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100 Kms from Sankarankovil
The morning sun brought a completely new sight, however. Our room had big windows and a balcony. The moment I opened my eyes, I could see the entire earth covered with tall coconut trees. I had only ever pictured a few coconut trees at the beaches, like in the paintings. This was so much different than what I had witnessed in Mumbai as well. It took me a minute to realize that the blue beyond green, was not just sky, but it was the ocean which was not visible in the dark sky last night.
During my flight, I read in the magazine that Kerala is basically a honeymoon destination, however, before I build an opinion, it was proven wrong as Kerala isn't for the newly wedded couples only. Kerala has been the most sought-after destination for the families, the backpackers, solo travelers as well as couples. My craving to crush the land of Kerala was surmounting as soon as I reached the Trivandrum International Airport.The Thiruvananthapuram airport reflects the mood and the nature of the city. Despite managing heavy traffic from the middle-east countries, the airport is compact and yet functional. From the window of my cab, even the city looked the same; knit and well-organized. However, the traffic situation is no different than any other part of India.Usually, Trivandrum is used as a launchpad by the most of travelers towards Kovalam and other cities for their pristine beaches, luxury or medial resorts, and abundance of nature. I had no different plans but I'm to stay at least for four hours in the city before I start my journey towards Kollam. I decided to spend a few more bucks on my cab driver and asked him to go round to the places that should be visited next time at leisure. In strict two hour ride, I covered many architectures that belong to British era and also touched the doorsteps of a few art galleries. I made a promise to myself to visit the Puthenmalika and Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple in detail next time (Not really sure when).
After 45 hours of gruelling train journey, we, four wanderlusts came to the capital city of God's Own Country. Our hotel was clearly visible by it's large glowing billboard from the platform. Hotel Highland could make a headline for it's brilliant Restaurant. Their overall service was also decent.
Sightseeing- Zoo, Planetarium, Padmanabhaswamy Temple.Shopping City- Sarees, ChipsChecked in a hotel in eveningHotel Name- Jumayira Residency, Trivandrum. ( Rs.4000/- for 2 a.c. rooms.)Day 7 Kovalam
From Varkala, we took a bus to Trivandrum, our next destination. The capital of Kerala, its one the crowded cities in Kerala, situated on the west coast of India, and is bounded by Laccadive Sea to its west and the Western Ghats to its east. Like any other city, Trivandrum also has innumerable restaurants, which didn't fail to excite a foodie like me. Hotel Rehmaniya serves delicious beef, mutton and appam. Sneak into Hotel ZamZam for Malabari-style biriyani, and Hotel South Park for Onasadya, a typical Kerala recipe that will make your taste-buds go crazy!
Next morning we went to the main beech for breakfast and after strolling a bit on the beech we packed our bags for the next destination, Kolvalam. We reached Trivandrum by afternoon and checked in a hotel there. Then we headed to Kovalam which just 15 kms from there. Again quiet a descent beech by Indian standards but it was heavy crowded and we could not find any patch where we could just be alone. So we destined ourselves to enjoy the crowd. The sunset was quiet beautiful the best of all was yet to come.Day 7:- Trivandrum to Kanyakumari
On the D-day , we reached Trivandrum in the evening. The weather gods were happy and it was drizzling that time. We took a taxi from the airport itself and set course to Varkala. It took us almost 2 hrs to reach the place. Our guest house was located 5 minute off the main road. The location was perfect for a peaceful stay.It was a traditionally kerala house with a wide backyard, coconut trees, garden in front and so colorfully painted. I was just in love with the location of guest house and the ambience.The settings of the rooms were equally bright. One room with yellow ambience and other with blue.Equipped with mosquito nets and WiFi. Attached bathroom with hot water facility was also available.Pretty decent rooms. Ayurvedic consultation and treatment is also available.
Eravikulam National Park
129 Kms from Sankarankovil
Best time to visit - April,May,June,September,October,November
This national park is the breathtaking home of a plethora of precious flora and fauna, and lies along the Western Ghats....
266 Kms from Sankarankovil
Best time to visit - May,June,September,October,November
This renowned hill station once housed the Madras Presidency during the British Rule and possesses many remnants in the ...
Ooty as many of you know is a place of toy trains and tea estates. It’s known for its flower shows and lake rides. Most of them picture their holiday in this lush green valley, sipping their hot cup of tea, soaking in every bit of tranquillity that nature can offer while gazing out at the stars at night. One can very well do all this and more.
