Though there are many spots to visit in Dandeli, they aren’t far from one another. Two days is sufficient for a sweet vacation in Dandeli or at least to visit all the must-see places. Here’s how you can plan out your Dandeli itinerary.
Since I live 50 kilometers away from Dandeli, it isn’t troublesome to travel. However, I’ve seen that most tourists come from Bangalore and Goa. Considering that, it’s best to book your stay much earlier. Dandeli is a popular tourist spot – it’s difficult to get a room on spot.
By the way, if you’re coming from far away and carry valuable items, you should consider purchasing travel insurance. Travel insurance is generally necessary if you’re visiting a dangerous or theft-prone spot.
Dandeli doesn’t come in either of them, but you’ll be around the Kali river a lot and you’re sure to get soaked while rafting. Anyway, if you’re planning on purchasing it, check out HeyMondo travel insurance. Oh, and all my readers get a 5% discount on their purchase through my referral link.
1. Check-in Resort in Dandeli
Arrive early in the morning and check-in your resort, homestay, or wherever you’re residing at. It’s best to check-in before you visit any place. Leave your bags behind and carry a smaller pack.
Rafting or any of the other activities, be sure to carry a change of clothes while stepping out. Sunscreen lotion can also come handy – it’s optional.
Dandeli is a jungle-ish area alright. But a pair of sandals would do better than shoes. With water activities, you’ll be taking off your footwear often. And you’ll mostly be out here for water activities, so the sandals or flip-flops (even better) is suggestible.
Transport: Plan out your transport firsthand. See if your resort has transportation facilities. If you wish to use your own transport, a four-wheeler is recommended. It can get difficult if your bike breaks down, services might not be available for kilometers. The best option (and the one we chose) would be to hire a car with a driver.
Check out how our trip went on my other post: Dandeli Travel blog
The drivers in Dandeli know their roads well and have contact with others in the area in case of emergencies as well.
2. Start with Water Activities
After unpacking at your stay, go straight for water activities (this doesn’t include rafting). This can differ in situations. Sometimes, your resort can suggest you start with rafting right away. You can go with that and then come back to water activities later.
I’ll elaborate on why rafting timings change later. Anyway, here are the other water activities:
- Jacuzzi bath
- Coracle ride
- River crossing
All of these typically come together at the same place. It shouldn’t be a long drive from your resort. In fact, if you’re staying at some great riverside resorts like the Whistling Woods, they’re right by the river.
We paid for all the water activities beforehand, so we just had to wait for our turns. Speaking of waiting, whichever opportunity you get first in these activities, go for it!
We decided to go kayaking first and we had to wait for 20 minutes! Anyway, all these fun wet activities will end by half of the day. You’ll be exhausted (and contented) by then too :)
Check out my other Dandeli Itinerary post on Travelista Club!
3. Visit Dandeli Backwaters and Tribal Shop
We visited the backwaters on our way back to the resort from the river. Either way, it’s a lovely spot. When we visited it, we couldn’t drive through it. So we decided to walk through the path while the car drove around the backwater walls.
There isn’t much to see here, but with the huge stones on either side of the road, you can great pictures.
Towards the end of the backwaters road, you’ll find a Tribal shop with local products made in Dandeli. You can check that out for souvenirs as well. Later, we got back into the car which was already waiting for us.
4. Campfire and Dinner
Enquire about your bookings prior to your travel. We had our dinner and breakfast for the following morning included in our package. Additionally, we had hired the car only for one day (to take us to the river, backwaters, and back to the stay).
What they provide for dinner differs from one homestay to another. It isn’t much to worry about. By the time we settled down to eat, we were too hungry to mind the food. But we had an amazing time.
After that, we had a campfire. This is considered an activity when you visit most websites that offer their Dandeli adventure services – but it really isn’t. At least it wasn’t for us. The campfire was already set before we arrived and we sat all around it for an hour or so and talked of our day.
5. Gear up For Rafting
As mentioned earlier, you can go for rafting on the first day or the second, as per your convenience – and the dam water.
Rafting is possible when there is a strong current. Sometimes, it might not be available. Dandeli is known for rafting so don’t miss it out. Make sure to ask your booked resort/homestay if rafting is available about a week before your visit.
Furthermore, there are two options for rafting. One is short-range rafting and the other is long. The time you spend here differs. The short-range rafting (usually 1 kilometer) doesn’t last long while the long 9-kilometer range can fill in your whole day.
You’ll need another change of clothes here.
Book your stay today for the best prices on Booking.com! Here’s a map that can help you plan your budget better (The prices mentioned are for 2 adults):
6. Trekking and Cycling
These are optional. They aren’t the specialties to experience in Dandeli. And they aren’t something you can’t find elsewhere. Whether you go for it or not, it’s fine either way.
Your Dandeli trip is over, that would sum up your itinerary. So two days and one night’s stay is perfect for a vacation in Dandeli. You’ll miss out on either the water activities or the rafting for anything less. And anything more than two days can get dull.
But visiting Dandeli is fun even if it isn’t your first visit – especially with friends.
I visited Dandeli with a group of friends last year, 2019, after our 12th graduation. And now we’re on our different streams, all physically distant from one another. Dandeli is our number one go-to spot to catch up on old times.
That being said, it brings us to the end of this Dandeli itinerary.
Have a happy journey!
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