Bandaje Arbi Falls trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort

Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort (2024)

Embark on an exhilarating trek through the breathtaking landscapes of Bandaje Arbi Falls, weaving your way via the historic Ballalarayana Durga Fort. Immerse yourself in the lush greenery and panoramic views as you traverse this captivating trail. Our Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek promises an unforgettable adventure, combining the thrill of exploration with the serenity of nature.

Whenever I’m in Bangalore, I seize every chance to escape to the Western Ghats for invigorating treks and hikes. In my quest to discover new peaks and hidden gems in this mountainous region, I recently set my sights on the Bandaje Arbi Falls trek.

Though technically categorized as a hike due to its one-day duration, it’s worth noting that in India, even hikes are commonly referred to as treks. Hence, I’ll use the term “trek” to encompass this enchanting expedition to Bandaje Arbi Falls.

PIN for later reference – Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort

PIN for later reference - Bandaje Arbi Falls trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort
PIN for later reference – Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort

This article may contain affiliate links, meaning if you decide to purchase via my links, I may earn a commission at no additional cost to you. For complete information, please see our affiliate disclaimer here.

About Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek

Commencing at the Rani Jhari viewpoint, the path winds through the historic Ballalarayana Durga Fort, a structure dating back to the 15th century. The entire trek spans a round trip of approximately 15 kilometres.

Planning your journey between November and May is advisable for an optimal trekking experience to Bandaje Arbi Falls. Heavy rains during the monsoon months from June to September make the trek more challenging.


It is strongly recommended to enlist the services of a local guide or opt for a reputable trekking agency.

Commencing and concluding at the Rani Jhari viewpoint, the trek covers a total distance of 15 kilometres round trip. This is a return trek with an estimated duration of 8 hours, accounting for numerous breaks.

  • Starting and Finishing Points: Rani Jhari’s viewpoint.
  • Total Distance: 15 kilometres return.
  • Type of Trek: Return.
  • Time Taken: 8 hours with lots of breaks.
  • Grade: Moderate to Hard.
  • Path: Rani Jhari viewpoint — Ballalarayana Durga Fort — Bandage Arbi Falls — Rani Jhari viewpoint.

The trek is graded as moderate to hard, following the path from Rani Jhari viewpoint to Ballalarayana Durga Fort, then onward to Bandaje Arbi Falls before returning to the Rani Jhari viewpoint.

Despite the absence of camping restrictions, completing the trek before sunset and returning to the homestay is crucial for safety reasons.

About Rani Jhari View Point

Rani Jhari Viewpoint, also known as Edge Point, is a scenic spot near Kalasa in the Chikamagaluru district of Karnataka. Offering awe-inspiring Western Ghats and Ballalarayana Fort vistas, this viewpoint captivates with its breathtaking panoramas.

Visitors can enjoy the beauty of Rani Jhari viewpoint without any entrance fee or specific visiting hours.

Rani Jhari view point 1
Rani Jhari Viewpoint

How to Get to Rani Jhari Viewpoint?

By Road

Access to Rani Jhari Viewpoint is exclusively possible via a 4-wheel drive vehicle. Regular 2-wheel drive cars are unsuitable for navigating challenging road conditions, resembling an off-road experience due to their poor state. To facilitate a smooth journey, renting a jeep from your accommodation is advisable, and many jeep owners affiliated with homestays offer transportation to and from the viewpoint.

For those opting for a trekking agency, these transportation charges are typically integrated into the package, and the trekking agency manages all necessary arrangements for your convenience.

By Public Transport

Public transportation to Rani Jhari Viewpoint is unavailable. However, an alternative option is to walk from the nearby homestays.

About Ballalarayana Durga Fort

Ballalarayana Durga Fort stands as a deserted ancient hill fort commissioned by the spouse of Veera Ballala I, the monarch of the Hoysala Empire. The precise construction date remains unclear, with conflicting information suggesting the 12th century, according to some sources and the 15th century, according to local accounts.

