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Old 24th June 2011, 09:39   #1
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Default Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Hi Team-BHPians,

After reading an inspired travelogue of Roamingrao(Ashok) and encouragement from HV Kumar, am embarking on my GQ in October 2011, following the footsteps, oops, tyre marks of Roamingrao (Ashok), almost the same time he did it last year.

I would be glad to receive any suggestions, inputs, tips on route, hotels and any other issue.

I would also feel happy ands secure if any of you Team Bhpians reside on the route mentioned below for any emergency, send in your contacts to my email ID.


It is a 100 days to go, planning to start on 01/10/2011. The route is as follows.

Day 1 - Bangalore - Pune

Day 2 - Pune - Vadodara/ Ahmedabad

Day 3 - Ahmedabad - Udaipur

Day 4 - Udapur - Chittorgarh - Ajmer - Pushkar

Day 5 - Pushkar - Jaipur

Day 6 - Jaipur - New Delhi

Day 7 - New Delhi

Day 8 - New Delhi - Vrindavan - Agra - Allahabad

Day 9 - Allahabad - Varanasi

Day 10 - Varanasi - Kolkata

Day 11- Kolkata

Day 12 - Kolkata - Konark - Puri

Day 13 - Puri - Vishakapatnam

Day 14 - Vishakapatnam - Nellore

Day 15 - Nellore - Chennai - Bangalore
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Old 24th June 2011, 10:50   #2
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Seeing this thread in Travelogue's section, I thought you have already done it.
Nevertheless, good that you have started preparing so early.
Wishing you all the very best Rajesh for the GQ drive.
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Old 24th June 2011, 11:07   #3
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Looks like a good trip. A well planned trip too. Looking forward to the update on the GQ for 2011.

I am sure you have already thought of it but since it is going to be a big trip pls do make sure the write up is in an organised fashion otherwise it could get very very confusing for us readers .

Just a few questions :

1) How many of you are doing this trip?
2) In what car(s) are u doing it?
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Old 24th June 2011, 11:23   #4
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

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Originally Posted by amrisharm View Post
Looks like a good trip. A well planned trip too. Looking forward to the update on the GQ for 2011.

I am sure you have already thought of it but since it is going to be a big trip pls do make sure the write up is in an organised fashion otherwise it could get very very confusing for us readers .

Just a few questions :

1) How many of you are doing this trip?
2) In what car(s) are u doing it?
It is 2 cars, Scorpio and a Tavera, with 5 Adults and 2 Kids. Did not want to have 2 many people.
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Old 24th June 2011, 12:41   #5
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Originally Posted by Rajesh1968 View Post
Hi Team-BHPians,

After reading an inspired travelogue of Roamingrao(Ashok) and encouragement from HV Kumar, am embarking on my GQ in October 2011, following the footsteps, oops, tyre marks of Roamingrao (Ashok), almost the same time he did it last year.

Hi Rajesh,

The trip looks like "Touch and Go" kind of. Shouldn't you keep some days to go around since you are driving all the way up North and East?

For example

a) A deviation at Ahmedabad on the way to Udaipur to Mt Abu for a day will be a good option.

b) You should not miss Ranakpur which has magnificent Jain temple - possibly the best - close to Udaipur

c) An extra day in Varanasi, Udaipur and Ahmedabad to see and explore.

d) Hotels -

Udaipur - Jagat Niwas palace, great value for Money
Ahmedabad - House of MG's. Heritage hotel in the middle of city.
Pushkar - The Greenhouse
Varanasi - Palace on Ganges
Jaipur - Diggi Palace
Puri - Great Eastern Railway Hotel,

e) Eating out -
Ahmedabad - Dont miss Dinner in Agashiye roof top restaurant in House of MGs in Ahmedbad and also in Vishala in Ahmedabad. If you are fond of Non Veg, the old city area.

Jaipur - Laxmi Mishtan Bhandar

Pushkar - Go to halwai street for hot an juicy mal Puas. They are yummy.

Old Delhi - Parathawala galli for Paranthas, Jielbis, Kulfi falooda and rolls in Nizams

Kolkata - Rasogolla in KC Das and Bengali food in Park stret and surroundings

Agra - Angoori Peta in Cant at Panchis

Mathura - Lassi in long Kullad opposite Krishna temple and pedhas

Varanasi - Benarasi pan

Udaipur - Dal-Bhati - Churma in Santosh Dal Bhati. The best you can get.

