From here & there

From here & there

Siddhara Betta: A trekking hotspot

Siddhara Betta in Koratagere taluk is an ideal weekend getaway for those living in Bangalore. Just the right spot for a trekker. The way to the hill has a terrain that is tough, slant steps at first, then a wider range, then a steep climb, with the support of railings on one side and then the crucial final lap.

The hill rises to a height of 3650 feet. On top, there are caves in all shapes and sizes.
The hill is approximately two kilometers in radius at the top. In one of the caves is a temple with a linga inside. Then, there is a small tarn where water is said to be at least six feet deep all through the year. It is believed that the cold water here has healing properties.

Mythology has it that the hill is a spot where navakoti (crores of) saints have meditated.
Another interesting legend drawn from the epic Ramayana has it that when Hanuman carried the Sanjeevini hill in his palm, a portion of it landed here. This hill is said to be home to many medicinal plants. Yet another story talks about a demon called Kakasura who was slayed here. There are elevated flat rocks inside these caves called gadduge, a place where many saints meditated. One such is Rudra Gadduge. You can reach this spot after a trek through a vineyard, known for a wild and rare variety of grapes.

History has it that King Kuranga Raya had built a fort on top of this hill. What is left of this fort is a huge space which can accommodate nearly 10,000 people.

Another legend revolving around the hill is that of saint Revanna Siddharu who was known to meditate here. When King Maranayaka invaded the fort, the saint is said to have left for Srisailam.

Getting there

There are direct buses to Siddhara Betta from Bangalore. Alternatively, you can drive down the distance of a 100 km in two hours.

There is a Dasoha Bhavana which serves food to pilgrims at noon. It is advisable to carry snacks and lots of water for your trek.