• touring coorg thadyiandamol and iruppu falls

Touring Coorg | Thadiyandamol & Iruppu Falls

You’d think after my last massive post on backpacking Coorg or this post on the top things to do in Coorg, you’d seen it all, but you haven’t! As I continued touring Coorg with goMowgli it seemed to just keep getting better and better. Although we were in areas with no cell phone reception or WiFi, I was content to have a group of people around who were so fun to chill with like the Hawaiian wine-guzzler Hailey.

These are a couple photos of chicken sighting that made me laugh on our way through a small town to get my 5th and final rabies shot.

backpacking coorgyes, those are alive. She’ll raise them and eat them. Below, are where she probably got them from.

backpacking coorgCrazy!

Nalnad Palace – Hiding Place fit for a King

On our way to Thadiyandamol to stay at another killer homestay, we stopped off to see where that king I told you about back in Madikeri (who had that awesome 17th century palace built and wanted to chop off his architect’s head?) used to go to hide out when well, other people wanted to probably chop of his head.

Coorg Nalnad PalaceHim and his wife would come up to Nalnad to take refuge. The guard there (who was oddly enthusiastic, which was awesome) shared that the “dark rooms” would be pitch black for 24 hours a day while the king hid with no sunlight coming in under times of very serious stress. The place was sadly used for a Bollywood film and those idiots decided to paint over the antique paintings on the walls and put their own dumb paintings to “look antique”. Hello, it already was!? They also used flash bulbs in filming and destroyed a lot. The government is working on fixing it all and is making some progress.

PS oddly enthusiastic = drunk of local wine ;)

Blue Mountain Homestay

If you’re going to hike Thadiyandamol, you should totally look into staying at this homestay. The owners were friendly, beds were soft, and the food was divine. We had a great dinner with beans, corn and paneer, spinach and chickpea, pepper chicken, roti, jeera rice, pakora (omg I love onion pakora), cabbage, and more. It was 1300 for stay, dinner, breakfast, and all the coffee you could guzzle.

Touring Coorg Blue mountain homestay

Touring Coorg Blue mountain homestay

Touring Coorg Blue mountain homestay

Hiking Thadiyandamol

You’ll have to get up early to do this hike because once the sun hits it gets hot! I got a nice little sunburn. We had a delicious omelette and headed out by 8. I spent half my time hiking and the other half checking for leeches and bitching about leeches, hiking, wasps, and just nature in general. I’m just getting a little lazy in Goa I’ve come to realize (but sort of already knew).

coorg gomowgli things to do in coorgtip to the wise, don’t sit on rocks in Coorg unless you want leeches on your ass!

backpacking coorg Hiking Thadiyandamola shot from the goPro

backpacking coorg Hiking ThadiyandamolHailey and I sitting on a rock which is something we both preferred to hiking, lol

coorg gomowgli things to do in coorg

backpacking coorg Hiking Thadiyandamol

backpacking coorg Hiking Thadiyandamolyes it was worth the hike! Look how amazing!

The hike was 4 hours altogether but it was difficult. Tennis shoes were fine but at the top (5,500 feet up there) you’ll need a jacket because it got very cold. It’s the tallest peak in Coorg, and second tallest in Karnataka. This area is all part of the Western Ghats which hold one of the most diverse wildlife in the world.

backpacking coorg Hiking Thadiyandamolno I’m not diving off, lol I just have to balance to sit down

backpacking coorg Hiking ThadiyandamolOh, just checking for leeches

backpacking coorg Hiking Thadiyandamol

Watch out for cobras in your path and whatever you do DON’T sit or fall on the wet rocks because they are leech central. Leeches are new to me. I spent a lot of time in the woods back home, but we must not have them because I’d never seen one before this. I’ve never seen one of these roll up in a ball either!

backpacking coorg Hiking Thadiyandamol

coorg gomowgli things to do in coorg

coorg gomowgli things to do in coorg

Secret Waterfall!!

This area has a couple places to eat lunch but none are something special. Best to have a quick bite and be on your way. We had a simple veg lunch then went to goMowgli’s secret waterfall called Cheladara (ok, I just told the secret.. but that’s what blogs are for). It was gorgous and huge but definitely too heavy of waterfall to swim in. I was pretty paranoid about leeches the whole time I was here but it was worth the extra bit of a hike on my tired shaky legs.

backpacking Coorg secret waterfall cheladara

backpacking Coorg secret waterfall cheladara

backpacking Coorg secret waterfall cheladara

backpacking Coorg secret waterfall cheladara

backpacking Coorg secret waterfall cheladaraAfter doing this in one day, you’re going to be exhausted. I recommend calling it quits and re-couping. I’d never been more happy to be on a guided tour than at this point. I was tired, sunburnt, and wanted someone to tell me where to go sleep rather than try to find a local bus to take me to town.

We stayed at Yamini Green right near Iruppu Falls which is one of many places in the area goMowgli uses for tours depending on availability, but not their first choice. It was less homestay, more complex area. It had nice rooms with big comfy beds but was pricey at 1,700 per night including food (three meals), granted the food was good and shower water was hot! the place even had an emu. We rested up for more adventure the next day.