I had this thing in my mind to tell everyone of my first Road Trip and here it is,I hope you enjoy it and plan to go there .I had nothing planned for this journey .I did not know I was going to choose road instead of railway .I had no experience in driving the bike but somehow I managed to drive bike for the first time without anyone's help to the toughest trail of south India and I could proudly say that with god grace I have completed approx. 15-20 successful road trips .I urge you to take road trip and believe me there is nothing more powerful than the spell of nature.What if perfect time doesn't come ,what if all you have carried throughout life is burden and hope for things to go better and smooth ,why can't you establish a pact with yourself and stop being worried,disappointed and hopeless with your life all the time. It’s time to outsmart the truth and accept what you are and stop being someone you've been dreaming of.People do day dreams ,they compare their lives with someone else's without knowing the fact that comparison is the thief of joy .No matters who you are ,no matters what you do ,there is always place of going places in one’s mind .To be truthful ,I was not happy person ever, not even now but when it comes to travel and places ,my soul fills with felicity.I am writing this blog not to gain popularity rather to help some person who needs a break from day to day life.I started my expedition from Chennai, Tamil Nadu to Ooty .Here is my route map throughout the journey
1st Wedding Anniversary is a special day, 365 of love adjustments little little fights and loads of enjoyment and a day to celebrate. We Tripjodi had no such special plans to celebrate our first Anniversary, however had thought to go for a ride to our nearest hill station Ooty. ( hardly 85 Km from Coimbatore ).
Some of the major Shooting location area that i covered are shown in the photographs. 'Kellan Marg'- A very very beautiful landscape, very cinematic, green spreads till you reach your sight and lovely horses and goats playing around enjoying the mother nature. Treat for ones eyes.! I seriously couldn't stop jumping you see :)
I have been thinking about writing a blog about Ooty for years now. Just like anyone writing blogs, I am not always satisfied with the end product. After deleting 100's of write ups, I have realized that my love for the place cannot be put into words.So I have decided to just go with the photos I have taken over my multiple trips to this heavenly abode I call my "Second Home".I hope you enjoy them as much as I did in clicking them!!
7. Ooty and Coonoor
Day 8:- Coorg to Ooty I was well aware that today’s ride is going to be a super awesome ride as we have to ride from one cold place Coorg to the queen of hills the other cold place Ooty. And the main attraction for the day was that we had to cross 3 states karnataka, kerala and Tamil nadu and the road runs through bandipur national park(karnataka), wayanad (kerala) and mudumalai with masinagudi (tamilnadu). So most of the time the road runs through dense forest. But there was a big risk involved in it, as it was a tiger reserve so you can get a change to see a tiger. If not that there been several cases of elephant attacks on these road. They are wild not the tamed one, so imagine if you are on bike and happen to meet these animals right in front of you. So with great joy we started our day from coorg and after a few hours of ride we reached nagarhole national park. We were stopped at the entrance. After enquiring we came to know that bikes are not allowed only cars and buses are allowed. Because it’s a tiger reserve. So we came to the main road and started towards bandipur . For that you will come across a place called kutta after which the kerala border starts and we have to ride for somtime inside kerala in order take the road for bandipur. It was already past 2pm so we decided to stop for lunch. Found a hotel and had an authentic kerala food on banana leaves with fried fish. After that we had to first cross wayanad forest then enter bandipur. Actually all the 3 forest wayanad,bandipur and mudumalai is a single forest but divided due to state boundaries. One important thing to be kept in mind is that we are not allowed to enter these places after 6pm. So we have to make sure we enter these place before that. If you have to go through the forest road from bandipur towards ooty, you have to take route 766 because only this route will take you through forest or else you will miss the forest ride. So once you enter bandipur by 766 it will take you out of bandipur towards gundlupete, from there you have to take the route 181 which is known as the coimbatore ooty gundlupete highway which will take us to the second entrance to the bandipur national park. The initial ride before exiting was also awesome. We are not allowed to stop anywhere on the road as it’s a forest area either you be in car or bike. No photography is allowed. But people were stopping at certain place wherever they spot deers and other wild animal’s . So unless no forest officials caught us there is no issue or else we will have to pay fine. In the first ride we spotted only deer,monkey,peacocks. So after exiting from 766 route we took the 181 route which brought us to the second entrance of bandipur national park which leads to Ooty via mudumalai forest. Only after reaching there we knew that we have to go through 2 entrances. And luckily at the second entrance when we reached it was 5:45pm , if we would have been 20 minutes late. They wouldn’t have allowed us to pass through. We now entered the gate after some distance we spotted deers again, but the fear was that neither tiger nor elephant should cross the route. And it was getting darker. Finally saw an elephant close to the road as other cars were pass we also didn’t stop. Then at many places we spotted groups of elephants some were only 2 to 3 feet close to road but none of them did anything. At a place even we spotted a tiger footprints. But luckily no tiger around. Finally we crossed bandipur and entered tamilnadu through mudumalai national park. At the entrance of mudumalai the