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Old 8th April 2015, 14:24   #436
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

I recommend following

Day 1: Stop in Belgaum - Hotel eefa - 9 hour drive
Day 2: Drive on past Bangalore and stop over in Salem - Hotel Cennys - 9 hour drive - this part will take you on awesome roads.
Day 3: Leave for Cochin around 7 am once the bus traffic has passed. Slightly frustrating between CE and Trichur

Unless you are visiting Eddapally, turn right before Kalamaserry and take the ICT road into Cochin Marine drive
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Old 8th April 2015, 18:35   #437
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

Hello

One stop to Palakkad is a tempting proposition. Though I enjoy driving, the longest I have is Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar, which is a puny 260Kms. I have no clue how different or taxing will be the straight haul to Bangalore. I intend to stop every 2 hours or so and take adequate meal breaks. I am driving Octavia 1.9TDI. Folks, do you think a first time long distance driver like me can undertake Mumbai- Bangalore at a stretch? How should I approach it and what should I be wary of?

Regards
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Old 8th April 2015, 18:43   #438
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

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Originally Posted by Ashokkp View Post
Hello

One stop to Palakkad is a tempting proposition. Though I enjoy driving, the longest I have is Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar, which is a puny 260Kms. I have no clue how different or taxing will be the straight haul to Bangalore. I intend to stop every 2 hours or so and take adequate meal breaks. I am driving Octavia 1.9TDI. Folks, do you think a first time long distance driver like me can undertake Mumbai- Bangalore at a stretch? How should I approach it and what should I be wary of?

Regards
If you can make it to Bangalore on the first day that would be good. But then we are talking 12-13 of drive easily. Or may be stay in Tumkur on Day 1. And start early the next day. That should also be easy.

The only place worth considering in Tumkur is Naveen Regency.
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Old 8th April 2015, 18:55   #439
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ashokkp View Post
Hello

One stop to Palakkad is a tempting proposition. Though I enjoy driving, the longest I have is Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar, which is a puny 260Kms. I have no clue how different or taxing will be the straight haul to Bangalore. I intend to stop every 2 hours or so and take adequate meal breaks. I am driving Octavia 1.9TDI. Folks, do you think a first time long distance driver like me can undertake Mumbai- Bangalore at a stretch? How should I approach it and what should I be wary of?

Regards
It would be difficult to judge whether you can do it or not. One option is to take it as it comes. Start with the plan of driving to Bangalore in one stretch but keep your potential halt options ready, as you proceed evaluate how you feel. If you find it getting tiresome, plan to stop at the nearest potential halt.

Of course, this would meaning starting without confirmed hotel reservations or choosing options that allow to cancel. Not sure if these are feasible. If not, play safe and go with what you have planned. Based on how the trip goes, you can adjust accordingly next time.
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Old 8th April 2015, 19:01   #440
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

Hello Ampere

Checked out Naveen Regency. Well within my budget. IF Tumkur, then its Naveen. Davangere seems to be the mid-point of Mumbai-Palakkad. With Naveen Regency opening a branch in Davangere, this could be the easier option. If there are any spots of interest near Davangere, I could linger on for a day before I proceed to Palakkad. Thank you so much.

Regards
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Old 8th April 2015, 21:26   #441
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

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Originally Posted by Ashokkp View Post
Though I enjoy driving, the longest I have is Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar, which is a puny 260Kms. I have no clue how different or taxing will be the straight haul to Bangalore. I intend to stop every 2 hours or so and take adequate meal breaks. I am driving Octavia 1.9TDI.
I did Mumbai-Chennai - 1400km - alone in my Civic back in '11 in 20 hours (5AM - 1AM next day), which follows the suggested route for you till Krishnagiri. I too was a relative neophyte then; the longest prior to that being Chennai-Hyderabad. Some suggestions to reduce stress and tiredness:

1. Sleep really early and well the previous night. I was in bed by 8 PM and woke up at 4 AM.

2. Get past the morning bottlenecks quickly - I was past Pune before 7:30 AM or so (including a breakfast break).

3. Don't have heavy meals - eat small portions, but more frequently. Instead of a heavy lunch at 1 or 2 PM, go for a short meal at 12, another at 4 etc.

