|Elevation||1,434 m (4,705 ft)|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
Kemmannugundi (Kannada: ಕೆಮ್ಮಣ್ಣುಗುಂಡಿ) is a hill station in Tarikere taluk of Chikkamagaluru district in the state of Karnataka, India. It is 1434m above sea level. This was the summer retreat of Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV and as a mark of respect to the king, it is also known as Sri Krishnarajendra Hill Station. The station is ringed by the Baba Budan Giri Range, with cascades, mountain streams, and lush vegetation, Kemmangundi’s has ornamental gardens and mountains and valleys views. There is a spectacular sunset view from the Raj Bhavan.
Origin of name
Kemmannugundi (or Kemmannagundi) derives its name from three Kannada words - Kempu (red), mannu (soil) and gundi (pit) and means a place with red soil.
Kemmannugundi is 53 km from Chikkamagaluru and 17 km from Lingadahalli by road. The nearest National Highways, NH-206 or NH-48, connect to Bangalore. There is another route via Mullayyanagiri, a scenic drive.
The nearest railway station is 33 km away at Birur.
The nearest airports are at Mangalore (150 km) and Bangalore.
Kemmannugundi was established as the summer retreat of Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV. He later donated this resort to the Government of Karnataka. The Horticultural Department of Karnataka now develops and maintains the resort and its surroundings.
Z point is a vantage point at Kemmangundi and can be reached by a steep uphill trek of about 45 minutes from Raj Bhavan and is another place from which to view the sunrise. Shanthi Falls near Kemmangundi can be visited.
Rose garden is a garden of roses maintained by the Horticultural Department of Karnataka. Many varieties of roses are cultivated there.
A downhill trek of about 8 km from Raj Bhavan takes one to Hebbe Falls where water streams down from a height of 168 meters in two stages to form Dodda Hebbe (Big Falls) and Chikka Hebbe (Small Falls). Jeeps are available from one particular point to Hebbe falls and they charge around INR 700 to 1200 (for an up and down trip depending on the no of people).
Kallathi falls is about 10 km. from Kemmangundi. On the road from Kemmangundi to Tarikere, a deviation takes one to Kallathi falls. It is also known as Kallathigiri falls and Kalahasthi falls. Water cascades from a height of 122 metres and the temple here is attributed to times of the Vijayanagar empire. According to a local legend, this place is associated with the Hindu sage, Agastya.
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Mullayanahiri is the tallest peak in Karnataka. It is famous for the temple on the peak and to reach kemmangudi via this route is a scenic beauty but the roads are narrow and bad.
The first choice of accommodation for most visitors to Kemmangundi Karnataka is the Horticulture Department Guest House (known as Raj Bhavan), which provides a number of cottages. This is a budget dormitory-type accommodation with a double room costing less than Rs.300/-. However, be warned: most visitors are unhappy with the facilities, with unwashed bed sheets and limited (cold) food. You need to book accommodation at the Horticulture Department Guest House well in advance and it is very rare that you will find a cottage vacant otherwise. Contact details given below: Horticulture Department, Lalbagh, Bangalore-560004 Telephone: 080-26579231 (Between March 15 to July 15) OR Special Officer Krishnarajendra Hill Station, Kemmannagundi Post, Tarikere Taluk, Chickmagalur district. Telephone: 08261-237126 (Between July 16 to March 14)
There is also a Horticulture Department Guest House in Kallathi village, where the famous Kallathi waterfalls are located. Phone Number of Horticulture Department Guest House Kallathi: 08262-235334. Before calling to Kallathi Guest House, please contact special officer for the availability of rooms at 94482-49019.