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Best Things To Do in Karnataka

The majestic coastlines of the Arabian Sea serve Karnataka, situated in southwest India, coming up with numerous tourist destinations. With Bangalore as its capital known for its shopping and nightlife, Karnataka is recognised as a versatile state catering to the travelling needs of people globally. Not only this, the infamous tourist destinations such as those of Gokarna, Mysore, Hampi, and Chikmagalur to name a few, nestle themselves here. The best things to do in Karnataka are flexible enough to include activities like whitewater rafting and becoming a party animal under the category of tourist attraction.

Karnataka has something as modish and lively as Bangalore brimming with its pub, malls, IT companies and cafes alike, and something as serene as the contrasting tranquillity offered by the Coorg hills. The state has received the prestige of being recognised having the maximum number of tourist destinations where people from worldwide flock to experience the versatile ethnicity the place has given birth to. Karnataka has many places to visit which will leave awestruck like Lal bhag garden, Kudremukh National Park, Iruppu Falls, Mullayanagiri, Mudabidiri etc.

The state has maintained a consistent ratio of natural destinations and manmade wonders, which gives it a unique stand among the Indian touring places. Karnataka could equally charm you with its palaces and forts and with its waterfalls and national parks. For adventure lovers, this place might come in the shape of a paradise as activities like rock climbing, white water rafting, cycling, parasailing and much more dominate the natural destinations here.

With hills, national parks and beaches to fill your travelling quota, there is little that Karnataka has managed to miss. Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) being the busiest airport in India in Bengaluru ensures its ease of international accessibility whereas the Konkan railway takes care of its intra-transport facilities. The best things to do in Karnataka could not be missed in a lifetime, as the state offers some of the unique activities and cultural experiences that go unrivalled all over the country.

Popular Packages

Package Name Duration Price Rating Details
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The Kodachadri Trek- Flat 20% off 2D 1N ₹ 3179 5.0 star View Details
Vacation Villa with Multiple Activities in Chikmagalur 2D 1N ₹ 2300 4.0 star View Details
Upto 20% off on Team Outing in Ramanagara Adventure Camp 2D 1N ₹ 1150 4.0 star View Details
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Attractions

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Lal Bagh Botanical Garden

Lal Bagh Botanical Garden is spread over an area of 240 acres exhibiting more than 1,854 species of medicinal and scientific plants and trees. Among the places to visit in Bangalore, Lal Bagh Botanical garden certainly tops the list for its vast green stretch and the presence of exotic birds.  

The park was commissioned and concluded by Hyder Ali and his son Tipu Sultan, respectively, in the year 1760 and this vast expanse of greenery houses a 3000 million years rock which is fondly famous as “the Lal Bagh rock” which is a unique site that interests hordes of tourists. 

There is also a glass house with a lake and an aquarium and this glass house hosts a vibrant annual flower show. The colorful and vivid presence of birds such as Parakeets, Myna, Brahminy Kite, Pond Heron, Purple Moorhen and Common Egret etc hook a lot of birdwatchers and photographers.  

Location: Mavalli, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560004

Best Time to Visit:  you can visit the garden any time of the year but if you particularly interested in the flower show then visit in January and August.

Price: entry is free for children and an adult needs to pay INR 10.

Timings: 6 AM to 6 PM on all days of the week.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Around 5 KM.

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Cubbon Park

This green belt region is spread over 300 acres land housing 6000 trees of different families contributing to the rich flora of the region.

Within the campus of the park, there are some interesting points like Cubbon Park Museum, Attara Kacheri, Ringwood Circle, the bamboo grove nook, lotus pond, Dancing Fountain and Sheshadri Iyer Memorial Park etc.

It is like a second home to nature lovers and morning joggers. If you wish to cover the entire park but not foot then hop on a toy train and tour around in the most fun away.

Cubbon Park is one of the Banglore tourist places where you can just sit idly beneath the green foliage and unwind watching the magical hours in the sky.  

Location: Kasturba Road, Behind High Court of Karnataka, Ambedkar Veedhi, Sampangi Rama Nagar, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560001

Best Time to Visit: Early morning.

Price: Free entry.

Timings: 6 AM to 6 PM on all days of the week except Monday. It also remains closed on every second Tuesdays of the month.

