Biligiriranga hills generally known as B R Hills, is a hill range situated at the south eastern part of Karnataka, on the border of Erode district of Tamilnadu. The whole forest range is called Biligiriranga wild life sanctuary or simply BRT wild life sanctuary. It is located in Kollegala and Yelandur Taluks of Chamarajnagar district, Karnataka and is in contiguous with Satyamangalam wild life sanctuary in Erode district, Tamilnadu.
The whole sanctuary is a protected reserve forest and in 2010, was declared as Tiger reserve. The sanctuary is around 322 sq. kms. BR hills is about 86 kms from Mysore and 225kms from Bangalore.
The sanctuary derives its name Biligiri (white hills) from the white rocks on which the popular Biligiri Ranaganatha swamy temple is situated. Also most parts of the year, the peaks of the hills are covered with mist. During the annual car festival, local tribes present a pair of huge slippers, once in two years measuring one foot and nine inches.
The temple has a stone idol of Ranganathaswamy and his spouse Ranganayaki. Small lodges are built near the temple. There is a PWD guest house and a forest department guest house, but not open to public.
To the east of the river Bhargavi, a tributary of river Cauvery, stands a gigantic Champaka tree, with a height of about 43 meters and a girth of 20 meters. It is the holiest of all trees for Soliga tribe, who worship it regularly. The tree is believed to be 600 years old and on its eastern side, there is a platform with 100 lingams. Soliga tribes perform fire dance there on the eve of Shivarathri festival.
BR hills forest harbours more than 800 species of plants. The forest forms an important wild life corridor, linking the Eastern and Western ghats. It has the largest population of Asiatic elephants. We also find a good population of Bison or Indian Gaur. Plenty of deer, Sambar deer, Barking deer, Sloth bear, Wild dogs and other mammals; Wild cats like Panthers and Tigers; Other animals like Snakes, Mangoose, Porcupine, giant Malabar Squirrels can also be spotted. About 250 species of birds can be found in the jungle. Most of them can be viewed on Jungle safari and also on the roadside.
Kyathedevarayagudi (K gudi)
K Gudi lies between Chamarajnagar and BR hills. A forest department guest house and Jungle lodges and resorts of Tourism department are located there. Jungle lodges have tented accommodation and log houses for tourists. They serve good food and also provide two safaris into the jungle both in the morning and evening. They have a package consisting of a lunch, evening safari, dinner, stay at tented cottage/log house, morning safari, breakfast and checkout. They can be booked on the web:www.junglelodgesandresorts.com