Gudibande Fort – For someone living in South Bangalore, Chikkaballapur may not sound like a preferred getaway, considering the distance of a little more than 100 Kilometers that one must travel.
But this place indeed grows on you with such an abundance of beautiful places, both in and around. Chikkaballapur has a range that quenches the thirst of the explorer and the seeker in you.
Chikkaballapur comes up with the most exhilarating treks that one may find near Bangalore to enjoy a soulful experience in nature.
Being the typical travelers, we wanted an experience that we could cherish as one of our best memories, with a bit of all the elements that people usually travel for.
It was not too tricky to finalize our destination, which satisfied all our expectations – Gudibande Fort.
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Gudibande Fort | A traveler’s paradise
Gudibande Fort was the ultimate destination for our expedition, where we could enjoy lakeside camping, a thrilling trek, explore a historical site built in the 17th century, and visit one of the Shiva temples believed to have been established by Lord Rama and his Guru, Maharishi Vishwamitra and considered as one of the 108 Jyotirlingas.
Gudibande Fort, undoubtedly, turns out to be one of the most ideal travel destinations, considering the variety the place offers.
If you like frequenting historical sites, you must visit this beautifully designed marvel with seven levels and interconnected escape routes.
Gudibande Fort was conceptualized by Byre Gowda, keeping Madhugiri Fort in mind, approximately 400 years ago in the 17th century. Byre Gowda is believed to be linked to the Tuluva dynasty of the Vijayanagara Empire.
For all the zealous trekkers, Gudibande Fort challenges you with an easy to medium-level trek you can enjoy with your friends.
One can also relax while camping next to one of the many nearby lakes, before or after the trek.
Our Plan for the Day | Gudibande Fort Trek
We had thought of starting early to make the most of the day.
Initially, we planned to start our journey after breakfast to keep us energetic while trekking. But since no one was feeling like eating that early, we tweaked our plan a bit.
The final decision was to get an excellent South-Indian breakfast packed from our usual restaurant, which we could have at one of the many beautiful spots Chikkaballapura offers.
After being all charged up, we planned to start our trek after breakfast.
Let the Travel begin
We started at nearly 8:30 a.m. from our house in JP Nagar, Bangalore.
Reaching Gudibande Fort from Bangalore should take approximately 2 hours in your vehicle, and the distance is between 90 to 95 Kilometers.
Alternatively, one can also commute in a local bus to Gudibande from Kempegowda Bus Station, aka Majestic Bus Station, Bangalore.
From Isha Foundation, Chikkaballapura, to Gudibande Fort, the distance is approximately 34 Kilometers, and it takes nearly an hour to reach.
There are a few trekking clubs, which also provide an exclusive pick-and-drop from Bangalore to Gudibande Fort.
One gets breakfast and/or lunch, a trip to Isha Foundation, and assistance for the Gudibande Fort trek at a price anywhere between Rs. 1000 to Rs. 1500.
Whatever your mode of transport may be, you will enjoy the scenic beauty of nature throughout the journey.
Breakfast by a lake shaped liked Map of India
While you can enjoy a delicious breakfast at one of the many excellent eating joints mushrooming near Nandi Hills crossing, we wanted a relaxing experience while energizing ourselves for the trek.
We found our perfect spot, just a bit before Gudibande Fort.
Amani Byresagara Lake, or Bhairasagara Lake, constructed by Byre Gowda, offers a pristine camping site.
Two locals were sharing the space with us, quietly and patiently waiting with their fishing rods in the lake.
We set up our table and chairs under a tree’s shade and enjoyed a delectable serving of Idly and Vada combo with chutneys and Sambhar, which we were carrying.
Relishing our breakfast while gazing at this gigantic lake was very satisfying. This lake also resembles the Map of India, but more abstractly.
Victory Loves Preparation
Gudibande Fort is approximately 6 to 8 Kilometers from where we had our breakfast.
We were at the base of the fort very soon.
Parking the vehicle is relatively easy. Even though authorized parking is missing, there is still ample parking space. And thus, the parking is free, at least for now.
Before you start the ascend, please ensure you are carrying water and something to munch on as you will not get any shop to buy water bottles or any eatables on the way or the top.
Thankfully, 2-3 local vendors were selling Coconut Water, Lemonade, and Guavas at this last point. Otherwise, there are plenty of small shops, approximately 1 Kilometer before the destination, where you can find water bottles and eatables.
