Hiking

23 Weekend Treks To Escape Air Air pollution Precipitated By Diwali

The thought of spending Diwali in a stuffy, smog-covered city is driving people to the mountains. And that’s great because autumn is a brilliant time to be on a trek. Just for this reason, I suggest that even if you cannot make it to any of the Himalayan treks, you must venture out and explore weekend treks near your city around Diwali. This helps you escape air pollution caused by Diwali.

Fleeing the toxic city air in search of crisp mountain air is wise. I’ll tell you why.

Trekking triggers a fundamental shift in the mind, body and spirit. (Watch Indiahikes Founder Arjun Majumdar’s TEDx Talk on How Trekking Affects Mind, Body And Spirit). At this point in time, this is much-needed after being cooped in your house during the lockdown.

And it’s not even as difficult as you think it is. Especially for the treks documented on the Indiahikes website. 

In the DIY section, you find a detailed itinerary of the treks along with the GPX files that help in easily navigating the route. So if you are truly itching to breathe in fresh mountain air, then here are some great weekend treks around Diwali that you must explore. 

TREKS FROM BENGALURU

1. Kumara Parvatha Trek

Difficulty – Moderate-Difficult

BaseKukke Subrahmanya Temple (281 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 5,600 ft

The trek to Kumara Parvatha is not easy. It is the fourth highest peak in Karnataka. And the trail to the summit of this peak starts from behind the famous Kukke Subramanya temple. This is situated in the lush green forest of Pushpagiri Wildlife Sanctuary. 

Kumara Parvatha is also known as Shesha Parvatha and it is the highest peak in Kodagu district. 

It’s a great trek to do if you are preparing for a Himalayan trek. To make it easier for you, we even have the audio trek mate that guides you through this challenging trail. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Kumara Parvatha trek

2. Ballalarayana Durga – Bandajje Falls Trek

Ballalarayan Durga trek Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy-Moderate

Base – Kalabhyraveshwara Temple (280 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 4895 ft

This trek lies in the Chikmagalur district of Karnataka. While exploring this weekend treks around Diwali, pay attention to the bigger picture. For instance, on this trek make your way to an abandoned fort from the 17th Century at its peak, and a gushing waterfall in the end. Watching the water falling from the snout to almost 1,000 feet below is a sight that sets your heart racing!

Although this one is famous during monsoons, it is a treat to be here in autumn too. Especially as one of the weekend treks around Diwali, you get to see beautiful autumn colours on this trail. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Ballalarayan Durga – Bandaje Falls trek

3. Kodachadri Trek

Kodachadri Trek-Indiahikes

Difficulty – Moderate

Base – Nittur/ Kattinahole/ Vallur (412 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 4302 ft

Kodachadri is located in Shimoga district and one of the most spoken-about trekking trails in Karnataka. Situated in the heart of the Mookambika Wildlife Sanctuary, the Kodachadri trek offers trekkers an adventure, a charm, and an experience that will remain throughout your lifetime.

Out of the other weekend treks around Diwali, this one is steeped in history. You get to visit a temple believed to be built thousands of years ago which is filled with a rich history. Apart from the mythology, imagine trekking to a place that has stories from the 7th AD! This is the place where the famous philosopher, theologian, Adi Shankara visited and meditated at the peak.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Kodachadri trek

4. Tadiandamol Trek

Tadiandamol Trek - Banner Image - Indiahikes - Suhas SayaBanner Image – Tandiandamol Trek

Difficulty – Moderate

Base – Kakkabe (262 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 5735 ft

A very popular trek amongst the trekking community of southern India. Tadiandamol Trek is one of the most talked-about treks between trekkers starting out to their trekking journey in the Western Ghats and even experienced trekkers. The trek also draws many visiting the famous hill town of Madikeri or Coorg. 

This is a great getaway to escape air pollution caused by Diwali. It takes you to the highest peak of the Kodagu district and the third highest peak of Karnataka.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Tadiandamol trek

5. Kudremukh Trek

Kudremukh Trek-Banner Image-Indiahikes-Meghana Jambhe

Difficulty – Moderate

Base – Kalasa (310 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 6207 ft

Kudremukh literally means horse’s face in Kannada. This name is because of the distinctive shape of the peak. This is also called as Samseparvath historically as it used to access from Samse village.

Kudremukh is nestled in the heart of the western ghats in Chikkamagaluru district. It comes under Kudremukh National Park which is the second-largest wildlife protected area in the western ghats. 

