Majestic Hike to Makalidurga & Lovely Drive to Lepakshi

Makalidurga is one among the 9 durgas around Bangalore and provides a beautiful short trek and views after the climb and its an apt trek for the monsoon months or for a early morning trek on other dry season..

Makalidurga Fort stands at the top of a huge granite hillock, huddled up amidst the chains of hills, formed like a valley close to Ghati Subramanya, a well-known pilgrimage center. It has a fort on top, at a height of 1,117 m. The Makalidurga trek is the nearest railway trek to Bangalore. It begins with a 2-km walk on the railway track from the station of Makalidurga. One can also ride bikes to the beginning of the trekking trail as well. A lot of refreshments is advised to be carried in case one wants to trek this hillock.

Makalidurga trek is of a medium/difficult level. There is a parking space created for vehicles in the base of the hill. One has to just cross the railway track and turn left. There is a small temple and some houses at the base of the trek. It is where the trek starts. Locals will make you visit a website which charges a sum of ₹250 Indian rupees per adult. There is a public notice by Karnataka Forest Department as follows: "Makali hills comes under Makali Reserve Forest. This place is under the supervision of Doddaballapur forest department. Illegal trekking is prohibited, which is an offence. Strictly illegal trekking is restricted. But on the public and trekkers demand, department provided the facility for trekking through online booking in website Night trekking not allowed. Morning 0600am to 0500pm only." Also, after a few meters, one can find an open ground with a view of the mountain. Turning right, would lead one to the trek path with markings all around. There are fort ruins and a temple at the top. The view of the trains looking like a mini toy is a worthful watching experience....

When the dawn was beautiful with lovely colors..

The Lepakashi Temple

Veerabhadra temple is a Hindu temple located in Lepakshi, in the state of Andhra Pradesh, India. The temple is dedicated to Virabhadra, a fierce emanation of Lord Shiva. Built in the 16th century, the architectural features of the temple are in the Vijayanagara style with profusion of carvings and paintings at almost every exposed surface of the temple. It is one of the centrally protected monumemts of national importance and is considered one of the most spectacular Vijayanagara temples. The fresco paintings are particularly detailed in very bright dresses and colours with scenes of Rama and Krishna from the epic stories of the Ramayana, the Mahabharata and the Puranas and they are well preserved. There is a very large Nandi (bull), mount of Shiva, about 200 metres (660 ft) away from the temple which is carved from a single block of stone, which is said to be one of the largest of its type in the world.

The temple was built in 1530 AD (1540 AD is also mentioned by Virupanna Nayaka and Viranna , both brothers who were Governors under the Vijayanagar Empire during the reign of King Achutaraya, at Penukonda. The cost of building the temple was defrayed by the government. According to Skanda Purana, the temple is one of the divyakshetras, an important pilgrimage site of Lord Shiva.

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