Water Sports in Karnataka
By Meenakshi Gupta
‘One State Many Worlds’, the tag line of Karnataka Tourism says it all. Like many other tourist attractions in Karnataka, water sports and adventure is the most sought activity by all age groups. With 300 km of coastline, rivers and backwaters, Karnataka Is well-equipped with water sports activities. The serene and pristine beaches, gushing and quaint rivers amidst the deciduous forests surrounded by misty hills entice you for water sports or activities in Karnataka. Enjoy the adrenaline rush of white water rafting, indulge in scuba diving and surfing or just pick up a soft sailing on a kayak or a coracle boat, Karnataka never disappoints you. Unwind yourself by immersing in these adventurous water sports of Karnataka.
The breath-taking views of Western Ghats take you to the best of the waterfalls and beaches, to the wonders of the water land and to unmatched adventure. From the simple coracle boat rides in quite serene water bodies to action-packed speed boats taking you to the islands beyond beaches. Take that banana boat, speed rafting and parasail on the pristine rivers and beaches of Karnataka for that adventurous thrill, unexplored, unexpected and exciting. Trust me you will never say ‘It’s enough!
Coracle Boat Ride
One of the special boats rides in Karnataka is the coracle ride. The circular boat made of resources naturally available is one of the highlights of any water activities in Karnataka. Taking that ride on a calm and picturesque river with amazing surroundings of neighbouring hills or lush green forest and even the boulders of the hills makes it an experience to remember.
The popular places to have a coracle boat ride are Nagarhole, Hampi, Shivanasamudra falls, Bheemeshwari, Hognekkal falls, Honnemaradu and Talakadu. At a very nominal fee of Rs 50-60, you get to ride for a good 30-40 minutes. Coracle boats are easily available at the venues and there is no need to book a ride in advance.
Click to reach Hampi, Bheemeshwari and Hognekkal
Honnemaradu and Bheemeshwari are the two very popular destinations for adventure lovers, especially kayaking. Honnemaradu is located at the backwaters of River Sharavathi in Shimoga and is famous for water sports. Swimming in open waters and kayaking are the most popular ones. Surrounded by many small and big hills in the Western Ghats, Honnemaradu is the destination for ardent adventure lovers. Similarly, Bheemeshwari is the destination for adventure lovers and is a quick weekend getaway from Bangalore. A kayak is a small and narrowboat which can house one or 2 persons. Kayaking requires concentration and understanding of the technique to enjoy the ride in the waters on your own.
Click to reach Honnemaradu and Bheemeshwari
Water Sports in Gokarna
One of the most popular and busiest beaches of Karnataka is Gokarna. Famous for its pristine landscapes, hikes, shores, and idyllic beaches, Gokarna is also a hub of water and adventure sports activities. Ranging from the calm parasailing to the action-packed jet-skiing and banana boat rides are the most sought after activities for travellers and adventure enthusiasts. Unwind and soak up yourself in the natural wonderland of Gokarna and enjoy those water sports in Karnataka.
Click to reach Gokarna
Be it a ferocious River Kali in Dandeli or Bhadra River in Chikamagalur or even Barapole river in Coorg, rafting is one of the most thrilling water-based sports activities pumping your heart faster and giving you that adrenaline rush. River Kali gushing through the dense forest in Dandeli provides the perfect set-up for a 12 km long stretch for that wild and ferocious rafting, suitable for beginners as well as seasoned. Just 45 km away from Chikamagalur, this 8 km distance of rafting in Bhadra River offers you the excellent views of the Western Ghats, plantations and the villages in the region of Sakleshpur, Kudremukh, and Charmadi Ghats.
The picturesque landscapes entice travellers from across the world. White water rafting in Barapole River in Coorg offers spectacular views of Brahmagiri Wildlife Sanctuary.
Click to reach Dandeli, Coorg, Chikamagalur
Surfing in Mulki
Image credits: Mantra Surf Club
Get those action-packed water-based sports in the safest and most exciting town Mulki in Karnataka. Surfing off-late is one of the most sought, thrilling and challenging water sports in India. Choose your trusted training companies and get on to the board. A pre-requisite of knowing swimming in open waters is a must to start surfing. Surfing in Mulki meets all the criteria for safety norms. The small little town on the west coast of Karnataka, Mulki has become a promising destination for Surfing, both for beginners as well as advanced surfers.
Image credits: Shree Netrani Adventures
Once considered a sport for the elite, has now become the reality for everyone who wishes to explore the underwater world. Also known as ‘Pigeon Island’, Netrani, near Murudeshwara in Uttara Kannada district serves or offers you one of the best Scuba diving experiences in India. The expedition underwater to witness the diverse variety of species of fishes, corals and much other exciting life can be enjoyed only at Netrani. A thrilling boat ride of an hour or so from Murudeshwara to Netrani Island is a perfect spot for Scuba Diving both for beginners as well as experienced and certified divers.
Click to reach Netrani
Karnataka’s varied natural resources are its coastline, forests, hills, and rivers offer the best water-based sports activities not only in the state but also in the country. Travellers, tourists and adventure enthusiasts flock to Karnataka for these activities to get that adrenaline rush and thrill. Karnataka has endless options for water sports