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Karnataka Tourism | How to Plan a Trip to Karnataka

One of the jewels of the South India, Karnataka is blessed with many historical and natural attractions. It is dotted with numerous ancient temples, hill stations, advanced cities, beaches and more.

  • Karnataka Travel Guide
Karnataka At a Glance
  • Capital City:Bangalore
  • Average Climate:21°C - 34°C
  • Best Time to Visit:November - April

Karnataka Tourism | Karnataka Travel Guide

Karnataka is one of the largest states in South India that is fully packed with diverse beauty. It is one of the most appealing states in India where many worlds live. You can explore the heritage sites, plunge in natural beauty, have fun with hill stations, or observe the wildlife. Natural beauty has many forms and Karnataka stores every aspect of it for you. Whatever you choose for your Karnataka tour packages, you will get the best of everything.

From the ruins of Hampi to the advancement of Bangalore, you will witness the beauty of an incredible past and futuristic growth. Mysore is another charm of Karnataka that offers you the beauty of heritage sites, whereas Chikmagalur, Sakleshpur, and Coorg are some of the best hill stations in Karnataka. You can discover the tranquility by heading to Mangalore and Gokarna and ON your relaxation mode with beachy vibes. There are plenty of temples in Karnataka where you can get the blessing and admire the architectural beauty. Hubli, Mangaluru, Hampi, and Mysore are some of the best religious places in Karnataka.

If any sense of worries and confusion strike in your mind, read this Karnataka travel guide and plan your vacation perfectly.

Why Visit Karnataka

It comes with no surprise that Karnataka is one of the best states of India for making a vacation remarkable. From witnessing a diversity in flora and fauna to enjoying festivals and thrilling activities; Karnataka has everything you need. Each side of this state is engaging and beautiful, and on top of that, the lively culture and tradition make it more delightful. You can't give this state one kind of tag as you can enjoy every kind of vacation. Whether you want a romantic escape, fun-filled vacation with friends, or looking for a family outing, Karnataka befit for all. You can step into the southern beauty and get in return excitement, thrill, surprises, and a beautiful cultural touch.

How to Reach Karnataka

Being one of the most-visited states in India, Karnataka has a well-developed infrastructure of transport. You can reach Karnataka by air, road, and rail as the connectivity mode is brilliant.

  • By Air: Bengaluru International Airport and Mangalore International Airport are two major airports that have good connectivity with Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and Hyderabad.
  • By Road: The road transportation has Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation(KSRTC) link with major cities and Karnataka destinations. This government corporation provides the service of intrastate and interstate buses.
  • By Train: The main cities of Karnataka are well connected with other regions of India. Whereas Bangalore Railway Station is one of the major railway terminals in Karnataka.

Best Time to Visit Karnataka

The best time to visit Karnataka is between October to February. During this time, you can attend the Mysore Dussehra and enjoy the wildlife excursion with perfect climate conditions.  But, as we know, Karnataka is one of the largest states of India and therefore experiences different kinds of climate in its different regions. To enjoy activities like trekking and witnessing the charm of Jog Falls, Monsoon is the ideal time to visit Karnataka.

Places to Visit in Karnataka

The list of places to visit in Karnataka shows each shade that makes your vacation more spellbinding. Being settled amidst Kannad Coast, Western Ghats, and Deccan Plateau, Karnataka has a diverse beauty that will blow your mind. The landscapes and geographic aspects of Karnataka cover all charm of nature and connect you with thrill, relaxation, and spirituality. You can set the theme of your vacation with the beauty that is scattered in this state in many forms. From the iconic ruins of Hampi to the greenery of coffee plantations, you will get uncountable moments that leave you with wow factors.

Historical and Heritage Sites in Karnataka

The impressive historical legacy of Karnataka attracts enthusiast travelers from all over the world. Karnataka has witnessed some of the most regal and opulent dynasties that left a heavy impact which still reflects through heritage sites and historical monuments. Archaeological wealth for the history buffs is surely a treat that gives an enthralling experience.

Some famous Historical and Heritage Places to Visit in Karnataka:

  • Mysore: Mysore Palace, Lalitha Mahal, Melody World Wax Museum, Railway Museum, Jagmohan Palace, and Karanji Lake.
  • Bangalore: Bangalore Palace, National Gallery Of Modern Art, Vidhana Soudha, and Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace.
  • Badami: Magnificent Badami Cave Temples, Traditional Mallikarjuna Group Of Temples, Mesmerizing Badami Fort, Alluring Bhutanatha, and Group Of Temples.
  • Hassan: Maharaja Park, Gorur Dam, Shettihalli Church, Hasanamba Temple, and Lakshmi Devi Temple.
  • Halebidu: Belur, Hoysaleshwara Temple, Archaeological Museum,
  • Hampi: Matanga Hill, Virupaksha Temple, Queen's Bath, Lotus Mahal, Vijaya Vittala Temple

Natural Park and Wildlife Sanctuaries in Karnataka

Karnataka is one of the most beautiful states for experiencing the wildlife. The rich diversity of flora and fauna connects you with nature glory at its best. Whether you want to scan the wildlife of the dense jungle or enjoy the safari, you can get everything in Karnataka. There are many natural parks in Karnataka that are the perfect treat for nature lovers and thrill-seekers.