It is situated at an altitude of 6,207 ft and is the 3rd highest peak of Karnataka after Mullayyangiri and Baba Budangiri. Out of the other weekend treks around Diwali, this too is a great one to explore.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Kudremukh trek

6. Savandurga Trek

Savandurga trek-IndiahikesThe view of the Nandi Temple from the section where muddy trail begins. Picture by Saurabh Sawant

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Sri Lakshmi Narasimhaswamy Temple (69 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 4022 ft

Savandurga trek follows a trail to the top of Asia’s largest monolith hill.

This is a weekend trek for adventurous souls. Located 60 km away from Bengaluru in the Savandurga state forest, this trail is famous for its challenging climb and amazing views of Magadi, Manchabele and Thippagondanahalli reservoirs and Arkavathi river. “Karigudda” (Black hill) and “Biligudda” (White hill) make the Savandurga hill cluster.

It is also called as ‘Savinadurga’ or the Fort of Death, because of the steep incline and defense structure.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Savandurga trek

7. Harihara Betta Trek

Harihara Betta Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Kavaranahalli (66 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 3876 ft

Harihara Betta Trek is situated right off the Bangalore-Hyderabad highway and is located in the Chikkaballapur district of Karnataka.

The hillock visible as twin-tower rocks from the main highway is a great offbeat, easy trek for a quick getaway from the city, and in fact very close to the Bangalore International Airport. The ease of access and quick drive on the highway makes it a perfect trek for trekkers to go on. 

A marvelous isolated temple, untried trails, a gigantic flatland, and a stunning view is what you can expect from this trek of Harihara Betta. Make it a point to take in the views as you venture out on weekend treks around Diwali. On this trek, spot the peaks of Nandi hills, Skandagiri, and the entire province of Chikkaballapur from the top. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Harihara Betta trek

8. Skandagiri Trek

Trekking places near Bangalore - Nandi oneView of Skandagiri from the trail

Difficulty – Easy

Base – Papagni Mutt (61 km from Bengaluru)

Max. Altitude – 4430 ft

Skandagiri is located in a village called Kalavara Halli, and hence it is also known as Kalavara Durga. At the foothills of Skandagiri lies one of Karnataka’s ancient and oldest mutts, the Papagni Mutt.

Skandagiri is located less than 60 kms from Bengaluru and just 3 kms from Chikballapur and is well connected by road and railways. Therefore, it is an ideal year-round trek for first time trekkers as well as the seasoned ones and can be completed in 5 hours comfortably (2 hours to ascend and 2 hours to descend, with an hour’s break at the summit).

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Skandagiri trek

TREKS FROM MUMBAI

9. Rajgad Trek

Rajgad Fort Trek-Rajgad Fort-Indiahikes-Nitesh Kumar

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Gunjavane Village (208 km)

Max. Altitude – 4514 ft

Rajgad trek is the most beautiful trek in Maharashtra. As the name suggests it is the king of forts. Because of the rich history and the mesmerizing architecture of the fort, it stands out among other forts in western ghats. 

It is situated at an altitude of 4,514 ft near Pune. This fort was built on the hill Murumb Devacha Dongar having a diameter of about 40 km. The huge size of the fort made it difficult to lay siege on it which helped Marathas to make strategic decisions. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Rajgad trek

10. Rajmachi Trek

Rajmachi-Trek-IndiahikesRajmachi Fort trek in autumn. Notice the trail losing its shade of green as the season progresses. Picture by Deep Thakkar

Difficulty – Easy-Moderate

Base – Udhewadi (96 km from Mumbai)

Max. Altitude – 2760 ft

Rajmachi Trek is nestled in the midst of two popular hill stations – Lonavala and Karjat. The trek can be approached either via the Lonavala side or another being the Karjat side and offers trekkers to climb two forts starting from the same base village of Udhewadi. 

Manaranjan fort is at 2510 feet and west-facing fort while the Shriwardhan fort at 2710 feet faces to the east.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Rajmachi trek

11. Harishchandragad Trek

Harishchandragad-Khireshwar village-Indiahikes-Shiva KumarThe trail from Khireshwar village is a flat road. You can see the mighty mountains in front of you. Picture by Shiva Kumar

Difficulty – Moderate-Difficult

Base – Khireshwar/Belpada (139 km from Mumbai)

Max. Altitude – 4670 ft

Harishchandragad trek is one of the most challenging treks in the western ghats of Maharashtra. A popular trek which offers a variety of adventures to all kinds of trekkers.

It is a hill fort in the Ahmednagar district situated in the Malshej Ghat. It climbs up to an altitude of 4,670 ft. 

