The Western Ghats region is the abode of some of the most mesmerizing waterfalls of Karnataka. The lush greenery of the Ghats turns into a beautiful canvas dotted with waterfalls, which are at the peak of their beauty in the grandest season of the year, the monsoon.
Monsoon brings life to the Western Ghats. The forest floor and tree tops start buzzing with sounds of various creatures, from birds to tiny frogs and the almost-invisible insects. Rain infuses a new energy into every single life form. It is no less than a carnival of green out there!
Towns like Yellapura, Sirsi and Siddapura in the district of Uttara Kannada are uniquely placed at the higher altitudes of the Western Ghats; hence they are home to some of the most beautiful waterfalls. Situated at around 30kms from Yellapur, Magod Falls is one such waterfall. The adjoining view of the valley makes it magnificent.
Unchalli Falls is situated at around 35kms from Sirsi. Being one of Karnataka's highest waterfalls after Jog Falls, Unchalli has such a thundering roar that it is locally known as 'Keppa Joga' - the falls that makes one deaf.
Benne Holey falls located along the road from Sirsi to Kumta is a place for adventure-lovers, as reaching the foot of the waterfall is no easy task. But once you make your way down there, the landscape will leave you speechless and breathless.
Some of the waterfalls of the region are seasonal in nature. For example, a beautiful waterfall along Gerusoppa road (from Jog falls via Mavinagundi) which tumbles down a great height but goes almost dry post-monsoon. Similarly, Majjige Falls which can be seen from one of the viewpoints of Magod Falls dries away post-winter and swells back into life once the rains begin.
There are some falls which have viewpoints that let you go up-close to the water. Sathoddi Falls is one such waterfall. Situated near Yellapur, it has water almost throughout the year. But the best time to enjoy this place is just after the monsoons.
At Vibhooti Falls, which is close to Yana, one cannot walk down to the very bottom of the forest floor, but the waterfall itself can be viewed up-close. The thick vegetation around the water adds to the beauty of the place and it is a treat to watch, both during and after the monsoon.
There are several other beautiful falls as well, in the district. During the monsoon there are innumerable streams that run along the forest floor and have a short life-span, but, they support many life-forms.
Apart from these waterfalls, there are other nature destinations around the area - Anshi Tiger Reserve near Dandeli, Jenukallu Gudda near Magod Falls, Yana which can be accessed via either Sirsi or Kumta, Sykes Point near Dandeli and several other places that are less-known.
The Uttara Kannada district alone has almost all types of landscapes that the entire state of Karnataka has – sea shores, dry grasslands, evergreen forests, deciduous forests and high-altitude grasslands. But what tops them all is the belt of the Western Ghats that makes the natural beauty of the region so unique. And, this makes monsoon the best time of the year for this area to showcase its beauty.
All one has to do is just go there and explore.