Presently, the sole surviving feature of the fort is a surrounding wall or compound, with minimal remnants of its former fortification. Visiting the fort reveals modest remains, and the prominent feature at the hill’s summit is an orange flag, marking the pinnacle of the hill.

About Bandaje Arbi Falls

Elevated at 200 feet, Bandaje Arbi Falls, also known as Bandaje Falls, is situated in the Charmadi region of Belthangady taluk in Karnataka. Accessible exclusively through hiking, the Falls’ summit offers stunning views of the Ghats and valleys.

Frequently shrouded in mist, the waterfall is often elusive. However, on favourable days with clear weather conditions, the trek to the top unveils captivating vistas of the surrounding landscapes. In the local language, “Arbi” translates to waterfalls, aptly capturing the essence of this natural wonder.

Bandaje Arbi falls
Bandaje Arbi falls

Important Information – Things To Know Before Visiting Bandaje Arbi Falls

New to hiking or trekking? Check out my beginner’s guide for trekking.

  • Wear Reliable Trekking Shoes: Invest in sturdy, comfortable hiking shoes for a secure trekking experience.
  • Pack a Secure Lunch: Carry your lunch in a spill-proof container to avoid any mess during the trek.
  • Stay Hydrated: Bring at least 1 to 2 litres of water. Utilize water-purifying tablets for refilling from the available streams.
  • Mind Mobile Coverage: Expect intermittent mobile coverage, with only the Airtel network functioning at the homestay.
  • No Shops Along the Trail: Be aware that no shops are on the trail, so pack accordingly.
  • Exercise Caution at Edges: Watch out for steep drops at edges; exercise caution to ensure safety.
  • Beware of Slippery Rocks: Stay alert for slippery rocks; maintain a firm grip and move cautiously.
  • Combat Leeches: Leeches can be present; carry salt, turmeric, or sanitiser to deal with them.
  • Dress Appropriately: Wear full pants and long-sleeved t-shirts to prevent insect bites, especially in leech-prone areas.
  • Watch for Snakes: Be cautious of snakes; be mindful of your steps, even if sightings are rare.
  • Respect Nature: Refrain from plucking flowers or plants from national parks, and don’t write on rocks. Preserve the environment.
  • Dispose of Garbage Responsibly: Carry your garbage with you; maintain cleanliness and protect the natural surroundings.
  • Emergency Information: Know that the nearest hospital is in Ujire for unforeseen emergencies.
  • Prepare for Rain: Be ready for rain; bring a poncho or raincoat to stay dry during unexpected weather.
  • Avoid Rock Writing: Respect nature by refraining from writing on rocks; preserve the natural beauty.

Trekking Agency

I opt for treks with the Bangalore Mountaineering Club (BMC) due to the enjoyable crowd and well-organized treks they offer. The affordability and efficient management make the experience worthwhile. BMC’s unique initiatives, such as seed bombing, contribute to their environmentally friendly approach. Having participated in BMC-organized treks to destinations like Vattakanal, Kumara Parvatha, and several others, I’ve thoroughly enjoyed each experience.

Weekend Itinerary for Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort

Note: BMC orchestrated and managed this weekend itinerary from Bangalore.

  • Friday Evening – Our journey commenced at approximately 9:30 PM from Bangalore on a Friday evening. The entire night was spent travelling by bus. Covering a distance of around 290 kilometres, the route from Bangalore to Durgadahalli homestay typically takes about 6 to 7 hours.
  • Saturday Morning: We were transported to the Rani Jhari viewpoint after breakfast. Embarking from there, our trek spanned the entire day, culminating in our return. Once back, the homestay owner kindly provided transportation back to the homestay.
  • Sunday Morning: Our initial destination was Kodige Falls. After an hour of exploration, we returned to the homestay for breakfast. Departing at approximately 10 AM, we stopped at Belur Temple on our way back. We reached Bangalore at around 8 PM.
Rani Jhari view point 1
Rani Jhari View Point

Accommodation at Durgadahalli Homestay

We lodged at Durgadahalli Homestay during our weekend getaway, nestled amid nature. The delightful sounds of peacocks serenaded mornings. Despite the simplicity of the dorms, the overall experience was pleasant.

