Ramanagaram – #AtoZCHallenge2016

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Ramanagaram with its lush green surroundings and tall granite hills is a famous tourist spot on the outskirts of Bengaluru, the city I currently live in.

I had first heard of the place during a road trip a couple of years ago. As we were travelling on the Bengaluru-Mysuru highway, we noticed gigantic granite rocks at a distance that seemed to continue for a while. Upon asking our taxi driver, we were told that those were the world’s oldest granite hills and it was actually a town called Ramanagaram. He enlightened us about the place being a popular backdrop for many of the mainstream films. Apparently, the rocky terrain of Manmohan Desai’s path-breaking film Sholay owes its origins to the mammoth rocky outcrops of Ramanagaram. If you are a film buff, you can imagine Gabbar’s sinister sounding voice echoing across the mountain, unleashing a wave of terror all around. Well almost!

ramnagar1

The world’s oldest granite hills at Ramanagaram

Apparently, the hill ‘Ramadevarabetta’, along with ‘Savandurga’ was also the shooting location for David Lean’s A Passage to India. In order to resemble caves, small door-like grottoes were made on the rocks (see below).

220px-Ramdevarabetta

The rocks on the hill Ramadevarabetta

But the town has got more to it than just rocks and film shootings. It is also popular with nature enthusiasts and bird-watchers since it is home to many rare birds, such as the long-billed vulture, the Egyptian vulture, and the yellow-throated bulbul.

Ramanagaram is the ideal place for the Ramdevarabetta Vulture Sanctuary where one can spot critically endangered vultures in their natural habitats. Occasionally, sloth bears have also been known to make an appearance around here.

Ramanagaram is also famous for sericulture, with most of its’ silk production forming the input for the famous Mysore silk. If time permits, do visit India’s largest cocoon market to check it out for yourself.

And that’s not all, Ramanagaram is also a climber’s paradise. Rock-climbing destinations don’t come much better or more popular. Try climbing a ‘Gabbar ki asli pasand’ rock  (I didn’t just make it up, there is one, by that name, trust me!) and see for yourself. For youngsters and children, adventure and rock-climbing camps are frequently organised that makes Ramanagaram a popular place for outdoor activity.

So, next time, you are on the Bangalore-Mysore highway, do not forget to stop over and check out this little-known town. Quirky Ramnagaram may be small but it has something unique to offer to everyone. Worth a visit, someday, perhaps!

14 Comments
  • Alana Mautone (@RamblinGarden)

    Reply

    I work with someone who is an avid birder. He will love to learn about this area (if he already doesn’t know). Thank you!

    • Esha Mookerjee Dutta

      Thanks for spreading the word, Alana! 🙂 Bird-watching can be a very absorbing activity in itself.

  • Rajlakshmi

    Reply

    I had seen this rock so many times while traveling to and from Mysore – Bangalore but never tried to find out more. Now I wish I had.

    A Whimsical Medley
    Twinkle Eyed Traveller

    • Esha Mookerjee Dutta

      Guess it is a common experience for many Raj…we often tend to overlook what’s in front of our eyes…I did too..until I got to know that this place had a lot more than just those rocky outcrops…perhaps next when you are here…. 🙂

  • inquisitivegeet

    Reply

    Wow.. That looks like one terrific trip you took!
    And the pictures are beautiful!

    Cheers
    Geets

    • Esha Mookerjee Dutta

      Thanks Geets! It was, indeed! Sometimes, it helps to randomly stop over during a trip and explore an unknown place only to discover so much more…:)

  • The Diary Of a Rolling Stone

    Reply

    Nice place for weeked visit it seems. Thanks for sharing.

    @authorparomita from
    <a href="https://rollingstonepictureproduction.wordpress.com/2016/04/21/riding-home-grow-up-messy/

  • kalaravi16

    Reply

    This was informative! Gabbar ki pasand is my favorite takeaway from this post! Never knew this place has so many things to visit – from vultures to film locales to sericulture…amazing!

    • Esha Mookerjee Dutta

      Thanks, Kala! Nice name you bet for a rock and bemused folks even try to climb that, can you imagine! Quite a branding there, must say!!

  • Shilpa Garg

    Reply

    Sounds like a great place which offers a lot from adventure sports to bird watching to shopping of silks too! 🙂

    • Esha Mookerjee Dutta

      It does, Shilpa. So unassuming as a place and yet, has so much to it! Btw, You can only get to see the cocoon market there, for the silks you’d have to go to Mysore 🙂

  • richajindal

    Reply

    Great views, Thanks for sharing d valuable information
    @2richajindal
    http://richajindal.com/good-life/

    • Esha Mookerjee Dutta

      Thanks! My pleasure …will surely check out your post too!!

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