Chitradurga, Gadag, Haveri, Kumta : lesser known Karnataka

#1 Oct 18th, 2012, 12:16
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Jun 2003
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Karnataka is my favourite, indoubtely. Last year I completed the norhern part, visiting Bidar and Gulbarga and now I’ve just comeback from the above small towns full of charme, culture, ospitality and … wonderful people.

The entired journey was made by local bus, cheap, affordable and most amusing.

Coming from Hindupur (AP) and heading to Chitradurga, you MUST stop in Hemavati (AP) : museum and besides Doddeshwara and Siddeshwara temples deserve a 2h visit.

In Chitradurga I choose the Amogha International hotel, in the heart of the old town, walking distance from bus stands (2 bus stands, depends where you are going to). The hotel is not bad, clean with spacious rooms, RS 1.040 (tax incl.) for a XX AC.

Chitradurga itself is a very pleasant town, not dirty and full of green, and it's FORT is a gem, really. So big, well kept and charming that you could spend a full day inside : the best I saw in Deccan.

In Gadag the hotel choice in downtown is inexistent (a new hotel will be finished in 3 months) and I had to sleep in Shivani Inn (suite room AC 940 rs) beside the new bus stand, a 20 minutes walk from the town center. The Shivani Inn was the best I could find, but the manager is dishonest and he will try to cheat you in any way, nevertheless the attached bar/restaurant is excellent. From Gadag, using local busses (there leave from the old bus stand) you can visit Lakkundi (temples + museum), Dambal and Annigeri in one day, thanks to short distances. The following day I went to Gajendragah (fort, just 1 h by bus) , then to Sudi (3 temples by the bus stand) just a 20’ + 20’ minute ride to Kuknoor by shared taxi (the grey ones that carry 20 people, simply called “auto”). The temple in Kuknoor is quite simple, but the Mahadeva in Itagi (pron. Itighě), just 5 km away, is really wonderful.

The following day, moving from Gadag to Haveri, I stopped in Lakshmeshwar, parking heavy luggages in the nice and supercheap snack on the bus stand. And after 2 h I took another bus to Haveri.

Haveri is a nice town. Probably, the best logistic accomodation is the Hoysala Hotel, just outside bus stand (800 rs AC), but I was still disappointed about the hotel in Gadad and I choose Shiva Shakti Palace, where I had a Vip cottage on the roof, after hard bargaing the price was fixed in rs 2000 taxes included, but the “flat” was excellent, althoug the location of the hotel is quite far from the center (1,5km). Another option would be Hitaishi, in the heart of the town, but is dark and sad for 800rs AC. The Siddeshwara Temple is 30’ minutes walking from bus stand, but best temples in Haveri area are by the river Thungabhadra. You can reach Guttal by bus (50’) taking an Apecar (500 rs) to vist Galaganath (wonderful !), Haralahalli, Chaudayyadanapura and Kuruvatti : distances are very short so you can see all of them in 4 or 5 h. The following day a bus (2h) took me to Balligavi (excellent Hoysala) via Anavatti (western chalukya) ; on the way back I stopped in Hangal where I visited the unic Tarateshwara temple with the sublime dome hall and the insignificant Billeshwara Temple. The third day I went to Harihar (again by bus, 75’), very good Harihara temple, and to Bankapur to see the temple inside the “peacok’s fort”.

From Haveri to Kumta, over Hangal, the bus drove on a most spectacular road. Sirsi is a very clean and pleasant town and from here the Banavasi temple is only 18 km (rs 400 by tuktuk). Kumta is much bigger than I expected and the Pandurang hotel is delicious and professional for 1.000 rs AC taxes included. I had the room 312 from witch I could enjoy an excellent panorama. The location of the hotel is also good, not far from bus stand either from railway station to reach Goa by train (just 2 h 30’). Kumta town isn’t still spoiled, prices are low and Kudle beach is super clean. Bycic les are available for renting. Do not miss Mirjan fort on Gokarna road, is a gem !

Until this moment I did’nt meet any western people on my journey, but is now it's finishing … I’ m heading to Gokarna.

Gokarna, such a disillusion ! Souvenir shops everywhere and not a decent accomodation : Gokarna International hotel is awful, Om beach hotel and See Bird resort (one in front to eachother) are very far from the center and very, very far from the beaches. The beaches themselves are very dirty. Kudle beach in Gokarna is full of waste and glasses, Om beach is little better, but no sand, only rock.

But Karnataka still remains my favourite, ‘cause is not spoiled yet. Trip was wonderful.
Unfortunately, the traditional way of making chay is finished … and the true taste is lost !

Happy journey
#2 Oct 18th, 2012, 14:24
Join Date:
Oct 2011
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  • Duronto Jajabar is offline
Nice trip report Haji,

Enjoyed..... post some photos too.

aamar payer tolai sorshe...(I have wheels under my feet)

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