The amicable owner, Sanjay, and his welcoming family, along with their friendly dog, Rocky, made the stay truly enjoyable. The delectable and flavorful meals served added to the charm of the homestay. For bookings, contact Sanjay via WhatsApp at +91 94497 01866 or at +91 77957 54335.

Other Things to See on Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort

Neelakunji Flowers

Neelakurinji, a shrub native to the forests of the Western Ghats in the southern part of India, derives its name from the Kunthi River within the Silent Valley National Park in Kerala.

Typically found in Kerala, Karnataka, and Tamil Nadu, these flowers are renowned for their unique blooming pattern, occurring once every 12 years. Our fortunate encounter with these gorgeous flowers occurred while trekking to the Bandaje Arbi Falls.

Kodige Falls

Kodige Falls, a privately owned waterfall, offers an excellent spot for a refreshing dip and water fun. The water, though not shallow, has slippery rocks. Visitors are required to pay an entrance fee of INR 30 per person. Access to the waterfall is exclusively possible via a 4-wheel drive.

Our homestay owner, Sanjay, recommended this waterfall, and he graciously transported us to and from the falls in his jeep. The round-trip jeep ride for the entire group amounted to INR 800.

Kodige falls
Kodige falls

Is Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort Safe for Solo Female Trekkers?

For solo female trekkers, I recommend opting for a reputable trekking agency. Joining an agency ensures a hassle-free experience as they handle all arrangements, including booking homestays, organizing transportation, and providing meals. While I didn’t perceive the location as particularly dangerous, its isolation within the forested surroundings could pose potential risks, making the guidance and support of a trekking agency valuable for safety and security.

Download the Emergency Plus app for any unforeseen situations. The app does not require a mobile network; it shows your location. This is useful to inform the emergency services in case of any emergency.
If you are a tourist, always have good comprehensive travel insurance to cover yourself in case of any emergency.

Closing Notes

The Bandaje Arbi Falls trek stands out as one of the most scenic treks I’ve experienced in the Western Ghats. The journey unfolded amidst breathtaking views adorned with vibrant greens and blues palettes. To all fellow trekking enthusiasts, I wholeheartedly recommend embarking on the Bandaje Arbi Falls trek for an unforgettable adventure amid nature’s splendour.

How can you support me?
You know how much I love coffee, so you can buy me a coffee – Buy me Coffee!

Or you can purchase from one of the below travel resources without any extra charge to you:
Travel Resources
Book your flight on or
Reserve your accommodation on Stay22
Reserve your stay at a hostel on HostelWorld
Use RentalCars or DiscoverCars for hiring self-driven cars
Book your tours and travels or purchase tickets on Viator or GetYourGuide
For a universal SIM card, use DrimSim
Buy comprehensive travel insurance on SafetyWing and WorldNomads

If you liked this article and if it was helpful in your planning or traveling, do share, tweet, or pin this post.

Follow me on Instagram | Facebook | YouTube | Twitter | LinkedIn

Do you have a question? Do you want any suggestions and tips for travel, hikes, and scuba dives? Use the Subscription box below to sign up and get updates by email.

Learn how to plan more, travel more, & live more

Get valuable travel tips and tricks, travel inspirations and listen to my stories in your inbox.

Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort (2024)
    We respect your privacy. Unsubscribe at any time.

    PIN for later reference – Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort

    Bandaje Arbi Falls trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort - PIN for later reference
    Bandaje Arbi Falls Trek via Ballalarayana Durga Fort – PIN for later reference