Topmost Wildlife Sanctuaries and National Parks in Karnataka

  • Bannerghatta National Park - Bannerghatta, Bengaluru
  • Bandipur National Park - Chamarajanagar, Bandipur
  • Nagarhole National Park - Madikeri Road, Hunsur
  • Anshi National Park - North Kannada District, Near Dandeli
  • Kudremukh National Park - Mudigere Taluk, Chikkamagaluru
  • Kali Tiger Reserve - Kodihalli
  • Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary - Dandeli, Uttara Kannada
  • Kabini Wildlife Sanctuary - On the Bank of Kabini River
  • Ranganathittu Bird Sanctuary - District Mandya, Srirangapatna,
  • Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary - Kumbarahalli, Kodagu, Somwarpet

Pilgrimage Sites in Karnataka

When it comes to visiting temples in Karnataka, there is no dull moment for you. It has plenty of pilgrimage sites that give peace and bliss to spirituality seekers. The best part about pilgrimage sites of Karnataka is that it offers a blend of incredible architecture along with sacred vibes. You can admire the ancient art and delve into the serenity of temples while touring Karnataka's Temple.

Some Famous Pilgrim Sites in Karnataka

  • Udupi: Udupi Sri Krishna Temple, Anegudde Vinayaka Temple, and Vadabandheswara Temple
  • Hampi: Sri Virupaksha Temple, Vitthala Temple, Achyuta Raya Temple
  • Gokarna: Sri Mahabaleshwar Temple, Sri Maha Ganapati Temple, Shri Shankar Narayan Temple, and Shri Kal Bhairav Temple
  • Srirangapatna: Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple, Nimishamba Temple, Shri Gangadhareshwara Temple, and Kshanambika Devi Temple
  • Shravanabelagola: Gomateshwara Temple, Lakshmi Narasimha Temple, Brahmeshvara Temple, and Chamundaraya Basadi.
  • Badami: Badami cave Temple and Boothnath Temple.
  • Halebidu: Hoysaleshwara Temple, Kedareshwar Temple, Nageshwara Temple

Hill Stations in Karnataka

Hill stations of Karnataka are a real gem that offers great landscapes and scenic beauty. Whether you want to explore the romantic side with your beloved or looking to add thrill to your life, the hill stations of Karnataka have everything for you. You can get the recluse time and rejuvenate your senses with the beautiful hill station in Karnataka. These hill stations welcome an ardent nature admirer, thrill-seeker, trekking enthusiast, or peace lover.

Some of the most Scenic hill stations of Karnataka

  • Nandi Hills - Get a spectacular view of cloud blanket
  • Coorg - Lock yourself in nature to unravel your soul
  • Chikmagalur- A paradise for ardent coffee lovers
  • Agumbe - A home to striking waterfalls
  • Ooty - Feel the romantic vibes in the air
  • Yercaud - A ground for nature lovers
  • Wayanad - Catch the thrill with numerous dimensions
  • Biligiri Hills - A hill station for curious souls
  • Kemmanagundi - Enjoy the quaint view with serenity
  • Kodachadri - A perfect treat for enthusiast trekkers
  • Madikeri - Store the moments in your heart along with camera
  • Munnar - Give your eyes a feast of greenery

Waterfalls in Karnataka

The thing that you should not miss during your tour of Karnataka is exploring waterfalls. This southern state is blessed with natural beauty that adds an extra layer of fun to your Karnataka vacation. Numerous waterfalls will take your breath away and take your excitement to another level. The lush green beauty around the waterfall will give the best view while bathing in waterfalls. A refreshing escape in Karnataka is all about visiting mesmerizing waterfalls. 

Some of the Best Waterfalls in Karnataka

  • Coorg: Abbey Falls, Iruppu Falls,Chelavara Falls, Mallalli Falls,and Burude Falls,
  • Shimoga: Jog Falls, Kunchikal Falls, Hidlumane Falls, Dabbe Falls, Onake Abbi Falls
  • Kemmanagundi: Hebbe Falls, Kalhatti Falls, Shanti Falls
  • Chikmagalur: Jhari Falls, Kallathigiri Falls, Alekan Falls, Kadambi Falls.
  • Murudeshwar: Apsara Konda Waterfalls, Koosalli Waterfall, Unchalli Waterfall

Things to Do in Karnataka

Karnataka is one of the most appealing southern states that is blessed with natural bounty, wildlife, heritage and monuments sites, aromatic coffee plantations, and much more. There are plenty of things to do in Karnataka that give you the next level of fun. You will find many fascinating activities in which you can indulge with your families and kids. Apart from that, camping, trekking, and hiking are popular activities in Karnataka among adventure lovers. Whether you are a nature lover, history buff, or thrill-seeker, you will have numerous dimensions to enjoy the fun in Karnataka.

