Etymology of Kemmangundi
Kemmangundi derives its name from three Kannada words - Kempu meaning red, mannu means soil and gundi means pit, together it means a place with red soil.
History of Kemmangundi
Kemmangundi was established as the summer retreat of Krishna Raja Wodeyar IV. Awed by the beauty of the surroundings Baba Budan Hills, Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV was inspired to build his summer resort at Kemmangundi. He then donated the property to the Government of Karnataka. The hill station and its surroundings are now maintained by the Department of Horticulture.
Places to Visit around Kemmangundi
Besides being a perfect spot to admire the nature there are several sightseeing where one can drop in.
1. Raj Bhavan: The Raj Bhavan is a guesthouse, which offers amazing view of the ranges and the neighbouring landscape.
2. Kalhatti Falls: The Kalhatti Falls is located on a deviation on the road from Kemmangundi to Tarikere. Kalhatti Falls is also known as Kallathigiri waterfalls. According to the legend this place is associated with sage Agastya. Here, the water cascades down from a height of 122 m amidst fascinating scenery.
3. Hebbe Falls: A downhill trek of about 8 km from Raj Bhavan is the Hebbe waterfalls where water streams down from a height of 168m in 2 stages, to form the Dodda Hebbe (Big Falls) and the Chikka Hebbe (Small Falls).
4. Bhadra Tiger Reserve: The landscape of Kemmangundi also comprise of the Bhadra Tiger Reserve. Besides the majestic tiger’s one can also catch a glimpse of panthers, jungle cats, elephants, gaur, deer, sambar and splendid birds such as robin, woodpecker and others.
5. Baba Budangiri Range: It is one of the highest mountain peaks between the Himalayas and the Nilgiris and the second tallest peak in Karnataka. The Baba Budan Giri stands tall at a height of 1895 m and is named after the Muslim saint Baba Budan.
6. Z point: Z point is a vantage point at Kemmangundi and can be reached by a steep uphill trek of about 45 minutes from Raj Bhavan and is another place from which one can view the sunrise. Shanthi Falls near Kemmangundi can be visited.
7. Rose Garden: Rose garden is a garden of roses maintained by the Horticultural Department of Karnataka. Many varieties of roses are cultivated there.
8. Mullayanagiri: Mullayanagiri is the tallest peak in Karnataka and is famous for the temple perched on the peak. Though the route to Kemmangundi through Mullayanagiri is scenic and beautiful, the roads can be narrow and bad.
Climate of Kemmangundi Hill Station
Kemmangundi has a sub-tropical highland climate influenced by monsoon. It has cool climate throughout the year than most cities in the sub-continent. December is the coldest month with mean temperature of 17 degree Celsius and April is the hottest with a mean of 22 degree Celsius.
Visiting Information on Kemmangundi
Lying in the district of Chikmagalur which is 53 km from Kemmangundi in Karnataka can be accessible by road from Bengaluru and the district itself. Train services from Tarikere, Kadur and Mangalore are also available. The nearest airports are at Mangalore at a distance of 212 km and about 277 km from the Bangalore Airport.