Savandurga from Base

Savandurga Trek

Trekking to Savandurga is a different experience altogether and I must say a trekker’s life is incomplete without completing the Savandurga trek.

Details of Savandurga Trek

Total distance : 4 to 5 kms (both ways)

Level of difficulty : Easy

Time duration : 4 hours in total

Permission required ?: No. But you can also book a guide through myecotrip website by paying 250 rs. You will get a guide along with you.

Details about Savandurga

Savanadurga is the largest monolith in Asia . Located at a distance of around 60 kms from the city Bengaluru, savanadurga is a center of attraction for pilgrims and adventurists . Savanadurga which provides a unique experience of trekking the single stone surely deserves a top place in their bucket list for the trekkers in Bangalore.

Savandurga from the base
Savandurga from the base
How to reach Savanadurga?

Reaching savanadurga should be of the least thing to bother as there are direct buses from majestic Bangalore . The bus with route number 241-A directly drops you at the Lakshmi narasimha swamy temple which is where the trail of the trek starts.

One can also choose to travel on their own vehicle. The place is located near magadi . One can reach there via magadi road or through the kengeri road and then Manchinbelle road.

Experience :
Reaching Savandurga

Our plan was to reach savanadurga by 4 am and reach the peak by 6 am or 6.30 and watch the sunrise. As a part of preparation, I googled trying to find every possible information about savanadurga and most importantly, is trekking allowed before 6 am as most of the treks are either banned or require forest permission. Unable to get a clear information we decided to start late and reach the base camp by 6 am.

As planned, we started from Bangalore around 5 and keyed savanadurga in the Google maps. The google lady suggested to take the route of kengeri but we missed taking a left near Nayandhalli and were forced to choose magadi road. On the way we picked some biscuits and water bottle . After travelling for nearly an hour , Google lady asked us to take left .

As I took left, we entered into a small village with not so good road. In couple of mins we reached a place in the village where it did scare us for a while.

Scary road in a village on the way to Savandurga
Scary road in a village on the way to Savandurga

Finally taking the guidance of the villager (thanks to the aunt who woke up early)we reached the base camp. We choose to have a breakfast before starting our trek.

From Savandurga to Peak

After breakfast we started our trek around 6.30 . As I looked at the mammoth stone , I was thrilled to trek. This was surely going to be a different experience in my short trekking life. As we started climbing, we watched the sunrise (sun had already risen but thanks to the clouds it appeared as though we are watching the sunrise ).

Sunrise during Savandurga trek
Sunrise during Savandurga trek

We realized it is unlike other treks where you have a ascend, flat surface and even descend at times. Savandurga trek offered no flat or ascend until we reached the 90%.

Pic of Savandurga while trekking
Pic of Savandurga while trekking
Machinbelle from savandurga
Machinbelle from savandurga

we made sure to take rest every now and then and keep ourselves hydrated. We reached the peak in about 2 hours with lot of breaks in between. After spending sometime at the peak we headed back and took roughly 1.5 hours to reach the base.

Suggestion for Savanadurga Trek
  • Like I mention in every trek, starting the trek early has an added advantage of less crowd, less heat, savanadurga makes no exception.
  • Take water. There is no water source. Take enough energy bars such as snickers
  • Trekking shoes are always mandatory.
  • There is no forest permission required and I have gathered the information from the local villagers that few people start at 2 in the night to witness the sunrise.

Check out more trekking destinations near Bangalore

shivagange Peak

Shivagange trek: A wonderful start for the beginners

If you are a beginner and would like to experience some trekking around Bangalore, Shivagange trek is a place that should be in top of your list.

Shivagange, popularly known as dakshina kashi(Kashi of the south) is one of the must visit places around Bengaluru(Bangalore). Shivagange is an awesome place which provides the traveler the experience of an amazing trek and also the blessings of the gods. Located at a distance of around 50 Kms on the Tumkur highway, Shivagange makes in the top of the list of the places to visit around Bengaluru.

Details of the Trek:

Distance: 3 – 4 Kms

Difficulty Level: Easy to Medium

Time Taken: 4 hours for the beginners

Ideal time to Visit: October to March

Suggested Age group: 12 to 50

Reaching Shivagange:

Shivagange is located at around 52Kms from Bangalore and 27 Kms from Tumkur.

By Bus: If you want to travel by bus, you can catch the Bangalore-Tumkur bus and get down at Dabaspete. It is around 8kms from here. You need to catch local transport from Dabaspete to Shivagange.

By Train: Tumkur is the nearest railway station but this is not convenient mode as you would again travel by road for 27Kms.

By Car: Travelling on your own vehicle is one of the best option. The Bangalore Tumkur highway is a well constructed road. Deviate left near Dabaspete and you find signboards for Shivagange from there on. There is a flyover just before Dabaspete and you need to take the service road and take a left if you are travelling from Bangalore. There are 2 Tolls where you would need to pay but the charges are low.

Starting the Shivagange trek early (before 9 AM) has couple of advantages. One, the temperature will be better. Two, the crowd will be less making it is easy for the trek. The Trek has a combination of steps and some big rocks making it an awesome experience. As you start the trek, in just about 50 steps, you find the Ganesh temple to the left and Veera bhadra swami on the right. Proceed your trek with the blessings of both the gods. In few more steps, you find the path being divided into two. One on the left is for the trekking and on the right leads to the Patalagange temple. Make sure you visit the temple before proceeding to the trek. As you move ahead, you find a mammoth Nandi. As you take few more steps, you find 2 paths. One which has the steps and the other which is a mud road. The mud road is a little longer than the steps route but easier compared to the steps. Both the routes merge again after some distance.

