Finally the day has come to visit Shivagange hill, one of the popular weekend getaways from Bangalore. This famous pilgrimage is only 55 km from Bangalore and is known for its moderate to tough trekking trail and sacred temples. Along with our friends from Thilak’s office, we decided to visit this place on a fine Saturday morning.
We left from home at 5.45 AM and waited in Goragunte Palya to meet our fellow rider friends. We were 10 in total and we started at 7 AM from Goragunte Palya. Had breakfast in hotel Vrindavan veg in Dabaspete from 7.45 AM to 8.45 AM and then headed towards Shivagange. In Dabaspete junction, you need to take a left diversion and then proceed for about 7 km to reach the hill.
We paid 15 Rs/bike as entry fee just before reaching the base of the hill at 9 AM. The road is well maintained throughout. There is no dedicated parking lot as such. We parked our bikes in the car street near to the temple and started to ascend. As soon as you enter the temple premises, you will notice mainly two things – 1. A steep trek trail and 2. Huge number of monkeys waiting to steal food/water from you.
At the entrance, there are two temples namely Gangadhareshwara temple and Honnadevi temple which can be reached by climbing only few steps. Both of these temples are cave temples and are very old.You can also find a big Ganesha statue on your left side while climbing these steps.
From the left side near the Gangadhareshwara temple, there is a path that leads to the top of the hill. The trek path is a difficult one and if you are just a beginner, it will exhaust you. We went in a peak summer season which made our trekking a more tiring one. Be cautious about your belongings as there are lot of monkeys throughout the trek path.
There are rock cut steps in many places which eases the trekking a bit. And the mesmerizing aerial view of the surrounding gives a soothing experience as you climb. There are small shops selling water, buttermilk, juice, churmuri, etc throughout till the top. Big salute to these guys who come here every day and serve basic necessities. You cannot stop appreciating them during your trek. If not these people, you would need to carry loads of water. But while eating or drinking, be careful of the monkeys. They can appear from anywhere.
In the mid-way, you will find a small temple called Olakal Theertha where you can find a water spring. You need to put your hand into a deep, small opening to touch the water. It is believed that if you could touch the water, that means you are a person of good nature. It is also a belief that if you touch the water, then you are free from all the sins you have committed.
Little more ascend towards the hill, you can find a big Shiva and Parvathi statues in a sitting posture. From this statue, till the top of the hill, the trek is the most difficult one. The trek trail becomes very steep and the steps are extremely narrow. There are railings for your support. Hold them tight and climb. These railings are a blessing in disguise. If not these railings, climbing till the top would have been highly difficult. Near this trek path, there are lot of monkeys. But, unless you show them food/water or do anything harm to them, they won’t create any problem to you. They will be jumping from railing to railing and will be trekking along with you. But, don’t you worry. They won’t hurt you unnecessarily.
Surprisingly, though the steps were steep, we dint feel that tired while climbing this stretch. May be because we were too cautious while climbing that we could not pay attention to our tiredness. 😉 As you are nearing the hilltop, the cool breeze touches your face and the atmosphere suddenly changes to a pleasant one. At the top of the hill, if you take a left, there is a big Nandi statue (bull) carved out of a rock which can be reached by climbing few more steps. These steps are the steepest one and are highly dangerous. Behind the bull statue, at one point, there is no rock support to keep your foot. You just need to walk on the railings. These two-three steps on the railings at such a height, with the view of the surrounding villages deep beneath the foot is the scariest for me in this trek and is unforgettable one. Do not miss to experience this amazing feeling when you are in Shivagange. But, we repeat, be extra careful while climbing up and down these narrow steps.
Little more steps of walk from the Nandi Statue towards the other side, you will reach another view point called Shanthala Point. This is the point from where Shanthala, the great Bharathanatyam dancer queen and wife of the great Hoysala king Vishnuvardhana is believed to have committed suicide. The place is named after her. View from here is extraordinary and cannot be explained in words. The spectacular view of the landscape is an absolute bliss and makes you forget all the hardship that you have undergone to reach the point and undoubtedly make you feel worth the climb. We spent lot of time enjoying the nature, clicking photos at this point.
- Be aware of monkeys. They are lot in number. Be careful of your belongings.
- Eat before you climb. You need energy.
- Avoid monsoon season.
- Try to reach the hill top before it becomes too sunny.
We started climbing down the hill at around 1 PM and reached the bottom of the hill at around 3.30 PM. Sat there for half an hour and started our return journey at around 4.30 PM. Had evening snacks at Rathnam Hotel near Dabaspete and left to Bangalore at around 6.30 PM. We reached home at 9.30 PM.
- Route Travelled: Onward: BTM Layout > Sankey Tank > Goragunte Palya > Hotel Vrindavan Veg near Dabaspete > Shivagange
Return: Shivagange > Rathnam Hotel near Dabaspete > Goragunte Palya > Outer Ring Road > Banashankari BDA > Jayanagar 4th T Block > BTM Layout
- Total Distance (To & Fro): 145 km
- Mileage (Bike): 40 km/l
- Fuel expense: 268 Rs
- Total expense: 1072 Rs
- Photos: Shivagange Album