Kodagu is one of the most beautiful tourist places in South India. Madikeri being its capital, has a population of around 45,000. In the year 1681, Madikeri was established by the then ruling King Muddu Raja of Haleri Dynasty. "Muddu Rajakeri' of those years is today's Madikeri. Tucked in the lap of cloud-wreathed hills, in this small town, having an enchanting dream line creation around it, could be enjoyed by walk also. Madikeri received rain from June to September upto January in winter, where one can indeed imagine being in "Swiss town" with mist covered seductive charm of Madikeri.
Omkareshwara Temple (1km): Located at the heart of the Town,Omkareshwara temple was built by king Lingarajendra in 1820. The temple has both Islamic and Gothic styles of architecture, built around a central pool. It is said Lingarajendra killed an honest and pious Brahmin to fulfill his political ambitions. That Brahmin became a "Brahmarakshasa" and started troubling the king. In order to purify himself for the killing of a Brahmin, he was advised to construct a temple to Lord Shiva. He brought a Shivalinga from Kashi, and the temple was built and named "Omkareshwara".
Raja Seat (2km): This is a small square mantapa in brick and mortar of four pillars bridged by arches, enhanced by beautiful surroundings. This spot was a favourite place of recreation for the Rajas and hence was permanently associated with them. It is built on a high level ground with a commanding view of the cliffs and valleys to the west.
ABBY FALLS (8km): Abby Falls also known as Abbi Falls. A thrilling 8 kilometre drive through forests and coffee plantations leads to the most popular attraction and picnic spot - the Abbi Falls. In the mountains of the Western Ghats, several streams combine, swelling with the monsoon rains and plunging down the mountain slope at enormous speed, hitting the huge boulders hard and forcing through the crevices and ravines. A misty cloud hangs over the falls. From here the water flows into the Kaveri River.
GADDUGE (3km): Raja's tomb aka Gaddige is one of the most important places in Madikeri, Coorg. This is important for both history lovers as well as for natural lovers, as this monument is located at a place from where you can get a commanding view of one part of Madikeri city. There are three structures in this complex. The monument was built in Indo-Sarcenic style in 1820. The Indo-Sarcenic style appears to be popular during that period. The tombs are in the style of Muhammadan edifices with domes in the center and turrets at the angles.
FORT, PALACE (2km): In Architecture, Madikeri is unusual. Built on high grounds, the Madikeri Fort looms large over the town. This was rebuilt between 1812-1817. At the entrance stands the majestic sculpture of horses erected on the entrance wall. Within the fort is the palace which now houses government offices. The palace is built in European style with secret underground routes. Now a stone structure of tortoise stands as a witness to it. There are initials of Virarajendra marked 'V' here and there. As a mark of regret for the brutal killing of the royal elephant by King Vira raja stone replicas of two mighty elephants stand nearby. There is also a unique museum with memorable of ancient antiques like weapons, idols, canon etc. adds more attraction to this place. A Ganesha temple also adds attention.
NISARGADHAMA (30km): A beautiful ecological park, where cauvery rivers splits forming a island and bamboo forest. A hanging bridge, boating, elephant ride, tree top shelter, deer park etc
DUBARE (30km): Dubare elephant camp is a project undertaken by forest department and jungle lodges and resorts. Dubare elephant camp has plenty of elephants which are trained under naturalists. A trained Naturalist is at hand to explain the various aspects of Elephant history, ecology and biology. The visitor can not only observe and learn but also participate in various activities involving Elephants. Dubare elephant camp can be visited by both overnight guests as well as day visitors. Tourists who stay in and around madikeri ( 30 kms from Dubare elephant Camp ) can visit the camp and enjoy the wildlife safari, joyride on the elephant, coracle ride etc
Harangi Dam (30km): A main picnic spot in Dubare, Harangi dam with a length of 846 meters and a height of 47 meters is constructed across a small stream in the forest of Dubare across the offshoot of river Kaveri close to Kushalnagar. One can access its beauty when the reservoir is fully filled with water during the monsoon period, primarily in the months August and September. It is quiet, devoid of any people or noise - beauty of calm and gentle breeze are the valued treasures one can enjoy here. Usually there were only a handful of tourists moving around this place. Guest house facilities are available for tourists looking for settling calmly for a night on reservation from the public works department.