Pune - Authentic Maratha cuisine in Asha and Shrewberry biscuits from Kayani bakery

Not sure you will be passing Indore. If yes, Golgappas in Rajwada.

Lastly, There is no need for you stay over at Nellore and comfortably drive back to Bangalore from Vizag in One day as NH 5 is superb. We did it comfortably when we went to Chattisgarh in March.
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Old 24th June 2011, 15:12   #6
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

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Originally Posted by Rajesh1968 View Post

Day 1 - Bangalore - Pune

Day 2 - Pune - Vadodara/ Ahmedabad

Day 3 - Ahmedabad - Udaipur

Day 4 - Udapur - Chittorgarh - Ajmer - Pushkar
Stay facilities are very poor in Pushkar,hope you have sorted this out.
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Old 24th June 2011, 17:14   #7
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Hey,

Do go thru' http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...r-gurgaon.html (Shifting base : A road trip thru' Pune-Baroda-Ah'bad-Udaipur-Ajmer-Gurgaon!)

for Pune - Delhi.

Any specific reason why you want to stay in Pushkar? Ajmer - Pushkar would be less than an hour so you'd rather stay in Ajmer which has decent stay places. Hotel Man Singh is a really good one.
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Old 24th June 2011, 19:41   #8
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Originally Posted by ranjitp1 View Post
Stay facilities are very poor in Pushkar,hope you have sorted this out.
Greenhouse in Pushkar is excellent. we stayed ther in thier innagural season. They have excellent luxury tents.
pushkar tents,Luxury tents pushkar,accommodation pushkar tents,pushkar luxury tents,pushkartents,hotels pushkar,hotelspushkar,pushkar resorts,pushkar hotels,pushkarresorts

Here is the pictures of our stay there in 2009
Golden Quadrilateral in 2011-dsc01875.jpg

This is halwai street in Pushkar with Garam doodh and halwai!!!
Golden Quadrilateral in 2011-dsc01883.jpg

Also, dont miss visiting beautiful Devigarh Resort where Amitabh's "Ekalavya" was shot. It is close to Udaipur. Taste their excellent Rajasthani Thali in the restaurant overlooking Aravallis. Here is the picture of Aravallis as viewed from restuarant.
Golden Quadrilateral in 2011-dsc01793.jpg

Last edited by Fauji : 24th June 2011 at 19:57.
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Old 24th June 2011, 20:37   #9
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Drive plan looks easy paced. I would be worried about only Puri-Vizag because the rains will wreck Orissa roads further (it is still being widened and sees slow traffic).
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Old 30th August 2011, 11:37   #10
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Time flies so fast, it seemed like yesterday when I posted 100 days to go, it is 30 days to go now.

I have had the fortune having got inputs from fellow BHPians, especially from HVK and Roaming Ashok Rao, who tweaked, added and changed the itinerary, which is more or less finalized.

Awaiting any final input from HVK once he is back from Leh, also did meet up with Ashok and family, to understand how the family did take this journey. It was very good to know how they managed the GQ with tight schedules.

Just waiting for the festivals to get over, when my partner on GQ goes for a overhaul and gets the chinks in the armor readied.

Will keep you posted on the journey
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Old 30th August 2011, 12:51   #11
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Drive plan looks easy paced. I would be worried about only Puri-Vizag because the rains will wreck Orissa roads further (it is still being widened and sees slow traffic).
It may probably take a bit longer than the rest of the days, but its still nothing more than a 10hour drive. There arent that many long 2-lane stretches any more in this section, though still not fully complete.

If one leaves a bit early in the morning, one can cover Puri to Berhampur in about 4-5 hours. After Berhampur, it should be a smooth ride all the way to Vizag.
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Old 17th October 2011, 15:29   #12
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Default Golden Quadrilateral in 2011 - Accomplished

At last, a mission planned and incubated for 8 months was completed a few days ago on 14th October, 2011. It was a casual web surfing teambhp.com web site, came across various travelogues and out of the blue saw a travelogue of Ashok ( Roamingrao) about his exploits on GQ in 2010, could not wait for him to complete his travelogue, pestered him to complete it fast, as the excitement was getting the better of me. This travelogue inspired me to do the GQ, “come what may” and started planning for the last 8 months, started exchanging notes with Ashok & HVK, got them to review route plans, checklists and other necessary things.

