On the onset of my short travelogue, I had mentioned that it was a weeklong tour. But actually I left my home at 11-40 PM on 19th December and had returned back on 26th, hence I guess that it barely qualifies me to write that.
Some two weeks ago my daughter informed me that her school (she studies in class-XI) should close for winter vacations on 19th December. I was thinking of going to some place where I have never been before. But I have visited almost all of the popular tourist places in West Bengal, Bihar and Orissa. Could not think of any new place to visit. Hence I thought of going to Andhra Pradesh, Vizag in particular. My friends who have been to this place supported my idea, telling me that winter is the place to travel there.
A quick search in the net allowed me to book a guest house in Vizag. Booked it for three days from 21st onward. So packed up and hit my garage at 11-30 Hrs of 19th December. My over ten year old Tata Indigo car (Petrol, run over 150000+KM) was faithfully waiting for me for another long trip.
Left home at 11-40 at the evening. The initial progress was slow, as the Kona expressway leading to NH-6 was chocked with heavy truck traffic. Reached the almost deserted Kolaghat Bridge at around two in the morning.
The road between Kharagpur and Balasore was bad. It is lying in this condition for over two or three years now, with one side permanently blocked for repair. Potholes and frequent diversions made driving difficult and had to proceed cautiously. I neared Cuttack by eight in the morning.
The bridge over river Mahanadi was almost empty at that time.
As usual, I found that the roads of Bhuwaneswar were busy. Not many cars at that time, it was mostly full of unruly bikers.
After crossing the city searched and found a small hotel for a breakfast. They made good samosas and idlis.
The road opened up after Bhuwaneswar and I could speed up. Good roads and minimal traffic.
A view of Chilka Lake from the main highway. Sorry that only a part of the lake is visible.
Soon I entered Ganjam district of Orissa. I had no prior reservation anywhere but called up the manager of “Hotel Sea Side Breeze” at Gopalpur-on-sea. He informed me that a room was indeed available for a day. Though it was on the terrace, he assured me that it would have excellent view of the sea. I was only charged Rs 800/- for a room. Please allow me to share with you a picture of mine standing there, with the room being barely visible at the left. Please also excuse me for not being properly dressed up for the photo shoot.
I had previously read in other travel related forums that “Hotel Sea Side Breeze” was very much centrally located at Gopalpur. Located right on the main road, it faces the sea on one side and the taxi/bus stand on the other. A view of the beach, with vendors selling some food items.
The main road at the night.
The car/taxi stand of Gopalpur is visible at right hand side of the picture.
Finished up our dinner and went to bed. It was the end of day number one and two.
Thanks for reading. I shall continue with the next part of my travel story soon. Please feel free to comment, if you have any.