4. Don't drive with the A/c on for too long. I drove mostly with the window down. Helps in preventing drowsiness.

5. Keep yourself hydrated. I think I finished 5 bottles of water that I had carried with me. This will also create "pee pressure" that will force you to take frequent breaks, allowing you to stretch your legs. :-)

6. Be aware of mirage - especially in north Karnataka.

7. NH 4 is truly beautiful in north Karnataka. Resist the temptation to overspeed. Keep going at a steady pace.

Have an enjoyable drive.
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Old 8th April 2015, 23:16   #442
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Originally Posted by Ashokkp View Post
...One stop to Palakkad is a tempting proposition. Though I enjoy driving, the longest I have is Mumbai to Mahabaleshwar, which is a puny 260Kms. I have no clue how different or taxing will be the straight haul to Bangalore...
If this is going to be your first long drive, play it safe. Especially with a kid on board! You may not be able to cover as much distance as you're planning, and definitely you don't want to get stranded with fatigue in the middle of nowhere with family on tow!

Fatigue while driving long distances depend on the driving conditions as well. My first long drive was Vellore - Mangalore (600 km). Road and traffic conditions were alright, and I was reasonably fresh at the end. But subsequently when I did Vellore - Kottayam (650 km), I had to do the horrible Angamali - Muvattupuzha - Ettumanoor - Kottayam stretch towards the end of my drive, and I remember that draining the hell out of me.

Do it over 3 days this time. Plan for a 2 day drive the next time!

Last edited by Geo_Ipe : 8th April 2015 at 23:20.
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Old 9th April 2015, 10:36   #443
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

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Originally Posted by Ashokkp View Post
With Naveen Regency opening a branch in Davangere, this could be the easier option. If there are any spots of interest near Davangere, I could linger on for a day before I proceed to Palakkad.
Not sure of too many places to see around Davanagere but also on your route towards Tumkur/Bangalore you can possibly visit the Chitradurga fort and Vani Vilas Sagar Dam (may not have much water in summer now) near Hiryur.

At Davanagere, don't miss the famous Benne (Butter) Dosa
Kotureshwara Benne Dosa at Vidyanagar, just off the highway opposite the BDT college is excellent!
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Old 9th April 2015, 10:43   #444
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

Hi

Binand, I truly appreciate the wonderful and practical tips. Let me get into a huddle with my "fellow travellers" and decide. Geo's advice is valid too. And, I will definitely dig into Kotureshwra Butter Dosa

Thanks folks.

Regards
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Old 9th April 2015, 13:38   #445
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If you are willing, start without a destination target for the day and drive as long as all are comfortable. The roads are free and excellent beyond Belgaum and retire for the day when you wish.
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Old 20th April 2015, 13:44   #446
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

Hi

I plan to be doing Bangalore - Kollam (Quilon) frequently, over the next few months.

I drove Kollam - Bangalore, y'day, taking the Punalur - Shencottai - Kadaiyanallur route to hit NH7 at Nallatinputhur, about 100k south of Madurai. Decided against taking the Rajapalayam route to Madurai, as I thought this would be faster. Left Kollam around 5:30a and hit Blr by 3:30p, with two drivers and a petrol Swift, & standard(!) breaks. The roads were uniformly good, except for slight damage, in the Aryankavu area, which does not really slow you down. Had a longish wait at some silly railyway gate though, waiting for two trains to come and go!

Does it make sense to do Bangalore - Kollam, via Coimbatore-Palakkad-Kochi? I would prefer the ease of driving highways, to navigating the several towns & villages on the above route (after you get off 7, that is)

Has anyone done Bangalore - Kochi, in the last couple of weeks, or do it frequently? How are the roads?

I've been driving Bangalore - Trivandrum, once in two months, since 3Q2014, and always take the TN route, going down to Nagercoil and looping back up, to Tvm.
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Old 26th April 2015, 15:44   #447
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Post re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

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Originally Posted by ARG View Post
Hi

I plan to be doing Bangalore - Kollam (Quilon) frequently, over the next few months.

I drove Kollam - Bangalore, y'day, taking the Punalur - Shencottai - Kadaiyanallur route to hit NH7 at Nallatinputhur, about 100k south of Madurai. Decided against taking the Rajapalayam route to Madurai, as I thought this would be faster. Left Kollam around 5:30a and hit Blr by 3:30p, with two drivers and a petrol Swift, & standard(!) breaks. The roads were uniformly good, except for slight damage, in the Aryankavu area, which does not really slow you down. Had a longish wait at some silly railyway gate though, waiting for two trains to come and go!

