Sakleshpur, a quaint little hill station nestled in the picturesque Western Ghats, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in South India. The beauty of this hill station has even got the name ‘Poor Man’s Ooty’. Here foggy mornings, dew drops at dawn, green meadows, plantations, meandering roads, and starry nights are not an illusion. If one needs a distraction from the busy city-life, this hilly retreat has a lot to offer. Sakleshpur is located near National Highway (NH) 48 and is a part of the Malnad region in Hassan.


The Western Ghats around the region keep it cool and pleasant during summer. Sakleshpur receives very heavy rainfall from the southwest monsoon. It is one of the places receiving the most rainfall in Karnataka.

How to Reach

Sakleshpur does not have an airport, and it is not connected by rail. The nearest airport is Mangalore, which is 105 km from Sakleshpur, and the nearest railway station is at Hassan.

Sakleshpur is located on National Highway 48 (NH-48), which connects Bangalore and Mangalore. It is 225 km from Bangalore and 130 km from Mangalore.

Key attractions/Sightseeing

Manjarabad Fort, Sakleshpur: Manjarabad Fort was constructed by Tipu Sultan, the ruler of Mysore as a strategic defensive location. The fort commands the approach to the plateau beyond Sakleshpur from the coast. Situated on a hillock, the fort is on one level, unlike other forts, which are multi-level. The fort is located just outside Sakleshpur on National Highway (NH) 48. Work on the fort commenced in 1785, and ended in 1792. The star shaped fort was also used to store the ammunitions, during the reign of Tipu Sultan. Its strategic location enables soldiers in the fort to see the British army coming from Mangalore. Out of the many chambers in the fort, some were used to house the horses. Certain chambers served the soldiers as kitchen and bathroom. The fort has Islamic style of architecture and arched entrance-ways. The fort sits at an elevation of 3,240 feet above sea level. From the fort, get an aerial view of the Western Ghats.

Bisle Ghat: Bisle Ghat is home to the Bisle Reserve Forest, which is a rainforest area. In the flora typical of the region of Western Ghats, king cobras, tigers, kadave (a kind of deer), numerous species of birds find abode. From Bisle Betta or Bisle Viewpoint, one can view the surrounding mountain ranges.

Kukke Subrahmanya Temple: Kukke Subrahmanya Temple is located in the village of Subrahmanya in the Sullia Taluk in south Kanara. The temple lies nestled amidst rivers, forests and mountains. Lord Subramanyeshwara, the son of Lord Shiva, is the presiding deity of the temple. Sacred premises of the temple are believed to be an abode to Lord Subramanyeshwara, along with his consort and Vasuki. Surrounded by lush green mountains, the temple is considered to be very sacred and is also famous for performing ritual rites to evade ‘Sarpa Dosha’. Adi Subramanyeshwara Swamy Temple is located behind the temple. Shrines of Saraswati Devi and Lord Ganesha can be found on the way to the temple.

Jenukal Gudda: Jenukal Gudda offers views of coast of Arabian Sea in Mangalore, on clear days. The second highest peak in Karnataka, it is also known as ‘Hodachalli’. Nestled by thick jungle and coffee estates, the site is frequented by enthusiasts interested in trekking activity.

River Hemavati: River Hemavati, which starts in the Western Ghats at an elevation of about 1,219 m, is the tributary of the Kaveri River. After originating near Ballala rayana durga in the Chikmagalur District of the state of Karnataka, it flows through Chikmagalur, Hassan District and Mysore District before joining the Kaveri near Krishnarajasagara. Approximately 245 km long, the river is an important contributor to the ecosystem of the town. Owing to the notable temples located near the site, Hemavati Reservoir is also a pilgrimage spot.

Agni Gudda: Agni Gudda is frequented by enthusiasts of trekking and outdoor camping. From the mountain, one can avail views of the surrounding rice terraces. The site is also a preferred spot for picnic and camping. Because of volcanic activities in this region, the mountain has got its name, which means ‘Fiery Mountain’.

Sakaleswara Temple: Sakaleswara Temple is a beautiful representation of the fine detailing and craftsmanship that was the hallmark of the Hoysala architecture. This temple is smaller than the standard temples in South India. Constructed between the 11th and 14th centuries AD, the temple gives the destination its name. Located at the entrance of the town, the temple is a remnant of the Hoysala Empire that ruled this region.

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