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Malenadu (Kannada: ಮಲೆನಾಡು or ಮಳೆನಾಡು) is a region of Karnataka state in India. Malenadu covers the western and eastern slopes of the Western Ghats or Sahyadri mountain range, roughly 100 kilometers in width. Malenadu covers portions of Belgaum, Chikkamagaluru Shimoga, Uttara Kannada, Kodagu and Hassan districts. It also covers western foothills of Udupi district and Dakshina Kannada district .
The word Malenadu is derived from male meaning hill and nādu meaning land another etymology being "maĹe" meaning rain and "nādu" meaning "land" translating it to "Land of Rains".
The hills of Malenadu are richly forested. Coffee and Arecanut are grown in many places. Sagara, sirsi, Siddapura, Yellapur, Thirthahalli,koppa, sringeri, narasimharajapura, Mudigere, Sakleshpura, Aldur, Balehonnur are major business centres in Malnad part of Karnataka. Madikeri and Somavarapete,chikkamagaluru are towns in the coffee-growing region. Mullayanagiri, at 6,317 feet (1,925 m), is the highest peak in Karnataka. Kemmangundi at 4,702 feet (1,433 m) above sea level is a popular hill station and was a favorite retreat of Mysore's former Maharaja Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV. Kalhatti Falls, 10 km from Kemmangundi, has a drop of 122 meters. Gangamoola peak, 10 km from the town of Kudremukh, is revered as the source of the Bhadra, Nethravathi and Tunga rivers.
Rivers (origin in Malnad)
- Lakshmana thirtha
- River Aghanashini
- Ghataprabha River
Important towns in the region
- Castle rock
- Narasimharajapura (N.R Pura)
- Joga Kargal
- Ambika Nagara
Other important places in Malenadu
- Angadi in Mudigere taluk, Chikkamagaluru district is famous as the birthplace of the Hoysala dynasty.
- Horanadu in Chickmagalur District is religious place, with Annapurneswari temple.
- Sringeri in Chickmagalur District is religious place with Sharadamba Temple established by Adi Shankaracharya.
- Kukke Subrahmanya in Mangalore district is a tourism and religious place.
- Kodachadri is a mountain peak in Shimoga District.
- Kudremukh is a mountain peak and name of a town situated in mudigere taluk, Chickmagalur district. Kudremukh National Park lies in this region.
- Dharmasthala in Mangalore district is a religious and tourism place.
- Chorla ghat, Anmod ghat, Yellapura ghat, Devimane ghat, Kogar ghat, Balebare ghat, Hosanagara ghat, Agumbe ghat, Mala ghat, Charmadi ghat, Shiradi ghat and Sampaje ghat are some of the prominent ghat sections in malnad.
- Shiradi ghat, Bisle ghat, Charmadi ghat and Sampaje ghat are places for trekking and biking.
- Bhadra wild life sanctuary in Chikkamagaluru Dist
- Honnemaradu in Sagara Taluk
- Chandragutthi near to Sagara is religious place with Renuka-Yellamma Temple
- Jog Falls in Sagara Taluk which is the famous waterfalls in the country.
- Siganduru in Sagara Taluk is religious place with Chowdeshwari Devi temple
- Ulavi is an important center of pilgrimage for people of the Lingayat faith. The Samadhi of Channabasavanna, one of the most revered saints of the Lingayat faith lies here.
- Kavaledurga in Thirthahalli taluk of Shimoga District
- Agumbe in Thirthahalli taluk of Shimoga District famous for Sunset view and is home to the largest venomous snake in the world The king cobra. There is a dedicated forest research station in agumbe as well.
- Humcha in Hosanagara taluk of Shimoga district is a jain pilgrim center.
- Mandagadde in Thirthahalli taluk of Shimoga District is a famous bird sanctuary.
- Ninasam in Heggodu, Sagara Taluk, is a famous folk art theatre.
- Nagarakodi in Siddapur Taluq, Uttara Kannada Dist.
- "Climate and Rainfall - Karnataka". Retrieved 2006-12-18.
- Elephant attacks spread fear in Malnad region
- Nyctibatrachus major in Malnad, India
- Malenadu Region of Karnataka