Does it make sense to do Bangalore - Kollam, via Coimbatore-Palakkad-Kochi? I would prefer the ease of driving highways, to navigating the several towns & villages on the above route (after you get off 7, that is)

Has anyone done Bangalore - Kochi, in the last couple of weeks, or do it frequently? How are the roads?

I've been driving Bangalore - Trivandrum, once in two months, since 3Q2014, and always take the TN route, going down to Nagercoil and looping back up, to Tvm.

Hi - it totally depends on your priority
If you drive the Tamilnadu Route, the Chenkotta part is very scenic and after that nothing much as a treat for your eyes but the roads will be less busy and you could have an easy drive and will reach Bangalore through straight well maintained highways. But its a dull drive.
On the other hand if you the Kerala leg is more scenic below are my key tips for you

Kollam - Kochi leg you have 2 options
Via Kottayam Kumarakom to Kochi - on this route you could drive beside the famous back waters of Kumarakam - The road is very busy and got sharp turns etc.. speeds should be minimal and beware of reckless driving by limited stop bus drivers. Do not forget to turn to Kumarakam from Kottayam. Reemember to take the bye-pass before Tripunithura
Via Alapuzha to Chertala to Kochi - On this route its very good road, traffic is much easier to manage. Either sides of the roads are highly populated areas and its not a boring drive although not ac scenic as the other route. You will get occasional glimpses of Alleppy back waters too
From Kochi to Palakkadu the roads are very good but the 6 lane highway ends at Trichur from there there will be a lot of trucks on the road. You will pass through a lot of small towns. There is a toll close to Rs 100 but its worth it. You will be crossing the Priyar river also. But these roads very busy and please beat the temptation to drive on peak speeds.

Palakadu - Coimbatore - The Check post at times can cause a bit of traffic jam.

Coimbatore to Bangalore - the best roads in South India but you will have to pay mutliple tolls totalling more than 600 rupees.

Some extra hints - if you start at 7 from Kollam you will hit morning traffic at Kochi near Vytla junction.
Instead of Palakadu road try the Vayanadu Route, its through Bandipur forest but beware night driving is not allowed in this route - you will have to start earlier than 7 from Kollam - ideally 5 am. NH 17 is but not as easy drive as the other options. Kochi - Kozhikodu leg will need 4 hours plus.
Drive in Kerala is not a pleasant experience - most people don't give way, roads are crowded and not well maintained, be ready for some frustrations.
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Old 26th April 2015, 16:43   #448
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Never think of doing Kollam-Bangalore via Calicut with a 7am start unless its a two day trip Even Kollam - Kochi - Palakkad - Bangalore would be tiring for a 7am start. Kollam - Trivandrum - Nagarcoil will be crowded during day. Punalur route makes sense among all above.

Last edited by coolclouds : 26th April 2015 at 16:44.
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Old 28th April 2015, 09:15   #449
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Default re: Bangalore - Kochi : Route Queries

Thanks, both!

I generally do the Blr to Ker drive by myself, and was looking for the easiest route to Qln, in terms of effort. I think I'll give the Salem - Coimbatore - Palakkad - Kochi route a shot, this week. It's been almost a year since I last did Palakkad - Kochi, and the Kuthiran roads were pretty decent, then.

Timing wise, except for the 1am-4am slot, I'm OK with being on the road, throughout. Have either of you done Blr-Kochi, recently? How long did it take, including breaks, and at what time?

Love the Bangalore - Mysore - Gundulpet route! I used to frequent that route when my fiancee was at Calicut (thus relegating the brilliant scenery to a distant second, in the list of attractions!), in the good old days before the KA ban on night traffic on the Gundulpet - Muthanga road.

Last edited by ARG : 28th April 2015 at 09:17.
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Old 28th April 2015, 09:43   #450
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Punalur route makes sense among all above.
With you. Like I said in my original post, I did Qln-Blr on that route, along with my driver, the week before. But, once you get off the NH7, that route is a little tiring to drive. Not too sure, I want to be doing it at night and by myself.

Blr-Qln, via Salem-Palakkad-Kochi, to my mind, should be less of a strain, if I manage to beat traffic in Ker - and a BIG 'if' that is, of course!
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