Average time required to visit the place: 2 to 3 hours or half a day.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Approximately 3.5 KM

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Nandi Hills

This is a set of breathtaking hillocks which is a complete nature retreat. From cycling and paragliding into the stunning mount to the Yoganandeeshwara Temple that sits atop the hill with a huge Nandi statue, these small mounds have a lot to offer, even the name of the hills was coined after the temple statue. 

Nandi hills are set small hillocks which serves as a great trekking or weekend getaway from Bangalore. It bestows the visitors with the sight of some endemic flora and fauna and magnificent vistas of the surrounding. 

Trek through the paved roads, rocky terrain, small streams and grasslands to reach the top of the hills but one must be careful of the steep descent and sharp turns while returning. Hordes of monkeys will accompany you throughout the trek hence do not keep eatables in your hands.

Location: Chikkaballapur Taluk, Chikkaballapur 562101, India

Best Time to Visit: October to March.

Price: There is no charge except for the commuting fare from Bangalore.

Timings: It is open 24 hours and the standard trekking hours can be between 6 AM to 6 PM.

Average time required to visit the place: A day.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Approximately 62 KM.

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Bannerghatta National Park

Bannerghatta National Park is one of the interesting places to visit in Bangalore for the assorted wildlife and natural establishments and the rich vegetation. One can hire jeeps and cars or board a bus for touring around this massive national park sprawled across an area of  104.27 sq. km. 

The park encompasses a number of establishments such as a pretty butterfly park swarmed with colorful species of butterflies, an aquarium, Children's park, a zoo, a Crocodile farm, Snake Park, a museum and a Prehistoric Animals' Park which is highly praised by the visitors. 

The flora and fauna of the park include eucalyptus, sandalwood, tamarind, neem, bamboo etc in plants and jackal,  spotted deer, fox, wild boar, sloth bear, elephants, leopards, porcupine, Asiatic Lion, Royal Bengal Tiger, monitor lizard etc in animals. 

Bannerghatta park is not only nature’s retreat but also has ample locations for short trekking expedition, some of the points are Hajjamana Kallu, Mirza Hill, and Uddigebande; all of these are located under a distance of 4 KM. It is a quick getaway for all the shutterbugs and adventure enthusiasts dwelling in Bangalore.

Location: Bannerghatta Biological Park, Bannerghatta, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560083

Best Time to Visit: Winter season.

Price: INR 80 for adults and INR 40 for children (Indian Nationals), INR 400 and 300 for adult and children (any foreign national).

Timings: 9 AM to 5 PM on all days of the week except Tuesday.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Around 23 KM.

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Bangalore Palace

Bangalore Palace is a true example of sheer architectural beauty which was built in 1873. This old opulent structure sits on a land of 25000 square feet displaying the regal mix of Tudor and Scottish Gothic architectural designs. 

Besides being a preserved site, it is also a grand venue that hosts marriage parties, events, and rock concerts. The palace houses paintings of the famous painter of bygone era Raja Ravi Varma along with ancient carvings and granite and ceramic tiles seating on the floor which are still unblemished. 

There is magnanimous ground in front of the palace which has hosted a number of international artists in the past like, The Rolling Stones, Backstreet Boys, Elton John, Lamb of God, Don Moen, David Guetta,  The Black Eyed Peas, Deep Purple, Metallica, Roger Waters etc. 

On the auspicious day of Dussehra every year, a grand fair is organized in the ground against the royal backdrop of the beautifully lit palace.

Location: Palace Road, Near Mount Carmel Institute Of Management, Vasanth Nagar, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560052

Best Time to Visit: During Dussehra when it is well lit with a grandiose celebration.

Price: INR 230 for Indians and INR 460 for foreigners.

Timings: 10 AM to 5:30 PM on all days of the week.

Average time required to visit the place: 3 to 4 hours.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Approximately 5 KM

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Vidhana Soudha

Vidhana Soudha is situated in the center of the city, painted in white and spread over an area of 60 acres. Vidhan Soudha is the most renowned landmark in Bangalore which houses the state secretariat and state legislature under one roof. 

This dome-like structure has two chambers where the first floor (central wing) can accommodate 268 members at a time and the southern wing can accommodate 88 members. 

The building is a marvelous amalgamation of Dravidian, British and Indo-Islamic style architecture. One must not miss the lighting up of the building on Sunday evenings and the inscription that reads “Government work is God’s work.” 