If you take the route on the left, you get to see the Valakallu teertha which is known for its unique characteristics. You need to put your hand in the Valakallu and it is believed that if you are able to touch the teertha(water) you are lucky. It is found that few people cannot touch the water even after multiple attempts whereas few get it at first go. There is an entry fee of Rs 5 per person to visit the Valakallu teertha and the temples inside.

If you take the right route, make sure you deviate and visit the Valakallu teertha while coming down. It is a place that you cannot miss.

At nearly half of the trek distance, there are big statues of Shiva and Parvathy. There is a story behind this. Long back, a family had come this place and the two children went missing. As the day ended, the children were scared and prayed to god. During that time, a couple of very old age appeared and provided the shelter to the kids. In the morning, the old couple had disappeared. It is believed that this old couple was Shiva and Parvathy. Behind the statues, there are 12 jyotirlingas.

Statue of Shiva and Parvathy on the way to Shivagange

Statue of Shiva and Parvathy on the way to Shivagange

The trek after this place is a little steep and contains more rocks. The steps are very narrow making it difficult to trek. People above 50 age and below the age of 12 years are strictly advised not to go beyond this point. At the top of the hill, you find another Nandi and a temple of Ram. There is ample space to sit and spend some time here before you start your trek down.

Important Suggestions:

  • Do not carry water or any eatables. There are monkeys which will attack you the moment they see any eatables or water with you
  • Before you start the trek, few people suggest you to leave your footwear. Please ignore them. The trek requires footwear.
  • There are good number of shops located on the way to trek which offers you some eatables and drink. So there is no need to worry about that. However, the cost is double.
  • Strictly avoid trekking with children below age 12.
  • Have breakfast and start your trek and try to reach back by lunch.
Skandagiri hill

Night Trek to Skandagiri

It was nearly 2 months I had done my last trekking Pangarchulla and the urge to go back and climb the mountain was increasing in me. The feeling in accomplishing the trek is totally different and I am sure every trekker can relate to it. On a fine day, I came across a post by Bangalore Adventures about the Night trek to Skandagiri.

Having heard from few of my friends that night trek is banned in Skandagiri, I looked at the post with suspicion. On the other side, the trekker in me was elated to experience as the dream of night trek to Skandagiri to witness the sunrise was possible now. After reading the complete post by the organizers, I was assured that the night trek(I would be more right if I call it as early morning trek) is legal with forest permission. Since it involved the forest permission and also in the night, I decided myself not to miss the opportunity.

On a Saturday night 11 PM, we arrived near the Majestic(Kempegowda bus stand) where the mini buses were ready for us to take the base camp of Skandagiri – Kalavara Durga. There were 2 groups named as Group 7 and Group 8 – 20 in each of them. We left Bangalore around midnight and reached Kalavara durga which is where our base camp was there.

Skandagiri which is located at around 70 KMS from Bangalore requires approximately 1 and half an hour to reach the base camp Kalavara Durga. As forest department allows us to start the trek only after 4 AM, we were forced to kill the time. Organizers conducted some team activity which helped to pass the next 2 and half hours.

As the clock was about to tick 4 AM, we started the trek. Within a few meters, we were at the forest check post. After quickly undergoing the check, the trek to Skandagiri started. Within a couple of minutes, the trail got steeper. The moonlight due to just completed full-moon day helped us to enjoy the trek without our torch. After nearly half an hour of trek, we were getting into the thick forest. The moon was helpless so were we. Few switched on the torch and others walked in the same path.

Entering into the thick forest of Skandagiri
Entering into the thick forest of Skandagiri

After the forest adventure, we then had to climb the mighty rocks.

Steps while trekking Skandagiri
Steps while trekking Skandagiri
Thick rocks during the Skandagiri trek
Thick rocks during the Skandagiri trek

Trekking through all the tough terrain in the dark was a new experience and fun. We took around 2 hours 15 mins to reach the top. The trek took a little longer as there were 40 of us and it was ensured that no one is left far behind. We reached the top around 6.15 and we were happy to make it before sunrise. However, the happiness was ephemeral as we realized the clouds forming and sun happily hiding behind them

Glipmse of Sun from Skandagiric
Glipmse of Sun from Skandagiri
View of cloud movement from Skandagiri
View of cloud movement from Skandagiri

Although disappointed for not getting sunrise view, the fact of trekking in the dark for the first time was something soothing.

We had samosa and also Soan papadi before we started to descend. On the way back we realized how big were the rocks that we actually climbed. It took us around 1 hour 45 mins to descend. After having a heavy breakfast, our target was to reach Bangalore and cover for the sleep of last night. I slept for continuous 8 hours 😀 had dinner and then again slept rejoicing the trek.

Here are few details of Skandagiri Trek

Total distance of the trek: 4 KMS

Total time taken: Approx 2 hours to ascend

Permission required? : Yes, from Forest department of Karnataka

How to take the permission? : Visit MyEcotrip

Fees applicable? : Yes, 250 Rs

Reporting Timings: Trek is allowed only from 4 AM to 9: 30 AM. You are supposed to finish the trek by 17:00

Difficulty level : Easy

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