Finally, the plan was put in place in June 2011, it was just the 3 of us, wife, son of 7, who turned 8 during the GQ and myself, in 2004 Scorpio 2.6 Dx. As I discussed this family, the reaction from parents, as usual was skeptical, though mom was encouraging, but dad was pessimistic, though a dampener, but we took it in our stride, my sister wanted to be part of it, so we decided to take her 2004 Tavera along with her husband and 12 year old son, along with a friend of hers. So it was decided that 2 cars and 7 people, the route planned but some changes we did on the way, we did break 3 rules which I shall mention as we go through:

PLANNED

Day 1 - Bangalore - Pune

Day 2 - Pune - Vadodara

Day 3 - Vadodara - Udaipur

Day 4 - Udaipur - Chittorgarh - Ajmer – Pushkar - Jaipur

Day 5 - Jaipur

Day 6 - Jaipur - New Delhi

Day 7 - New Delhi - Mathura - Agra

Day 8 – Agra - Varanasi

Day 9 - Varanasi - Gaya

Day 10 - Gaya - Durgapur

Day 11- Durgapur - Kolkata

Day 12 - Kolkata - Konark - Puri

Day 13 - Puri - Vishakhapatnam

Day 14 - Vishakhapatnam - Nellore

Day 15 - Nellore - Chennai – Bangalore


ACTUAL

Day 1 - Bangalore - Pune

Day 2 - Pune - Udaipur

Day 3 - Udaipur

Day 4 - Udaipur - Chittorgarh - Ajmer – Pushkar - Jaipur

Day 5 - Jaipur

Day 6 - Jaipur - New Delhi

Day 7 - New Delhi - Mathura - Agra

Day 8 – Agra - Varanasi

Day 9 - Varanasi - Gaya

Day 10 - Gaya - Kolkata

Day 11- Kolkata

Day 12 - Kolkata - Konark - Puri

Day 13 - Puri - Vishakhapatnam

Day 14 - Vishakhapatnam - Bangalore


Day 1
Date - 1/10/2011
Location: Sarjapur Road, Bangalore
Time: 4 AM
Planned Destination – Pune Actual Destination - Pune

As planned we were all excited to embark on a journey never done before in our families, we had loaded the cars the previous evening with bags and fuel, just carried water and documentation in the morning.
Born brought up in Basavanagudi, an old suburb of Bangalore, where my parents still stay, met them at 4.30 am, took their blessings and last cup of filter coffee before we returned back to Bangalore, later took the blessings from Dodda Ganapathy, the almighty, before we started the journey.
Proceeded via JC Road, KG Road, Malleswaram, along the railway track and onto Tumkur Road, our first encounter with drivers coming in opposite directions, somehow entered the elevated highway and on our way to our first halt Chitradurga, for breakfast.
After breakfast, we started towards Belgaum, which was second stop , Lunch. As we approached Hubli, as took the bye pass, did remember having read that cops are prowling to catch speedsters, but found none, so proceeded towards Belgaum, which was cloudy and did have few spots of welcome rain for us. An interesting incident, though not tragic, as we approached Tawandi Ghat, a Fiat Linea which was playing cat and mouse for some time with us, which did not deter us, took a sharp turn and fell into a ditch just a few moments ahead of us, though signboards warned, we did want to stop and help but people around had already moved to the car, so we moved along.
Skipped lunch at Belgaum, as ‘slip of the tongue remark’ of McD at Kolhapur was enough for the 2 brats to start the first of their numerous protests, so we decided to stop at McD. I was pleasantly surprised by the crowd at McD.
After lunch, on our way to Pune, this is where I was slightly disappointed; GQ in Karnataka is out of the cities/ towns but in Maharashtra and some other states, was in the city or in suburb and bad roads, which was a disappointing to start the 1st state on my GQ.
As we approached Pune, just before the Katraj Tunnel, we were stopped by Octroi, may be they thought a Big Black Car from KA, may be carrying contraband as the next day was Gandhi Jayanthi (GJ), they wanted to know what we were carrying, where we were going, explained to them and were let go. Out came suniladhiy’s tip of reaching the destination of a friend’s house. Before we could reach his place, my friend was anxious so he sent his driver and car to the Chevy Showroom on the highway and we followed him to his house.
Day 1, ended at Pune, with no untoward incidents, so far so good. A distance of 850 KMs covered in 13 hours including breaks of 90 minutes for Breakfast and Lunch.  

