(Last Updated on : 30/03/2013)
Tourism in Karnataka
includes numerous nature, religious and the adventurous spots of tourist interest. Tourism in Karnataka offers its visitors a wide array of temples, forests and wild life, scenic beaches and historical monuments. All kind of travellers will find a suitable place for holidaying in the state of Karnataka. For nature, admirers there are beaches and hill stations. Wildlife sanctuaries are also scattered throughout the state. For those who want to indulge in adventure, the state provides many opportunities to try out several adventure sports. Being an Indian state
, religion is an indispensable part of the culture of Karnataka. Hence, there are a number of temples and mosques in the state. Some of these are famous worldwide.
Pilgrimage Tourism in Karnataka
The state of Karnataka is a home to numerous pilgrimage centres. Temples are an integral part of pilgrimage tourism in Karnataka. The famous Virupaksha Temple
in Karnataka attracts religious pilgrims from different parts of the country. It is the main centre of pilgrimage at Hampi
and has been considered the most revered over the centuries. Numerous devotees from all over the country come to the Virupaksha Temple to offer their prayers. The Omkareshwara temple in Madikeri
in Karnataka is a holy place, which is flooded by devotees most of the time of the year. The Omkareshwara temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva
. The Nandi Bull Temple
, located in the capital city Bengaluru
is occupied the whole time of the year with religious rituals and events held in the temple premises. The Iskcon temple
in the city of Bengaluru is one of the most celebrated and sought after pilgrimage centres in Karnataka. The imposing temple compound, the supreme deities of Lord Krishna
and the pious ambiance makes the pilgrimage one of the most sacred sites. This temple attracts pilgrims from national and international front every week. Muslims comprise majority part of population in Karnataka and as a result, there are several mosques. The Jumma Masjid, Jami Masjid
, and the Military Masjid of Bengaluru are important religious centres for the Muslim devotees. The Jamiya mosque in Bijapur
and the Ekminar mosque in Raichur District
are among the other important Muslim pilgrimage centres in Karnataka. These religious places in the state of Karnataka are also renowned for their architectural marvel apart from their religious fervour.
Nature Tourism in Karnataka
Wildlife in Karnataka is a significant part of its tourism. The dense forest of Karnataka is a treasure trove of wild life. The interesting colourful birds, impressive flora varieties and abundant species of fauna comprise the Karnataka's forests and wildlife sanctuaries that have room for thousands of mammals, birds, reptiles and insects as well as several scarce species. Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary
is the largest wild life sanctuary of Karnataka. It is a home to some rare species of birds and animals. The sanctuary offers wildlife Jeep safaris, bird watching, fishing, coracle boat rides, trekking in the jungles of Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary.
The Nagarhole National Park
in southern Karnataka is an ideal locale for a wide variety of wildlife. Animals like four-horned antelope, sloth bear
, jungle cat, spotted deer
, flying fox, Royal Bengal Tiger
, panther, Indian bison
, bonnet macaque
, and pangolin
find a safe haven in this sanctuary. A trip to the Nagarhole national park in the dry seasons can be quite rewarding because wild animals can be spotted in large numbers near sources of water.
Bandipur National Park
is a stunning forest reserve situated in the south Indian state of Karnataka. The region is well gifted in terms of foliage and vegetation that ranges from deciduous and evergreen forest covers to open grassy woodlands. The Cubbon Park
in Bengaluru is an interesting tourist haunt. The vibrant flower beds, shady bowers and blossoming trees make it an ideal location for the visitors to spend some quality time in the lap of nature. The Brindavan garden
near the city of Mysore
in Karnataka is another major tourist attraction.
Adventure Tourism in Karnataka
The landscape of Karnataka provides adequate opportunities for promoting adventure sports. Paragliding is one of the most thrilling aero sport activities in Karnataka. The beautiful airstrip set in 1 sq. kms of tall wild-grass close to Bengaluru's Hebbal Lake is the spotlight of aero sports like Parasailing and Micro light flying. The trekking trails of Karnataka are mostly positioned in the Western Ghats -North and South Canara, Shimoga District
, Hassan District
. Trailing down the paths one can discover the fascinating beauty of nature. Kudremukh in Karnataka
is the most beautiful and the second highest peak in the state and is a paradise for the trekkers. The white water rafting in Karnataka is an unforgettable experience.
Several adventure organisations conduct White Water rafting
in Karnataka. Water sports are a big rage in this part of India. The chief watersport sites in Karnataka are well set with outstanding quality surfboard Kayaks
, canoes and other services. The Arabian Sea
, Kaveri River
and other water bodies have made Karnataka a perfect spot for trying out these escapades.
Leisure Tourism in Karnataka
Karnataka was a seat of power to many dynasties and kingdoms and thus there are several historical monuments, which are an integral part of its tourism. The historical monuments of Karnataka reflect the rich history and cultural prosperity of the state. The Gol Gumbaz
in Karnataka is the mausoleum of Adil Shah II, who was from the Adil Shahi Dynasty of Bijapur
. It is the largest dome in the Islamic world and is necessary visit site of Karnataka. The Maharaja's palace in Mysore
is a spectacular monument of Karnataka. Built in Indo-Saracenic fashion with domes, towers, arches and row of pillars, the Mysore palace
is a treasure house of fine carvings and works of art from all over the world. The Bangalore palace in the capital city Bengaluru is a prime tourist spot in Karnataka. It is the smaller replica of the Windsor Castle in England. The major forts in Karnataka remind the spectators of the chaotic times that the structures have witnessed. The forts are also counted amongst the major tourist magnetism in Karnataka. The Bidar Fort
built by the rulers of Bahamani Dynasty
of Deccan is well known for the impressive gates, the fortifications and the Rangin Mahal, with its opulently ornamented interiors. The Gulbarga Fort is in ruins at present but a trip to this fort is worth the visit. The Bijapur Fort was the headquarters of the of the Adil Shahi dynasty.
The architecture of this majestic fort is unique and is one of the most impressive forts of Karnataka. The long coastline of Karnataka, arrayed with some of the famous beaches is a vital part of its tourism. Beaches in Karnataka
are a dream come true for the visitors. The Bhatkal beach of Karnataka, with the lofty hills and blue sea is a popular tourist spot. The Murudeshwar beach
is another prominent beach of Karnataka. It is also a popular picnic spot and a charming destination, which is flocked by tourists almost all throughout the year. Malpe beach
in Karnataka is a wonderful hangout precinct with its virgin beach. The endless territory of golden sand, pleasingly swaying palm trees, the blue sky and the wave of the sea, all set an idyllic temperament for a memorable holiday here. The Maravanthe beach
of Karnataka provides facilities for water sports. The seawater is safe for swimming and this makes it one of the most coveted destinations for the tourists. The hill stations are the major attractions in Karnataka.
From the out of this world view of Chikmagalur District
to the quite retreats of Madikeri
, from the spectacular Coorg to the forested Biligiri hills
, hill stations in Karnataka has them all. Most of the hill stations of Karnataka are situated in the different ranges of the Western Ghat Mountains. Each hill station is diverse from the other and offer great opportunities for the travellers to lose themselves in the tranquil lap of nature. Madikeri, Agumbe hill station
and Coorg are among the most popular hill stations of Karnataka.