Harishchandragad is an ancient fort. Its origin is said to have been in the 6th century during the rule of the Kalchuri dynasty. But the caves which you see on the top are probably carved out in the 11th century. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Harishchandragad trek

12. Kalavantin Durg Trek

Kalavantin Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Thakurwadi (139 km from Mumbai)

Max. Altitude – 2205 ft

Kalavantin Durg Trek is one of the most popular treks in Maharashtra. Situated at around 2,205 feet in the Raigad district of Maharashtra, the trek is a perfect one for beginners or adventure seekers. 

The Pinnacle of Kalavantin is a thrilling experience that one goes for. Amongst the trekking circle, there is a misconception that It is considered as a very dangerous or treacherous trek. The angle of the photos or videos takes this angle for this whole trek. With enough precautions and knowing the trek well, the trek is one adventure that you should go on. 

Trekking through the uneven trail, thick vegetation, and thrill of reaching the top is an experience you must not miss out on.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Kalavantin Durg trek

13. Salher Salota Trek

salher fort indiahikes

Difficulty – Moderate

Base – Waghambe/Salher Wadi (214 km)

Max. Altitude – 5175 ft

It is a treat to explore weekend treks around Diwali in Maharashtra.

Salher and Salota are the twin forts of the Selbari-Dolbari hill ranges located near the border of Maharashtra and Gujarat, in the Baglan region of Nashik district, approximately 280 kilometers from Mumbai.

Salher peak is the second highest peak in Maharashtra, only after Kalsubai. But, Salher Fort is the highest fort in Maharashtra, at 5,175 feet.

These are historic forts famously known for the Battle of Salher in the year 1672, between the Marathas and the Mughals. It is the first-ever open-field battle the Marathas won against the Mughals.

The gigantic hills that house these forts atop are separated by a Col or a Saddle (the lowest point on a mountain ridge between two peaks) in the middle.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Salher Salota trek

14. Takmak Fort Trek

Takmak-Fort-Ridge-View-IndiahikesView from the ridge on the trail of Takmak Fort. Picture by Saini Krishnamurthy

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Sakawar Village (72 km)

Max. Altitude – 2000 ft

The Takmak fort is one of the hidden gems of the Sahyadris. The fort is situated in the Vasai Tehsil, Thane district. Though it is closer to Mumbai, it still remains unexplored.

The base village for the trek is Sakawar which is at sea level. The trek gradually gains altitude and climbs up to 2000 ft from the base.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Takmak Fort trek

TREKS FROM DELHI

15. Nag Tibba Trek

Nag Tibba IndiahikesNag Tibba Trek – Indiahikes – Kumar Amrit – Golden sunset in Nag Tibba campsite

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Panthwari (332 km from Delhi)

Max. Altitude – 9914 ft

Resting at 9,915 ft, the summit of this trek is the highest in the Nag Tibba range of Garhwal Himalayas. From here, you see a 100-degree view of snow-capped Himalayan ranges such as Swargrohini, Bandarpoonch, Kala Nag, Srikantha, and Gangotri. You also see Kedarnath peak in the north, Doon valley and the snow peaks of Changabang. With views like this and a climb to make you earn them, this weekend trek may be one of the best.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Nag Tibba trek

16. Prashar Lake Trek

Prashar Lake Trek Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Mandi Bus Stop (409 km from Delhi)

Max. Altitude – 8900 ft

Surrounded by the Dhauladhar ranges in Kullu Valley is a blue-water lake called Prashar. Prashar Lake is a well-kept secret in the Mandi district of Himachal Pradesh. The trek follows a charming trail through a forest and several  rivulets. Meanwhile, one can enjoy the local culture as the trail goes through villages as well. The trek offers a 180 degree view of the Dhauladhar, Pir Panjal and Kinnaur mountain ranges.

For those interested in architecture, the local temple of Prashar Rishi next to the lake, with its riveting Himachali architecture, blends perfectly with the landscape.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Prashar Lake trek

17. Benog Tibba Trek

Benog Tibba IndiahikesPicture by Izzat Yaganagi

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Benog Tibba Base Camp (37 km from Dehradun) 

Max. Altitude – 7372 ft

The Benog Tibba Trek is in Benog Mountain Quail sanctuary of Mussoorie. Established in 1993, the sanctuary is home to near extinct, The Mountain Quail.

