Thank you GOD.
In my college days, I used to organize and do Road (bike) trips with my close friends when every semester ends. It was a wonderful experience until a new guy exceeded the speed limit and crashed.
I was missing a good Road Trip from then. After I owned a car, I want to do a Road Trip.
This New Year I wished for a Road Trip, so just planned and raised few queries and clarifications on routes in the Travel Itinerary section. I got many suggestions; this helped me make a perfect plan. Thanks AR Ram, appus, Bopanna, Generalmax, Highway Ranger, smooth rider, and others.
To know about me and my car, please check my Ownership Thread
. Day 1 (January 11)
Early morning, according to me, 6.00am, we started from my residence at Koyambedu to Mysore. Roads were filled with lots of patches till the second toll. We cruised at 80–90km. By 8:30am we had some breakfast, and then no more break, so we reached Krishnagiri by 11:30am. Then took right to Hosur road toward Bangalore. There were too many diversions and the roads were too busy with very slow-moving traffic. Many people advised to be careful in taking the NICE road or else we would enter the Electronic City. Toll Road to Bangalore
After lots of confusion, we found and took the NICE road by 12:30pm. This road is one of the best roads to cruise. I planned to take NH 209 to Mysore but the GPS guided me to the Bangalore-Mysore Highway (Mysore Road). This is a 4-lane road with few patches but with lots of speed breakers and also crosses many small towns. The best part is that the local people never bothered about the vehicles and horns. NICE Ring Road
Reached Mysore by 2:30pm. Checked-in at the booked hotel and had our lunch and started to Mysore Palace. Admired the way the Royals lived!!! Mysore Palace
Went for a walk, did some local shopping, had dinner, and dozed off. BTW
, I stayed in a hotel named “Kings Kastle” in Mysore (very near to the Mysore Palace); I have booked it thru Cleartrip.com. One little secret is Cleratrip.com is way cheaper than direct booking. I purposefully mention the hotel’s name in this travelogue for the food they served. Food is so delicious but the quantity was very less. Day 2 (January 12)
We have started from the Hotel by 8:00am and went to Chamundi Hills, 13km from Mysore; this is a small hill with Chamundeshwari temple on top. The drive was such a fun with twists and turns, it’s my first hill drive. It’s a comfortable 2-lane road. Chamundi Hills Aerial View of Mysore
Had darshan of Mother and started toward Kuruva Island, Wayanad; the GPS showed a different path to get down from the hill; the road was a bit narrower than the one I climbed. Bit confused to follow the GPS since the road was aloof too. A Cab (Tata Indica) was climbing up very fast. I pulled my car to the left and gave him ample space, but in no time his OVRM hit mine and there was a clashing sound. I felt like something crashed and scattered in the road. My OVRM was forced closed and I was bit upset that my Right OVRM is gone. I opened it and saw the mirror position was disturbed. Thank GOD that I could able to adjust the mirror to my convenience and there were no damage at my end; only a little scratch.
I refilled my fuel tank and started toward the Kuruva Island.
A small drama took place at the Petrol Bunk: There was only 2 points left in my fuel indicator, meaning approximately 6 L of petrol was left behind. I told the Petrol Bunk guy to fill my tank, but he filled for only Rs. 300 and informed that he misheard me. He was questioning me about which card (credit or debit) would I be using. Meanwhile, in a fraction of a second, I missed to notice whether he zeroed the meter after Rs. 300. When I questioned him, he said “yes,” but I was not convinced as the meter reading was passing Rs. 360 at that moment. He filled 28.2 L to the brim and asked me to pay for 28.2 L + Rs. 300. I felt this is a day-time robbery but it’s my fault as I didn’t ensure that the meter reading was 0 before he re-started filling. Just to check my luck, I raised my doubt of zeroing the meter and he promised that he did it. I said 28.2 + 4 L is not possible in my tank, as the capacity of my car tank is only 35 L and it already had 6+ L in the tank. He just went to the station and acted as if he is checking some meter and billed only for 28.2 L. Thanks GOD!!
