Monday, August 1, 2011

Shivasamudram - an Amazing stretch of splendour on water

Shivanasamudram falls is one of the largest water falls in south india and is located across cauvery located near Mandya district in Karnataka. The town of shivasamudram is a small island that splits the cauvery river into two and creates two spectacular waterfalls called Gaganachukki and Barachukki both accessible by road. The falls cut flow through rocky gorges and cut across as many segments fall down as multiple streams of waterfalls. The place is best during/after monsoon, other times of the seasons, the place is very dry and water almost trickling down.

Distance: 150 Km from Bangalore
Routes : 
There are two routes from Bangalore
  1. Bangaloreè Mysore roadè MaddurèMalavalliè Shivasamudram
  2. Bangaloreè Kanakpura roadè Malavalli è Shivasamudram

While the first route (1) goes through the 4 lane road for about 100 km till Maddur and turns left to Malavalli road, is a bit longer but is more reliable route. The second route is two lane throughout and is a country side road, yet very good for the most part. We took the second route while coming and left back to Bangalore by the first route so that we can travel safe by the Mysore road after getting dark.
Accessibility: Though its possible to take bus till Maddur and then towards Malavalli, the dispersed nature of the two falls require own vehicle to explore all the places, as there won’t be any transport that can take you to all the viewpoints of both the falls, which are a must during a visit to Shivanasamudram.

Best time to visit: Post monsoon è July to November. All other months are a ‘strict no’, as there would be very little water.

Time spent:
  • 1.       Explore the viewpoints of both the falls, photographs
  • 2.       Take a Dip along the river banks
  • 3.       Enjoy a coracle ride in Barachukki
  • 4.       Take a bath at Barachuckki

Spot 1:
Gaganachukki falls: On reaching shivanasamudram from Malavalli there would be plenty of signboards pointing towards Gaganachukki. On entering the main road there would be a big arch for the hydel power project of Shivanasamudram. Entering through this road will take you to the first view point of Gaganachukki. The place gives a complete glimpse of the falls. Gaganachukki is bigger of the two falls and this Hydel power station end only gives a view point and you cannot go down to the falls. The place also has a resort and a decent restaurant. This place is only for clicking pictures, and if you are not that type you can skip this   place.

The four must see spots in Shivanasamudram

Spot 2:
Bridge: Driving towards the Barachukki would need you to cross the bridge. This crossing itself is a great place and you can go down the river to take a dip or have a home packed lunch nearby the river bank.

Spot 3: Crossing the bridge can take you to the other side of Gaganachukki where you can actually climb down the rocks and go the falls and witness Gaganachukki in close quarters with waters gushing down closeby. It is not advised to take bath here as the current is very strong, with slippery rocks all over the place. Morever Barachukki has ideal place to take bath. There is also a Dargah (Hazrath Mardane Gaib) closeby. The place also has small local eateries where you can get Fresh fried fish, Parottas, rice and fish curry.
Spot 4: Riding further towards Barachukki can take you to the falls which is more spread out and ideal for taking bath.  This place also has shops nearby where you can eat fresh fried fish. Coracle ride here is a must and would take you close to the falls where you will get almost drenched.

Second spot of ganaganachukki as seen from the first spot view point

Another view of Gaganachukki on full flow

Shot taken from the view point taken from Gaganachukki - Spot 1

Enroute to barachukku

The river valley seen from Gaganachukki spot 2 - near Dargah, (see the smaller dargah in the right corner above)

Picture as taken from Gaganachukki spot 2

Picture as taken from Gaganachukki spot 2

Gaganachukki view point spot 1 as seen from Gaganchukki  Dargah spot 2

Another picture from Gaganachukki spot 2

Another picture encompassing both entire Gaganachukki

River flow take from Dargah view point

Picture of the Dargah close by

A field en-route

Spot 3 -the bridge crossing to reach Barachukki

Spot 3 - Bridge crossing to go to Barachukki
Barachukki falls

Barachukki - complete view

Coracle ride at Barachukki
Though exploring all the above places can take one full day, if there is time one can also go to Somnathpur,  Mudukuthore,  Talakad – great temples known for Hoysala architechture and ancient temple submerged in the banks of Cauvery. This is a further 35 Km from Shivasamudram. Unless you start very early from Bangalore covering this with in a day is difficult.

Suggested: An ideal trip would be to travel in car or a cab, as the peak season would almost always see rain that might happen during the day. But riding a bike down these roads is always special and one shouldn’t hesitate going by bike if you can start early enough in the day.
Eateries: Maddur Tiffanys at Maddur is a good place to have breakfast, with idly and Maddur vada which Maddur is very famous for.  There is a decent hotel at the view point of Gaganachukki (spot 1) mentioned above. However if you are okay with local food, there are local eateries at the Dargah side of Gaganachukki and some small eateries at Barachukki that provide rice, fish curry and fried fish.