6 lessons I learnt from the Chikkamanglur trip

Tripoto
2nd Jun 2018

A weekend in the lap of the mountains, watching the clouds brush past, meandering through the coffee estate, a weekend in Chikkamanglur. Just like the usual weekend trips, this one too was special for many reasons. For it came with some special lessons. So, here’s what I learned.

Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

1. Traveling on budget has its own perks

With few more trips lined up for the coming months, this trip was meant to be done on a shoestring budget. We were strict on our budget from the very beginning. A stay of three days, travel, stay, food, and loads of fun; I and my bestie managed to do all this at Rs 5000 (per head).

• We traveled from Bangalore to Chikkamagalur and way back in KSRTC Volvos. The tickets were approximately priced at Rs 1000 (two-ways). We were glad to have chosen a morning bus on our way to Chikkamagalur. The road was beautiful and the terrain around was to die for.

Photo of 6 lessons I learnt from the Chikkamanglur trip by tanwistha gope
Photo of 6 lessons I learnt from the Chikkamanglur trip by tanwistha gope

• We stayed at the female dormitory of Zostel Chikkamagalur. A bed in the female dorm costed us Rs. 499 for one day. Not to forget the sack full of memories that the stay gave us!

Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Chikkamagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Chikkamagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

• For travel within Chikkamagalur (to the Hirekolale lake, Mullayangiri, Hebbe Falls, Bababudan Giri and all around Chikkamagalur in an auto) Vijay bhaiya, our auto driver was our friend, guide, entertainer, and our guardian angel. To take us to around these places, coupled with long rounds of laughter, stories, and a bunch of happiness, he charged us Rs 2000. For the jeep ride to Hebbe falls, me and my friend grouped with two more friends from Zostel. So, per head, it cost us Rs 150; a total of Rs 600 for an entire jeep. This is the usual rate, bargain well to get a good deal.

Photo of Hirekolale Road, Uppalli, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

• Food bill rounded up to an approx. of Rs 1200 per head. This included delicious snacks at Zostel, roadside tea and bhajji, maggi at the hills, and lunch at the Taj restaurant (we visited this place twice in three days; this would give you a hint on how yummy their food was)

The plate says how yummy and delicious the food at Taj Restaurant was......

Photo of 6 lessons I learnt from the Chikkamanglur trip by tanwistha gope

2. Zostel life is fun

Situated about 7 km from the Chikkamagalur bus stop, Zostel Chikkamagalur is situated at the most perfect location; surrounded by Nilgiris and amidst a beautiful coffee estate. On any given day, I will blindly choose this cozy, backpacking, budget-friendly stay over a luxury one. Why not? Where else can you see strangers becoming friends so soon?

Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

Meet the battalion at Zostel that keep the vibe going strong.

• These three happy faces in the selfies are the soul of Zostel. The pretty lady in front is Swathi. An amazing cook and always available for a chat. She makes the most amazing Maggi on earth. Do try it. She also makes super fluffy and soft neer dosa and chatni. She and her husband (right behind her in the pic) are amazing to watch.

Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

• This handsome guy in the middle, wearing the brightest green Tshirt, is Vinil. He is the host at Zostel and is always available for help. Doesn’t his smile say so?

Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

• This is Minty, the princess of Zostel Chikkamagalur. Adorable, lovable, playful, equivalent to every adjective on earth. A white bundle of joy; one big reason to head back to Zostel soon.

Photo of Zostel Chikmagalur, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

3. Don’t follow the crowd, trust your instinct

One of the finest thing that this trip taught me is to trust my instinct. On the first evening, we thought of going to the Hirekolale lake. All excited, we started gathering a gang. All of a sudden, one of them objected to doing so. The reason being that she didn’t find the place cool enough. All because of some pics that Google showed her. Glad that we ditched her and went ahead. What a fool would I have been, had I not visited it?

Photo of Hirekolale lake, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Hirekolale lake, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Hirekolale lake, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

The other such decision that my instinct help me take was to opt for Vijay bhaiya’s auto over a bolero. Continue reading to know more about that.

4. Strangers can be your disguised guardian angel

Thanks to Vijay bhaiya for making our ride through Chikkamagalur a fun-filled one.

Photo of 6 lessons I learnt from the Chikkamanglur trip by tanwistha gope

Ever smiling, funny, extremely, and our occasional photographer. He took us to the best tea-shops, best restaurant for lunch, and the best maggi halts. He shared his experiences, stories about the place, and most importantly, he made us two girls feel absolutely safe throughout the journey.

Photo of Chikkamagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Chikkamagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

5. Every trip has some adventure waiting for you

Visit to the Hebbe Falls was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. What you see in the pics is the walk to the fall, the misty surroundings, and the beautiful waterfall right ahead of it. The bit that makes it the most amazing experience of my life couldn’t be captured. For we were not in a position to do so!

Photo of Hebbe Falls, Kesavinamane, Chikkamagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Hebbe Falls, Kesavinamane, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Hebbe Falls, Kesavinamane, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Hebbe Falls, Kesavinamane, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

The stretch that leads you to the fall is extremely muddy with almost no proper road ahead. It’s like a piece of land carved out of the mountains to create a way to the waterfall. And you ought to travel that road sitting in jeeps. This ride is one heck of an experience. To us, it seemed like no road ahead, but the way the driver drove meant the other way. Scared, excited, yelling, and our butts busy exercising with every jump that the jeep took. It was scary, fun, and worth every bit.

Photo of Hebbe Falls, Kesavinamane, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

6. Every reason to fall in love with the Western Ghats

I am absolutely mesmerized from top-to-toe by the spell that the Western Ghats have cast over me. It started with the ranges in Munnar last year, kept growing with the ranges in Ooty, and now with the ranges in Chikkamagalur, am bowled out. The trek up Mullayanagiri was one of the best experiences of my life. It was tough, tiring, chilly, and the rain made it even more worthwhile.

Photo of Mullayanagiri Peak, Pandaravalli, Karnataka by tanwistha gope

With every frame, the Western Ghats takes you to a new level of love for the mountains. To be honest, I haven’t been to the foothills of the Himalayas nor would I boast of being a mountain lover. My tryst with the mountains in the north has only been in the beautiful city of Darjeeling. However, I am extremely glad to have started exploring the mountains with the Western Ghats.

Photo of 6 lessons I learnt from the Chikkamanglur trip by tanwistha gope
Photo of Chikmagalur, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Chikmagalur, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Chikmagalur, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Chikmagalur, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Chikmagalur, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope

Diverse, scenic, cloudy, misty, dreamy, and every frame to fall for. Ask me to choose my favorite bits from the huge basket it offers, and here I go,

• the whirlwind hairpin bends

• the acres of tea plantations, the best coffee estates, and spice gardens

• the chain of waterfalls during the monsoon

• the delicious fruits and veggies

• its birds and flowers

And the flock of clouds that keep pouring in from heaven above.

Photo of Mullayanagiri, Chickmagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
Photo of Chikkamagaluru, Karnataka, India by tanwistha gope
2 Comment(s)
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nice
Wed 10 17 18, 19:29 · Reply · Report
Looks pretty cool, what was your itinerary?
Thu 09 06 18, 22:04 · Reply · Report