Coorg has many interest places to offer for the tourists | Kodava community is an interesting community to know about in Coorg
Highest mountains, dense forests, deep valleys and the fragrance of coffee are some of the special features of Coorg hills. Coorg hills look like a green rose in the head of Western Ghats with rare traditions and culture.
Coorg is a hill area situated in the western direction of Mysore in Western Ghats. This is on the borders of Karnataka and Kerala. Situated at a distance of 120 kms from Mysore this wonderful place is a must visit which transforms the visitors into another worlds.
Visitors can first visit Mysore which has interesting places like Maharaja Palace, Chamundeshwari Temple, and Lalith Mahal Palace. Coorg is actually a place district. Head quarter of Coorg village is Madikeri. Road to Madikeri is not good as the single road is being converted in to a double road. A distance of 40 kms of road journey is horrible with diversions and ups and downs. Roads are almost uninhibited and look scary at night. Very less traffic is seen in that route after 08.00pm. Resorts in the middle of coffee plantations can be seen for every two kilometers. These are generally situated at a distance of 1 or 2 kilometers away from main road in valley like areas.
Rain fall is very high in Coorg. Land is always damp. Coorg fascinates the visitors with its nature beauty. Nature looks like as if it is wearing a green blanket, beautiful houses look like a picture post card.
There are many places of interest in Madikeri Talakaveri the birth place of River Kaveri is situated at a distance of 4kms from Madikeri. Tourists can see many silver trees of which plywood is made. Spice plants like cardamom, pepper and pineapple and bamboo… there is so much beauty around which has to be seen but cannot be described. Coffee beans can be seen during the early months of the year. They are red in colour. Estates in Madikeri are generally spread over an area of 5 to 2000 acres. Many of the owners construct their houses in the middle of the estates. Many famous actors, politicians and business men from Andhra Pradesh also have estates in Madikeri.
Coorg is famous for honey and coffee. Spices are available at fewer prices. People of Coorg watch Hindi and Telugu movies. People of Coorg have taken up a movement in the name ‘Kodagu Rajya Mukti Morcha’ and are fighting for a separate state status. The movement has no place for violence and only cultural and traditional programs are taken up to involve people in this. Strikes are very rare. Coorg is not only a very rich place in Karnataka but is the highest tax payer to the government. But 53% of villages here still have no power supply. People here want a separate status for reasons like this.
People of Coorg have special history. Kodava community people are very beautiful and are fair. Their language and traditions are all different. They migrated from Kurdistan, Kashmir and Rajasthan. But nobody has any information why they came here and when. Some say they are the heirs of Roman soldiers who came here after the fall of Pandya kingdom who ruled this place in 8th century. Some other says that these are heirs to the soldiers of Alexander. Whatever be their birth, they are a special community. Their language has much influence of Tamil than Kannada. Kodava community worship nature and women. Women have the right over ancestral property. They can remarry in the instance of death of their husbands.
The houses of ancestors are regarded as temples by Kodava people. These houses are called ‘Ine Mane’ and are spacious and beautiful. These are located in dense forests and so are not seen near the roads.
The next thing to be mentioned about Kodava community is their dress. Men wear coat called Kupiya which is knee length and tie a clothe belt in red or gold colour around the waist. They also carry a knife with ivory handle. Women wear silk sarees in strange style. They have folds of the saree at their backs and wear the loose end of the saree over their shoulder to the front. They also wear scarves over their heads like Kashmiri women.
Kushalnagar near Madikeri has an elephant’s park. Tourists have to cross a river on boat to reach this place. There is also a Tibetan Bouddharam at Bailekuppu. This is also called the Golden Temple. A few kgs of gold is used in the construction of this temple. Indian Government has given this place to Buddhist monks who came to India escaping from China. The statue of Lord Buddha is very pleasant. There are many schools and colleges running in the premises of temple.