Nandi Hills or Nandidurga is a hill station, situated 1,478 mt. above sea level and 65 km from Bangalore, in Chikkaballapur district of Karnataka. It gets its name from the ancient Nandi or bull which is meant to be the mount of Lord Shiva. Later developed as Tipu Sultan’s summer retreat this hill-station was patronized by the British too. These hills are the source of the rivers Palar, Arkavati and Pennar and rolling green slopes surround the Amrit Sarovar Lake, making it a popular weekend destination.
Places To Visit in Nandi Hills
Nandi Temple : The Nandi Temple is situated on the foot hills of Nandi hills. It was built during the period of the Banas, Cholas, Hoysalas and the Kings of Vijayanagar. The residing divinities are Bhoganandiswara and Yoganandiswara. The sponsor for the temple were the Vijayanagar Kings.
The temple is adorned with pillars and metal work which are beautiful and attractive. The temple was built by Kempe Gowda who was a local ruler in the Vijayanagara kings period. There is a lamp tower in front of the temple and it is lighted every evening by a boy who wobbles up the tower.
Tipu’s Drop : Tipu’s Drop is a cliff face which is around 600 m high located on the Nandi Hills. History reveals the fact that the doomed prisoners were forced down the cliff to their death. The height of the cliff yields a fabulous view of the city.
Horse Way : A stone doorway in the fort on the North-eastern side, is believed to have been the horse way for helping soldiers to climb the wall on horse back.
Tipu Sultan’s Summer Residence
It is also known as Tashk-e-Jannat (Heaven’s Envy) a beautiful palace resembling the Dariya Daulat at Srirangapatna was built in 1791on top of this hill. The fort covers a huge area of 90 acres and is above 4851 feet above sea level. A soldier could hide in this well constructed fort and shoot in all four directions at the same time. The fort has five arches with minarets owing the art and architecture of Tipu’s regime. There are many paintings on walls and ceilings but are maintained in bad shape. This palace is closed to the general public.
Fort : During the Ganga period, the Chikkaballapur chieftains built a fort. Tippu strengthened it further and also build a rest house.
Brahmashram :It is said that Sage Ramakrishna Paramhamsa meditated here. It’s a cool cave with serene environment. The place has big rock structures.
In the heart of the Bangalore city is located Cubbon Park, in front of Vidhana Soudha, stretching over an area of about 300 acres.
Janapada Loka – Folk Arts Centre
53 kms from Bangalore on Bangalore-Mysore Road at Ramanagaram is Janapada Loka, a subsidiary of Karnataka Janapada Parishath, registered as a public charitable trust in 1979, for the preservation and promotion of folk arts.
Shree Gavi Gangadeshwara Temple
Sri Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple near Bangalore, is a natural monolith carved cave temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.
The home town of Sri M.Visveswaraya, the architect of modern Karnataka. Muddenahalli is just a few Kilometers from Nandi Hills. The house of this genius is now a museum.
Nandi Hill Accommodation
Nandi Hills provides modern, well-furnished accommodation for tourists. Nehru House, formerly Cubbon House, build by Lord Cubbon has 18 rooms and available for tourist. Gandhi House, where the Mahatma himself stayed, is under the management of DPAR (Protocol) Government of Karnataka and is reserved for the stay of important dignitaries. The Horticulture Department runs a vegetarian restaurant and the Karnataka Tourism Department runs a vegetarian / non-vegetarian restaurant.
How To Get There
The nearest airport is Bangalore international airport. It is about 60 km away from Nandi Hills.
Bengaluru International Airport (BLR) – 19 km
Tirupati Domestic Airport (TIR) – 210 km
Nearest railway station is Chikkaballapur, which is situated at a distance of 9 km away from Nandi Hills. Nearest major rail junction is Bangalore, which is well connected all the other cities in India. There is a regular train service from Chikkaballapur to Bangalore.
Nearest Railway Station
Bangalore City Junction (SBC) -44 km
Government Transport buses carries out frequent services from cities like Nandigrama, Bangalore and Chikkaballapur to Nandi Hills. Deluxe bus services are available from Bangalore to Nandi Hills.