TIBETAN GOLDEN TEMPLE (30km): The Tibetan Monastery or the Tibet Golden Temple is located around 6 kms from Kushalnagar town towards Mysore. This Tibetan settlement at Bailkoppa or Baylkuppe is the the second largest Tibetan settlement outside Tibet. There are over 7,000 monks and students at the Tibetan monastery. the 40 ft tall golden Buddha statues are the major attractions of Bailkoppa. The statues of Buddha, Padmasambhava, and Amitayus are the notable ones. The walls of the temples and the institutions are decorated with colorful paintings depicting gods and demons from Tibetan Buddhist mythology. The altar is decorated with flowers, candles and incense sticks. The monastery not only attracts large number of young Tibetans seeking enlightenment and education, but also draws huge tourists from all over India and abroad.
Talacauvery (48km): This is the place that is generally considered to be the source of the Cauvery River. It is located in the Brahmagiri hill near Bhagamandala, 1,276 m. above sea level. However, there is not a permanent visible flow from this place to the main rivercourse except during the rainy season. The temple here is dedicated to Goddess Caveriamma. Other deities worshipped here are Lord Agastheeswara, which denotes the link between Cauvery and Sage Agasthya and Maha Ganapathi.
Bhagamandala (40km): This is a pilgrimage place in Kodagu, It is situated on the river Kaveri in its upstream stretches. At this place, the Kaveri is joined by two tributaries, the Kannike and the mythical Sujyoti river. It is considered sacred as a river confluence (kudala or triveni sangama, in Kannada and Sanskrit respectively). It is a common practice for pilgrims to take a dip in the triveni sangama and perform rituals to their ancestors before proceeding to Talakaveri, the birthplace of Kaveri.
NALKNAD PALACE (40km): At the feet of 'Tadiyandamol" the highest mountain of Kodagu, stands proudly the Nalknad Palace recalling the memories of history. It is just 45 kms away from Madikeri via Napoklu in Kakkabe. It is located near a village named Yavakapadi and was built between the years 1792 and 1794 AD. This palace was the last refuge of the last king of Kodagu, Chikka Veerarajendra before he was deposed by the British. It’s a major tourist spot by converting a part of it as a museum to display the crafts of the Kodagu region.
IRPU FALLS (86km): The Irpu Falls, also known as the Lakshmana Tirtha Falls, are located in the Bhramagiri Range and is a fresh waterfall 60 m high. Amidst thriving green Western Ghats, Irupu falls is a major tourist attraction as well as a pilgrim spot. The river Lakshmana-tirtha flows nearby and it joins the Kaveri River at a later part. A famous temple of Lord Shiva, known as the Rameshwara Temple, is situated on the banks of this River. There is another temple dedicated to Sri Ram, surrounded by paddy fields, from where it is ascend to the falls through natural forest. Except the waterfall all other places are inside the wildlife sanctuary and need permission to enter the sanctuary.
NAGARAHOLE (85km): Nagarahole is named after Nagarahole (Cobra river in the local language, Kannada), a winding river which runs eastwards through its centre. Situated in the two districts of Mysore and Kodagu in the state of Karnataka. It was originally constituted into a sanctuary in the year 1955 covering an area of 258 sq. Kms and subsequently enlarged to include the adjoining areas of Mysore district and now extends over an area of 643.39 sq. kms which was given the status of a National Park in 1983.
1. Thadiyandamole (5729 ft): Micro hotspot of bio-diversity in South India, the Trekkers paradise. Breathtaking views of Arabian sea and Kerala coast.
2. Pushpagiri (5626 ft): Trekkers can cross to Subramanya, in Dakshina Kannada district from Pushpagiri Range.
3. KoteBetta (5400 ft): Trekking distance 14 km to and from (22 km from Madikeri).
4. Igguthappa Kundu: Trekking distance 12 km to and from (40 km from Madikeri).
5. Brahmagiri: Wild life sanctuary near Nagarahole National Park. Trekking distance 24 km to and from (80 km from Madikeri).
6. Nishanimotte: Trekking distance 12 km to and from (6 km from Madikeri).