If you stay in Bangalore or are merely visiting the city and want to enjoy a picnic close to nature with your friends, Mekedatu should be on your bucket list. Situated in Kanakapura of Ramanagara district, Mekedatu is a site by a stretch of narrow, deep gorges through which the river Kaveri flows. The spot is steeped in folklore: with the name of the place meaning 'goat's leap' in Kannada and has an interesting mythical story attached with it. So, not only will you get the chance to spend time in nature, you'll be able to do so at a spot accorded great mythical significance.
As gentle winds blow and the sound of swift river waters endlessly colliding against jagged rocks reaches your ears while you chill with your friends at the location, you'll find yourself soothed - and only in a way that being by a river can accomplish. Whether seeking a trek, a fun time with your mates, a dip in rapid riverflow, or even all of those things at once, Mekedatu is the right place for you!
'Meke' translates to either a goat or a sheep in English and 'datu' means to cross. Hence joining the two words Mekedatu translates to 'Goat's Leap' in English. There is an ancient story popular amongst the locals which justifies the strange name. The tale is about a herdsman who encountered a goat being chased by a tiger. The goat being frightened jumped from one side of the gorge to other. The tiger did not continue his chase after the goat jumped and let the goat run away. After this incident locals started calling this place Mekedatu. People also started believing that the goat that leaped was no other than Lord Shiva himself. There are some peculiar holes on both side of the gorges which provides evidence that the Goat was divine and adds an interesting twist to the tale. The constant erosion of the rocks by the river Kaveri has made the narrow gorge wider.
Places to See
About 3.5 kms away from Mekedatu is the site of the the rivers Kaveri and Arakavathi's confluence. The latter river merges into the former so that the resulting water body gets 150m wide. At Sangama, one can enjoy the experience of riding the traditional round boat coracle.
2. Chunchi Falls
A wonderful pocket of nature, these falls are situated close to Sangam. The falls get particularly dense during the rains, making the view a lot more gorgeous -- so it's advisable to visit them during monsoons.
3. Sangameshwara Temple
Situated in Sangam, this holy place is a shrine to the Sangameshwara avatar of Lord Shiva. Devotees on their way to Mekedatu can stop by and offer worship to their god while enjoying a rich, scenic view. The temple was recently innovated, so there's places to relax as well.
Things to Do
Being by Kaveri river at a spot like Mekedatu offers one chance to have memorable adventures:
If you're in the groove for taking those hotwheels to the road, biking around Mekedatu -- especially on the road to Kanakapura -- is your chance! So grab your helmet, start those engines, and enjoy a thrilling ride through the valley as the Kaveri rivers soars past you and birds fly over. For the bikers among all the tourists to Mekedatu, this is an opportunity to not be missed.
The fresh waters gnashing against the sculpted ancient rocks make for a ridiculously inviting sight on a summer day. So if you know how to swim, feel free to take a dip with your friends and have a good time!
Those looking to exploring the regions on foot are welcome to trek alongside the river. Walking on the gorges and passing through forests is a delightful way to conclude your trip to Mekedatu!
Accomodation and Conveyance
While travelling to Mekedatu can be an incredibly fun and enriching experience, there's not many facilities to lodge at, which makes staying here for prolonged periods difficult. There's also hardly shops or markets. Yet there's a Karnataka State Tourism Corporation canteen near Sangam, so that tourists visiting the spot can grab a small snack. Finally, it is wise to carry your own food and supplies while camping here.
With its intricately carved gorges, deep riverflow, mythical aura, and gorgeous vantage points, an excursion to Mekedatu may just be your next favourite day trip!
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Best Time To Visit Mekedatu
The climate remains favourable throughout the year, but most people prefer to travel to Mekedatu in the late months of September until December to avoid sunburns. Additionally, if youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re looking to swim in the Kaveri river, then visiting during monsoons should be avoided -- the rains render the rocks slippery so it gets dangerous.
Tips For Visiting Mekedatu
1. While biking is a fun activity, it remains inadvisable and dangerous to speed. 2. Be careful while stepping into the river water - the rocks are sharp and slipping on the can be life-threatening. 3. Avoid the regions of the river with whirlpools. 4. Do not litter into the river. 5. Steer clear of the waters if you don't know how to swim. 6. Dress comfortably for the trek.
How To Reach Mekedatu
Via Air: Tourists visiting from places far off places can avail the option to taking a flight to Bangalore as the closet. Upon reaching Bangalore, one can opt for many different ways of travelling to Mekedatu itself. Via Road: From Bangalore, heading to Mekedatu requires reaching Kanakapura first by making a 55 kms journey. There are a number of buses one can take to Kanakapura, but even biking or driving all the way is also an option. After reaching Kanakapura, public transportation gets scarce so one can either book a cab or drive their own vehicle to Sangama. On reaching Sangama, one crosses the river and walks for about 3.5 kms to Mekedatu.