forest officials informed me that few minutes back a herd of elephants passed from here so be care full they can turn violent anytime. It was getting colder and colder and by now it had already become dark. And we have to cross this forest . I followed a mahindra thar as this is easy way because the roads were zigzag so you need to concentrate more and chances of hitting any animal is also less during night. It had a good caption behind it which read “I may get lost somewhere. But i will not get stuck anywhere “. Kept following it as he was driving at a good pace till we exited the forest area. We came to a Junction called theppakadu, from there we took route 700 which is known as mysuru ooty road and exited the forest through masinagudi. Once out of forest we stopped for a hot coffee and bhajji. Sat there for some time. Then continued we came across a valley which is known as bison valley after which we had to take 36 hairpin bends upwards. I stopped and clicked a photo and continued as the height went increasing it became cooler and cooler. Which showed us that we are reaching ooty. But it was super fun to take those 36 hairpin bends as it was too steep. Once done with it we reached ooty in some time again halted for coffee break before searching for hotel. We came inside ooty for hotels and we saw an oyo board near a hotel and asked mateen to stop. By then a person came from the opposite direction and asked us are you looking for hotel. We said yes and he took us to the same hotel where we stopped bargained and took a room for 2 nights as 800 per day. In the end it was an awesome ride we ordered our dinner , had it and went to sleep.
10. 'Golmaal Again': ultimate Ooty
214 Kms from Sankarankovil
Best time to visit - January,February,March,September,October,November,December
A major city and commercial hub in Tamil Nadu, Coimbatore offers not much in terms of touristic attractions unless you'r...
Our preparations started way back in December, when we booked our trek seats through YHAI. All our seats were booked except Prashob's due to some glitch in the system and his only option was to get spot booking done at the Base camp. We drew up a list, made a plan and made some efforts to be prepared in the best way possible for all scenarios!
Day 4: Coimbatore (on the return back to Mysuru)Last day we planned to start early and cover Coimbatore on the way back home. I believe our PM's visit that brought lot of popularity for the large Shiva statue set up in Isha Foundation, Coimbatore.We had a mouth watering local food that includes - Ven pongal, Onion Uttappam, Ambode, Medu vada and onion dosa just before we take left in Coimbatore city to reach Isha foundation. Breakfast costed less than 200/- for 4 people
Love birds are you planning for a vacation ?? Do you want to get detached from the daily life schedule and get lost loving, caressing each other ❤, then Vattakanal is the best place to be.
We started from Coimbatore, it is just 53 Kilometres from Coimbatore and nice offbeat place to spend a weekendDhoni waterfalls is a small waterfalls near Palakkad in Kerala. We had a weekend exploration to the Dhoni and enjoyed the 4 kilometres long trek through dense forests in Wester ghats.
Known for its salubrious climate and proximity to the Nilgiris, Coimbatore is a bustling city in Kongunadu in western Tamil Nadu. Teeming with education institutions, engineering companies and textile mills, the city is also considered among the safest and fastest growing ones in the country. About 25 km from the city is the pristine region of Siruvani, through which the river by the same name flows gently. Located close to the foothills of the Western Ghats, this green belt is rife with waterfalls, rolling hills, fields and rivers; a few resorts have sprung up in the Siruvani region, offering visitors an opportunity to unwind, slow down and explore the forests in the vicinity. The newest, and perhaps the plushest, among them is VM Hospitality’s Dvara.
From everything we gathered on the internet and Couchsurfing, we figured that to reach Ooty, we'd have to take a flight to Coimbatore and then take a bus to Ooty. We found out that there are 2 terminals near the Airport. The internet suggested that there are direct buses from Gandhipuram, however we learnt that the bus services are limited and we should take a bus from Mettupalayam Road Terminus. So we took the 4:00 AM flight from Delhi to Coimbatore and took an Ola from the airport to Mettupalayam Road Terminus. We took the bus from Mettupalayam at around 10:30 and reached our hotel in Ooty by about 4. We had booked Fun City Resort through Goibibo. We had actually reached the place well before 4 but Google maps just refused to help us reach our hotel, and we ended up walking uphill in the wrong direction! Anyway, we somehow reached our hotel, and were famished! We planned on ordering something, only to find out that our hotel didn't provide room service. So, now after freshening up, we made a move to the mall road, which was about 5 km from our hotel. The bus stop was at a walk-able distance, so we took the bus going towards mall road. I remember asking people at the bus stop about the exact name of the place we should get down at, "Charring cross" is the name of the place if I remember it correctly. We took the bus and on a fellow Couchsurfer's suggestion checked out some good food joints. He also specially suggested us to go to Moddy's which is at the far end of the mall road. Ooty is famous for homemade chocolates, and we were told that this place is not only famous but has been there for some considerable number of years now. We got some homemade chocolates for home and also got some for my cousin and our host in Coorg. While heading back we saw a board which had details of cab rates for local sight seeing. As we stood there trying to figure out who to get in touch with, a cab stopped by us and asked if we were looking for some help. On getting a nod in affirmative from us, he gave us a visiting card of a travel agent. I gave him a call while getting some food packed for dinner. And in moments I had booked a cab for local sight seeing.
