A mosaic of rock-cut temples, national parks, waterfalls, and garden cities
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About Karnataka Tourism
Karnataka is the sixth largest Indian state. It is located on the Southwestern side of the country. Bengaluru is the capital of Karnataka. The state is famous for its ancient ruins, temples, monuments, food, silk, sandalwood, etc., which are the key source of Karnataka Tourism. Moreover, the state is home to many tourist hotspots such as Coorg, Hampi, Gokarna, Bengaluru, Mysore, Chikmagalur, Bandipur National Park, Nagarhole National Park, Shivanasamudra Falls, Pattadakal, Jog Falls, etc. Karnataka also has many nationally protected monuments and a total of 34,000 temples that cause a boost in tourism in Karnataka. Some of the famous things to do in Karnataka are go-karting in Bangalore, silk shopping and skydiving in Mysore, trekking and river rafting in Coorg, etc. Indulging in all these activities let you experience the best of Karnataka.
Karnataka Tourism is characterized by ancient sculpted temples, cosmopolitan cities, evergreen forests, and scenic beaches. Karnataka is a culturally prosperous and naturally compelling state with an exciting blend of urban jungles, glittering palaces, wildlife sanctuaries, ancient ruins, and yoga centers. All points of interest in Karnataka spell allure. Some of these tourist destinations in Karnataka are well-renowned, while many more lie off the beaten path. So, follow our Karnataka travel guide with places to visit, weather information, and a map of Karnataka.
Known as the City of Gardens, Bangalore or Bengaluru is the largest city in Karnataka. In the IT hub of India, Victorian-era bungalows and ancient cave temples shine in the shadows of skyscrapers. Places to visit in Bangalore include Lal Bagh Botanical Gardens, Tipu Sultan's Fort, Dravidian-styled Bull Temple, and HAL Museum. Enjoying the nightlife of Bangalore and exploring Nandi Hills are some of the best things to do in Karnataka.
The regal splendor of Mysore or Mysuru attracts thousands of travelers during the Dussehra celebrations. One of the major tourist attractions in Karnataka, Mysore is rich in tradition with an atmospheric bazaar district lined with spice stores and incense shops. Nestled amid emerald landscapes and expansive plantations, Coorg or Kodagu region extends along the southernmost edge of Karnataka. A major hub for coffee and spice production, Coorg district in Karnataka is home to the Kodava people. Its carpeted hills and not-so-often-taken trails are ideal to enjoy bird watching and trekking in Karnataka.
Tourist places in North Karnataka offer a change of scenery and pace. The ancient city of Hampi, famous for the 14th-century ruins, is like an open-air museum of sacred complexes, shrines, and royal structures. Located in the coastal Konkan region in Karnataka, Gokarna is blessed with a beautiful string of beaches that can rival the beaches of Goa. Islamic ruins of Bijapur along with Buddhist cave temples and Jain structures in Aihole are also worth visiting. Pattadakal, Badami, Mangalore, Jog Falls, Belur, and Bidar are also major tourist destinations in Karnataka.
National parks in Karnataka are home to a great variety of flora and fauna. Bandipur National Park and Nagarhole National Park are two of the most famous wilderness areas in South India. Comprising 880 square kilometers, Bandipur is home to 100 species of mammals and 350 species of birds. Prowling with tigers, sloth, and elephants, Nagarhole National Park flanks the Kabini River in Mysore and Kodagu districts in Karnataka.
The best time to visit Karnataka is from October through March. During this time of the year, post-monsoon greenery brings life to hill stations and national parks, and also the weather is ideal for sightseeing in Karnataka. The airports in Bangalore and Mangalore are major points of entry for travelers visiting Karnataka. The state has decent train connectivity with major railway junctions in Bangalore, Mysore, Mangalore, Hubballi, and Arsikere.
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Places To Visit In Karnataka
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Hazara Rama Temple In Hampi
One of the most unique and popular temples in Hampi, the Hazara Rama Temple is a gorgeous Temple located at the center of Royal Enclosure. It is dedicated to the Hindu deity, Lord Rama. Among the many unique things, the name ‘Hazara Ramaswamy Temple’ stands out as it literally translates to a thousand Rama referring to the...
Hippie Island In Hampi
Located just a boat ride away from Hampi, the laidback Hippie Island, or Virupapur Gadde is separated from the historical Hampi by Tungabhadra River. A trip to UNESCO World Heritage site of the gorgeous ruins of Hampi is incomplete without a visit to the Hippie Island, deriving its name from the numerous Hippie foreign back...
- Island tour
Daroji Bear Sanctuary In Hampi
Abode of the Indian Sloth Bears, the Daroji Sloth bear Sanctuary is located in Karnataka, just 20 kms away from the gorgeous ruins of Hampi. The open scrub forests, undulated hillocks, fallen boulders and sheltering caves of the sanctuary, spread over 83 square feet, are home to a large population of these honey-lovers, end...