Adventurous Activities in Karnataka

You can get the impeccable beauty and thrill in Karnataka by enjoying the adventure-packed activities with your close ones. It is the state that offers majestic mountains, rivers, beaches, and dense forest. Each element of Karnataka offers something interesting for you. From the modernity of Bangalore to the historic vibe of Mysore, Karnataka is blessed with countless opportunities that give you adventure-filled experiences.

Popular Adventure Activities in Karnataka

  • Trekking: Pushpagiri, Tadiandamol, Mullayanagiri Peak, Nandi Hills, Abbey falls, Shimoga, Chikmagalur, Hassan, and Coorg
  • Camping: Ramanagara, Kanakpura, Bheemeshwari, Sakleshpur, Masinagudi, Coorg
  • Paragliding: Nandi Hills, Bangalore, and Mysore
  • Water Sports: Honnemaradu, Maravanthe Beach, Karwar beach, Gokarna, and Devbagh
  • Wildlife Safari Tour: Bandipur Tiger Reserve and National Park, Anshi National Park, Kudremukh National Park, Mookambika Wildlife Sanctuary, and Nagarhole National Park,.
  • Rock Climbing: Kanakapura, Savandurga, Turahalli and Kabbaldurga, and Tumkur
  • Cave Explorations: Badami Cave, Yana Caves, Kavala Caves, Antharagange Caves, Brahmashram Cave, Biladwara Cave, and Shiva Cave.

Kid-Friendly Activities in Karnataka

Numerous water parks, amusement parks, and gardens of Karnataka are ideal for fun indulging in activities with your kids and family.

Some Popular Spots in Karnataka for Kids and Family

  • Water Parks: Lumbini Gardens and GRS Fantasy Parks
  • Theme & Amusement Park: Wonderla Amusement Park, Innovative Film City, Snow Park
  • Gardens: Utsav Rock Garden, Lal Bagh Botanical Garden, Cubbon Park, Brindavan Garden, and Lav Kush Garden
  • Museum: Government Museum, Mysuru Rail Museum, Folklore Museum, and Regional Museum of Natural History Mysore

Places for Shopping in Karnataka

Karnataka is a perfect amalgamation of shopping malls and local shopping. From its ancient ruins to glittering buildings, Karnataka has become one of the most popular tourist places for vacation. You can enjoy shopping in Karnataka that gives you one of a kind experience. Whether you are looking for branded things to purchase or fill your bag with handicraft items, you will be spoilt for choice in Karnataka. The most popular items to buy in Karnataka are Mysore silk, incense sticks, sandalwood oil, sandalwood sculptures, and wood carvings.

Enjoy Shopping in Mysore

Mysore is one of the calmest and pollution-free cities of Karnataka that is also becoming a hub for tourists for shopping. You can enjoy shopping in Musuru as countless options are available here for everyone.

  • Things to buy: Traditional Paintings and Rosewood Inlay, Betel Leaf, Sandal Soap and Sandalwood Oil, and Mysore Silk

Enjoy Shopping in Ramanagara

It is another beautiful destination of Karnataka that is near Mysore and famous for the Silk Cocoon market. You can fill your bucket with souvenirs from the local markets:

  • Things to buy: Toys and Doll and Silk items

Enjoy Shopping in Coorg

Being famous as the Scotland of India, Coorg is an exceptional destination in so many ways. And shopping in Coorg is one of the best parts to enjoy your vacation in Coorg. From shopping arcades to flea markets, there is much more to shop in Coorg.

  • Things to buy: Ayurvedic therapeutic oils, spices, and homemade chocolates.

Shopping in Chikkamagaluru

Far and wide known as the Coffee land of Karnataka and heaven for coffee lovers. Shopping in Chikmagalur is one of the best things to do in Karnataka. There are many things that you can take back to your home as souvenirs from this destination.

  • Things to buy: Homemade Wine, Coffee, Chocolate, Spices-Pepper, and Coconut Oil

Enjoy Shopping in Shivamogga

It is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Karnataka that receives heavy footfalls during the monsoon. It is home to Asia's second-largest waterfall and a getaway for Western Ghat. You can enjoy shopping while exploring this destination to get the best experience.

  • Things to buy: Handicrafts, Areca Nut, Rosewood Carving, Wooden Toys, Jackfruit, and Spices