Winter Hikes outside Bangalore – Self Drive Adventures

Winters in Bangalore are mild and usually dry. This is the best time to head out into the countryside for a nice drive and a good hike. From wildlife spotting to magnificent nature photography, a day out in the open entails many wondrous experiences. Bangalore is close to some of the most engaging hiking routes – combining easy connectivity to the city by road and stunning landscapes. With a self drive car, one can plan impromptu trips and have a rejuvenating experience on the weekend or on a holiday. Here are two top recommendations.

Savandurga

Just a 90 minute drive away, Savandurga is a top hiking destination for Bangaloreans. The summit of the Savandurga hill reaches more than 1200 metres above sea level and it is quite an invigorating climb on a rocky slope. At the top, one would find the remnants of an old fort. The unique aspect of Savandurga is that it is a monolith – a single piece of giant rock considered one of the largest in the entire continent. It is an impressive site from a distance too, a dome-like grey structure rising out of the forests.

Apart from the trek to the top, one can also explore the vegetation at the foothill to get a chance at some rare bird sightings. Some of the species found at the Savandurga State Forest include spotted doves, jungle fowls, greater coucals, black-winged kites, and many more.

Ramanagaram

Dominated by its granite hills and formations, Ramanagaram is like a natural maze that the outdoor enthusiast can spend days exploring. From arid shrub land to jagged hilltops, it provides a fascinating stage for rock climbers and trekkers. Rappelling is another popular activity in Ramanagaram.

The entire Ramanagaram district is full of natural surprises. One can climb the highest summits of the region and enjoy spectacular views of the surrounding plateau. Those who enjoy water activities can indulge in kayaking. It is also a good spot for bird watchers. Ramanagaram is home to the rare long-billed vulture and yellow-throated bulbul.

The drive from Bangalore to Ramanagaram is a short and scenic one, 55 kms south-west in the same direction as Mysore. The main town of Ramanagaram is a major hub for silk trade and visitors can also squeeze in a stop at nearby Channapatna, famous for its wooden toys.

Go for the Self Drive Option

Instead of depending on the limited public transport to head out into the outskirts, adventurous travellers are taking matters into their own hands, literally. A rental nowadays comes at a cheap cost and it gives total privacy and freedom. Zoomcar is one of the most favoured car rentals in Bangalore. App-based booking makes getting a car very easy and travellers can drive the latest models – from cosy hatchbacks to sleek sedans and rough-and-tough SUVs. 24/7 on-road support adds that extra security bit and ensures a hassle-free experience. All India permits allow longer inter-state sojourns too.

A good hike can really invigorate the dullest of routines. Feel the wilderness and momentarily at least, become part of it. Get behind the wheel and discover the adventure that waits outside Bangalore.

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