Iruppu Falls

When going here you’ll want to go early. This will help you avoid crowds and also means you can get in your swimsuit without people staring at you… because this waterfall you can actually swim in! …and by swim, I mean shiver and get pounded by the water- it’s like a massage from the strongest man in the world. I didn’t last long in the water but it sure was fun!

backpacking coorg iruppu falls

backpacking coorg iruppu falls

backpacking coorg iruppu falls

backpacking coorg iruppu falls

backpacking coorg iruppu falls

backpacking coorg iruppu falls

backpacking coorg iruppu falls

I was hosted by goMowgli on this tour, but all opinions are my own.


About the Author:

Rachel Jones left a career in nursing and lived on the beaches of Goa, India for the five years. Now she lives in Mexico where she gives advice on the 40+ countries she’s visited in the last 10 years. She’s the author of two India travel e-books: Guide to India and Insider’s Guide to Goa. Her blog, Hippie in Heels, like its name, is a contradiction combining off-beat adventurous places with glamorous and bespoke travel. Hippie in Heels has been featured in ELLE, Marie Claire, Grazia, and Cosmopolitan magazines. She’s a writer for Bravo TV.


  1. Justine November 24, 2014 at 5:25 pm - Reply

    I would love to go to each and every one of these places. The hike and waterfalls look awesome. Although, I have to say that leeches freak me out too. I would have been super paranoid that I had leeches on me the entire time! And there are cobras too?!

    • Rachel Jones November 26, 2014 at 11:23 am - Reply

      Haha yes leeches and cobras :) lol although we never saw a snake the whole time!

  2. venus john November 24, 2014 at 11:05 pm - Reply

    I like onion pakoras..

  3. Tim | UrbanDuniya November 25, 2014 at 8:41 am - Reply

    I really wish I had made it to Coorg last time I was in India – and unfortunately due to time constraints (and geography), I’m going to have to miss it this time too! That shot with the mountains and the mist on the hike is stunning!

    • Rachel Jones November 26, 2014 at 11:24 am - Reply

      Ahh shame you’re missing it, it’s a heavenly place.

  4. Rebekah November 25, 2014 at 9:25 am - Reply

    That looks so amazing! That’s really not what I’d imagine in India… I love seeing other sides of a country. I’m usually ok with nature and dirt, but leeches are disgusting and I would have been paranoid about it

    • Rachel Jones November 26, 2014 at 11:24 am - Reply

      Haha leeches are some of the weirdest things ever!

  5. Colleen Brynn November 25, 2014 at 10:05 am - Reply

    Oh my god, I would have been sitting with you too! I’ll go hiking, but one day (and a short hike at that) is enough for me. Those waterfalls look fun, but NO THANKS to those gross leeches. They do NOT look like that in Canada. I’ve had them before but that one in the photo looks like an alien. Sick. Haha.

    • Rachel Jones November 26, 2014 at 11:25 am - Reply

      Let’s just say we’re going hiking and not…….

  6. Nat November 25, 2014 at 10:56 am - Reply

    Hey Rachel!!
    What amazing pictures!
    I always have been a urban girl, but since we started travelling the world I became more connected with nature. I think something inside me is changing… When I read your article and saw your pics I truly want to visit this place… But I have to confess that I would panic with leeches…. :-(

    • Rachel Jones November 26, 2014 at 11:26 am - Reply

      I also find myself more into nature than city life :)

  7. Laura November 25, 2014 at 1:26 pm - Reply

    This trip sounds amazing! (except for the leeches, they’re not so amazing) That is such a shame about the temple being ruined by the bollywood filming, I hope they’re able to restore it – it sounds like a pretty fascinating place. I also had no idea so many parts of India were SO green!

    • Rachel Jones November 26, 2014 at 11:27 am - Reply

      This is the greenest bit of India I’ve ever seen.. it was so refreshing.

  8. Lemuel November 28, 2014 at 10:36 pm - Reply

    Great adventures. I wish I can do this someday. I’ll just have to save money first. The place are beautiful.

  9. teo7724 December 18, 2014 at 11:37 am - Reply

    I think one of the more romantic place to visit is Coorg,India. I personally went there on my honeymoon and my husband and I loved the food and the people there! I would strongly suggest Coorg if you like greenery. Although it can get very touristy, especially in the summer, they are very beautiful places with so much green landscape. To break free from the tourist crowd, I would suggest you to try some home-dining options. We went to dine with one of the local hosts on BonAppetour ( http://www.bonappetour.com)., and were treated to a fancy meal at their homes on the rooftop!

    • Rachel Jones December 19, 2014 at 7:27 pm - Reply

      I agree! that’s interesting.. that you for sharing it with me, I’ll totally check it out next time.

  10. Harideep August 25, 2015 at 1:09 am - Reply

    Its Chelvara Falls.. :D

  11. ANAIR September 7, 2015 at 7:21 pm - Reply

    Thank you for your introduction to Coorg. Inspired by your experience I have booked a tour with GoMowgli in October. This is with my family (one child), so will definitely avoid the trek. The Irrupu falls looks inviting and is in the itinerary. Expecting to have as much fun as you had. BTW, I mentioned you when discussing the tour with GoMowgli.

    • Rachel Jones September 8, 2015 at 2:31 pm - Reply

      That’s great news :) & thank you for mentioning me to them. Yeah, the trek was pretty rough even for me! You’ll love the journey.

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