Please note that it is one of the sightseeing places in Bangalore that needs prior permission or a pass nowadays. The grandeur of Vidhana. Soudha is visible after sunset when the entire building is well lit and it resembles a grand palace

Location: Doctor Ambedkar Veedhi, Sampangi Rama Nagar, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560001

Best Time to Visit: September to February

Price: No entry fee.

Timings: 10 AM to 5:30 PM on all days of the week except Sunday.

Average time required to visit the place: 1 hour.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Approximately 3.5 KM

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Venkatappa Art Gallery

This enormous art gallery is segmented into two halls where it exhibits more than 600 paintings. 

One of the two halls displays stone sculptures associated with Khajarao School of Art and Mathura whereas the other hall exhibits pottery and clay articles dating back to the Indus Valley civilization. 

This art gallery houses the artwork and paintings of world famous and renowned artists such as K. Venkatappa, M. F. Hussain, Hanumaiah, Hariram, Yusuf Arakkal, Rekha Rao, N. S. Bendre, and Vasudev in galore on the first level of the building. 

There are paintings christened as Prithvi, Vayu, Jala, Agni, Death, Sea Shore, Nagamandala, In Space,  and Last Glimpse by K.K Hebbar on the second level of the gallery. 

Venkatappa Art gallery is the Mecca for art loves, magnanimous, loaded and authentic and is one of the aesthetically pleasing places to visit in Bangalore.

Location: Kasturba Road, Ambedkar Veedhi, Sampangi Rama Nagar, Bengaluru, Karnataka 560001

Best Time to Visit: During the daytime.

Price: INR 10 per head (adults) and INR 5 (children)

Timings: 10 AM to 5 PM on all the days of the week except Monday.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Approximately 5 KM.

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Wonderla

Take a day out and get charged at this craziest amusement park in Bangalore. Wonderla is one of the largest amusement parks in the entire country with more than 60 exhilarating rides such as Hurricane, Equinox, Insanity Twister, Recoil, Dropzone, Flash Tower, Mixer, Y-scream, Maverick etc. 

These high-tech rides will swirl, twist and turn you in around 360 degrees and will pump adrenaline rush to a next level. The water rides like splurgy and frolic with speedy drops and to and fro motion. 

Wonderla not only tops Bangalore tourist places list but it is loved by the local population as well. From rain disco to fun pools and wave pools, from roller coasters to boomerang rides; even an entire day at Wonderla is not enough to satiate the thrill junkies in you.

Location: 28th Km, Mysore Road, Bengaluru, Karnataka 562109

Best Time to Visit: November to February.

Price: Ranging from 850 to 2000

Timings: 11 AM to 6 PM from Monday to Friday and 11 AM to 7 PM on every Saturday and Sunday.

Average time required to visit the place: An entire day.

Distance from Kempe Gowda Bus stand: Around 35 KM

Ask a Question

Traveller Tales From Karnataka

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Devi Chattopadhyay

23 October 2015

This was a really nice trip. Firstly, this place is close by Bangalore and very much in driving distance. Secondly, the adventure activities are well-organized. They are safe too. This way it is very e...

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Lakshmi Krishnamoorthy

27 November 2017

"Lovely resort overlooking the lake\nWe (two girls) went from Bangalore to Doddaballapur (Bus no. 285M) and from doddaballapur to ujjani from ujjani it took us 10 \nmins to reach the resort the tour or...

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udit kumar

26 September 2014

It was my first trekking and had loads of fun :) Planning another trip with thrillophilia grp very soon.

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Shaffaf Khan

11 December 2018

"We booked through Thrillophilia... 2300 for 2days 1 night starting on 1st day 0900 and the camp ends at after a trek followed by breakfast. You will be taken to the mountains in the pic to trek and ev...

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Shakti Arora

10 April 2014

Wao it was absolutely brilliant to see those majestic Tiger and charismatic Leopard, this was the first time i saw these animals for the first time. The panoramic views catches our attention , its one

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Deepak S

07 November 2018

Fantabulous Team Outing at Ramanagara It is a wonderful place for a team outing... We (a team of 37) visited this place on 25th OCT 2018 & had a wonderful experience. I have been part of several tea...

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Keerthana Priya

23 November 2017

"It was a wonderful experience.The food was also very tasty.Try to meet cute little rott from sula vineyards.."

