While the road infrastructure has drastically improved from the days that one would have desired to accomplish this journey over a weekend and comfortably; I still feel, the best way to complete this journey is to do it in about 2 and 1/2 days. A two day trip can be a stretch but nevertheless, it can be achieved in a day too
This is a guide I have prepared after multiple journeys I have done on this road lately. A guide that gives an fair understanding of the amenities available enroute which can make you plan your trip better.
2 – 1/2 Day Drive
Start the drive Friday after noon and hit the roads for about 5 hours to call it a night at a serene town of Wai, just that the mountain step of Panchgani and Mahabaleshwar
Saturday morning can start a little early and one could target to reach Hubli post witnessing few astonishing get away location enroute Bangalore. Hubli will come little before dusk
Another 7 hours on the road and one could reach Bangalore on a bright day leaving behind a beautiful Bangalore evening to enjoy with family and friends
2 Day Drive
Make it a little more hectic by starting early on a Saturday morning. The drive to Hubli is around 12 hours plus the breaks one would take to see the place near by the route to Bangalore
7 Hours to Bangalore a Sunday morning still remains a drive one can enjoy
1 Day Drive
This is a drive I would recommend to folks who prefer point to point driving and do not care much to experience the beautiful surrounding we live in. I suggest take a flight instead.
Road from Mumbai to Bengaluru
Places to visit
Panhala Fort: also known as Panhalgad, Panhalla, is located in a mountain town of Panhala about 20 kilometers from Kolhapur. It is strategically located looking over a pass in the Sahyadri range of mountains which was a major trade route from Bijapur in the interior of Maharashtra to the coastal areas. This fort was built between 1178 and 1209 CE, one of 15 forts, built by the Shilahara ruler Bhoja II.
Belgaum Fort: I would avoid driving to the Belgaum fort at any given time as it is situated in the middle of the city. Entering the city in the middle of the day is just not advisable given the journey that is still pending to complete
The fort, built with fine ramparts and a large moat, has a rich history with historical and religious monuments dated to the Adil Shahi dynasty. The fort has been captured in battles many times, as the possession of local rulers, until the region was stabilized by the British Raj. It is notable in modern history because Mahatma Gandhi was imprisoned by the British in this fort during India’s freedom struggle
Kittur Fort: The fort was built by Allappa Gowda Sardesai, the ruler of the Desai dynasty between 1650 and 1681. It was held by the Desai marathas of Kittur, as well as Rani Chennamma, a lingayat woman warrior of Karnataka who revolted against the British in 1824. Kittur reached its zenith during the Mallasarja Desai.
The Ruins of Kittur Fort
Chitradurga Fort: or as the British called it Chitaldoorg, is a massive fortification that straddles several hills and a peak overlooking a flat valley in the Chitradurga District. The fort’s name Chitrakaldurga, means ‘picturesque fort’ in Kannada, is the namesake of the town Chitradurga.
The fort was built between the 11th and 13th centuries by the dynastic rulers of the region including the Chalukyas and Hoysalas, and later the Nayakas of Chitradurga of the Vijaynagar Empire. The fort was expanded between the 15th and 18th centuries by the Nayakas of Chitradurga also known as Palegar Nayakas
Mahalakshmi Temple: Shri Mahalakshmi Temple (also popularly known as The Ambabai Temple), is an important Hindu temple dedicated to Durga located on the banks of the river Panchganga in Kolhapur city. Temple of the goddess Ambabai was built during Chalukya reign. Mounted on a stone platform, the idol of the crowned goddess is made of gemstone. The crown contains an image of the Sheshnag, the serpent of Vishnu
Gangambika Temple: This place is off the main highway and very close to M K Hubaalli. The temple is constructed in the middle of the river. It gets exciting as you walk down the stairs to reach garbha gudi which is inside the river surrounded by circular walls. This temple seems to be a trimmed down replica of ‘ Shri Basaveshwara’ temple situated in Kudalasangama.
Navagraha Jain Temple: Navagraha Jain Temple or Navagraha Teertha or Navagraha Tirtha is situated at Varur near Hubli, Karnataka. Navagraha Teertha is one of the major pilgrim spots for the Jain community in India. The temple features a 61-foot (19 m) tall monolithic idol of the Shri Bhagavan Parshvanatha and the smaller statues of the other eight Jain teerthankaras
Gokak Falls: Gokak Falls is a waterfall located on the Ghataprabha River in Belagavi district of Karnataka, India. The waterfall is six and a half kilometers away from Gokak town. Located right on the main road is a celebrated tourist center in the district. This falls has a height of about 170 feet.
Where to Eat
On the map below are marked places I would recommend one to visit for some local relishing food while enroute. These waypoints could come handy in case one wants to travel down south from Mumbai
A word of caution that can help prepare a better drive is that once inside Karnataka, the frequency of food stops and gas stations reduce drastically as compared to that in Maharashtra.
Where to Stay
- Rutugandh River View Resort, Wai
- Magnus Caverns Resort, Wai
Kholapur & Panhala
- Serenity Resort, Panhala
- Hotel 3 Leaves, Kolhapur
- Hotel Park Inn, kolhapur
- Hotel Naveen Lakeside, Hubballi
- The President Hotel, Hubballi
- Sankama The Boutique, Davanagere
- Southern Star, Davanagere
- Hotel Ojas, Matadakurubarahatti