The writer gives an overview of the must- visit places in Kodagu when it rains
Often, when it rains heavily in Kodagu, focus naturally turns towards the inflow into the rivers, the most important being the Cauvery, for obvious reasons. Connoisseurs of natural beauty are instantly drawn to the magnificent waterfalls in the various parts of the district that spring back to life. The sight of a roaring waterfall is a rare spectacle and a thrilling experience.
The monsoon is the right time to discover nature's bounty and splendour in Kodagu. The roar of the torrents gushing down the rocky cliffs is a magnificent sight to behold. These ‘beauty spots' dot the mighty and magnificent Western Ghats in the district. It is difficult to judge as to which one is the best.
Irpu Falls is one such waterfall in Virajpet taluk. Located in the Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary, Irpu is also a much sought after pilgrimage centre to which where people go to seek the blessings of Lord Rameshwara. The temple is located near the falls. Visitors here have the twin objectives of relishing the beauty of the waterfall and praying at the Sri Rameshwara temple in one visit.
Abbi (also Abbey Falls) Falls, near Madikeri, is a spot one should not miss on a visit to Madikeri. It is an integral part of a visitor’s tour package. A trek in the midst of coffee plantations would lead one to the waterfalls. No matter what—rain or scorching heat—tourists flock to this spot all round the year.
Mallalli Falls is a wondrous spectacle in Somwarpet taluk which is frequented by tourists. Although Mallalli Falls is not so well known now, plans to develop it into a full-fledged tourist facility are still on. The Department of Tourism released Rs. 10 lakh to take up development works such as improving the link roads and making available shelter to visitors in the area.
Medurapole Falls at Surlabbi, an area that receives heavy rainfall in Somwarpet taluk of Kodagu, is an enchanting place. Milky water sheets beat against the rocky areas to the delight of visitors. However, not many have discovered this waterfall. Water cascades down to join the river located several hundred feet below. The Geejaganda Falls in the nearby Garwale, located not very far away from the Medurapole Falls, is also worth a visit.
Chelavara Falls near Cheyyandane in Virajpet taluk is another marvellous spot. The National Adventure Foundation conducts training camps for the youth in trekking and rappelling there.
A huge, thundering water sheet, falling down the cliffs is a bewitching sight indeed. Devaragundi Falls at Mukkodlu village and Mullanda Abbi near Mutlu village are also captivating, but not explored by tourists.
The glory of the Kuppehole Falls near Haleri, off the Madikeri-Kushalnagar road, is in full view. The sound of the roaring water piercing the eerie silence of the surroundings is amazing.
Muddy water coming down in huge sheets along the woods is a great sight indeed. The area is home to a variety of orchids.
A number of smaller waterfalls have come to life along the Karike road near Bhagamandala and a few on the Madikeri-Chettalli road.
However, one common thing in the vicinity of all those waterfall areas is that they are trashed by tourists. Plastic bags, empty liquor and water bottles, broken glass pieces, and soft drink bottles abound the spots. Appeal from the locals to keep the areas litter-free has not helped so far.