The trek starts from the Indiahikes campsite near forest office of the sanctuary. Right from the very first campsite,  you are in the wilderness. Trekking through lush green forests with the captivating sounds of birds makes this a trek almost perfect trek for beginners. The long forest cover ensures that you don’t feel the sun for a long time.  The fatigue of an otherwise steep trail doesn’t set in because of these settings. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Benog Tibba trek

TREKS FROM COCHIN

18. Bekal Beach Trek

Bekal Beach Trek Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy

Base – Bekal (354 km from Cochin)

Max. Altitude – Sea Level

Bekal is 400 Kms from Bangalore on the Panvel – Cochin highway and is easily approachable from Mangalore and Kasargod. KSRTC has limited buses to Kasargod. Instead, reach Mangalore by any means and take another bus to Kasargod, 49 kms away.  All buses that head towards Cochin stop at Bekal.

Get off at the Bekal Fort stop. The best time to do this trek is in the months of November until March when the humidity is the least.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Bekal Beach trek

19. Chembra Peak Trek

Chembra Peak Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Meppadi (254 km from Cochin)

Max. Altitude – 6890 ft

The highest peak in Wayanad at an altitude of 6,890 ft above sea level. It is also one of the highest peaks in the Western Ghats that is above 2,000 m. The peak is visible from the different parts of Wayanad. 

It is located 8 km south of Kalpetta and near the town of Meppadi. Trekking to Chembra peak can be started from Meppadi town itself. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Chembra Peak trek

TREKS FROM KOLKATA

20. Ayodhya Hills Trek

Ayodhya Hills Trek Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy

Base – Purulia (250 km from Kolkata)

Max. Altitude – 2001 ft

Ayodhya Hills Trek is a weekend trek to the mystical hills of Ayodhya. Once considered a hot spot for rock climbers, it has now become popular among trekkers and travelers alike. The unique rugged characteristics of the mountains blend beautifully with the canopy of greenery that Purulia is famous for.

These jungle trails are fantastic for people of all ages. The presence of water bodies inside the jungle makes the location perfect for camping.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Ayodhya Hills trek

21. Biharinath Hill Trek

Biharinath Hill Trek Indiahikes

 

Difficulty – Easy

Base – Biharinath (226 km from Kolkata)

Max. Altitude – 1480 ft

Biharinath Hill Trek in the Bankura district, where Biharinath Hill resides, is a quiet and refreshing gateway to several weekend treks. Being the tallest hill in sub-Himalayan region of West Bengal, Biharinath has a natural attraction for trekkers. Sandwiched between the Purulia hills and Damodar River, Biharinath Hill towers amidst charming tribal villages, refreshing water bodies and a plethora of trees and fields. 

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Biharinath Hill trek

TREKS FROM HYDERABAD

22. Gandikota Trek

Gandikota Trek Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy

Base – Gandikota Village (382 km from Hyderabad)

Max. Altitude – 1063 feet

Gandikota trek gives one a slice of America’s famous Grand Canyon is in Andhra Pradesh. No Kidding. Just as River Colorado flows in Arizona, the River Penne flows among massive gorges through the Erramalai ranges in Andhra Pradesh. What’s more, there is a fort is located right at the edge of this gorge.

It is the Gandikota fort that was built in 1123 by a Chalukya king from nearby Bommanapalle village.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Gandikota trek

23. Mahindra Peak Trek

Mahindra Peak Trek Indiahikes

Difficulty – Easy-moderate

Base – Sunkarametta (669 km from Hyderabad)

Max. Altitude – 5,315 ft

Mahindra Peak is one of the highest peaks in the Eastern Ghats. It is situated at an altitude of 5,315 ft from the sea level. 

It is at the base of Sunkarametta Baptist church which is one of the oldest churches in that region. This church was built in the Gothic style of architecture with no sand used for the construction. It was built by Britishers between 1936 to 1939 who were confident of victory in World War II.

The Mahindra Peak trek remains an unexplored trek in that region. This is your chance to explore one of the  weekend treks around Diwali. It comes with a sense of adventure because there is no proper marked trail to the peak. Hence, you can not do this trek without a GPX file or a local guide. 

The trail passes through mango trees and coffee plantations. The huge bushes on the trail challenge you throughout the trek.

| Click here for the detailed trek guide of the Mahindra Peak trek

Conclusion

These are only a few treks from our extensive collection of 188 DIY treks. You can explore more in the DIY section of Indiahikes website. You may even explore an undocumented trail and share the documentation with the Indiahikes community. We will be happy to publish the trek documentation under your name on the Indiahikes website.

In conclusion, this is is a great time to step out. Weekend treks around Diwali allow you to escape the polluted city air, and you get a chance to trek under brilliant blue skies that are devoid of haze. The air is crisp and there’s a delicious dip in the temperature indicating that winters are just around the corner. 

So which trek are you exploring this Diwali? Do you need any help with it? Drop your thoughts/questions in the comment section below and we will guide you through it 🙂 Happy trekking!

 

 

 

 

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