Historically, Chamarajanagar was called Arikottara earlier. It was renamed after Chamaraja Wodeyar. He was the king of Wodeyar, who was born here.
K. T. Achaya, an eminent oil chemist, food scientist, nutritionist and food historian was born on 6th October, 1923. He has written the famous books such as 'Indian Food: A Historical Companion,, 'The Food Industries of British India, and 'A Historical Dictionary of Indian Food'. Karma Tsewang, a distinguished Indian footballer and currently playing for Salgaocar as a midfielder was born 1st October, 1988. S. Mahendar, an illustrious Kannada film director who directed more than 30 films was born in this place. Later, he joined the Bharatiya Janata Party and became a politician.
Geographically, the district has total 5,648 sq. km. area and occupies the ranks 15th in State and 187th in India on the bases of this size. It lies at 11°92' N latitude, 76°95' E longitude and 662 m altitude. In the year 2019, it had total 48.23% forest area of total geographical area. It is bounded by Mysooru district of Karnataka on the West and North, Mandya and Ramanagara districts of Karnataka on the North-East, Dharmapuri district of Tamil Nadu on the East, Salem and Erode districts of Tamil Nadu on the South-East, Nilgiris district of Tamil Nadu on the South and Wayanad district of Kerala on the South-West. National highway 7 passes through the district. Natives of the district experiences a very pleasant climate throughout the year. The actual rainfall in the district was 692.7 mm in the year of 2018-19.
Administrative wise, the district is divided into 4 sub-districts, 5 towns and 428 villages. Kannada is its official language. The district of Chamarajanagar came into existence on 15th August, 1997 in the state of Karnataka. Its district Headquarters is at Chamrajnagar which is located at a distance of 179 km. from the State Capital.
Demographically, according to 2011 census, the district has a total number of 2,44,198 households with a total population of 10,20,791 including 5,12,231 are males and 5,08,560 are females. The density of population of the district is 181 persons per sq km. The sex ratio is pegged at 993 (females per 1000 males) while the child ratio stands at 953 (females per 1000 males). As per 2011 census the percentage of major religions practiced by the people of this region is Hindu at 92.29%. The population growth rate during the period 2001 to 2011 was 5.73% out of which 4.55% were males and 6.95% were females. According to 2011 census, the principal language in the district was Kannada with 86.11%. In the year 2017 the number of live births in the district was 10,287 out of which 5,316 were males and 4,971 were females. In the same year the number of deaths in the district was 9,446 out of which 5,466 were males and 3,980 were females.
Economically, the district is dependent on agriculture primarily. It also has various small scale industries. The Gross District Domestic Product during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 13,33,609 lakh at current price and Rs. 10,32,832 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Net District Domestic Product during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 12,29,222 lakh at current price and Rs. 9,44,834 lakh at constant prices in the year 2011-2012. The Per Capita Income or NDDP, at factor cost during the period 2016-17 was Rs. 1,13,359 at current price and Rs. 87,133 at constant prices in the year 2011-2012.
Education wise, according to 2011 year, the literacy rate is 61.43% out of which 67.93% are males and 54.92% are females. The total number of literates in the district is 5,65,279 including 3,12,957 are males and 2,52,322 are females. The district has a number of primary, secondary and higher secondary schools and graduate colleges.
A number of political personalities belong to the district. Rangaswamy Dhruvanarayana (R. Dhruvanarayana) is a member of Indian National Congress. He represents Chamarajanagar constituency in 15th and 16th Lok Sabha of India. Halahalli Shreekantha Shetti Mahadeva Prasad is serving as Minister for Co-operation and Sugar in Government of Karnataka. He is representing Gundlupet assembly constituency in Karnataka Legislative Assembly. Basavayya Rachaiah was a member of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly, a member of the Rajya Sabha from Karnataka, a member of the Lok Sabha from Chamarajanagar Karnataka (1977). He also served as the Governor of Kerala and Himachal Pradesh.
The district has a number of famous historical and religious places to visit. These places are Survarnavathi Reservoir, Kanakagiri Hill, B.R. Hills, Peer Hazarath Sayyaduna Hazarath Murdana Gayib Dargah and Bara Chukki, Chamarajeshwara temple, Sri Vijaya Parsvanatha Jain Basadi, Janana Mantapa of Sri Chamaraja Wodeyar, BR Hills Biligiri Rangana Betta, Haralukote Anjaneya & Janardhanaswamy Temple, Bannari Amman Temple, K.Gudi Jungle Lodge, MM Hills Male Mahadeshwara Betta, Bandipura Wild life Sanctuary, Talkad Pilgrimage Centre, Kelasuru Jain temple, Sri Adinatha Swamy Digambar Jain temple, Somanathpur, Shivanasamudra Shivanasamudra Falls, Karivaradarayana Hills, Sri Chandra Nathaswamy Hill, Jain Hill Jaingall Betta, Chikkahole Reservoir, Suvarnavathi Reservoir, Sri Kshetra Kanakagiri, Jain Pilgrim Centre, Sri Vardhamana Swamy Jain Temple, Himavad Gopala swamy Betta, Sri Hulugana Maradi Venkataramana swamy Betta, Sri Swarnagowri Devalaya, Sri Kaavi Basaveswara Temple, Sri Bolagudda Mahadeshwara Temple, The Bhavani Sagar Dam, Mayamma Temple Mukkadahalli. During 2016, there were 3,128 foreign tourists and 1,13,71,081 domestic tourists who visited the above places.