"Let's do that again!", the five of us vowed as we returned home to Coimbatore. Twenty-four hours earlier, we were upset that we had only one day of our semester holidays in common. Wanting to make the best use of that one day, I decided to give my friends a taste of Vattakanal. It is a small town a few kilometers form Kodaikanal. I had fallen in love with this place during my last visit, the previous year.So we left Coimbatore at 5 in the morning (one hour later than planned) in my Maruti Suzuki Swift ZDi. Construction work on Pollachi Road made making up for lost time impossible and gave us quite an off-roading experience. We had to tolerate bad roads till we reached Palani.(Tip 1: Consider the condition of the roads while planning your trip. This rule applies to any road trip.)
From Coimbatore, my place of interest to visit was ISHA yoga center and Adiyogi statue. I just enquired about buses & took a bus to Gandhipuram busstop, from where I got a bus to ISHA yoga center ie; Bus no. 14D which in turn passed through station from where I took bus to Gandhipuram...this is what happens when u r new to a place and don't know the local knowledge;)
Having finished the remainder of my assignment during the connecting Indigo flight, I was relieved. It was heartening to see the coconut plantations from the airplane window as we began our descent at Coimbatore. A little while later we were greeted by the tropical South-Indian weather as we made our way to the baggage claim. Since the Zoomcars request processing time is approximately three hours (we had booked the vehicle at 9am), we found ourselves with a little less than two hours to kill. My sister joined us in the meantime, and we had a short breakfast comprising of ready-to-eat noodles and ice-creams from the general store outside the airport. Little did we know about the adventures that lay ahead of us!After getting picked up by the Zoomcars representative, we headed to their nearest depot. Having completed all the formalities, we found ourselves driving to the Adiyogi Statue twenty minutes later. We had been looking forward to visiting since we saw the unveiling ceremony on TV, and our trip to Ooty was the best opportunity we could possibly think of. Google Maps had become our best friend, as the hour-long journey to the statue was really eventful - we found ourselves passing by fields of coconut trees, and small patches of land blooming with yellow and orange marigolds. A couple of bridges and a few narrow roads later, we found ourselves at the entrance of the parking lot.
118 Kms from Sankarankovil
Best time to visit - April,May,June,August,September
Translating to 'the gift of the forest' in the native language of Tamil Nadu and originally home to the Palaiyar tribal ...
When something good happens travel to celebrate.. when something bad happens travel to forget and when nothing happens travel so that something happens .. This s a kickstarter for our first trip together after marriage . The first couple trip to the queen of hills Kodaikanal and fortunately being my native place too .. The trip was planned basically like a road trip just for a night stay to enjoy the nature and a hill drive to initiate the number of travels which forever lies ahead of our life together . We started from Madurai at 9 in our car towards Kodaikanal. We reached around 12 with pit stops in between . We had booked for a room at The Carlton . After checking in and refreshing we went for a walk around the lake .. Then a drive around the lake and pillar rocks . The Maggi stalls and Bhajji stalls around the lake are sure to satisfy your food cravings .. And not to forget the hot chai is the absolute best thing you can have in that climate . We restricted ourselves from indulging in any other activities other than walking and ice hockey . For all those who love purchasing in tourist destinations this place gives you everything you can ask for . But the highlights are the home made chocolates , handmade accessories,winter wear , herbal balms and different fruits . And to mention my husband gifted me a handmade necklace and earrings piece inspired from peacock feather .We called the day off at Kodaikanal with a walk in the coakers walk . We reached around the closing time so the park was almost empty giving us the ‘ our ‘ time in the serene hills . Returning to our room and with a dinner in the balcony with the lakeside view crashing in to each other’s arms is nothing more we could have asked for a better sign off for the day .We travelled back to Madurai the next day from Kodaikanal with the amazing memories we had made . Traveling is not a part of life ,it’s a life by itself .. Follow to know more about the Wanderlust partners hooked forever !!!!!!!
