10 Adventure Activities in and around Bangalore

Kundermukh-Western Ghats, Karnataka. A popular trekking option from Bangalore

Wondering what to do this weekend? How about trying something different from routine, something exciting and fun that will help you unwind? Here is a list of top adventures you can do in and around Bangalore.

1) Trekking

There is no better way to explore the beauty of a place than trekking. Thanks to the scenic Sahyadri range and numerous other hills, rivers, jungles and cascades Karnataka is blessed with, it is rapidly emerging as the prime trekking destination in India. Trekking gives you the opportunity to take a closer look at nature while challenging you with the ruggedness of the terrain.

There are over a hundred trekking destinations around Bangalore. Most of the scenic ones are located in Coorg, Chikamagalur, Hassan, Shimoga and Canara which are all about 5-8 hrs drive from Bangalore.

If you are new to trekking, we suggest you start with some easy treks at Skandagiri or Ramanagara which are within an hour drive from the city.

Kumara Parvatha. Source:Sunil Fernandes - Flickr
Kumara Parvatha trekking route. Source: Sunil Fernandes – Flickr.

2) River Rafting

Thanks to its abundant rivers and rugged terrain, Karnataka offers a wide range of rafting opportunities. Rafting requires upper body strength, especially if you choose to paddle in sections with moderate to hard rapids. Inflatable rafts used for this sport can hold between 3 to 10 rafters.

Teamwork and coordination is the key in rafting. Level of difficulty depends on the presence or absence of rocks, waves, drops, etc. Begin from a relatively safe place and move up the difficulty levels as you progress.

Popular places around Bangalore : Dubare, Barapole (Both about 300 KM, 6 hrs from Bangalore) and Dandeli (450 KM, 7 hrs)

Barapole rafting - Coorg
Barapole Rafting- Coorg. Source: Sandeep R – Flickr.

3) White water Kayaking

Kayaks are one of the oldest forms of water transport with an estimated 4000 years of history. However, the kayak took it’s current form in the ‘70s. Today, kayaking is a recreational and competitive sport and is widely practised in many parts of the world. Whitewater kayaking is done in swift water where the paddler has to manoeuvre her kayak using her skills and abilities through the river as it loses its gradient and becomes turbulent.

Kayaking does require considerable skill and strength; but it has its rewards once you nail down the basics and progress through the skill levels.

Where: Cauvery near Hogenekkal (150KMs, 2.5 Hrs from Bangalore), Barapole in Coorg (300 KMs, 6 hrs from Bangalore)

Kayaking near Bangalore
Whitewater Kayaking. Source: Manik, Goodwave.in

4) Surfing

Riding the waves. Dancing with the beat of the ocean. Pushing your limits to stay on top. Surfing, once mastered is an addiction that one cannot get rid of.

The waves for surfing are usually found in oceans. But it is not uncommon to surf in rivers with suitable conditions. As surfing is yet to catch mainstream attention in India, pro surfers like Ed Templeton visit Indian waters for the privacy it provides.

But fret not! Just because surfing is not mainstream yet, doesn’t mean you cannot try it out. Some of the places where you can learn surfing are: Udupi, Mangalore, (370 KM, 7 hrs), Gokarna (500 KM, 8 hrs), Mahabalipuram and Pondicherry (350 KM, 5 hrs)

Source: Haanee Naeem - Flickr
Surfing. Source: Haanee Naeem – Flickr

5) Climbing

Anatoli Boukreev, a world renowned climber said, “Mountains are not stadiums where I satisfy my ambition to achieve, they are the cathedrals where I practice my religion.

Climbing is rapidly gaining popularity among the urban crowd. It is the art of ascending rocks / artificial walls. Climbing greatly improves a person’s sense of balance and concentration. It’s a great and fun way to spend time when the adventure bug bites you.

Climbing is done indoors on artificial walls that contains many types of holds with varying levels of difficulty.

Some of the places that offers indoor climbing : Residency RoadKanteerava Stadium and Sarjapur Road

You can also go bouldering at Turahalli and Ramanagar which are located about an hours drive from the city.

Source: Dahon-Flickr
Wall climbing. Source: Dahon-Flickr.

6) Scuba diving

As a child, when I first learnt to dive in a swimming pool, I wasn’t diving, I was flying, like Superman
– Tom Hiddleston

Scuba diving, unlike some of the other activities on this list, requires training. It is not the cheapest sport either. But if you have the resources at your disposal, then it is a must try! Seeing reefs up close or swimming alongside fish, scuba diving gives you experiences you cannot get anywhere else!

Pondicherry(350 KM, 5 Hrs) and Netrani Islands(500 KM, 8 Hrs) are the most popular destinations among the scuba enthusiasts of the city.

Scuba diving near Bangalore
Scuba Diving. Source: milewski, Flickr.

7) Cycling

Either going to school, or going places around your house playing with other kids, all of us have had some sort of tryst with a bicycle. But for whatever reasons, the cycle eventually ended up in a scrap yard in most cases. Why don’t you rekindle your relationship with this two-wheeled eco-friendly friend?

You can either rent out cycles or buy one of your own. You can use it to either commute to work or go on long trips or try some mountain biking through hills around the city. The options are endless.

Popular mountain biking trails around Bangalore are Nandi Hills and Turahalli, both about an hours drive from the city.

Mountain Biking
Mountain Biking. Source: Mirko Banfi, Flickr.

8) Paragliding

Most people confuse parasailing and paragliding. The only common thing is that you’ll be strapped to a parachute.

In paragliding, you go to the top of a hill or mountain and find a suitable place to take off. You’ll be strapped onto a gliding wing(or canopy), and when the right wind hits, you run off the cliff and take off into the air. It is an extremely exhilarating and sometimes scary experience. Depending on the skill of the tandem pilot, you can do various stunts mid-air too. This is one experience no one will ever regret.

Xtacee club offers paragliding courses around Bangalore

Paragliding near Bangalore
Paragliding. Source:Carlo Tancredi.

9) High Rope Traversing

High rope traversing or Tyrolean traversing is a technique used in mountaineering activities while crossing from one point to another point with a depression in between. It is also a recreational sport where people tie a rope between two buildings or over a river and try to cross it. It does not need much skill or strength. Most modern set ups have some sort of safety harness too, so anyone can try this.

Ramanagar (50KM) and Bheemeshwari (100 KM) are two popular places that offer high rope traversing near Bangalore

Traversing near bangalore
High Rope Traversing. Source: Steven Hepting- Flickr

10) Slacklining

Slacklining has taken Bangalore by storm in the past 2 to 3 years! Remember when we were kids we would try to balance along the edges alongside pavements and walls? Slacklining is something like that, except that it is on a Nylon rope suspended at some height. It greatly improves your balance and concentration while also strengthening the muscles in your core, calves, hamstring and outer thighs.

The best thing about slacklining is that you can set it up anywhere! All you need is two poles or trees spaced conveniently.

Slack lining near Bangalore
SlackLining. Source:Pavla Šedivá, Flickr


So what are you waiting for. Plan with your buddies and have a blast in the outdoors this weekend.

Featured Image: Kundermukh in Western Ghats. Source: Karunakaran, Flickr

3 thoughts on “10 Adventure Activities in and around Bangalore

  1. Hi, I’m from Bangalore and interested in Slack Lining so is my 8 year old son. Please provide information as far as where it is done regularly, what days and time. It’ll be very helpful.


  2. An excellent post for people planning a vacation in Bangalore. There are so many fun activities you have listed out in this blog. I am sure someone who wishes to spend a fortnight in Bangalore will have enough to try out in the short span. This post is sure to help many vacationers like me.

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