Sigh! We started again. We took SH 33; this route led to a reserve forest (Nagarhole Reserve Forest). There, I signed at the check post and then resumed my journey. The road was a single lane with lots of speed breakers. Lots of sign boards were put up to drive slowly to ensure safety of wildlife, but unfortunately I saw wild animals only in the sign boards. After a few kilometers, there was literally no road for a stretch of 6 to 8 km. Reached Kuruva Island, took a bamboo ferry ride to the Island, walked till a stream (nearly 1.5km to and fro), took some snaps, and returned back. In January, the Island is a bit dry, dusty, and sunny. Nagarhole Reserve Forest Kuruva Island Timing: 9:30 AM to 4:15 PM daily
From Kuruva Island, we started our journey to the Resort; this is where the GPS played a vital role in testing my skill. GPS showed a shorter route bypassing the State Highways. Without knowing the risk, I entered the road and the road was more than an off-roader’s dream. It was not even a road but a very narrow single lane full of stones and red sand; the road has bulges in middle and path-holes in sides with deep inclines and declines. Somehow I managed the initial 5km; then the real test came. It was a real narrow lane with high steep and sharp right turn. I have no idea whether a Sedan of this sort can climb the steep path-hole lane with sharp turn at end. All of a sudden I lost my confidence and strongly believed that am going to TOPPLE the car. There is no way of quitting in middle as there are no people around to help. I have no choice other than to pray to GOD and proceed further; I left to HIS wish. Only by GOD’s grace, I climbed the steep and was on top of it. At a distance, I saw a Jeep with a driver. I asked him how far the main road is and he said couple of Kilometers only and also confirmed that the road is good after few hundreds of a meter. As said, I saw a single-lane Tar road full of path holes. (Understood that this is the good road he was talking about.)
Reached Main road and called the resort guys. Found that we need to park the car at a nearby church and they will be picking us in a Jeep to the resort. It’s a 3km stretch with 8ft width path inside coffee plantations. This path should be an off-roader’s dream. But I felt this is a lot more safe than the ones I traveled. Church where we parked The steepy path to Resort Coffea Aroma Resort Day 3 (January 13)
We started to Eddakal Caves; it’s a 28+ km travel from the resort. To our disappointment, this spot is closed on all Mondays. The resort guys who gave us direction had no idea about it. Went to Sunrise Valley, which was also closed on all Mondays. Drove back to Soochippara Waterfalls. The roads were not in good condition: full of path holes with deep steeps. Eddakal Caves Timing: 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM daily (closed on Mondays and Public Holidays)
. Only people who are interested in trekking can enjoy it. Soochippara Waterfalls Timing: 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM daily
. Need to walk 1-km declined slope and reach the waterfalls. Getting near waterfalls is really cumbersome; one needs to get trained in circus. Wayanad Day 4 (January 14)
Started early, had our breakfast, and begun our journey back to Chennai by 9:00am. Took the route through Sultan bathery (route NH212 --- NH 209 --- NICE Ring Road --- AH45). We crossed one more reserve forest (Bandipur Tiger Reserve Forest) in this route. My wife spotted some deers by the roadside. There were many speed breakers installed closely, which literally slows you down. Till the NICE Ring Road, it’s a 2-lane road crossing many villages and having lots of path holes. In few places, the road narrowed to some 20+ ft, where two buses need to pass through. The Delicious Kerala Breakfast Bandipur Tiger Reserve Forest Spotted some Deers The Narrow Single Lane
My first stop was at McDonalds in Hosur road around 3:45pm. Filled my tank and continued my journey to my home. Reached by 9:00pm. This is my first 12-hr continuous ride. BTW
, initially, I was not confident whether I can manage to reach Wayanad from Chennai without a break. So I have planned my trip with a halt at Mysore. While returning, I was a bit confident, so I cancelled Mysore halt and drove back straight from Wayanad to Chennai.