Gadaikallu aka Jamalabad Fort Trek

I had trekked Gadaikallu back in 2010. But, I had completely forgotten about the experience. So, I planned a second trek there along with my friends Naresh and Deekshit. On thursday, the 9th of December, I picked up Deekshit from Surathkal bus station and drove to Naresh’s house. His mother had invited us over for lunch. We had a heavy and delicious meal at their place. While Naresh finished his meeting, we had a good chat with his parents. 

At around 2PM, we left to Belthangady. Gadaikallu or Jamalabad fort (1700 ft) is located 70km from Mangalore, near the town of Belthangady. Do not type Gadaikallu on google maps. Instead type - Jamalabad fort entrance and you will reach the right location. 

At the base, we were greeted by two friendly forest guards who took our details and collected a fee of Rs 50 per person. Normally, the location is open from 6AM to 5PM. They requested us to be back by 5PM. However, they also told us that in case we did not find them there, we could just leave. 

The climb is extremely difficult. The first stretch is steep. After a steep climb up the hill, we reach a forest area. The walk in the forest is fairly simple. But after that, you reach the main rock with steps cut on it. This is yet another steep and difficult climb. You might take anywhere from 1 to 1.5 hours to climb the fort. 

Jamalabad fort was built by Tipu Sultan in 1794. It was named after his mother, Jamalabee. During the 4th Mysore war in 1799,  it was captured by the British.

At the summit, make your way to the Tipu drop point. From here, you will get excellent view of the Kudmreukh mountain range. 

It was just the three of us there for a long time until a group of police inspectors came. As the sun set, we made our way back to the car. It took us just 30 mins to get down but our legs were shivering with pain. Gadaikallu is a moderate to difficult climb and the Mangalore humid weather makes it even more difficult. Expect some cramps in the legs when you are back. 

Here is the video on this trekking experience - 


  1. Great location. I haven't able to make trekking a priority in my to-do list ... Mainly because of other commitments that have taken priority. ... May be some day!

    1. You should trek. It takes you to places that otherwise you cannot visit.


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