long hike starts at Papagni Mutt and leads to the historic fort ruins dating back to the 18th century. Once you reach the top, take in the stunning panoramic views of the surrounding hills, making the trek truly worthwhile.
Key details of the Skandagiri Trek:
- Ideal Number of Days for the Visit: 1 day
- Trek Distance: 4 km one way
- Trek Altitude Range: 4429 feet
- Starting Point: Chikballapur
- Nearest Railway Station: Nandi Halt (16.9 km)
- Nearest Airport: Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru (43.7 km)
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Best Places to Visit near Skandagiri Trek
There’s a majestic rock formation overlooking Nandi Giri which has been admired by renowned personalities like Jawaharlal Nehru and Sir M. Visveswaraya during British Rule. As a traveler, I loved the unique trail that offered a delightful mix of rocks, boulders, and mud, surrounded by thick vegetation. It’s amazing to find such a trek so close to the city!
As you get closer to the summit, you’ll be captivated by the dilapidated fort walls, carved pillars, and stones that transport you back to the 18th century when Skandagiri Fort was alive with grandeur. Reaching the summit, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the intact Shiva Temple, still worshipped by devotees who climb all the way up. It’s a rare sight for a fort with surrounding ruins.
The summit rewards you with breathtaking views of the surrounding hills, forests, villages, and even Chikballapur town. After completing the Skandagiri Trek, you can explore nearby attractions like Nandi Hill, Muddenahalli (birthplace of Sir M. Visvesvaraya), and Bhoga Nandeeshwara Temple, an ancient Hindu temple complex with intricately carved pillars and a reflecting pool. Trust me, this adventure is one you won’t want to miss!
What is the best time to visit Skandagiri Trek
The best time to hike Skandagiri is from September to February, when the weather is more pleasant and the views are at their peak.
Skandagiri is a fantastic trek that can be enjoyed throughout most of the year. If you’re hiking during the summer, don’t forget to wear a cap to avoid dehydration from the sun’s heat.
For monsoon treks, bring a poncho, raincoat, and backpack rain cover to stay dry, but be cautious during heavy rain, as the trail can become slippery and challenging due to loose rocks and mud.
Although trekking between February and May is possible, the scenery may not be as breathtaking as in winter. Monsoon season is generally not recommended, as South India’s long rainy periods make the trail slippery and increase the risk of injury.
Trust me, trekking Skandagiri during the right season is an experience you won’t want to miss!
How to reach the starting point of the trek?
Reaching the Skandagiri Trek base location is a breeze, even if you haven’t selected transfers.
By Air: From Kempegowda International Airport Bengaluru, it’s just a 50-minute drive (43.7 km)
By Train: From Nandi Halt railway station, it’s a mere 25-minute drive (16.9 km).
By Bus: You can hop on a bus from Majestic Bus Station, Bengaluru, as there are buses running every 10 minutes to Chikballapur and vice versa.
By Own Vehicle: The Mylappanahalli Bus Stop is only 14 minutes away (7.8 km) by car or cab. If you’re coming from Bangalore City Center, it’s approximately 67.2 km away, and you can get there in around 1 hour 22 minutes via car or cab.
Availability of accommodations and food near the trek
When it comes to food during your Skandagiri adventure, Nandi grama, at the base of Nandi Hills, offers a few small eateries for a quick bite. For more dining options, head to Chikballapur, where you’ll find a variety of decent restaurants. Staying hydrated is essential, and you can find water at the trek’s base, Papagni Mutt, where a small groundwater tank provides a reliable source.
As it is a one-day trek, there is no need to stay near the base. As per your convenience, ou can book good hotels in Chikballapur as well as Bangalore (because it isn’t that far) and travel from there.
The Difficulty level of the Skandagiri Trek
Skandagiri is an accessible trek for most adventurers, with no sections that are particularly difficult. However, it’s essential to be prepared for various trail conditions and exercise caution throughout the trek. During the monsoons, the trail can become slippery, making proper footwear crucial and checking weather forecasts to avoid heavy rain days advisable.
While scaling small rocks or walking on large stone slabs can be an enjoyable part of the trek, be careful not to slip or fall, as it could result in injuries. Additionally, some sections of the trail consist predominantly of muddy terrain, which can be slippery even without rain. Ensure you maintain firm footing in these areas to avoid slipping and sliding down the trail. With the right preparation and caution, you’ll have an incredible and safe time exploring the Skandagiri trek!
Nearby Destinations you may want to explore:
- Savandurga Trek near Bangalore, Karnataka
- Makalidurga Trek near Bangalore, Karnataka
- 12 Amazing Tourist Places To Visit in Kerala