Until 1956, Kollegala was part of the Coimbatore district of the Madras Presidency. The States Reorganisation Act of 1956 moved Kollegala to Karnataka primarily organising it along linguistic lines. Kollegala is the name derived from the names of two hermits namely 'Kauhala' and 'Galava' who were believed to be instrumental in the development of Kollegala. Kollegala, also called "Silk City", is famous for its hand loom silk saree industry. Kollegala is one of the larger taluks in Karnataka and was previously the largest. Plans are underway to divide Kollegala, making Hanur the capital of the new taluk in the Chamrajanagar District. This separation has been ongoing for years is not yet entirely in effect.
Kollegala serves as a center for pre-university education in the region. Well known schools in Kollegala include Lions High School, Sree Vasavi Vidya Kendra, St. Francis Assisi High School, Nisarga Independent PU college, Seventh Day Adventist High School, and Mudigundam Gurukaar Subappa Veerappa (MGSV), and Mahadeshwara Degree College.
Kollegala was one of the areas which played host to the activities of Veerappan(jan 18,1952-oct 18,2004), a notorious bandit who smuggled sandalwood and poached elephants for their tusks.
Many tourists visit the Kollegala area.The Malai Mahadeshwara Hills, and the waterfalls at Hogenakal near Male Mahadeshwara hills and the waterfalls of Gagana Chukki and Bhara Chukki at Shivana Samudra (also known as Bluff) are popular destinations. In Kollegala there is a small hill called "Maradi Gudda" which is located in the heart of the city. Gundal dam is just 15 km (9.3 mi) away from Kollegala. It also Includes BRT Tiger Reserve (2011) Which Approximately 25–30 km From The Town, Which Is A Home To Many Of The Fauna And Flora Including Mammals Like Tigers, Leopards, Indian elephant, Indian Guar, sloth bear etc.
Kollegala is connected by two national highways:NH 209 this starts from Bengaluru-Dindukal via Coimbatore, Kollegala
NH 212 this starts from Kollegala to Calicut, via T.Narasipura, Mysuru
The nearest railway stations are Chamarjanagar 30 km (19 mi) and Mysuru (MYS) 60 km (37 mi). The nearest airport is Kempegowda International Airport (BLR), 150 km (93 mi) and Coimbatore International Airport (CJB), 170 km (110 mi) away. Kollegala is the main junction where you can enter Salem, Coimbatore, Ooty, Kozhikode from Mysuru & Bengaluru. The Biligiri Rangana Betta (known as BR hills) is just 30 km (19 mi) away from the town. The K.Gudi (Kyathadevara Gudi) Wilderness camp run by the jungle lodges and resorts (a government of Karnataka undertaking) is near the B.R hills.
There are two bus routes from Bengaluru to Kollegala:Bengaluru->Maddur->Malvalli->Kollegala (Via NH 275) Bengaluru Mysuru highway, take left diversion at Maduur after 80 km from Bengaluru
Bengaluru->Kanakapura->Malvalli->Kollegala (Via NH 209)
Karnataka government buses from Bengaluru ply from MCTC which is popularly known as Satellite bus terminal in Mysuru Road. Since the town was in Coimbatore district in the past, buses run between Coimbatore and Kollegal.
Kollegala is located at 12.15°N 77.12°E / 12.15; 77.12. It has an average elevation of 588 m (1,929 ft). Since the town is on the foothills of the Western Ghats, it is home to a mixed topography. Temperature is moderate.
As of 2011 India census Kollegala had a population of 57,149. Males constitute 51% of the population and females 49%. Kollegala has an average literacy rate of 69%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 74%, and female literacy is 64%. In Kollegala, 10% of the population is under 6 years of age.
People in Kollegala speak a variation of Kannada distinct from that spoken in Mysuru and Bengaluru. Tamil also some of the common launguage spoken by the locals. This dialect of Kannada at times suffixes da when spoken among friends. Kannada as spoken in Kollegala was used in the 2005 film Jogi starring Shivarajkumar.
Lions School and PU college, SDA, Assisi, RC mission and Sree Vasavi Vidya Kendra, Mahadeshwara first grade college, Jss Women's College And College For Nursing are the oldest private institutions in Kollegala offering best education at pre-university level.