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Sanchari Saha

10 January 2018

"Awesome Experience... Such a great wine tasting & learning session we had. We were allowed to taste some 5 varieties, with the instructor specifying its history then manufacturing, bottling & ageing p...

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Ms. Pallavi

27 January 2019

"It was simply superb place for day out.... The discipline, hospitality, nature around, it was really .... It's ever best place to enjoy for both children's and elders.... Food what they provided ...

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What You Should Know More About Things To Do in Karnataka

  • Q. What are the best things to do in Karnataka?

    Karnataka creates a magnificent land of wonders as the Eastern and the Western Ghats bordering the state have given rise to several rivers making popular tourist destinations on the way. The place is also famous for its rich archaeological and historical significance backed by temples and forts. Check out the best things to do here in Karnataka:

    • Experience the Vairamudi Festival
    • Experience Laksha Deepotsavam
    • Visit the Gol Gumbaz
    • Tour Pattadakal
    • Visit the Brindavan Gardens
    • Visit the Mysore Zoo
    • Skydive in Mysore
    • White water raft at Bheemeshwari and Kodagu

  • Q. What are the best adventure activities to do in Karnataka?

    Karnataka has shaped itself to suit the adventurous people with every kind of adrenaline-inducing needs. For the overtly courageous ones, there is the activity as daring as skydiving, whereas for the not-so-daring ones, you could find cycling and hiking tours. Nonetheless, the diverse landscape and the endless greenish lush of the flora around calls for a breathtaking view with each of these activities.

    • Static skydiving in Mysore
    • Microlight Flying in Bengaluru (Jakkur airfield), Coorg and Mysore
    • White Water Rafting in Bheemeshwari, Madikeri, Kali River and much more
    • Scuba Diving in Murdeshwar
    • Rock Climbing in Ramanagara, Savanaduga, Turahalli and Madhugiri
    • Trekking in Coorg, Kodachadri
    • Aquatic parasailing in Malpe beach, Gokarna Beach
    • Jetski Ride in Gokarna Beach, Varuana Lake (Mysore), Netravathi (Mangalore)
    • Motorbiking
    • Cycling

  • Q. Which are the most adventurous places for trekking in Karnataka?

    The most appealing aspect of trekking in Karnataka is reflected by the pleasant weather and the abundance of forests all around, which create an overall fantastic ambience for any trekker. Also, the trekking routes here are safe enough to allow you to trek even during the night time. You could choose any trekking expedition as per your wish, be it a weeklong hiking venture or a few long hours of trekking up the hills.

    • Mullayanagiri (Near Chikmagalur)
    • Z Point (Near Kemmanagundi)
    • Skandagiri / KalavaraDurga (Near Bangalore)
    • Kumara Parvatha(Near Mangalore)
    • Nandi Hills (Near Bangalore)
    • Yana (Near Jog Falls)
    • Madhugiri (Near Bangalore)
    • Kunti Betta (Near Srirangapatna)
    • Yedakumeri / Green Route Trek (Near Mangalore)

  • Q. Which are the best campsites in Karnataka?

    Campsites in Karnataka come with the heavenly backdrops of coffee plantations or waterfalls. There is no way anything else could possibly beat a camping experience in any part of Karnataka, especially of those listed below:

    • Kalhatty, Ooty
    • Coorg –Votecad
    • Foothills of Jenukallu mountain, Sakleshpur
    • Seagot, Wayanad
    • Dabbaguli
    • Kodamballi, Channapatna

  • Q. Which are some famous waterfalls to visit in Karnataka?

    The rush of rapid thick silver streams rushing down from great heights has given rise to numerous cascades all across the state. Each of them is a sight worth drooling over and most maintain their charm consistently through every season. Karnataka’s waterfalls come in different types, be it in block, cascade, segmented, or plunge. Check out the list of the country’s most wondrous waterfalls:

    • Arasinagundi Falls, Kollur
    • Gokak Falls, Belgaum
    • Kadambi Falls, Kudremukh
    • Benne Hole Falls, Karwar
    • Jog Falls, Shimoga
    • Sural Falls, Belgaum
    • Abbey Falls, Coorg
    • Lalguli Falls, Karwar

  • Q. Where can I do river rafting in Karnataka? How much will it cost me?

