Sunday, December 14, 2014

Nijagal betta / Siddara betta - Exploring ancient temples 13/12/2014

Place: Nijagal betta / Siddara betta, Tumkur


Distance: 62 x 2 =  kms
Route: Vijaynagar -> Nelamangala -> Dabaspete -> HaleNijagal Betta -> Shivagange
Crew: Santosh and Sagar
Bikes: Bajaj Discover 150
Budget: 250/Head

This trekking would have never been possible without Santosh. After cancelling trekking to this place for around 3-4 times had thought I will never be able to conquer the Nijagal Peak, fortunately Santosh joined this adventure.

To make things simple I have divided a single day journey to two posts, 
1 - Nijagal betta / Siddara betta - Exploring ancient temples  (One you are reading right now)

Brief about the place: Nijagalbetta is a rocky hill lying close to Dobbaspet town in Karnataka. The hill lies very near to the Bangalore Pune National highway (NH4) and is also called as Siddarabetta. Nijagalbetta has ruins of ancient temples and fort built by Chickadevaraya Wodeyar. The hill has excellent rock formations. There is a carved idol of Hindu deity Lord Hanuman near to the fort entrance where people come and feed the monkeys as a sign of worship. There is a Muslim Dargah inside the fort. There are some ponds inside the fort formed by water trapped between the gaps of rocks. There are many unexplored archaeological ruins near Nijagalbetta.

The Peak
Saturday morning: Started from my home at 6 am. Santosh hopped on my bike at Navaranga, we headed on towards Tumkur. Took just 45 mins to reach Dabaspete on the silky smooth NH4. After having  tea we switched on google navigation to Nijagal betta but unfortunately maps was showing wrong route so we asked the local people and found there are two hills on either side of the NH one is Hale Nijagal to the left (the one we wanted to go) and other one is new Nijagal city to the right. After 3 kms from Dabaspete underpass there is a reliance petrol bunk to the right side, opposite to this petrol bunk there is a small underpass which leads to the hill. We didn't feel safe to leave the bike alone at that place since it looked isolated so we parked it near Cafe Coffee Day which is just before this under pass to the left. After parking bike at CCD we walked towards our destination. After crossing underpass, need to walk straight for 100 meters, there is a foot path to the right which leads to the way to the Hill.
The under pass to the left of NH which leads to the hill base
Nijagal Betta 

The Trek: We started the uphill trek with full josh, it was early in the morning so there were no one else on the hill except us. We encountered a open place from we had a good look at the ancient temple, a dargah, and the hill. We skipped the dargah and ancient temple for later. There was a scary tree which had eaten the rocks from the bottom and you could see roots rising almost 6 ft from the bottom. You can see the below photo. 
Started trekking


Carved idol Lord Hanuman near to the entrance





The scary tree
First gimps of the hill and ruined temple

The Peak: We next encountered the Carvings on the rocks. There is a pretty amazing thing we can see here, there is hindu siddara temple at one side and on the other side there is muslim darga. Nice to see two greatest gods at same place. Because of the temple the place is littered. There are rock caves on the top, took couple of photos, after spending couple of minutes we left the place. On the way back visited that ancient ruined temple. We started down on the same route. Saw couple of people in opposite direction. Had a nice breafast at Kamat hotel on the other side of NH opposite to the underpass. Santosh insisted we will have one more trek to the great Shivagange Hill so I agreed and we left for our next trek to Shivagange. I have written Shivagange trek on the other post.
Santosh taking selfie :P

A look from the peak




Ruined hindu temple

Dargah

Note:
1. The local people easily get confused when you ask for direction to Nijagal so better you explain using words - Nijagal Betta, Siddara Betta. Its on the left side of the NH.
2. After crossing Dabaspete underpass keep looking for Reliance petrol bunk (comes after 2 km - 3km). Just opposite to the petrol bunk there is a small underpass, you have to take this route.
3. You can take bike only till the base of the hill where it is risky to keep so better park on the highway side in front of some shops as we did.

You can checkout these Google sphere photos if you are more interested in the place:

Open with maps whenever possible

1. First look at the hill
2. Ruined ancient Temple
3. Half way to the Hill
4. The caves of Nijagal
5. The peak

2 comments:

Poonam said...

Tumkur is a dream destination for anyone on a religious pilgrimage. Moreover, there are many adventure spots such as rock climbing, boating, trekking et al in Tumkur district for the young as well. You can checkout many places to visit in tumkur.

Ashwin said...

Hi, Nice post about Tumkur. Thanks for sharing this lovely post. This is one of the best religious pilgrimage. Loved this post. Make your trip to this place by booking your bus tickets in Online Bus Ticket Booking portal.