Day 2
Date - 2/10/2011
Location: Balewadi Link Road, Pune
Time: 4.30 AM
Planned Destination – Vadodara Actual Destination – Udaipur

As planned woke up at 3 AM, got ready by 4 AM, stuffed the cars with bags and started to Vadodara at 4.30 am, took the NH and then as guided by HVK, took the Mumbai Pune Express way, which was amazing, would have appreciated if I had taken it in daylight, but any way, it was breeze, exited Expway as guided by HVK’s note, followed it to a T, only place we goofed up but did not lose any time or distance, regrouped and headed on back on GQ from Ghodbunder road, again it pained me to read in one of the blogs that only Orissa and Karnataka were lagging behind in GQ, but what I saw from Ghodbunder to say about 75-100 kms, there is not semblance of GQ, still it is WIP, and some places it was RIP, with nothing happening. As it was GJ, nothing much on road, what should have taken maybe 4 - 5 hours from, took 3 hours to reach Ghodbunder junction
Anyway, as suggested by Roamingrao, who incidentally was in Ghodbunder, we stopped at Vital’s at Manor. Food was good and had a good buffet breakfast. Just before we headed to Vadodara, the yellow stickers were pasted on the headlights.
Till Valsad, we could not gain time, but did good speed, post Valsad, hit very good speed and approached the place to make a choice whether to go thru’ Ankleshwar and Bharuch to avoid the Golden Bridge or go on it, made a call to Roamingrao, who was 100 kms behind us, his view was during the same time last year when he did his GQ, traffic was choc a bloc, so he said, take it as there is a cars only lane. We took the golden bridge, and our hearts sank as we approached it, to see huge pile up, there was no way out, called Roamingrao and advised him against it, but as luck would have it suddenly, a policeman come about stops lorries and makes way for cars to move on to the wrong side of the road to proceed to the toll gate, out of it in 15 minutes, called Roamingrao and let him know our experience, incidentally he took it and was out in 10 minutes.
Hunger pangs, so we had a lot of restaurants on the left hand side of the road, entered one as we liked the name “Honest Nandini”, they had Thali food, good one at that, had a meal, during the meal one of us had a brainwave, why don’t we head to Udaipur and spend the entire day there, as it is 300 Kms from Vadodara and we could do it 5 hours and reach by 8pm. This was first time we broke a rule of not doing night driving beyond 7pm, though we reached Udaipur safely, it was a risk that we took in unknown roads.
Finally, lunch done, headed towards NE1, we still had 50 kms to reach Vadodara, to reach NE 1, we almost did a ring road sightseeing of Vadodara and approached NE1 and took it, here again the HVK and Roamingrao’s photo of deviation to Himmatnagar came to life, took the deviation and on to Himmatnagar, the next 60-70 kms was almost city traffic as it was single lane and over taking was next to impossible, this is where we lost all the time we had made up and darkness and fallen. We also spent a few minutes for Photo Op at board where Tropic of Cancer passes. As we were approaching Rajasthan border, Roamingrao’s travelogue reminded me of Ghats from the border to Udaipur, we had not factored in our travel, with heavy lorry traffic, and we managed to encounter the road to Udaipur.
Prior to this, we had called RTDC, Kajri and informed them about our change of plans and extended stay, they were very cooperative and confirmed the reservation. In the meanwhile my wife reached out to her colleague from Udaipur and took a contact to book a cab for sightseeing at Udaipur, which we had planned to do at every place we intended to do sightseeing, rather than take out vehicles with no idea of roads or places.
Reached RTDC Kajri at 9.30 pm, all in one peace, had driven 1600 kms in 2 days, which was a big ask, as the maximum we had done prior was 600 kms, this was an achievement of sorts.
Day 2 ended with 750 Kms of driving in 17 hours, with leisurely breaks of a total of 120 to 150 minutes, which does not include time lost at Tolls and Golden Bridge.

Day 3
Date - 3/10/2011
Location: RTDC Kajri, Udaipur
Time: 10 AM
Planned Destination – Udaipur Sightseeing Actual Destination – Udaipur Sightseeing

