Amazing Tourist Places To Visit In Shimoga For Best Travel Experience
Shimoga is an actual nature’s gift with an enchanting natural scenery of hills. Spread with waterfalls, dense forests, flora & fauna, forts, and abundant paddy fields things makes Shimoga more picturesque place to capture.
Situated more or less in the mid-south-western part of Karnataka, the western part of Shimoga district includes tropical forests, beautiful hilly areas, and the eastern is less dense with several lakes and river valleys.
Shimoga was ruled by the great Indian dynasties of the Kadambas, Gangas, Chalukyas, Rastrakutas, Keladi and Vijayanagar Kings. Shimoga is also an important industrial, commercial, fine arts and educational centre along with amazing tourist destinations to visit here.
Sacred Heart Church
The Sacred Heart church of Shimoga is said to be the 2nd largest church in India. The area of the church is about 18000 sqft with a big prayer hall. The impressive structure built in the Roman and Gothic styles of architecture. The main attraction of the church is the statue of Jesus.
Shivappa Nayaka Palace / Museum
Shivappa Nayaka Palace is located in the heart of Shimoga city on the banks of river Tunga. This palace was built in 16th century by Keladi ruler, Shivappa Nayaka. The palace is entirely built of rose wood. This palace is now a museum maintained by Archeology Department of Karnataka. This museum has collections of stone carvings and antiques of the Keladi period.
Agumbe is located in Thirthahalli taluk of Shimoga district. Agumbe is about 80 km from Shimoga. This is a famous place for viewing the sunset from this top of a hill. The place finds its attraction at the time of sunset with different hues, colours, and shapes. Agumbe is also known as the “Chirapunji” of South India because this place receives the highest rainfall in South India. The best season for viewing is from November to January.
Ambutheertha or Ambuthirtha is 10 km from Thirthahalli on Hosanagara road. The river Sharavathi originates in this place. It is believed that this is the place where Lord Rama broke a bow to win the hand of Sita. A Shivalinga is installed at the spot.
Balligavi is 80 km from Shimoga and 20 km from Shikaripura. In the 12th century, Balligavi was the capital of Kedara rulers. The main attractions of here are Keshareshwara temple, Panchalinga temple, Thripuramthakeshwara, Kaithaleshwara and the Veerashaiva mutt.
Bandalike is about 35 km to the north of Shikaripura. Bandalike is well-known for its temples and Basadis. Shanthinath Basadi, Someshwara Threemurthi and Sahasralinga temples are few main attractions of Bandalike.
The Bhadra dam is located 28 Km from Shimoga near Kuvempu university. The Bhadra dam is constructed across the river Bhadra. The height of the Dam is 194 ft. Aqua farms and an electricity generating station, are other attractions.
Bhadravathi is an important industrial centre in Shimoga district situated on the banks of the river Bhadra. Mysore Iron and Steel Limited, the Mysore Paper Mills Limited and Sugar factories are important industries here. It also includes the 13th century Lakshmi Narasimha Temple built by Hoysalas and now maintained by the Archaeological Department.
Gajanur is 12 km from Shimoga on the way to Thirthahalli. The dam is constructed across the river is a major attraction here. Gajanur is an ideal picnic spot for the people and also has an elephant camp to train the elephants.
Gudavi Bird Sanctuary
Gudavi Bird Sanctuary is just 16 km from Soraba taluk on Banavasi road. Gudavi Bird Sanctuary is only bird sanctuary located in the midst of dense forest. Gudavi Bird Sanctuary is one of the five best bird sanctuaries in the state. This bird sanctuary is spread over an area of 73.68 Hectares and provides shelter to around 191 varieties of birds. A large range of birds migrates to Gudavi during the months of May to October.
Heggodu is a small village located in Sagar taluk of Shimoga district. It is about 8 km from Sagar. The village is known for its famous drama training institute initiated by K.V. Subanna called NEENASAM. The centre also has a well equipped indoor Auditorium called as Dr Shivarama Karantha Ranga Mandira.
Holebagilu is a beautiful place we get while going to Sigandur Chowdeswari Temple. Holebagilu is located at a distance of 30 Km from Sagar, and it is surrounded by the thick and dense forest.
Honnemardu is located at a distance of 25 km from Sagar on the way to Jog Falls. The place is situated on the back waters of Sharavathi river. This is one of the magnificent places for adventure water sports in Karnataka.
Humcha is about 54 km from Shimoga city. Humcha is a famous Jain pilgrim centre. The main attraction of Humcha is the Padmavathi Amma’s temple. The Panchakuta Basadi of 10th & 11th Century and Jain Mutt are other places of interest.
Ikkeri situated 3 km to the south of Sagar taluk and about 76 Km to the north of Shimoga. The word Ikkeri in Kannada means “Two Streets“. This place was the capital of Keladi Nayakas for some years. Aghoreshwara temple here is a unique blend of the Hoysala and Dravidian style of Architecture.
