When visited: April 2014 Temp: 20-24C
In Bangalore for the weekend again and this time I had a morning free to visit a birding site and most people seemed to suggest that Nandi Hills, 60km from Bangalore was a pretty good bet. I arranged a car to pick me at 530am (on retrospect I should have made it 500am to get there for the sunrise). It took us just over an hour on an interesting drive on highways initially and as we approached Nandi Hills the scenery was very attractive. Ascending the 40 curve hill road, I caught the tail end of the sunrise which was still impressive. Apparently if weather conditions are right, you can sometimes see a sea of clouds surrounding the hills.
We didn’t but you should stop just beyond the main entrance where there is large step well and a giant map of the top of Nandi Hills. Having not stopped to study this map, I probably spent more time than I should have at the top of the hill rather than down by the step well and nursery where the birding was somewhat better.
Parking by the road side at the top, near where the ‘Special Officer’s House’ was, I set off for a slow ramble towards Tippu’s Drop where the Tippu Sultan used to have the condemned pushed off the sheer cliff.
Finding a tree fill of orange cherries, I saw the following attractive birds…white cheeked barbet, oriental white eye, red vented bulbul etc.
And by the hillside near Tippu’s drop, the view was magnificent…
It was here I came across this delightful pair of lizards…I’m reliably told by Nishant that they are:
After finishing off at the top, I drove down to the step well and then discovered the nursery right next to it where the birds were very interesting as well….In India, Step wells are common and basically are wells with steps cut into the side walls so people can walk down deep to fetch water…they are beautiful in design and symmetry..
Checking out the path that went beyond the well and up towards the top of the hill, there were a few more interesting things…
Tawny bellied babbler
Flower nursery was pretty…and the macaques were everywhere..
It was just under 1.5 hours to get back to my hotel at the Sheraton. It was a great outing for a morning and I would recommend it.
A few shots of Bangalore scenes in the evening…