17 Things To Do In Shimoga

Things To Do In Shimoga

Welcome to Shimoga, a hidden treasure nestled in the heart of Karnataka, India. Known for its breathtaking landscapes, rich history, and vibrant wildlife, Shimoga offers a plethora of activities for every type of traveler. Whether you’re an adventure enthusiast, a nature lover, or a culture seeker, the diversity of experiences here will surely captivate your heart. In this guide, we explore a curated list of the top things to do in Shimoga, each promising unique encounters and unforgettable memories. So, pack your bags and get ready to explore the beauty and excitement of this stunning destination.

Things To Do In Shimoga

  1. Explore Jog Falls

Jog Falls, India’s second-highest plunge waterfall, is a majestic sight to behold in Shimoga. During the monsoon season, the falls are especially powerful and offer spectacular views. Surrounding the waterfall are lush forests and trekking paths, making it a perfect spot for nature lovers and adventure seekers. You can take a guided trek down to the bottom of the falls for an up-close experience of this natural wonder. The area is also ideal for bird watching, so bring your binoculars and keep an eye out for exotic species.

  1. Visit the Sakrebailu Elephant Camp

Sakrebailu Elephant Camp is located just 14 kilometers from Shimoga. It’s an ecological haven where you can observe elephants in a natural environment. Visitors can watch these majestic creatures being bathed and fed by their caretakers. The camp is an educational experience where you can learn about elephant conservation and the efforts to protect these magnificent animals. It’s a great spot for families, as children and adults alike can enjoy watching the elephants and even participate in feeding them under supervision.

  1. Take a Boat Ride at Sharavathi River

Sharavathi River offers a tranquil escape with its stunning backwaters and lush scenery. A boat ride on the river is the perfect way to unwind and appreciate the natural beauty of Shimoga. You’ll glide past dense forests and islands teeming with diverse flora and fauna. For those who enjoy fishing, the river is an ideal spot to catch some local fish. Additionally, the area around Sharavathi is great for picnicking and bird watching, making it a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of city life.

  1. Discover the Historical Keladi Temple

Keladi Temple, dating back to the 16th century, is a must-visit for history enthusiasts visiting Shimoga. This temple showcases the architectural style of the Nayaka period and is dedicated to Lord Shiva, Parvathi, and Ganesha. The temple complex is adorned with intricate carvings and ancient murals that tell stories of the past. Visitors can enjoy a quiet stroll around the temple grounds and absorb the peaceful atmosphere while admiring the detailed craftsmanship of the structures.

  1. Enjoy Bird Watching at Mandagadde Bird Sanctuary

Mandagadde Bird Sanctuary is a small island on the Tunga River and is a paradise for bird watchers. It is home to a variety of bird species, including the median egret, the little cormorant, and the darter. The best time to visit is between June and September when the birds are nesting. A viewing tower provides the perfect spot to observe these birds in their natural habitat. The serene environment and the gentle sounds of the river make this sanctuary a soothing place for spending a day in nature.

  1. Stroll Through the Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary

Bhadra Wildlife Sanctuary offers a spectacular opportunity to immerse yourself in biodiversity. Home to species such as tigers, leopards, and several types of birds, it’s a haven for wildlife enthusiasts. The sanctuary also offers safari rides that provide a chance to witness these animals in their natural habitat. Additionally, the sanctuary’s lush green forests and the presence of the Bhadra River add to its serene environment, making it ideal for photography and nature walks.

  1. Visit the Historical Town of Balligavi

Balligavi, once a flourishing town during the Hoysala and Chalukya eras, is now a treasure trove of ancient temples and ruins. The place is known for its architectural sites, such as the Kedareshvara Temple and Tripurantaka Temple. These structures showcase intricate carvings and sculptures that are a testament to the craftsmanship of the bygone eras. Exploring Balligavi is like walking through the pages of history, ideal for those who appreciate archaeology and ancient cultures.

  1. Rafting in the Tunga River

Tunga River is perfect for thrill-seekers looking to experience white-water rafting. The river’s varying currents offer both challenging rapids and calm stretches, suitable for both beginners and experienced rafters. Rafting here not only provides an adrenaline rush but also offers stunning views of the surrounding dense forests and wildlife. Post-rafting, you can relax by the riverbank and enjoy a peaceful picnic.