Vijaya Vittala Temple In Hampi
One of the greatest temples in Hampi, the Vittala temple or the Vijaya Vittala Temple, located near the banks of the river Tungabhadra, represents an exceptional craftsmanship of Dravidian architecture. The Vijaya temple in Hampi is one of the most popular attraction of this ruined town. Dating back to the 15th century, thi...
Virupaksha Temple In Hampi
Located in the state of Karnataka in Southern India, Virupaksha Temple in Hampi is one of the groups of monuments, which has been denominated as the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Adorned with magnificent carvings and sculptures, the Virupaksha Temple in Hampi is surrounded with structures including a pillared walkway, courtya...
Things To Do In Karnataka
Your list of the best things to do, compiled on the basis of actual traveler experiencesView All
Shopping In Mangalore
Traveling to Mangalore? Read our detailed guide to know about the best places for shopping in Mangalore. Be it a honeymoon, family vacation, or a solo trip, any vacation is incomplete without shopping. Even if a destination does not have any specialty, a traveler always buys something or the other to keep as a memory of his...
- Leisure Time
Bouldering In Hampi
Bouldering in Hampi is one of the most thrilling activities one can engage in and Hampi boulders are perfect to climb. Bouldering is a form of rock climbing that is performed on small rock formations or artificial rock walls, known as boulders, without the use of ropes or harnesses. Due to this bouldering in Hampi has becom...
- Rock Climbing
Camping In Hampi
Accorded the title of World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Hampi offers an exhilarating venture that anyone can undertake. Camping in Hampi, is one of the most famous outdoor avocation amid the historical ruins and surrounding natural beauty. Explore Hampi to find the most suitable camping destination. With China's camping area, ...
Matanga Hill Trek In Hampi
Matanga Hill, Hampi is located at the eastern end of the Hampi Bazaar, offering you an awestruck view of the ruined city and the panoramic view beneath you.Being the top-most point in Hampi, Matanga Hill is amongst the most popular places to visit. The tourists get a mesmerizing view of the city of Hampi. There is a small t...
Scuba Diving In Mangalore
Home of the Kadri Manjunath Temple, popular for its bronze statues and the Mangaladevi Temple from the 9th Century, Mangalore dwells as the chief commercial city in Karnataka, India. When it comes to holidays, it is the best place to spend your time with your loved ones here. From its serene beaches to the holy temples hous...
Travel To Karnataka
Read about the best & quickest routes to save time & money, as suggested by our travelers
There are seven cities in Karnataka with airports: Bangalore, Mangalore, Mysore, Hampi, Hubli, Belgaum, and Bijapur. The Bengaluru International Airport or the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) and the Mangalore International Airport are the only two airports that operate international flights to and from Karnataka. One of the busiest airports in India, Bangalore Airport is connected to Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, and Jaipur with direct flights by Air India, IndiGo, Jet Airways, and Spice Jet. The airport in Mangalore is served by flights from Bangalore, Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, and Hyderabad. Taking a flight from Delhi or Mumbai to Karnataka is the quickest option to travel.
Rail transport in Karnataka is yet to reach some district headquarters. The train connectivity within Karnataka state is relatively poor. However, all major cities of Karnataka are well connected to other parts of India by a train route. Bangalore railway station is Karnataka’s most important railway terminal. The capital city of Bangalore is connected to only a few district headquarters by railroad. Hubbali is headquarters of South Western Zone of Indian Railway.
Karnataka has a decently laid-out intrastate rail network. Konkan Railway connects coastal region of Karnataka with Mumbai, Kochi, and Goa. Karnataka has a total railway network of about 3,089 kilometers. It’s more convenient for travelers from Mumbai or Hyderabad to Karnataka to board a train than taking a bus or flight.
Travelers can also board the Golden Chariot, a luxury tourist train operated by Indian Railways and KSTDC, to travel from Goa to Bangalore via Hampi and Mysore.
Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) is the government operator for road transport in Karnataka. It connects major cities and tourist destinations in Karnataka with both intra-state and interstate buses. KSRTC reservation for bus tickets can be made online in advance. The National Highways in Karnataka run for 3,973 kilometers. As one can see in Karnataka district map, smaller towns and district headquarters are well connected by state highways. For transportation within city or town limits, motorbikes, auto rickshaws, and buses are good options. So, buy a Karnataka road map and start exploring this beautiful state. Travelers can take a scenic coastal drive to Gokarna or find adventures along the hilly road from Mysuru to Coorg.
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FAQ's of Karnataka
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Is it safe to visit hill stations of Karnataka in monsoon?
Although the roads are a little difficult to drive on during heavy rainfall, it’s the best season to witness waterfalls of Karnataka in full flow.
What are important airports in Karnataka?
Kempegowda International Airport (KIin Bangalore and Mangalore Airport (IXE) are airports with regular flights.
How many days will I need to explore attractions in Karnataka?
Depending on the nature of your trip, it may take 7 to 10 days to visit popular points of interest in Karnataka.
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