A word of caution for the ones carrying eatables – while there were no monkeys on the way to the top, a group of monkeys was present.
It is advisable to wear a cap or carry an umbrella if you plan to start the climb during the mid-hours of the day.
Conquering the Gudibande Fort
The total distance one needs to walk is approximately 4 Kilometers (Two Way).
The time taken in ascending is between 20 to 40 minutes, depending on one’s trekking comfort.
You can expect a mix of broken steps and trails in the trek. At specific points, you would notice steep climbs and narrow steps.
It would be best to notice the narrow passages built for escaping in adverse situations. We also entered one or two of such passages on our climb.
However, these passages are separate from the main trek, and you can avoid them if you are uncomfortable with narrow spaces.
Few chambers were built for the sentries to execute an ambush against the enemies. It was quite an experience to understand the nitty-gritty kept in mind while building this majestic structure.
Throughout the trek, you can enjoy the beautiful views of Gudibande town. We reached the top in approximately 30 minutes, and luckily, with no soldiers standing against us, the fort was conquered.
View from the Gudibande Fort Top
Once on the top, one should take advantage of the serene views.
From one side, you can see the entire Gudibande Town, which looks like a stack of candies packed in multi-colored wrappers.
Very close to the town is the massive Amani Byresagara Lake, which resembles the Map of India.
And on the other side, you would see farmlands like freshly woven carpets being kept out for drying.
Sri Rameshwara Temple
On the top is a temple believed to have been built by Lord Rama and Maharishi Vishwamitra.
This temple is considered as one of the 108 Jyotirlingas.
Water Management Wonder
While designing the Gudibande Fort, Byre Gowda also considered rainwater harvesting.
There are around 19 rock ponds at different levels of the fort, which were interlinked. As a result, Gudibande Fort could hold 3 lakh liters of rainwater.
Celebrating our Gudibande Trek Triumph
After enjoying the view from the top, we descended, and the first thing to do was replenish us with some Coconut Water and Lemonade.
We were lucky to get an exclusive spot near Vatadahosahalli Lake, nearly 2 Kilometers from Gudibande Fort.
We considered celebrating our victory on this trek by treating ourselves with some freshly cooked Vegetable Pulav and some curd at our humble camping site.
The unexpected rain added to the overall experience and brought much respite after the trek.
Places Near Gudibande Fort
After descending from Gudibande Fort, there are ample options that one may opt for. Depending upon your interest and the time of the day, you can visit one of the below-mentioned places:
- Bhairasagara Lake, Chikkaballapur – Approx. 6 Minutes, 2.5 Kilometers
- Vatadahosahalli Lake, Chikkaballapur – Approx. 12 Minutes, 8 Kilometers
- Avalabetta Top, Chikkaballapur – Approx. 35 Minutes, 20 Kilometers
- Lepakshi Temple, Andhra Pradesh – Approx. 40 Minutes, 25 Kilometers
- Jakkalamadugu Dam – Approx. 1 Hour, 47 Kilometers
- Adiyogi Statue, Isha Foundation, Chikkaballapur – Approx. 1 hour, 34 Kilometers
- Nandi Hills – Approx. 1 Hour 15 Minutes, 62 Kilometers
Gudibande Fort From Bangalore Map
You can reach Gudibande Fort by following the below map:
Some Tips for the Gudibande Trek
- Carry hats, caps, or umbrellas for protection against extreme sunlight.
- Wear light-colored clothes to avoid absorbing more heat during the daytime.
- Keep drinking water to avoid getting dehydrated, and carry bottles for that.
- Keep some chocolates or other instant high-energy food as a supplement.
- Elderly people and individuals not comfortable with long walks should avoid them.
- Let me summarize a few crucial details about this marvel called Gudibande Fort:
- Distance – 95 KMs from Bangalore
- Timings – No specific Timings as the place is open throughout the day.
- Parking Space – Ample
- Parking Charges – Free
- Entrance Fee – Free
- Eatables – Multiple eateries at around 1 Kilometer from the start of the trek. Nothing is available on the way or at the top of the trek.
- Drinking Water – Carry your own water. Water is not available on the way or the top of the trek.
- Activities – Trekking, Self-Managed Camping at nearby lakes.