Whether you travel the Karnataka (Karavali) coast on the Konkan Railway or along the busy NH-17, southern India’s smoothest highway, the route between Goa and Mangaluru ranks among the most scenic anywhere in the country. Crossing countless palm- and mangrove-fringed estuaries, the railway line stays fairly flat, while the recently upgraded road, dubbed by the local tourist board as “The Sapphire Route”, scales several spurs of the Western Ghats, which here creep to within a stone’s throw of the sea, with spellbinding views over long, empty beaches and deep blue bays. Highlights are the pilgrim town of Udupi, site of a famous Krishna temple, and Gokarna, another important Hindu centre that provides access to exquisite unexploited beaches. A decent inland road winds through the mountains to Jog Falls, India’s biggest waterfall, which can also be approached from the east.

Book through Rough Guides’ trusted travel partners

India features

The latest articles, galleries, quizzes and videos.

Living the past: the ancient professions of Old Delhi

Living the past: the ancient professions of Old Delhi

Modernity is seeping into Old Delhi, a walled district that has long harboured the Indian capital’s traditional ways of life. But what does this mean for long…

11 Dec 2017 • Jack Palfrey local_activity Special feature
Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

Budget trips: 20 of the cheapest places to travel

That ever-growing travel wish list might be putting some pressure on your pocket – but there are plenty of destinations where you'll get more bang for your b…

11 Oct 2017 • Emma Gibbs camera_alt Gallery
19 places to get utterly lost

19 places to get utterly lost

One of the great joys of travelling is stumbling across unexpected places, wandering without a single destination in mind and embracing the journey. These place…

12 Sep 2017 • Keith Drew camera_alt Gallery
View more featureschevron_right