If you’re caught in traffic all the time in Bangalore, or if you’re engaged in a busy job schedule, you’ll undoubtedly need a break. There’s a site in Bangalore called Nandi Hills with amazing vistas that you can visit even on weekdays and won’t take up much of your time. It is, in my opinion, a must-see location.
Camera Gear used: Nikon D610, Nikkor 14-24mm f2.8, Nikkor 70-200mm f2.8 VRII, Manfrotto tripod.
Is Nandi Hills open?
Nandi Hills is now open to tourists on weekends. Tourists must make bookings for their visit to the historic hill castle at least one day in advance. To enter Nandi Hills, you’ll need a pass. Nandi Hills is recognized as one of the best and most appropriate weekend escape spots. The parking ticket was a bit on the expensive side. In Nandhi Hills, you may also stay in a government hotel.
How to reach Nandhi hills
Here are a few things to keep in mind. Nandi Hills is located 60 kilometers from Bangalore city at a height of around 1500 meters. Take the toll road to the airport (buy return tickets to save some money on toll). The Nandi Hills top should take about 75 to 90 minutes to reach with this approach. A large number of motorcycles visit this location in a queue, one after the other.
As of this writing, the roads are in decent shape. It is preferable to own a vehicle or hire a self-driving automobile. To reach the base of the Nandi Hills, leave Bangalore early in the morning, about 4 a.m. At the bottom of the hill, there is a gate that, depending on the local police, maybe locked until 6 a.m. The hours of operation for Nandhi Hill are 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. at the time of writing.
Morning view from Nandi Hills
It’s a 20-minute trip up, and instead of parking, you drive directly into the main fort gate, collect your admission ticket, and then drive within the fort for another 5 minutes to reach the opposite side of the Nandi Hills. Make sure you are there at the hilltop by 6 a.m., or 7 a.m., to see the dawn and the cloud-covered countryside vista. There are several points of view. On weekends, this location may be overcrowded, resulting in a traffic bottleneck on the hilltop. On weekends, I would recommend leaving early or going during the week.
The views from these vantage points are breathtaking. Above the cloud, surrounding peaks, forests, and large structures may be visible. Other attractions in Nandi Hills include the pond, temple, and summer palace. The inside of the fort can be explored later that day, but for a glimpse of the cloud-covered countryside, an early morning visit is recommended.
Nandhi Hills hiking trail
Nandhi Hills has a second entrance. Tippu’s summer palace stands behind the entrance on the top of the hill. This location has a stairwell entry. Park your car behind the Nandhi temple, which is located at the bottom of the Nandhi hills, to access the Nandhi hills hiking route. Although you may see hikers on this trail early in the morning, I would recommend traveling in groups rather than going alone because there have been incidences of thievery.
This is the path that leads to the top of the hill. The trek uphill will take around 2 hours, and the trail offers some of the greatest views in the area. If you are going on the weekend, I would strongly advise you to take the hiking route rather than the motorable road because the motorable road is still quite congested and people spend hours stuck in traffic. Parking on the summit is restricted, and there are too many vehicles early in the morning to observe the sunrise.
Where is Skandagiri?
Skandagiri, which is close to the Nandhi hills, is another popular weekend trek spot. This is a wonderful site for hikers, similar to Nandhi Hills, where the walk begins in the middle of the night and trekkers seek refuge at the medieval abandoned temple on top while waiting for the morning light.
Note that there is no motorable road to the summit, so you’ll have to hike for around 2 hours. Hiking to Skandagiri also needs a forest permit, which may be obtained at the trail’s beginning or end. The gate unlocks about 2 or 4 a.m. and closes again every now and again. For the most up-to-date information, check with the locals, then watch the movie below to get a sense of what it’s like to walk to Skandagiri.
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