Day 5 - Nov 10th
After some good days spent in Bodh Gaya, Varanasi and Allahabad, today was the start of the return journey. We did not have any fixed destination in mind as we wanted to cover a fair distance onwards to Kolkata and check on where to stay for the night by evening depending on where we reach by that time.
Morning started with me set to have a last glimpse of the sunrise. But by the time I got up the Sun had already risen pretty high.
Had a quick bite in the morning and packed some breakfast and were ready to say Good Bye to Varanasi.
A family picture just before departure.
Started pretty late. It was 8.30 am when the Xylo finally started to negotiate the morning traffic of Varanasi back on its way to the highway. Hit the highway by 9 am and then on it was pedal to metal stuff once again.
Crossed the Mughalsarai exit and reached Mohania by 10 am in 1 hour flat. The breakfast packed was not too much to our liking and hence wanted to take a break for a brunch. We found this impressive looking joint just 7 km ahead of Mohania right on the highway.
Facilities were good, but food was ordinary and most importantly took a lot of time to serve us.
It took us a full hour to get over with the food a full half an hour more than what we wanted. My son wanted to drive after this to make up for the lost time, but a lot of persuation later and much to his displeasure had to make him sit in the rear seat.
From there on reached Sasaram by 11am, Dehri on Sone by 12 noon, Sher Ghati at 1pm and Dobhi by 1.10pm. A couple of Toll plazas came on the way.
Took a tolilet break here at Dobhi and took the opportunity to fill up the Xylo for the last time of the trip. From here on to Kolkata it will be no more fill ups.
By 3 pm we were back by the side of Parashnath Hills and very soon crossed Topchanchi. The scenery around here is overwhelming but sadly staying options are limited and NOT advisable due to law and order reasons.
On the highway near Topchanchi there were quite a few shops which were selling swords, daggers and sticks openly. I had heard about this and seen some pictures of this earlier but myself did not stop to wield my camera over them.
Reached Gobindaghat (entry point of Dhanbad) by 4 pm and stopped for tea in the same Khalsa Hotel It was early winter and the Sun was fast going down. Did not want to enter Dhanbad to check on stay options so went ahead keeping Asansol or preferably Durgapur in mind.
Reached Durgapur at 6pm and I wanted to have a free run back to Kolkata which on perfect driving conditions is two and half hours. But others were not to keen and I also thought of a possible hold up in Panagarh and more importantly at the Kolkata entry point in Dankuni during evening hours post 8pm which becomes a pain after a long and smooth drive.
So took up a hotel in Durgapur for the night.