Entrance fee: There is no entrance feeTimings: The lake is open throughout the day. Although early mornings and evenings are the best time to visitTip: The lake is untouched by human actions and we can keep it that way. Don't throw plastic in and around the lake and refrain from harming the natural surroundings in any way.
Once you reach The Misty Mountain Hop, expect to be mesmerized by the jaw dropping valley views. The mountains that belong within the property are cut into steps, where at each step you can choose a spot to pitch your tent. Just surrender yourselves to Mother Nature and let her take care of you!
Over the long weekend in May 2018, we booked two of the campsites in Kodaikanal through CampMonk. This one is about The Spice Valley Campground. Read about the other one Here. This 200 acre land comprising of 4 hills adjoining the Kodaikanal Wildlife Sanctuary is right in the lap of wilderness.We packed our saddles and gear and set off on a long bike ride to the mountains. Even though we have been to Kodaikanal few times, this trip was an adrenaline fueled journey.
Kodaikanal is a weekend gateway from Bangalore. The beautiful hill station is just 465 kms away from the city and situated in the lap of Palani hills in the state of Tamil Nadu. I started my journey on Friday night to reach there by 10 AM. Day 1:The first stop was Pine Forest which is quite popular among the tourists. The mystic place will certainly make you spell bound.
5) Kodaikanal – A 160 K.M bus ride from Munnar takes us to our next destination - the hill-station of Kodaikanal. Pleasant climate, scenic natural vistas and numerous waterfalls are what draw travellers to this quaint hill station. One of the reasons to include Kodai in the circuit is because it is relatively less crowded as compared to its counterparts, Ooty and Conoor. Another place worth visiting, rather worth spending a night at is Vattakanal. It is 30 KMs from Kodai and is known as the hip part of Kodaikanal. Evergreen meadows, dense pine forest, lofty hills and the mist in the air makes Vattakanal a traveller’s delight. There is no dearth of accommodation here. You can find lovely places to stay at just 400 INR per head. Incaase you run out of luck, and all rooms are booked, do visit the IPC church in Vattakanal. They charge around 200 bucks per head and allow you to spend the night in their dorm.The golden hours at Vattakanal are something, you CANNOT miss.What to see: Berijam lake, Kodaikanal Lake, Guna Caves, Pillar Rocks, Silver Cascade Falls, Palani Falls, Vattakanal Viewpoint, Kodailkanal Solar Observatory, Thalaiyar Falls, Dolphin’s nose, Upper Lake view, Pine forest, Perumal Peak.Where to stay: Altaf’s café, Edwin’s, RC guest house, Jennova’s cottage. Out of 3 nights make sure to spend atleast 2 nights in VattakanalRecommended Number of Days: 3n/4dKodai to Madurai by train: 140/- SL (45 mins)Madurai to Rameshwaram train: 40/- Gn (3 hours, 40)Stay Cost: Rooms start at 700/- per night. *Tariff may vary from time to time*Food: 800/- per day or less, depends where you choose to eat. (Breakfast-lunch-dinner; without alcohol)Total Cost: 4680 /-
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Day 2 - Kodaikanal, What a love place, very beautiful, I stared riding at 7, got up late again. anyway reached kodaikanal around 3 pm, Got a decent hotel, took my camera and went for exploring kodaikanal. Climate is always chill at kodai (No Fan in rooms). Many places to see in kodaikanal. Pillar rock Pine forest Devil's kitchen Dolphin nose (Trek)All places are open for limited time. Till 4.30-5Pm so make sure you start early to cover all the places. In evening you can spend a very beautiful time near the lake. You can hire cycle and many fun games are available around the lake.
135 Kms from Sankarankovil
Best time to visit - January,February,August,October,November,December
This seventh largest city of Kerala is popular for its houseboat cruises along the Kerala backwaters. Alappuzha is bed...
Drive from Kochi to Alleppey, its 53km away & would take around less than 1.5 hours to reach. Check in to a boat house whose check-in time is 12pm and it would start sailing on the back waters till 5pm and it would stop at one point. You can get down and visit nearby places. Overnight stay in the boat house.
Now this is why I love Kerala and Keralites (or Mallus, as they are fondly called) so much. We were approached by an auto, he checked where we wanted to go, got confused a bit with the description of the address, and when he realized the place dropped us there at the same rate that he would charge otherwise normally. In between I didn't feel a drop of fear, which may not be the same in other cities.
Exciting day for my little one as we were heading to Alleppey or Alappuzha as it is called in Malayalam for the overnight stay in houseboat.We reached Alleppey at around 12:00 noon and checked in to our personal houseboat operated by the company known as Swagatha.Houseboats are available as per the group size. As we were just 3 of us, we had our private one.They sail into the backwaters and all we have to do is sit back,relax and enjoy the lush green coconut grooves on both the sides,the country life and awsome authentic food.It was a well maintained and beautiful houseboat which began to sail at 12.30 pm into the backwaters of Alleppey. They served us welcome drink on arrival and lunch after an hour. Lunch had options of both veg and non veg. Non-veg food had fresh karimeen fry in authentic kerala style. Karimeen is a very tasty fish and a part of staple diet for the locals.Tea and veg fritters were served at 5 pm while the boat took us deep in the backwaters. Sun was about to set and we enjoyed the view while sipping the tea.As per the Govt. Law the boat had to be parked by 6.30 pm. One can chose to check out of the houseboat and book a hotel nearby,however we decided to spend the entire night there.Our houseboat had a small but cute bedroom and a very organised kitchen.Dinner menu was 2 vegetables, dal, roti, rice,Kerala style chicken and salad which was served by 9 pm. Off to sleep for yet another beautiful day.Other things to explore in Alleppey:Alleppey beachVembanad Lake - the longest lake in IndiaBird Watching.
The next morning the back waters of allepey was waiting for us. One of my favourite destination . I went there few times in my college days so already was having fair idea what was lying ahead. we didnt opt for night stay in houseboat as the government dont allow the boat cruising after 6 o clock . Any way boat wil standstill at night and we dont have much activity to do. we planned to do 5 hours of backwater activity , after that we will head towards mararikulam beach ( dont miss this beach , its very clean and nice). Now lets put some pics .
I got back to my stay by 8 pm, and decided to look around for cheaper options for dinner. However, The Indian Coffee House that appeared on the map was shut down, and Cafe Catamaran just across my place was mobbed with travelers. Thus, I had my humble meal of ginger Chicken & Rice at Art House Cafe which too wasn't very far. By the time I got back, the property manager called up people for a bonfire at the beach. Siddharth was actively getting up people gathered and we lit fire and sat around it with music playing. I was pretty tired with the activities of the day and moved on to my room in some time, and fell asleep much before anyone else came back.I woke up early in the morning and got fresh, I had a walk across the beach and clicked some pictures. I figured out that there wasn't much left to do in Alleppey, so I decided to move on to my next destination. I went to have breakfast at Halais Restaurant who supposedly made good Kebabs and Shwarmas. However, they didn't have that on the breakfast menu and I ended up having Egg Curry and Appam, which was pretty good. I got into an auto for the Railway Station, and about a km later realised that I left my camera at the restaurant itself. We drove back to the place where I found my camera lying unattended at the same place I had left it. Arriving at the Railway Station, I got a ticket to Varkala Sivagiri for 50 bucks. The direct train to Varkala was a bit late, so I boarded the next train that took me to Kayankulam. From Kayankulam, I boarded the New Delhi- Kerala Express which had its only General Compartment at the front end of the train. By the time I could get to that compartment, the train had already started moving, and hence, I got into one of the Sleeper coaches. I waited for the TTE to come but that didn't happen, and in an hour I got down at Varkala.
My roommate Sidhharth had been traveling for about 6 weeks now of which he had been here for about 4. I just inquired him of the houseboat scene and he told me that there was a government ferry at 4.45 pm that gave you a round trip in about 3 hrs. I left for the Boat Ferry immediately, and reached there just in time, I got a 40 Rs ticket for the ride, and perched on the upper deck for a grander view. The ferry boat was basically a bus in the backwaters meant for transporting people. Young students got off to their homes which lay in the middle of the creeks. It was a pleasure to see the greenery and the luxurious houseboats floating around in the water. Fishermen in smaller boats created a beautiful sight. There were Shikaras that gave couples a nice alone time witnessing the pleasant landscape. My ride took 1.5 hours to reach the terminating point at Vembnad Lake which looked like an endless expanse of water. The ride back was quicker. In all I paid 80 bucks to and fro. This is a great deal for solo travelers as the shikaras or the houseboats charge much higher in the range of 2000 Rs, and spend more time in the water which may be a bit boring for someone who is restless.
Right at the Alleppey Railway station, I had a Rice-Fish Meal at the IRCTC Eatery. Having done that I got an auto to drop me at the Alleppey Beach. I walked towards Zostel Alleppey, which was almost a km away, or so I felt in the blazing heat at 3pm with the Sun reflected on my face from the white sand of the spectacular beach. However, the heat and the weight of my luggage kept me away from going closer to the shore. Zostel was right in front of the beach at a far North corner. I hadn't made an advanced booking, but they had a dorm bed empty for the day, and were happy to have me.
210 Kms from Sankarankovil
Best time to visit - January,February,October,November,December
Thrissur, the land of temples, is one of the most visited cities in Kerala. The waterfalls and the scenic temples here o...
Here's to the main purpose of the visit. It was my first being part of a church wedding.4. The Church- Urgh.. I forgot to note the nameIt was a Mass marriage where a collective couples get married at the same time. Never ever miss to admire the interior, architecture of the church. Oh yeah the pretty flower girls too.
Here I am, safely returned over those peaks from a journey far more beautiful and magnificent than anything I had hoped for or imagined.....It's always fun to pack your bags and join your travel buddies without knowing a single plan on the itenery. Oh yeah I did the same.This whole trip is two in one travel purpose, A collegue's marriage and mainly sight seeing.After a long tiring day in office we boarded the bus from Bangalore to Ernakulam heading towards Thrissur.
The vibrance of the culture of Kerala is best highlighted during the annual festivals dedicated to the village deities. Thrissur Pooram is one of these post-harvest festivals that promises a grand spectacle to travellers who wish to be a part of local culture during their travels. The festival is celebrated from April to May and showcases a spectacle of an assembly of village deities on bedecked elephants from around the region. The procession reaches the Vadakumnathan Temple, where a strict ritual for 36 long hours is an absolute sight to behold for any visitor in town.Suggested accommodation: Clayfingers - Art Cottages; rooms start at Rs 4,000You might also like: Vadakumnathan Temple, Thrissur: A stillness within the chaos by Shilpa Shinde
Athirapally: One place you shouldn't miss while on Kochi. 85 km from the city centre. Athirapally and vazhachal waterfalls can be covered in a day trip basis. The beauty of the waterfalls can only be matched by its vastness. Nobody can actually describe it so it's better to watch it for yourselves.
Payyanur to thrissur (250km) :Road to calicut or kozhikode is filled with twisties and forests. Though the road is 2 lane, its still a treat to drive on. It Always keeps you on your toes. No trip to calicut is complete without a chicken biriyani at the world famous PARAGON hotel! By having The biriyani, suleimani and milk sarbath you are having a slice of calicut culture which dates back to the olden days. A ride on the jhangar boat in beypore is also a novel experience. Thrissur is just about 120kms from here. Easily accesible yet confusing once you reach the city. So we rode as a group in the thrissur city. The city is built around the vadakunnathan temple. The vadakunnathan temple is an ancient hindu temple dedicated to lord shiva. This temple is a classic example of the architectural style of kerala and has monumental towers on all four sides and also a kuttambalam. Mural paintings depicting various episodes from mahabharata can be seen inside the temple.Tip: Guruvayur temple is just 27km from thrissur city and can be covered easily
This humble district is finding its way on most Kerala Itineraries owning to its splendid display of culture and festivals that form a highlight of the trip.
Athirapalli waterfall and Guruvayu Temple
115 Kms from Sankarankovil
Best time to visit - February,March,April,May,August,September,October,December
Kerala’s Idukki district is home to the beautiful hill-station of Munnar. An erstwhile summer resort to the British, t...
One of the perks of living in Bangalore is the proximity to beautiful hill stations - far enough to take a break yet close enough to return in two days and continue with BAU. Here's an account of our much awaited trip to Munnar - the beautiful hill station in Kerala, a state that justifies every bit of the name "God's own country".
Early morning we started for Munnar from Cochin. We booked the cab from Savaari. Their cabs are well maintained and the drivers are well mannered and punctual. We started at around 7:30 in the morning. The condition of the road from Cochin to Munnar is pretty decent and there are no potholes. We enjoyed the drive. One should buy water bottles on the way to Munnar because in Munnar drinking water is a bit expensive than Cochin. Our driver told us to buy water beforehand. At around 11:30 AM we reached Munnar town and I don't have words to explain the view outside, those fresh green leaves of the tea garden. I have been to many hill stations but this view was totally different. We decided to do sightseeing first and then leave for our resort. We had booked Sterling resort in Chinnakanal ( road to Chinnakanal is closed till 6 pm). First, we visited the top station and got an amazing view from the top. Then we went to Matupetty dam. Matupetty dam is surrounded by beautiful hills from all the side and also has water activities . After this we went to Kundala dam and did boating. They have paddle boats and Shikara rides. At last, we went to the flower garden and saw a variety of colorful flowers. After a hectic day, we went to relax at our resort. Sterling has a spectacular view and also they have adventure activities inside like dirt biking, zip line, tree climbing etc. Next day we had to leave for Thekkady.