We got an 7+1 Innova and told the driver that it was his choice to show us Udaipur’s best places and no shopping, as we had been warned that these guys would take us where they had a cut.
First, went to City Palace, amazed by the Palace and the cleanliness, only later realized that the Royal family still owns it and maintains it, because when we saw Chittorgarh, it brought tears on the bad maintenance.
We hired a guide to show us the Palace which was indeed the good choice, as he explained with a lot of patience, once done, we thanked him and moved to the car and the next destination, the ropeway to the temple above the hill. Being holidays for schools a lot of schools had planned excursions, we somehow got thro’ the school crowd and got on the Cable car, I could not join as I have a fear of heights not sure if it is Vertigo or psychological, but other went up visited the temple and came back. Then we proceeded to the boat ride to shows from a distance where “Rich & Famous” stay when in Udaipur, one done, headed for lunch. The driver took us to Nataraj, lovely food, reminded us of Rajdhani in Bangalore, similar food and gestures and hospitality, once lunch done. We asked him to drop us at a market, as we did want to burn some calories as we had just a deed more than a few. Once shopping done, with ladies happy headed to some more sightseeing to another lake and palace by night, once all of them done, we bid adieu to our Innova and the driver, before we let him go, we had him talk to someone in Jaipur for a cab, it so happened his brother has an agency in Jaipur, so finalized the same for Jaipur.
Retired to our rooms, with great excitement about what we had seen today what we had in plan to see in the morning, the biggest fort in Asia, at Chittorgarh.
No driving done today, so Scorpio had a good rest; Tavera had the brakes redone at Atharva Motors in Udaipur.

Day 4
Date - 4/10/2011
Location: RTDC Kajri, Udaipur
Time: 5 AM
Planned & Actual Destination – Chittorgarh, Ajmer, Pushkar, Jaipur

Started at 5 am, sent an SMS to our guide for Chittorgarh, reached the top of the fort at 7 am, our guide was ready, we started our guided tour, and a lot of emotions engulfed us, awestruck at the mammoth and the grandeur of the fort, grief and anger at the ASI / Govt. of India to have brought it this state, if we cannot build another, why not maintain it. After an elaborate 3 hour tour, headed down to the town below for breakfast, only one restaurant was available, the less said the better about the place, filled our tummy.
Started towards Ajmer, as suggested to turn at Nasirabad to Ajmer, did take the deviation and pleasantly surprised by the quality of the road, reached Ajmer town and asked for directions to Dargah Sheriff and found the road, worried about parking, out came youths who pointed to parking places, went into one and parked both the cars. I was also warned about touts in helpings get to Dargah, was approached by one, avoided him and told him that we would manage. We started walking towards Dargah Sheriff, then a gentle man said it is closing time and it is about a kilometer away, before he could finish, an enterprising auto fellow promised to ferry us back and forth, fixed the price and hopped on. The next 10-15 minutes was a ride on my life, not sure if anybody else could drive but the locals, the width is good for 2 autos and was told that it was 2 way, with cattle, people and vehicles on the road, the auto driver may go bonkers if asked to drive on GQ with 4-6 lanes. Once we reached the entrance, we met the same tout type person, we did not have chance, but to go with him as the place was going to close, so followed him, he got us blessed, gave us few things like sacred thread and flowers and took us to the Dargah office, made us sit and offered us water and tea, spoke to us and asked us if we wished to donate then they could pay at the cash counter, duly made a donation got a receipt. He led us back to the entrance, blessed us and bid us goodbye, we did enquire if we need to pay him, he said that he was blood relation to the holy man; it was his duty that people should go back happy. On introspection, felt ashamed our misplaced thoughts, left for Pushkar with a happy mind and body.
Pushkar, here we come, at the entry toll, a man approached us to be the guide and told us he can take us to the temple directly, believed him, only later we found out everybody can get their cars to that place, had a darshan of the god and left for Jaipur.
Road to Jaipur is a mess via Kishangarh, lot of construction is happening , finally reached Jaipur, took some to locate RTDC Swagatham, it is in small lane, which is very easy to miss, finally checked in, value for money. Food is expensive for the quality served.
Day 4 ended with visiting 3 historical places, a total of 475 Kms.

Day 5
Date - 5/10/2011
Location: RTDC Swagatham, Jaipur
Time: 9 am
Planned & Actual Destination – Jaipur Sightseeing

Started at 9 am, went around the Palaces and Forts of Jaipur, had Lassi at a famous place, forget the name, did some shopping and retired for the day.

Day 6
Date - 6/10/2011
Location: RTDC Swagatham, Jaipur
Time: 4 am
Planned & Actual Destination – New Delhi

Started early, as per advice of HVK about constructions and traffic at Behror and Manesar, but was surprised to reach Dhaula Kuan by 8.15 am, as the day was Vijayadashami holiday, with most factories closed. Reached place of stay, on the way had called the cab guy, who reached at 10 am, we left at 10.15 am after breakfast to New Delhi sightseeing, was in Delhi after having spent a 8 months in 1997-8, it was a revelation, that people can make good roads and signage if they put their mind to it. Visited Delhi Haat, which was only place which was not crowded or since we reached early, all other places were full of people due to the holiday and Delhi was really hot. Visited Qutub Minar, headed towards Bahai Temple, saw it from outside as there was queue for a couple of kilometers, then headed to Swaminarayan Mandir, which too had huge crowds, so prayed from the parking entry and left for Rajghat, as Red Fort had to be avoided as Raavan Dahan was later in the day, not sure if Ram Lila Grounds is close by to Red Fort, but driver said we believed him.
Rajghat had huge crowds too but did spend time paying my respects to the great man.
Headed to the places of power, North & South Block, Parliament and the Rashtrapati Bhavan, saw all of them from a distance. The security made us feel “So near yet so Far”. A visit to Sarojini market ended our sightseeing of New Delhi.

Day 7
Date - 7/10/2011
Location: New Delhi
Time: 10 am
Planned & Actual Destination – Mathura & Agra

Post breakfast left for Mathura and Agra, road was peaceful, no traffic jams, except at Faridabad, reached Mathura at 12 Noon, all temples were closed so left for Agra, took a good amount of time to reach Rahi Tourist Bungalow, could not visit Taj, as it was Friday, so had to make do with Agra Fort and Light & Sound show.
Day 7 ended with very light driving.

Day 8
Date - 8/10/2011
Location: Rahi Tourist Home, Agra
Time: 5 am
Planned & Actual Destination – Taj and Varanasi

Started at 5 AM to view Taj at Sunrise. Fantastic piece of architecture and masterpiece. Spent about hour or so at Taj, started for Varanasi. This section encountered the best roads of GQ. Road from Agra to Varanasi. Very good flyover at Kanpur, which avoids the city, the best road for me was 80 KM Allahabad bye pass, no words to explain, above all NO TOLL. WE did good speed and reached outskirts of Varanasi at about 4.30 pm after having break for brunch, as we wanted to see the Ganga Arathi. The next 90 minutes was a nightmare, from which I have still not recovered. My brother in law wanted to perform ceremonies of parents at Varanasi, so he had contacted a priest and they had made arrangements. To reach the guest house, this is near Harishchandra Ghat/ Hanuman Ghat, had to drive in lanes which may be a have had a foot on either side of my Scorpio, had heard Varanasi is not so clean place, but this is heights. No offence meant, but even the residents do not take any initiative, which was appalling to see Foreigners roaming the streets, not sure what impression they would carry about one of the holiest places of India, any way had to park her amidst garbage and slush, emptied a few packets of Ratkill around and under the car.
Walked down immediately to the boat to witness Ganga Arathi, that was really refreshing, the next 45 minutes took us away from what we had to just go thru’

Day 9
Date - 9/10/2011
Location: Harishchandra Ghat/ Hanuman Ghat
Time: 10 am
Planned & Actual Destination – Temple Visit

Post the ceremonies, we headed to Kashi Vishwanath Temple at 11 am, we had engaged a guide to takes in without a delay, may be the almighty did not like the way we wanted to see him, refused permission to see him, the cruel reason was that Governor of MP was supposed to visit, so they had closed entry from 11 am, till 1 PM there was no sign of the Governor, so we decided to pray from outside, visited Vishalakshi and had very good food Annapurna Temple trust, walked back to the guest house.
Once at the guest house the nightmare of heading back to the highway, but since it was day time, we manage to get out in 45 minutes and hit the highway.
Road up to Mohania was bad, later it turned to be good. As instructed by HVK, took a left at Dhobi to Gaya.
We did make the same mistake as we did at Varanasi, called up the priest and told him that we will manage accommodation, even if it meant staying at Bodhgaya, so on the way found a good place at Gaya – Vishnu International, which had a kitchen only for guests, very good food and reasonable.

Day 10
Date - 10/10/2011
Location: Gaya
Time: 9 am
Planned – Bodhgaya Sightseeing and then proceed to Durgapur
Actual Destination - Bodhgaya Sightseeing and then proceed to Kolkata

As it is one of the memorable date of my life, my son’s birthday, took him and others to Bodhgaya temple, hoping a visit to a great persons place of penance would do good to my son.
As we were returning, my sister called and said that the ceremonies which were supposed to be over at 2 pm, would be done by 12 noon and we can start at 12.30, so let’s look to Kolkata instead of Durgapur.
The second time we broke the rule, and hit to Kolkata, no issues, excellent road, but once in Kolkata it was absolutely difficult to get people to help out, not attitude but the lack of them at the time of the hour at 10 pm, finally got a taxi driver to help us out, finally reached destination. Kona Expressway, what a misnomer, it is nothing but rubble laid and called an expressway, Mamatadi, please note, infrastructure is way to progress.

Day 11
Date - 11/10/2011
Location: Kolkata
Time: 9 am
Planned & Actual Destination – Kolkata Sightseeing

As usual the cab that had been booked arrived and we started with… what else a good South Indian breakfast at Komala Vilas on Rash Behari, then headed to Dakshineshwar and Belur spent a 1 hour at both. As it was Laxmi Pooja, there was not much crowd at Kali Temple. On our way back, we asked the driver to take us to KC Das on Esplanade, where we hogged on the sweets, puri and samosas. Once done headed to New Market for shopping.
We were absolutely tired and it was hot in Kolkata, asked the driver to drive us around famous places, he did show us Victoria Memorial, Race Course, Eden Gardens, Mamatadi’s house. We so much wanted to the Metro and Tram, but the heat and drive to Kolkata had taken its toll, went back to the guest house to retire for the day, as we had a long day ahead, with Jaleshwar Check post giving me nightmare and Orissa Roads.

Day 12
Date - 12/10/2011
Location: Kolkata
Time: 5 am
Planned & Actual Destination – Konark & Puri

We started in right earnest at 5 am, to reach Konark before sunset, as we did earlier, went thru’ Rubble Expressway till we reached NH6 to Kharagpur. As instructed by Roamingrao, stayed on the right at Kharagpur Bye pass and headed to Bhubaneshwar. Roads were excellent, Jaleswar was fast approaching and my tension too was getting to me. Finally Jaleswar was reached, as instructed by a lot bhpians, stayed on the wrong lane for half the distance and moved back to the correct lane on the other side. A few funny things happened or noticed, one is the Toll gate has been shifted from it is original position which is about 5-10 kms, secondly the toll gate is also on the wrong side of the road and finally this takes the cake, I have noticed in most of the border check posts to have many tea stalls, but here I found grocery stores selling Ashirwad 5 KG packs, this really says that lorries are stuck for days/weeks, not sure who needs to take call, but the sooner the better.
Once Jaleswar was passed, drove thru Orissa’s so called GQ, in the melee of Lorries with containers missed the entry to Chilka Lake, I hope the Orissa Government does something to advertise this place more, or if they are doing it, I did not see any. I did get a glimpse of Chilka from the top of the hill.
I had the Worst and Best experiences on the road at the entry to Cuttack, at Madhupatna; I had a flat, though tubeless, the metal piece was big enough to deflate the tyre, it so happened that the road was wide and did block the road. As the Murphy’s Law goes, “something has to go wrong, it will”, the wheel spanner rod broke and desperately searching for Puncture shops, sorry to say, found many, but none was willing to come, just requested them to change the tyre, which was pathetic, for people who have shops for the same purpose on the highway. My faith in the almighty was increased, as I was searching for mechanics to help out, found a Maruti workshop, went and met the guy incharge and just told him my plight, without batting an eyelid, he called out to his assistants, reeled off the tools and asked one of them to accompany me, and dropping all work he had on hand, was too very famished to believe this was happening to me, bundled him to the other car and took him to the Scorpio. Meanwhile, my wife noticed a guy on bike circling the car and watching the damaged tyre, she took a chance a approached him for help, he did promise her to get help, when we arrived , he too got his mechanic, both the mechanics got working and within 5 minutes the car was ready to be driven, the feeling was amazing, we dropped the guy from Maruti workshop, he charged Rs.100 and the other mechanic who came with bike fellow, paid him Rs.100, he spoke something to the bike fellow in Oriya, I thought he wanted more, but it turned out that he did not have change and wanted only Rs.50,but asked him to keep it, within a span of an hour found angels. My wife also had reached to Justdial services, they gave a list of spare part dealers who were no way connected to this issue, even then she called on of them Mr. Manoj of Manoj Automobiles, and requested help, he sent 2 people to help out, but the work was done, this guy Manoj repeatedly called my wife to find out if it was fine and we are safe and good to drive. Fantastic people.
I did have a fear that punctured tyre may not withstand another puncture, but when asked Manoj directed us to Rajdhani tyres on Cuttack Road, where I wanted buy a new tyre, there the guy asked me not to buy a new tyre, he will get the tyre readied and usable but would need an 1 hour, he took the tyre to another shop got the patch work done, which cost Rs.300, and Rs.30 for removing and putting the tyre back, amazing service.
This took us till 3.30pm and finally proceeded to Konark, the sun set as we entered the Sun Temple, saw whatever we could and headed to Puri.
Checked into the hotel and asked about the temple visit, they did mention it is season time and may take more than a few hours, engaged an auto for to and fro, went to the temple, surprised by the crowd, which as good as any temple in Bangalore, took exactly 15 minutes to go in and come out.
A very eventful day, maybe the most till date.
Day 12 ended with a drive 550 Kms.


