Channarayana Durga fort

DIY Hiking Guide To Channarayana Durga

Situated about 100 Km from Bangalore in the Tumkur district of Karnataka, Channarayana Durga is an ancient hilltop fort and a temple. The place is known to be one of the Navadurgas around Bangalore and has about 7 entrances spread across different levels. It is the perfect place for beginners who like hiking and history. The place is good for a day trip, and you can even stop by a small lake on the way.

If you’re in the region and planning to explore a new place, we’ve got you covered. This guide comprises all details you need to know about the fort, its history, and the hike itself. Let’s jump right in. 

Channarayana Durga Hiking Guide

Channarayana Durga Fort History

Originally, the fort was built by Channapa Gouda in the 17th century. Channapa was a local king who ruled Madhugiri and the surrounding area. He later lost the fort to the Marathas, and over the next few years, the Marathas and the Mysore Woodeyars fought over it. Each claimed the fort multiple times during this period before losing it to the British, who later abandoned it. 

Best Time To Visit

view from the channaraya durga fort

The best time to visit Channarayana Durga fort is during the summer months from January to June, and the post-monsoon months between September and December. Whether you’re going during Summer or Winter, start early in the day. This way, you can avoid heat and humidity. 

Try not to visit the fort during the Monsoon season. Due to the rain, the terrain is quite difficult to traverse, and the rocks are quite slippery. So always go during the dry season, as you can easily complete the hike.

How To Reach Channarayana Durga From Bangalore?

Frequent buses are available from Bangalore to Tumkur (40 Km) and Dobbaspet (50 Km). You can also board a train from Bangalore to Tumkur (Station code: TK).

You have to board another bus from the Tumkur or Dobbaspet bus stand to reach Channarayana Durga. The bus frequency from either of these places to Channarayana Durga is very limited.

The best and most convenient way to reach Channarayana Durga is by using your own vehicle, as there are no direct buses from Bangalore.

Network Availability

Channarayana Durga has very good connectivity with Airtel and Jio on all parts of the trail until the summit.

ATM Availability

There are no ATMs available in the region. Although there is no entry fee, we recommend you have a few bucks with you. Digital payments are not accepted in the base village.

Languages Spoken

Most people speak the regional language of Kannada. The officers at the entrance could speak English in their limited capacity. So you do not have to worry about communication problems.

Parking Availability

There is no parking space at the hike starting point. You just have to park your vehicle at the side of the road.

Restroom Facilities

No restrooms are available at the base or the trek’s starting point. Come prepared, as you will need to answer nature’s call outdoors.

Related: Use these super helpful public restroom tips during your travels. 

Where To Eat?

You don’t have many options for breakfast and lunch near Channarayana Durga. But there are a few snack shops near the base where you can grab quick bites and drinks.

There are no places where you can refill your water bottle. So carry water bottles and other essentials with you. Usually, while hiking, you must keep your backpack light and carry only the essentials.

Read the blog to know more about what we usually carry for day hikes.

Where To Stay?

There is no accommodation available for the visitors to stay near Channarayana Durga. But you’ll get decent stays in Tumkur. However, the place isn’t too far from Bangalore, and you won’t take much time to complete the trek. You wouldn’t need to stay and can return once you finish the activity.


Things To Do In Channarayana Durga

Hiking and exploring the Channarayana Durga fort is the most popular activity.

Hiking Details

Distance to the base: 98 Km from Bangalore

Entry Fee: Free

Registration: No registration or pre-online booking is required.

Timings: From 6 AM to 7 PM. Last entry is not permitted beyond 5 PM.

Duration: 2 hours for the ascent and 1 hour to descend.

Permission: Although permission is not required to hike the Channarayana Durga fort, your contact details will be noted down by the forest officer at the base in a register. 

Maximum Altitude: 1053 m

Hike Distance: 1.43 Km one way

Difficulty Level: Easy, highly subject to your fitness level.

Terrain: steps, rocks, and steep boulders for the most part

Hiking Route:

Channarayana Durga hiking start point

You must park your vehicle near the temple and walk to a water tank. Take a right from there.

hike start point and route start

A 50 m walk on the visible route will lead you to the hike’s entrance. This path is used frequently, so you will be able to identify it pretty quickly

steep stretch at the start of the trail

You’ll see yellow arrow marks when you move on the path and look closer to the ground. These act as guides throughout the trek. You can see one in the picture above. The yellow arrow mark is on the steep rocky terrain. 

The initial climb is very steep, with an inclination of approximately 70° on the slippery granite. Be careful while placing your foot, and ensure your footing is firm before taking the next step. This terrain continues across 3 stretches on the path, from the fort to the temple and the lake. Don’t forget to follow the arrow until then.

first fort entrance en-route

After entering the fort entrance, climb the steps laid, and you’ll have a simpler stretch that lasts for about 500 m. You can see a few water storage ponds and enjoy the views from this point. Take a break if you need; click pictures and revitalize yourself.

view of the fort from the top of Channaraya Durga

The last flight of stairs will lead you to the barren, open land, where you can relax under the shadow of the massive fort walls. This is your final destination, so give yourself a pat on the back. 

At The Channarayana Durga Summit:

last few steps to the fort summit

On reaching the top, climb a few stairs to get a panoramic view of the surrounding hills in the Tumkur district. From the summit, you can see the fort’s sharp descent (steepness) and even find a glimpse of the trail you just walked on.

Channarayana Durga fort walls

Walk along the walls of the fort and witness everything. Right from the settlements, lakes, hills, and more. Be sure to look out for the Siddara betta and Mathugiri fort. The best part is that after the long trek, when you’re pumped, you feel euphoric and accomplished.

Relax at the summit for some time and return on the same route.

Important Things To Remember

  • Since the place isn’t popular like other destinations in Karnataka, very few people come here.
  • The use of plastics and smoking is strictly prohibited. As a hiker, you mustn’t litter and explore the place responsibly. 
  • Collect and bring back the waste with you and dispose of it in proper dedicated bins.
  • There is no water stream or shops once you start your hike. So carry enough water and liquids.
  • Monkeys are found at the start of the trail. Beware of your belongings and feed them only fruits. Read the blog to learn how to deal with the monkeys.

Essential Things To Carry

  • Ensure you carry at least 1 L of water per person.
  • Take some energy bars and snacks.
  • Have your first aid kit handy.
  • Cap, sunscreen & sunglasses are essential to ward off the summer heat.
  • Carry a poncho or raincoat in case of rain.
  • Above all, ensure you wear comfortable shoes with good traction and grip.

Read the blog to know more about what we usually carry for day hikes.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is a guide required for the Channarayana Durga trek?

The probability of getting lost in the Channarayana Durga hike is nil. The straight visible route will lead you to the summit. Hence, a guide is not required to hike Channarayana Durga. However, you might need a guide to reaching the place since it isn’t as popular as other spots in Karnataka.

Is camping allowed in Channarayana Durga?

No, camping is strictly prohibited in Channarayana Durga.

Is a GPS file required to hike Channarayana Durga?

The hiking path is visible and straight, so you don’t require a GPS file. If you need a GPS file, drop an email to

Can the Channarayana Durga hike be done in a day?

Channarayana Durga is usually done as a day hike. One day is enough to complete the trail and return. In fact, you can reach back to Bangalore or your place of stay on the same day.

If you find this blog helpful and valuable while you plan a trip to Channarayana Durga fort, do check out our other guides. If you have any doubts or want information, comment below. For more extensive hiking guides such as this and travel tips, guides, and itineraries, subscribe to the newsletter and follow us on social media – Instagram, Pinterest, and YouTube.

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