is a hill 33 km west of Bangalore
) off the Magadi road , in India
. The hill is famous for a temple and is also believed to be among the largest monolith
hills in the world. The hill rises to 1226 m above mean sea level and forms a part of the Deccan plateau. It consists of peninsular gneiss, granites, basic dykes and laterites. The Arkavathi river passes nearby through the Thippagondanahalli reservoir and on towards Manchanabele dam.
Origin of name
Savandurga is formed by two hills known locally as Karigudda (black hill) and Biligudda (white hill). The earliest record of the name of the hill is from 1340 AD by Hoysala Ballala III from Madabalu where it is called Savandi. Another view is that the name is originated from Samantadurga attributed to a Samantharaya, a governor under Ahchutaraya at Magadi, although there is no inscription confirming this. This was the secondary capital of the Magadi rulers such as Kempegowda. from 1638 to 1728, Mysore took over this place and Dalavayi Devaraja occupied this place with the palace at Nelapattana. In 1792 Lord Cornwallis captured it from Tippu Sultan and this was described by Colonel Wilks. Robert Home in his Select views in Mysore (1794) shows distant views of the hill from Bangalore. He called it Savinadurga or the fort of death. There were no steps to reach the hill top and it was covered by Bamboos and other trees forming a barricade.
The Savandurga hills are frequented by pilgrims who come to visit the Savandi Veerabhadreshwara Swamy and Narasimha Swamy temple sited at the foothills. Picnickers come to spend time among the serene environs of the hill. Rock climbers, cave explorers and adventurers are among others who frequent the locale.
Along with Ramanagaram, this was also a location for the making of David Lean's movie A Passage to India.
The hills are home to the endangered Yellow-throated Bulbuls and were once home to Long-billed Vultures and White-backed Vultures. Other wildlife include Sloth bear and leopard.
Surrounding the area is a state forest with scrub and dry deciduous forest covering 27 sq. km. The degraded forest, which is considered as shrub and tree savanna of the Anogeissus–Chloroxylon–Acacia series is highly diverse, recording over 59 tree and 119 shrub species.
Some of the plant species recorded here include: