Chikmagalur is a small town situated in the Chikamagaluru district of the state of Karnataka. The city is located in the south-western part of Karnataka on the foothills of the Mullayanagiri range . The name Chikmagalur means younger daughter's town in Kannada. It is 250 km from Bangalore, the state capital and is a popular weekend getaway.
History of Chikmagalur
Earlier, Chikmagalur was called by the name of Kadur district till 1947. Later it was given the name of Chikmagalur, because of its history. It is believed that it was given as dowry to the younger daughter of Rukmangada, who was the chief of Sakrepatna and the other part was given to the elder daughter, which is known as Hiremagalur.
Chiklamaglur is famous for its tea and coffee plantations. In fact, it is the place where coffee was cultivated for the first time in India. It was Babu Budan, a Muslim saint who brought coffee seeds from Yemen in 1670. Today a mountain range to the north of the town is named after him. Later, when the Europeans came to India, they took over the plantations and trade of coffee and tea.
Things to do in Chikmagalur
Chikmagalur has several historical monuments and places of interest like the Kodandarama Temple, which is a synthesis of the Hoysala and Dravidian styles of architecture, the Jamie Mosque and the new St.Joseph's Cathedral which has a shell shaped portico. The Ishwara Temple at Hiremagalur, which is now part of Chikmagalur town, is well-known for the 1.22 metre high figure of Jademuni.
Chikmagalur is surrounded by unending high hills, waterfalls and rivers like the Bhadra, Hemavathi, Tunga, Netravathi and Vedavathi and wild life. Being a hill station at an altitude of 3,400 ft in the Sahyadri Mountains of the Western Ghats it has a pleasant climate.
The climate of Chikmagalur is pleasant all year round but the best time to visit the place is from the months of September till March. Chikmagalur is considered as the most sought after hill station for summer hideaways, since the place remains cool even during summers.
Main festivals celebrated in Chikmagalur include Ganesha Chatruthi, Deepavali, Ugadi, Dusherra and more.
Food & Shopping in Chikmagalur
Chikmagalur, the Land of Coffee is well known for the coffee plantations and production. Local Cuisine of Chikmagalur is called as "Malanadu" cuisine, known for its richness and spice. The typical flavor in the Chikmagalur Cuisine is brought by the aroma and taste of coconut milk. A famous example for Chikmagalur cuisine is the Akki Roti, kaikadbu, and many more treats prepared with coconut milk. However, tourists can have customized food as per their needs, such as north Indian, Biryani, purely vegetarian food, Jain cuisine, etc.
Travelling to Chikmagalur
To reach Chikmagalur by air, Mangalore domestic airport is at a distance of 170 km from Chikmagalur and serves as the closest airport. From here, tourists can hire a taxi or board a bus to reach Chikmagalur. Taxi costs around Rs 2000 to Rs 2500. Next closest airport is Bangalore International Airport at a distance of 270 Km. Cabs from here costs around Rs 3000 Rs 4000.
The Main railhead near Chikmagalur is Hubli which is at a distance of 239 km from the city. Kadur Railway station is the closest railway station at a distance of 40km from Chikmagalur and by taxi from Kadur to Chikmagalur costs around Rs 600. Hassan Railway station is at a distance of 60 km from the city.
Chikmagalur is well connected with the State owned bus services to other major cities in the state. Deluxe luxury buses and Volvo buses are available from Chikmagalur to Mangalore (170 km), Bangalore (270 km) and Hubli (239 km).
Travelling within Chikmagalur
Chikmagalur is in a hilly region and the roads are very steep. Best way to traverse in the town is by the public transport buses or by jeep. Jeeps are available at a rent price of Rs 500 for a day. Through hotels tourists can also hire cabs to visit nearby places.
Accommodation Options in Chikmagalur
Accommodation options in Chikmagalur are plenty that range from star hotels and luxurious resorts to budget hotels. Hotels in Chikmagalur are located away from the hustle and bustle of the city life.There are home stays in Chikmagalur which cater to the needs of all types of visitors.