    White water rafting in Karnataka is one of the top activities here with spots like SitaNadi and Bheemeshwari promising you an experience of a lifetime. It is generally done in a flowing water or with the one with a turbulent stream, and for that, these are the best spots you could try your mind and body at:

    • Kabini River
    • Kondaji
    • Barapole River
    • Sita River
    • Sowparnika River

    These experiences in Karnataka generally priced around INR 1000, but they are likely to change depending on the season and the destination you pick.

  • Q. Which are some destinations to visit for wildlife safari experience in Karnataka?

    Out of 34 biodiversity hotspots all over the world, four of them rest in the Indian subcontinent. One of them is the Western Ghats, and you could obviously guess now how rich this spot is with its diversification of flora and fauna. The conservative centres especially the ones of Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve are equally thrilling and fun to explore:

    • Nagarahole National Park
    • Mudumalai National Park
    • Bandipur National Park
    • Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary
    • Bannerghatta National Park

  • Q. Which are the best places to visit for a spiritual experience in Karnataka?

    Do not fool yourself into getting overwhelmed by the bustling crowds and streets of the IT hub of Bangalore, as the place is equally capable of producing some of the finest spiritual experiences of the country. The ashrams, forts, temples, and festivals of Karnataka are typical of the state with unique practices and beliefs that India is so revered for. Check out the top spiritual destinations in Karnataka:

    • Ramakrishna Math, Bangalore
    • Shri Sridhara Swami Ashram, Shimoga
    • Fireflies Ashram, Kaggalipura
    • Vishwa Shanti Ashram, Arishinakunte
    • Chamundi Temple
    • Holy Trinity Church
    • Iskcon Temple
    • Shree GaviGangadeshwara Temple

  • Q. Which are the best locations for rock climbing in Karnataka?

    Karnataka’s exquisite make of the terrains and the obvious pleasant weather make the overall rock and wall climbing experiences quite sublime. Commune with nature as you engage yourself with these formidable ventures worth cherishing for a lifetime.

    • Savandurga
    • Hampi and Badami
    • Yana
    • Skandagiri
    • Madhugiri

  • Q. Where can I do scuba diving in Karnataka? How much will it cost me?

    Karnataka serves one of the best dive sites of India found just off Murdeshwar. Netrani is a small-uninhabited island entertaining the adventurous yearning of the travellers. With water depth ranging between 6 and 40 meters and visibility from 15 and 30 meters, the destination is perfect for divers of all levels of experience.

    The service is offered here at the cost of INR 5000 attracting a horde of interested tourists all year round.

  • Q. Which are some famous routes for biking in Karnataka?

    The curvature and the straightness of the biking trails are versatile enough to give you the experience you want in Karnataka’s biking routes. Bangalore is especially popular for its biking trails hardly failing to impress bikers who come to seek solace here. Check out the most eminent biking trails of Karnataka:

    • Bheemeshwari, 105 km from Bangalore
    • Savandurga, Karnataka, 50 Km from Bangalore
    • Wayanad, 265 km from Bangalore
    • Ooty, 266 km from Bangalore
    • Shivanasamudram Falls, 135 km from Bangalore on road
    • Hampi, 350 km from Bangalore
    • Biligiriranga Hills, 200 km from Bangalore
    • Bangalore to Sakleshpur
    • Yercaud, 213 km from Bangalore
    • Kabini River, 209 km from Bangalore

  • Q. Where can I enjoy skydiving in Karnataka? Is it safe to do it? What are its charges?

    Diving from a height of 10,000 feet with only the safety of a parachute attached to you is daunting enough to make you question if the experience is safe at all. Although there are not many records of death associated with these practices in Karnataka, nonetheless, it is foolish to try it without any fitness or activity experience at all.

    Mysore nestles a few prominent skydiving sites with the Chamundi Hills being the most famed of them all. The cost of skydiving here during the weekend is INR 42,000 whereas it INR 35,000 in the weekdays.

  • Q. Which are some famous beaches to visit in Karnataka? What are the activities to do there?

    Being one of the most celebrated coastal destinations of India, it is impossible for Karnataka to not leave its visitors in awe of its calendar-worthy beaches. The beach destinations here are thoughtful enough to include other sightseeing tours so that you are not too bored gazing at the breathtaking horizon of the sea (which is doubtful). Check out the favourite beaches of the state:

    • Kaup Beach
    • Karwar Beach
    • Gokarna’s Beach town
    • Netrani Beach
    • St. Mary Island
    • Ullal Beach
    • Malpe Beach