Day 13
Date - 13/10/2011
Location: Puri
Time: 5 am
Planned & Actual Destination – Visakhapatnam

Started at 5 am towards Vizag, roads up to Khurdha/ NH were ordinary, but post that it was good, crossed Ichchapuram as we did Jaleswar, reached ISKCON by about 3.30 pm, checked in. Since we had planned to do Vizag Chennai, 850 Kms, the next day wanted the cars to be checked for any issues, spoke to Ajith at Automotive Manufacturers, he welcomed us, check the lights as my headlights had gone out, checked the fuse and got it working, all for free, Great.
We headed to the famous RK Beach, hoping find stalls like Juhu in Mumbai, but sorry to say did find many stall, but none of them suited our palate, felt disappointed, but no complaints or offence meant, so returned early a retired to bed.
Day 13 ended with 600 kms of drive.

Day 14
Date - 14/10/2011
Location: Vishakhapatnam
Time: 4.30am
Planned Destination - Chennai
Actual Destination – Bangalore

Started at 4.30 am, did not have slight inkling of what by the end of the day would do to me confidence as driver and also my car.
Reached Rajahmundry at 7 am, a distance of 200 kms, had breakfast and started to Chennai, on the way I suggested to my wife why don’t we hit to Bangalore, we will get 2 full days before we get back to office, she backed me, we started the journey to Bangalore, without realizing the risk I was taking, though I knew but could let my wife know, did not let my sister’s family know too. Picked speed and crossed Vijayawada at 10.30 am, again GQ is a sham in and after Vijayawada. I all the while was upset that we have a traffic light on State Highway in Bangalore – Mysore, having 2 on a National Highway in Vijayawada was the height, there is toll of Rs.67 end of Vijayawada city towards Chennai, felt it the money collected is not for any road, but to put the “Diversion 400 metres board”, it is disgrace that the government has allowed the contractor to collect the money.
Passed by Nellore at 2.30pm, still had doubts of reaching Bangalore, but did not lose heart, reached border at 4 pm, headed to Chennai, did not know of the new flyover or diversion to Bangalore, checked with toll guy, he guided me and whoa!!! Was in Poonamalee at 6pm. This is when my wife asked me seriously whether we could continue or not, asked her to give me a few minutes, approached a hotel Kumara Vilas, ordered something to be packed to avoid wasting time, in the meanwhile asked for 1 milk for my son and 2 filter coffees (second one in 14 days), instantly I got the energy that I wanted, wife too got excited after the coffee, she went and asked the brand of the coffee powder, where else but from my beloved home state of Karnataka ( Café coffee day from Chikmagalur), that must have been a message to come home, so we did, the next 350 Kms was more of city drive.

Passed by Infosys campus at 10.30pm, Silk Board at 10.45pm, Sarjapur Road Junction at 10.55 PM, TOTAL Mall crossing at 11.05pm.

Finally, my GQ was accomplished in 14 days, with endurance driving of 1250 kms for 19 hours with a total break of an hour; I surpassed my own endurance limits amazing that I could do it. But for my wife next to me, it would not have been possible; she did not sleep a wink during the driving period, though at times, stopped to take a power nap for a few minutes.

Thanks to all you guys, who have sent in your tips at various times
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Old 17th October 2011, 16:06   #13
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Congrats Rajesh for the completion of a successful trip. Please put up detailed photographs of whole trip.
How much distance did you cover in total?
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Old 17th October 2011, 16:18   #14
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Awesome travelog, you finished this pretty fast post some pics . Maybe a seperate thread in the Travelog section would be great!
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Old 17th October 2011, 16:34   #15
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Default Re: Golden Quadrilateral in 2011

Congrats rajesh on successfully completing GQ trip. We too planning a similar trip jan 2012. Have to come to Blr. Will take Delhi - Kolkata - Vizag - Blr. Return via Pune - Mumbai - Ahmd - Jaipur - Delhi.

Do post the detailed log, details of hotels you stayed, road condition, fuel station info etc.
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