  1. Explore the Agumbe Rainforest

Agumbe, known as the ‘Cherrapunji of the South,’ is famous for its rainforests and biodiversity, making it a must-visit for ecological tourists and nature enthusiasts. It’s one of the best spots in India for trekking, especially during the monsoon when the forests are lush and waterfalls are at their full might. Agumbe also provides a unique opportunity to learn about rainforest ecology and conservation efforts in the area.

  1. Visit the Tyavarekoppa Lion and Tiger Safari

Tyavarekoppa Lion and Tiger Safari, just outside Shimoga, provides a safe and controlled environment to see some of India’s majestic big cats up close. This safari park allows you to observe lions and tigers in large, open enclosures from the safety of a vehicle. The park also features a small zoo where children and adults alike can learn about various animal species, making it an educational and fun family outing.

  1. Relax at Linganamakki Dam

Linganamakki Dam, built across the Sharavathi River, is an impressive structure and a crucial power generation unit in Karnataka. The area around the dam is picturesque, offering panoramic views of the backwaters and lush green hills. It’s a popular spot for picnics and casual hikes, where visitors can enjoy the tranquil surroundings and occasionally spot a variety of birds and small wildlife.

  1. Trek to Kodachadri Hill

Kodachadri Hill is a trekker’s paradise, offering one of the most beautiful treks in Karnataka. This mountain peak is enveloped in dense forests and boasts a stunning view of the Western Ghats at the summit. The trek is moderately challenging, making it suitable for both novices and experienced trekkers. At the top, you’ll find the serene Mookambika Temple and a breathtaking view of the sunset over the Arabian Sea on clear days.

  1. Explore the Mystical Kavaledurga Fort

Kavaledurga Fort is a historical fortification that stands atop a hill, surrounded by dense forests. The trek to the fort is an adventure, winding through lush greenery and offering panoramic views of the surrounding landscape. Exploring the ruins, you can see the remains of palaces, temples, and ancient structures that whisper tales of a bygone era. This spot is perfect for history buffs and photography enthusiasts.

  1. Experience the Onake Abbi Falls

Onake Abbi Falls is a lesser-known gem in Agumbe. This waterfall is reached through a trek that takes you through dense forests, making it an exciting journey for nature lovers. The falls are named after the local word for a pounding stick used in agricultural processing, reflecting the waterfall’s forceful plunge. The secluded location offers a peaceful retreat away from crowded tourist spots, ideal for a quiet day in nature.

  1. Discover the Secrets of Gudavi Bird Sanctuary

Gudavi Bird Sanctuary, located on the banks of the Gudavi Lake, is one of the best places in Karnataka to observe diverse avian species in their natural habitat. During the monsoon and post-monsoon months, the sanctuary becomes a host to migratory birds, making it a vibrant spot for birdwatching. The serene surroundings and the chorus of bird calls provide a tranquil escape for visitors.

  1. Visit the Anandapuram Lake

Anandapuram Lake, situated near Shimoga, is a tranquil spot perfect for a leisurely day out. The lake area is picturesque, offering opportunities for boating and fishing. Surrounding the lake are spots ideal for picnics and relaxation, where you can enjoy the calm water and lush greenery. It’s a great place to unwind, especially for families looking to escape the city’s hustle and bustle.

  1. Unwind at the Banavasi Temple

Banavasi Temple, one of the oldest temples in Karnataka, is nestled in a quaint village that has maintained a picturesque charm over centuries. The temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is known for its beautiful architecture and intricate carvings. Visiting Banavasi gives you a glimpse into ancient cultural heritage and provides a peaceful retreat with its rustic surroundings and traditional crafts showcased by local artisans.


Shimoga is more than just a destination; it’s an experience rich with natural beauty, adventure, and cultural heritage. From the thrilling trek to Kodachadri Hill to the peaceful ambiance of Anandapuram Lake, each activity offers a unique slice of Karnataka. The memories you make here will last a lifetime, filled with the sights, sounds, and colors of Shimoga. Whether you’re visiting for a weekend getaway or a long vacation, Shimoga welcomes you with open arms and countless adventures. So why wait? Dive into the heart of Karnataka and discover all the amazing things to do in Shimoga!

Recommended Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *