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Markonahalli Dam – Unseen, Unknown & Unheard.
Each one of us needs a way to feel peaceful and tranquil at times. For me it’s traveling to ideal locations for relaxation in the midst of a peaceful environment. Traveling is a wonderful experience & I love to travel a lot. I always wanted to explore new places which are Unseen, Unheard & Unknown. Recently I visited an unseen neglected dam called Markonahalli Dam. I am sure many people are not aware of this dam.
About Markonahalli Dam.
Markonahalli Dam is relatively an unknown dam near Yadiyur, situated around hundred kilometers from Bangalore. This dam is built across the river Shimsha and Hemavati in Kunigal Taluk of Tumkur district. It was built by Krishnaraja Wodeyar IV, the king of Mysore under the guidance of his Diwan, Sir M Visweswaraiah & Ganesh Iyer in 1930s.
The specialty of this dam is it has an automatic siphon system that enables water to be flushed out of the reservoir automatically when it touched the optimum level. It doesn’t require any person to open or close the gates. Very first to be of that kind in Asia & all credit goes to Bharata Ratna Sir M. Visvesvaraya, one of the most influential makers of modern India. The great man with a rare combination of intellect, integrity, discipline & vision.
This beautiful dam not only serves the basic purpose but also has some interesting picnic spots. On the other side of the dam there’s a beautiful park with lot of greenery & nice play area for kids. Don't expect to too much wildlife around this dam. We did spot many beautiful birds & rabbits. Peace of mind and tranquility is what one will feel when you visit this place.
There are so many beautiful & historical places as well as visiting spots near Markonahalli dam, but due to governments poor tourism planning & policies no such developments are seen. The Karnataka tourism department is neglecting these beautiful places.
Just few months back the dam was under threat with a private company from Hyderabad wanted to start mining in a vicinity of just one km. Unfortunately the local politicians & concerned authorities gave permission to the company for contract of mining and related activities, including quarrying, blasting and stone crushing on 10 acres of government land nearby. Thanks to the local peoples protest & media, the concerned authorities stopped mining activities.
Karnataka tourism department’s recurrent theme is ‘One state, many worlds’ just the catchy slogans don’t work, strong policies should be implemented immediately for the welfare of the state.
Interesting Places to see near The Markonahalli Dam.
Historical temple of Sri Siddalingeshwara in Yediyur
Very old temple dedicated to Someshwara and Parvathi at Kunigal.
Kunigal Lake (Very famous through folk songs)
Deepambhudi lake – Around 26 KMs from Kunigal
Huliyurdurga - Nice picnic spot & small trek point, around 22 KMs from Kunigal
Kunigal stud farm (Horse breeding farm)
Where to Eat : There are limited eating options near the dam. There are some small restaurants that serve tea, coffee and snacks. Better to pack food from home.
Where to Stay : There are no good hotels available near the dam. There’s a government inspection bungalow which is not maintained properly, Kunigal or Yediyur is the other option to stay.
Best Time to visit : This place can be visited any time of the year, but better to visit during or after monsoon, because the dam will be full.
To get There : Bangalore-Pune highway till Nelamangala, at Nelamangala Circle, left to Kunigal Road, which is also called Bangalore-Mangalore highway.
Markonihalli Dam is beautiful weekend picnic spot near Kunigal. Away from the busy city life when you want to spend some moments of solitude, places like Markonahalli Dam become the perfect destinations. The beauty of the clean water and the greenery around will leave you spell bound.
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