Jog falls about 103 km from Shimoga is situated on the borders of Shimoga and Uttara Kannada district. Jog Falls is incredible and counted in the world famous water falls. The river Sharavathi takes a spectacular leap from a height of 292 m in four distinct falls, Raja, Rani, Rocket and Roarer to form the highest waterfalls in India. The best time to visit Jog falls is after monsoon during July – August. Nearby is the Sharavathi Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, 40 km from Sagar town.
Kanoor Fort is situated in the dense forest 50 km from Jog falls on the way to Bhatkal. This Fort of Keladi dynasty was constructed by Kari Maneesena Rani Abbaka Devi. The queen was exporting spices to European countries. Queen popularly called as spices queen (Sambru Mennsina Rani in the Kannada language).
One of the important historical places in Sagar taluk, Kalasi has Twin temples dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Mallikarjuna Temple and Lord Neelakanteshwara Temple.
Keladi is about 8 km from Sagar. Keladi was the first capital of Keladi Nayakas. The main attractions of Keladi are temples of Veerabhadra, Rameshwaram, and Parvathi. These temples are built in the combination of Hoysala and Dravidian styles of architecture. There is also a well maintained Keladi Museum, which has a collection of copper inscriptions, palm leaves and coins from Nayaka’s period.
Kodachadri is a hill station located in the Western Ghats. Kodachadri is situated at an altitude of 1343 m above the sea level. It is believed Jagadguru Adi Shankaracharya did meditation here. You will find a ‘Sarvajna Peeta’ of Sri Shankaracharya at the top. Adi-Mookambika temple at Kodachadri is considered to be the origin of Goddess Mookambika. This charming mountain is a perfect weekend getaway and a trekker’s paradise during summer.
Koodali is at a distance of 16 km from Shimoga. Two important rivers Tunga and Bhadra mingle here. Koodali is famous for its cultural heritage and temples. Mahaprayaga and Rushyashrama, Brahmeshwara, Narashima and Rameshwara temples along with 600 years old mutt of Shankaracharya are major attractions here.
Kundadri is about 12 km from Thirthahalli. An adventurous place for trekking lovers. Kundadri hill is, in fact, a single gigantic monolithic rock formation with various outgrowths. A rough stone paved path leads one to the top of the hill. This place is also a Jain pilgrimage centre.
Linganamakki Dam is constructed at a distance of 6 km from Jog Falls across river Sharavathi. The height of the dam is 1819 ft above sea level. Linganamakki dam is the main feeder reservoir of Mahatma Gandhi Hydro Electric Project in Jog.
Mandagadde Bird Sanctuary
Mandagadde Bird Sanctuary is located at a distance of 30 km from Shimoga on Thirthahalli Road on the banks of the river Tunga. Surrounded by dense, lush green forest, this place is picnic spot for birds migrating from far places around the world. Birds like Egrets, Bellakki Cormorant, Darter, Snake bird, etc., immigrate from different parts of the world during May season for breeding.
Nagara is at distance of 19 km from Hosanagar. Nagara was the last capital of the Keladi kings. Few attractions of Nagara are Nagara Fort, Shivappanaika palace, Devagana tank, Neelakenteshwara temple and Gudde Venkataramana Swamy temple.
Sigandur is a beautiful place and small village surrounded by green and backwaters of River Sharavathi in Sagar Taluk of Karnataka state. The main attraction of Sigandur is a temple dedicated to the Goddess Chowdeshwari which is called as Sigandur Chowdeshwari Temple.
Sri Rameshwara Temple
Sri Rameshwara Temple located in Thirthahalli is one of the main Hindu Temples. This temple is constructed on the banks of the river Tunga, and it is made of stone. Sri Rameshwara Temple is near the place Parashurama Thirtha. The sanctum sanctorum of the temple has a Shiva Lingam which is believed to have been installed by Parashurama.
Sakrebylu or Sakrebailu or Sakkara Bayalu is 14 Km from Shimoga on Thirthahalli Road, located on the banks of the Tunga reservoir. Sakrebylu spot is where elephants from the nearby forest come to bathe and play in the water.
Talagunda is located at a distance of 5 Km from Balligave. Several ancient inscriptions are found here. The Pranseshwara temple is a main attraction of Talagunda. “Prabhudeva Gaddige” is located to the east of Talagunda.
Tyavarekoppa, located 10 km away from Shimoga. The safari is stretch around an area of 200 Hectares of dense forest. Lions, Tigers, cheetahs, bears and other wild life animals roam around in the dense forests freely. This safari opens from 9 AM to 5 PM every day except Tuesday.
Varadahalli, also called as Varadpur is well known for a famous Mutt (Ashram) called Sridhara Swami Mutt. It is famous for the Samadhi of His Holiness Sri Sridhara Swami one of the great saints of the 20th century.
Apart from all, Ganapathi Temple located in Ramanna Shreste Park, Basaveshwar Temple located in Gandhi Bazar, Marikamba Temple and Kannika Parmeshwari temples are few places to visit within the city limits.