Day 3 - MunnarMunnar city as it is do not offer any attractions for the tourists except for the Kannan Devan tea factory which is withing city limits i.e. within 5 km rangeSo, here is the map that lists some major attractions of Munnar and its locality
The saddest thing is that you can't see anything once it's dark. We reached Munnar after dark and we had no idea what stood around us. But when dawn broke, it was so beautiful!We went via Cochin to Munnar, and Kochi is totally different and not at all what I came to see. It's a metro city- beautiful and offers a lot of things to eat and places to visit, there is a port as well. But I met with the usual metro city traffic, malls, lights and the only city i saw traffic lights in :D
Marayoor->Munnar->Chithirapuram->DevikulamEarly morning next day, we explored the aromatic Karayur Sandalwood Reserve. Reaching the Sandalwood forests was a 4 kilometer ride from the Marayoor Holidays.
Calm and serene town of Munnar has lots of spots for sightseeing. Some of the must see tourist spots are listed here.Mattupetty Dam And Lake: 13 Kms from Munnar, this is one of the famous tourist attraction. This picturesque place is a good picnic spot with lot of water activities for water sports lover.Time : Anytime.Cost: FreeMattupetty Indo-Swiss Farms - known for more than 100 varieties of high yielding cattle.Visit Time : 9:00 Am.- 11:00 Am. and 2:00 Pm.- 3:30 Pm.Cost: Rs. 5 per personPallivasal- First Hydro Electric Project in Kerala.Eravikulam National Park - It covers an area of 97 sq kms of breathtakingly beautiful evergreen forests and is a home to Nilgiri Tahr . The tourism area of the park is known as Rajamalai and the tourists are allowed to explore the wilderness of the forest.Visit Time : 8:00 Am.- 4:30 Am.Cost: Rs. 65 per personForest is closed between Mid Jan to 31st March due calving season of Nilgiri Tahr.Top Station - Located 35 km. away from the city this is the highest point in Munnar. Known for its panoramic views, this place is paradise for photographers.Kolukkumalai - Highest tea plantations.Kundala Dam and Lake: Famous for its Kashmiri-Shikara boat rides and pedal boat rides, this picturesque spot is feast for eyes.Cost :Rs. 10 per person for the lakeBoating Charges: Rs. 350 for 15-20 mins.Echo Point - Situated at a serene lake bank Echo Point is located 15 kms. away from Munnar, on the way to Top Station.Cost : FreeRose Garden - Very well maintained beautiful flower garden.Cost : Rs. 30 per personPhoto Point -Located 2 kms from Munnar, this place has dense tea plantation and ideal for photography.Cost : FreeWaterfalls - Munnar is known for its gushing waterfalls. Attukad, Chinnakanal, Cheeyappara,Valara are worth visiting.Tata Tea or KDHP Museum -Located in the Nallathanni Estate of Tata Tea around 2 km from Munnar, the KDHP Museum is the great delight for tea lovers.Visit Time : 9 am to 4 pm. Closed on every Monday.Cost: Rs. 75 for adults and Rs. 35 for kids.Ponmudi Jeep Safari - Covers the places like the spice plantations, Nadukani para view point, picnic point, Water lily pool, Ponmudi dam, the hanging bridge, etc.Duration : 3 hours.Cost : Rs. 3000 to 3500 per jeep.Visit to Spice Gardens - Just like Thekkady, Munnar is also known for spice and coffee plantations. There are many spice gardens here to visited. I had visited Kerala Farms and had a wonderful experience.Visit to the local Market - Munnar town has a busy market with large number of shops selling varieties of spices, oils, teas and handicrafts. The street food here is famous and lip smacking.Try local Food- Relish the Malabar cuisine in hotels like Saravana Bhavan and Gurubhavan.Ayurvedic Massage - Ayurvedic massage centers offer various relaxing massages and perfect way to end the day. I visited Swatic Ayur Care Centre, for one of the best message I ever had.Cost : Rs.1300 onward for 60 mins.The active day ended with peaceful sleep.
We woke up with some white monkeys knowing on our balcony doors in our Thekkady hotel. Post our breakfast we got back into the car for another long journey to Munnar, a hill station in Kerala.Roads from Thekkady to Munnar were covered under thick layers of forests and sprawling tea & spice plantations. the cool breeze and the soothing silence was adding utmost peace and tranquility to our souls.
Early to the temple, we had darshan pretty quick, this temple is also quite expansive. Sadly, Gomathi, the elephant was unwell and was kept in a closed enclosure. On the same note, none of the elephants were seen in the temples as they are off to their rejuvenation camp. This is one of the temples where people surrender images of insects, body parts as a part of offering to safeguard one from getting affected. Three parts of the temple are dedicated to sankaralingam, Sankaranarayanar and Gomathi Amman. We can Sankaranarayanar as one half Narayana and other half as Shiva.