While planning for the trek to Nagalapuram hills a few months back, I felt a bit difficult to gather some important information about the place. But for me, the trek was a wonderful experience. Keep in mind few things well in advance, you will not face much difficulties on the way. The information I am sharing here will be very helpful to those who wants to explore Nagalapuram hills and to have a good time in nature.
Located about 120 km from Chennai, Nagalapuram has become a favourite destination for adventure enthusiasts in Chennai. Nagalapuram is located in the state of Andhra Pradesh (Near to TamilNadu and Andhra border). Many trekkers and nature lovers hike this forest trail during weekends and holidays. The stream which flows along the trail and couple of natural pools are the main attractions in this trek.
Next, getting there;
Don’t get confused with the search results you find in google map, set your destination as “Nagalapuram west trekking entrance”.
A weekend is very much enough for a trek to Nagalapuram hills. The sad part is public transport is not available from Chennai. It will take around 3-4 hours by car to reach the starting point.
The last village on the way is Arai, going further you will reach a dam and a small parking ground nearby. If you are staying overnight in the hills, just inform the concerned person in the parking ground. They will allow parking your vehicle in their house. You will get the help of guide also if needed.
Start walking and find the trail
From the dam, walk towards the right from the direction you came. A spillway about 750 meters from the parking ground is where you have to find the trail. Don’t follow the road. When I came here the first time, I got lost in the hills taking the wrong path, hiked in the wrong direction and took some time to find the exact trail.
If somebody is around, it is better to confirm with them about the trekking trail. Or else climb up to the dam, look around, if you see grassy plains, walk towards it and there is your path.
Hiking further will take you to a track, follow this track till you enter into the forest.
Now you are good to go, walk straight towards the direction of the hills.
Into the wild
Upon walking through the forest, we can easily spot a stream on the left side. You see many trails going in different directions. I don’t insist to take any particular path, it is totally your choice to choose which path to trek. Every trail will lead you into the forest and you can explore on your way. There are not much danger inside but make sure that you can find the way back in case you are lost. But to take the most common route, which will definitely take you to the falls, always make sure the stream is nearby and on your left side.
The stream will get bigger and wider as you ascend and you will spot small pools also. About 30 minutes walk will take to a much big pool ( I think it is the first pool everyone talks about). This is a picnic spot and it will be busy with people most of the time.
Only few will further ascend the trail since the trek will get little treacherous afterwards. A little conscious while walking can save you from getting few scratches. Moving upwards will take you to some more waterfalls and finally to the campsite.
There are two common places to camp, either on the top of the hill or in the catchment area of the dam where you started the trek. More people camp nearby the dam. To camp in the forest, just find out any good places to pitch your tent on the way before dark.
For camping, bring enough lights. Collect as much wood you needed for the night to keep you warm and for cooking. Water is good in the streams and can be used for cooking. Make all the arrangements for the camping before it gets dark.
Few tips for the trek
If you are coming for a one day trek, come as early as possible, trek and stay in the forest till afternoon and walk back in the evening.
If camping is in your plan, find a camping spot before nightfall because it will be very difficult to walk over the rocks in dark.
Don’t expect to get camping tents and other essential things in the village, bring everything you need.
If staying nearby water, don’t forget to get into the water during the night. It will be fun but be safe.
I had a great time with my friends camping near the waterfall. That was a full moon day, there were thousands of fireflies around us and the silence of the forest was so enchanting. Those are the moments when we understand and feel more connected to the mother nature.
I want to say one important thing before concluding. As the number of people coming here is increased, littering is a big issue nowadays. You can see plastic covers, bottles and other wastes scattered inside the forest. The river is gradually getting polluted. If this situation continues, very soon we will lose this beautiful place also. We have to be more responsible towards our nature. So don’t leave anything in the forest, don’t allow anyone to do also.
Hope you will have a good time in Nagalapuram.
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Read more about the Triund trek which I did a few months back. This trek is one of the best treks in Himachal Pradesh.
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