Hogenakkal Waterfalls is your perfect day trip destination from Bangalore. The brilliant milky waterfalls and never ending river will leave you exuberant with joy! Remember the song “Raat ka Nasha Abhi” from the movie Ashoka? The song was shot here amidst brilliant landscapes.
Here, I have written about my experience of completing a trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls and compiled some very useful tips for you at the end of this travelogue.
My recent trip to Hogenakkal waterfalls helped me realize how beautiful South India is. The rocky formations in the course of Kaveri create a magnificent site which is no less than Alice’s wonderland. In addition, the coracle ride will help you indulge deeply in the scintillating experience of Hogenakkal falls.
Located at a distance of 170 KMs, HogenakkalWaterfalls are located in the state of Tamil Nadu. However, it is very close to the Karnataka – Tamil Nadu border. You can hire a car or hop on your bike and reach Hogenakkalin 3 hours. After spending another 3 hours at the place, including the coracle ride, you can reach back to Bangalore on the same day.
When you reach Hogenakkal Waterfalls, you will be a little disappointed by the overcrowded venue with a lot of eateries. But, to discover the true brilliance of Hogenakkal Waterfalls, you should enjoy the coracle ride.
Coracle is a small boat which can carry a maximum of 7 people, including your guide. The cost of enjoying the coracle ride would come up to Rs 900 for 6 people. However, if you are a family of 4 or a couple, you can either wait for more people to join you or keep the boat to yourself. But, you will have to bear the entire cost. Negotiating with the coracle owners is possible. But, if you are visiting Hogenakkal Waterfalls during peak season or on a weekend, the chance of getting a better deal is elusive. According to Government norms, a guide cannot charge more than Rs 110 per person. But, due to lack of strict regulations, no guide would respect the government directives.
View of Hogenakkal Waterfalls before starting the coracle ride (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
When you start your coracle ride in Hogenakkal Waterfalls, you will have to wait for some time to be impressed. But, when you listen the roaring sound of water turning into an uproar, you will realize that you are up for a treat. The coracle goes as close as possible to the waterfalls and as the strong current of Kaveri river splashes the cold water on you, the admiration for nature’s magnanimity grows stronger in you.
A closer view of Hogenakkal Waterfalls from the coracle (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
A Coracle fighting against the strong current as the tourists endure the cold splashes of Kaveri river (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
Once you have enjoyed proximity to the stunning waterfalls, the coracle proceeds towards the most tranquil stretch of Kaveri river. You can see some vendors floating along with as they persuade you to buy chips or a water bottle. The sad part is that people buy chips from these vendors, just to throw the wrapper in the pious river, not caring about nature at all.
Floating shops (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
After rowing for some time, you will reach some spots along the banks of Kaveri river where you can take a dip in the holy waters. These spots are less crowded as compared to the main area, from where you started your coracle trip. You can swim at these spots. Life jackets are available for you here. But, to be on the safe side, you should carry life jackets from the beginning itself. If you don’t plan to jump in the waters, Life jackets wouldn’t be necessary.
A spot where you can swim in Kaveri river (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
Another view of the brilliant landscapes (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
After swimming for some time in the placid waters, our guide took us to a lesser known spot which was near the Karnataka – Tamil Nadu border. When we reached there, we saw some men clad in yellow shirts. Our guide wore a blue shirt. Blue shirt indicated a coracle guide from Tamil Nadu and Yellow shirt indicated a guide from Karnataka. We failed to understand the need for separate uniforms when both the states share the immense beauty of one river. But, on talking to our guide, we realized that all the venom was infused by the politicians and personally, they just hated this differentiation. A Karnataka guide can ignite riots if he enters Tamil Nadu territory. However, if a political pawn does not notice a yellow shirt in blue shirt territory, no ramifications would surface. I was really grieved by the dirty games these Indian politicians play.
From that spot, we were able to get a bird’s eye view of the Hogenakkal Waterfalls and vast Kaveri river.
A Karnataka-based guide repairs his Coracle as our Tamil guide takes us to the spot near Karnataka – Tamil Nadu border. (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
View from the spot, that’s me in green T-shirt. (Trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls)
Elated, we returned back in time to proceed out return journey and reach Bangalore. The trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls was certainly worth the 5-6 hours spent in traveling. I have compiled some useful tips for you which would help you in planning, saving money and eventually enjoying your trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls
1) Car hire: If you are hiring a car with a driver from Bangalore for your trip to Hogenakkal Waterfalls, accompany him when he is going to collect permit to enter Tamil Nadu. Our driver asked for Rs 500, but the permit only costs Rs 100.
2) Hiring a Coracle: One coracle can accommodate 6 people, excluding the guide. It costs Rs 900 for one coracle, irrespective of a number of people in it. If you are a couple, you will have to bear Rs 450 per head if you choose not to share your coracle ride with anybody. If you are okay to share the ride, you can wait for some time and you might find other 4 people to accompany you.
3) Negotiating with the coracle guide: If you have patience, you can negotiate hard and reduce the cost by a couple of hundred rupees. But, during crowded hours, it might be difficult to crack a deal
4) Coracle Ride timings: The last coracle ride would be around 5 pm. Hence, make sure to start your ride in the afternoon so that you can peacefully enjoy the experience. Normally, one coracle guide does approximately 2 trips. If you are starting a trip around 2 pm, that would be the last trip for the coracle owner. Hence, he wouldn’t rush to complete the ride. But, if you start your ride around 4:30 pm, he might rush you to complete the ride before it gets dark.
5) Carrying camera & other belongings: Its pretty safe to carry your cameras or mobile phones during your coracle ride during your trip to Hogenakkal waterfalls. Unless the coracle flips over, which is very less likely to happen, your belongings are safe. There are lockers available near Hogenakkal waterfalls. But, I didn’t find them to be very safe
6) Eating locally: You will find many eateries here selling fried fish and other delicacies. Make sure you check the hygiene factors before embarking upon a joyful trip for your taste buds.
7) Oil Massages: Your trip to Hogenakkal waterfalls can include an oil massage from an experienced Masseuse. The massages at Hogenakkal Waterfalls are actually famous.
I hope you found some useful information in this post. Do let me know your experiences or questions in the comments below!