Cauvery River

Kaveri or Cauvery flows in Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. The river covers a distance of about 765 km and flows through the state of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu. On its journey to the Bay of Bengal, the river is joined by its tributaries, which include Shimsa, Hemavathi, Honnuhole, Arkavathi, Kapila, Lakshmana Theertha, Kabini, Lokapavani, Bhavani, Noyil and Amaravathy.

Talacauvery (also Talakaveri) located about 5000 ft above sea level is considered the source of the Cauvery.

Talacauvery is located in Coorg district of Karnataka and is 47 km from Maidekri.

Talacauvery is considered a famous pilgrimage site in Karnataka.  At the source of the Cauvery there is a temple where every year on Tula sankramana thousands of pilgrims gather to pay their respects to the Cauvery.

The river then flows through Mysore district where two islands Srirangapatnam and Shivanasamudram are formed.  At Sivasamudram the river drops 98 meters forming famous falls known as Gagan Chukki and Bara Chukki. After meandering through Karnataka, the river then enters Tamil Nadu and forms the boundary between the Erode and Salem districts. The Cauvery is joined by the Bhavani River at Bhavani. Hogenakkal is a major landmark on the course of the Cauvery in Tamil Nadu. Trichy and Thanjavur are other important towns on the banks of the Cauvery.

The river after covering a distance of 765 km merges into the Bay of Bengal through two principal mouths. One of the important distributory is Kollidam , which is is the northern distributary of the Kaveri River as it flows through the delta of Thanjavur. It splits from the main branch of the Kaveri River at the island of Srirangam and flows eastward into the Bay of Bengal.


Amaravati, Arkavathy, Bhavani, Chinnar, Hemavati, Honnuhole, Kabini, Kannika, Kollidam, Lakshmana Tirtha, Lokapavani, Noyyal, Pambar, Shimsha, Sujyothi

Riparian States and UTs

Karnataka, Kerala, Pondicherry, Tamil Nadu

Cauvery River Basin

The Kaveri basin is estimated to  72,000 km2 with many tributaries including the Shimsha, the Hemavati, the Arkavati, Honnuhole, Lakshmana Tirtha, Kabini, Bhavani River, the Lokapavani, the Noyyal and the Amaravati River.

Tributaries of Cauvery

Amaravathi River: Amaravati River is a tributary of Kaveri River in Coimbatore. It is continuation of the Pambar and Chinnar rivers in Kerala. It begins at Manjampatti Valley between the Annamalai Hills and the Palni Hills in Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary and National Park. It descends in a northerly direction through Amaravathi Reservoir and Amaravathi Dam at Amaravathinagar. It is joined by the Kallapuram River at the mouth of the Ajanda valley in Udumalaipettai. It joins with the Kaveri at Thirumukkudal, about 10km from Karur.

Arkavati River: It originates in Nandi Hills of Karnataka and joins Cauvery at Kanakapura, called Sangama in Kannada, after flowing through Kolar District and Bangalore Rural district. The river is used by the Bangalore Water Supply and Sewerage Board to provide 135 million liters of drinking water per day to the city of Bangalore, or about 20% of all the city’s water. The river drains into the Chikkarayappanahalli Lake near Kanivenarayanapura.

Tributaries of Akravati

Kumudavathi and Vrishabhavathi rivers are tributaries to this river.

  • Bhavni River: Its is a major tributary of Cauvery River. It originates in Nilgiri Hills, where 12 major rivulets join Bhavani. The west and East Varagar tributaries coming from the Nilgiris are the largest and each have dams in Tamil Nadu. The Bhavani is a 217 km. long perennial river fed mostly by the southwest monsoon and supplemented by the northeast monsoon. Its watershed drains an area of 6,200 km² spread over Tamil Nadu (87%), Kerala (9%) and Karnataka (4%).
  • Hemavati River: It starts in the Western Ghats at an elevation of about 1,219 meters near Ballala rayana durga in the Chikmagalur District of the state of Karnataka, in southern India, and flows through Chikkamagaluru, Hassan District and Mysore district before joining the Kaveri near Krishnarajasagara.

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