Copyright Amit Pahuja

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Short & Beautiful drives from Bangalore - Kadamane Estate, Sakleshpur

May 16, 2018

If you're looking for some good drive circuit, off-road fun and forest drive trails around Bangalore, this is a post you'll love to read. There are a loads of short drives from Bangalore where you can spend a weekend or couple of days for a short break from maddening life in Bangalore. We explored one of them few weeks back and it was a wonderful retreat and great fun drive. We wanted to spend couple of days out of Bangalore and being a driving enthusiast, we wanted to explore a circuit that can fit into our requirements for offloading trails and nature drives. So we researched and got to know of a great place called "Kadamane Estate" through our one and only human GPS, Mr. HVK. He knowing me and my interests, suggested this place and as I trust him well, I went ahead and booked this place for a couple of nights.

 

The wait started and before the D-day, we got all the packing etc. done so we are ready for the trip. On the D-day, we started around 6am from Bangalore towards our destination. The drive is pretty smooth till Hassan and then you get into villages where the roads are somewhat bad and bumpy but not back breaking like in Bangalore :) Anyway, we decided to go to Shettihalli church that was on the way to our final destination for the day and spent some time there for family photoshoot.

 

Shettihalli Church 

 

 

 The route we took (click on image for google map)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Farmlands at the Shettihalli church site

 

 

 

 Farmlands and the river Hemavati 

 

 Farmlands at the Shettihalli church site

 

 

 

 

 

 Farmlands at the Shettihalli church site

 

 

After a good photoshoot, we proceeded towards Kadamane Estate, Sakleshpur. It took us almost 2 hours from Shettihalli church to reach Kadamane Estate. The roads we a bit of village roads and at the end became exciting. We had to cross one check-post in-between where we were asked where are heading and only after ensuring that we have a booking at the Kadamane estate, we were allowed to get through. Our host suggested one route and told us not to take the route suggested by Google Maps at the end 11kms but somehow we fell pray to Google and literally ENJOYED the trail Google suggested to the core. It was a narrow forest trail the only a JEEP with 4x4 capability would do easily and we just LOVED driving on that trail with our darling Raakshas SUV. 

 

The route we took to Kadamane from Shettihalli Church  (click on the image for google map)

 

  

 

Drive towards Kadamane ...

 

 

 

 The drive to Kadamane

 

 

Excellent mud trail towards Kadamane

 

 

 

After getting down from the trail, we had to drive another 20mins to reach the Kadamane Estate entrance. The weather that day was very warm around 33 degrees Celsius and felt like we made a mistake to come there. Anyway we didn't had a choice so just proceeded to the bungalow where we had our accommodation booked. We had to make an entry at the gate for going to the Sinnadorai bungalow  (yes, thats the name of the bungalow) and then drive for few minutes to reach the place. The drive is good through the tea estate and gives a very good view and feeling to be in nature.

 The view of Kadamane tea factory

Office @ the Kadamane estate entrance 

 

 The main entrance and the reception area at the Kadamane bungalow

 

After reaching, I called up the manager (Radhika, a wonderful, sweet lady who manages the estate) and informed that we have arrived. We were greeted well by the staff and offered iced tea which was yummy. After the check-in formalities, we were shown our cottage that was just 200 meters away with a big lawn and a wonderful view of the tea estate. Wow!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Single cottage view from our double cottage

 

The rooms of the cottage were pretty well done with basic amenities and clean toilets. The rooms had fans but no Air Conditioning and I guess you pretty much won't need AC's here most of the time in a year but yes during March, it would have been a welcome amenity to have. anyway, so we settled in the room, opened all the windows so that the breeze can come and then just relaxed for a while. 

 

The lunch was ready when we arrived around 1:30pm with some of the very good south Indian cuisine vegetarian food. Even though we are a hard core non-vegetarian family, we had to settle in for veggie food for the day as there was no other option :(. Anyway, we enjoyed the food to the fullest and then proceeded back to our room.

 

Around 4pm, we decided to go for drive out in the tea estate and kids wanted to go for bike ride. So we went for the drive within the estate that had a beautiful circuit and great views. Suddenly during the drive, it started drizzling and made the weather a bit better than what it was few hours back. We spent some time on the drive and kids enjoyed their tea estate biking trip before we returned to the cottage early evening.

 

Lovely views of the Tea estate within the property

Lovely views of the Tea estate within the property

Lovely views of the Tea estate within the property

The drive circuit within the property

 

 

Kids biking at the drive circuit within the property

 

Lovely views

 

 

 

 

There are couple of driving circuits in this area and we wanted to do them but then Radhika suggested to do that next day and we agreed. During evening, it started raining like hell and made the evening very cold if not chilling.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We had some good tea with pakodas (onion fritters) and relaxed throughout the evening by spending time playing carrom at their sports room and chit chatting. By around 8pm, the dinner was ready. 

 

Dinner was seriously delicious and we had chicken prepared specially for us :) Yipppeee !! the kids and we were all happy again. So we enjoyed the yummy dinner before crashing into the beds for that night.

 

Early morning, we decided to go for a trek to the estate and woke up at 6am. One of the staff member from the estate escorted us to the trek and made sure we come back safe and sound to the cottage. The trek was very good and tiring as well but was fun!

 

Sunrise view from the estate

 

 

Morning view from the estate

 

 

Sunrise view from the estate

 

 

Beautiful views everywhere!

 

 

Beautiful views everywhere!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Views from the top of the hill 

 

 The trek trail

 The trek trail

 The trek trail.. was very slippery here

 

 

After the trek, we had breakfast and decided to play tennis at the tennis court which is within the estate. That was some real good fun and workout for the whole family. We played tennis for sometime and then played "pitthu" (Lagori)! Anyway it was great gameplay for 2hours.

 

 

 

 

 

 Met this dog family while returning from the trek and played with them for sometime

 

After that we got ready for a picnic lunch which was arranged on our request somewhere on a water stream around 7-8kms away in the deep forest.

 

So around 12pm we went to the water stream and guys believe me thats a drive I cannot forget at all even today. I loved the drive so much that I would go here again just for the drive when its raining heavily :) The place was very nice and had a good driving trail for a 4x4 equipped vehicle. You can do the trail if you have a 2 wheel drive vehicle but at some places it might be difficult to drive if you're not very experienced driver. Else, you can always ask Radhika to arrange one Jeep for you.

 

 Drive to the water stream through the deep jungle

 Drive to the water stream

 

 Drive to the water stream

 Drive to the water stream

 

 Drive to the water stream

 Drive to the water stream

The forest drive 

The forest drive 

The tea estate spread across acres and acres

 

Anyway so we reached at the water stream that had very little water left now because of no rains but still was not a bad place for a picnic lunch.

 

 Lunch @ the water stream. We were told that the whole place actually submerges under water during monsoons. We were lucky to actually have lunch there as it had not started raining yet.

 

The lunch today was Chicken Biryani with Pineapple curry and Raita .. Wow and that was just finger licking good... We enjoyed the lunch and then spent some quality time there playing Damsharaz... and boy that was some golden moments spent as a family away from mobiles phones and urban madness!