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Old 20th April 2016, 12:31   #1
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Default Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

Hi friends -

I am looking for some help from you to figure out the best way to have darsans at Pancharama Temples. I am from Trivandrum, need to be in Calicut on the 8th May and trying to club this darsan. I would, therefore, go from Calicut.

I prefer staying at some place from where it is easier to go to these temples. I usually take a cab that will take me to these places for the driver would know the alternate routes and restaurants well. I can enjoy some time with family and glutton without having to worry about driving. This is how I have covered many temples around Trichy and Chennai.

After the darsan of these temples, I would want to return to Trivandrum.

Need help on the following -

1. Route from Calicut
2. Where do I stay so that I can take a cab and finish the darsans in a day or two
3. Which route do I take to return to Trivandrum

Thanks for taking your time to help me.

Regards
Jay

Last edited by convivial : 20th April 2016 at 12:36. Reason: Additional Information
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Old 20th April 2016, 12:59   #2
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Default re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

Quote:
Originally Posted by convivial View Post
Hi friends -

I am looking for some help from you to figure out the best way to have darsans at Pancharama Temples. I am from Trivandrum, need to be in Calicut on the 8th May and trying to club this darsan. I would, therefore, go from Calicut.

I prefer staying at some place from where it is easier to go to these temples. I usually take a cab that will take me to these places for the driver would know the alternate routes and restaurants well. I can enjoy some time with family and glutton without having to worry about driving. This is how I have covered many temples around Trichy and Chennai.

After the darsan of these temples, I would want to return to Trivandrum.

Need help on the following -

1. Route from Calicut
2. Where do I stay so that I can take a cab and finish the darsans in a day or two
3. Which route do I take to return to Trivandrum

Thanks for taking your time to help me.

Regards
Jay

Ideally stay in Vijayawada to visit Amravathi(Amarama) as that is the midpoint and you could go to all the temples.

Next day leave for Rajahmundry and stay there and do day trips to Samalkot and back to Rajahmundry

Next day Rajahmundry-Drakhsaramam-Bhimavaram-Palakollu and back to Rajahmundry.


Rajahmundry you can check out Hotel River Bay,accomodation facilities are not that great in the town.The other option if you are ok with driving a little more is the Coconut Country Resort at Dindi in the Konaseema region.

From Calicut the best way would Kozhikode-Bangalore-Hyderabad-Suryapet-Vijayawada-Amravathi with a stay in Vijayawada.

Calicut-Bangalore is approximately 5 hrs,another 8hrs to bangalore and another 5hrs to Guntur.You can choose to stay at bangalore or hyderabad depending on your convenience and how much distance you are prepared to drive on a single day.
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Old 20th April 2016, 14:53   #3
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Default re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

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Originally Posted by ranjitp1 View Post
Calicut-Bangalore is approximately 5 hrs,another 8hrs to bangalore and another 5hrs to Guntur.You can choose to stay at bangalore or hyderabad depending on your convenience and how much distance you are prepared to drive on a single day.
Calicut-Bangalore would be around 7 to 8 hours with normal driving - not 5. It would be very difficult to do it under 6.5 hours even with a very early start because you need to account for the ghat section and then the forest stretch both of which can be quite slow to cover.
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Old 20th April 2016, 15:49   #4
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Originally Posted by kala View Post
Calicut-Bangalore would be around 7 to 8 hours with normal driving - not 5. It would be very difficult to do it under 6.5 hours even with a very early start because you need to account for the ghat section and then the forest stretch both of which can be quite slow to cover.
Oops sorry,i dont know what I was thinking when I wrote that.8hr it definitely is.
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Old 20th April 2016, 17:19   #5
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Default re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

>>From Calicut the best way would Kozhikode-Bangalore-Hyderabad-Suryapet-Vijayawada-Amravathi with a stay in Vijayawada.

I think Bengaluru - Tirupati - Naidupeta - Nellore - Ongole - Vijayawada - Amaravati makes more sense. Bengaluru to Nellore is around 360 kms. Then Vijayawada is another 300kms from there.

You are looking at 10 to 11 hours of drive from Bengaluru.

If you go via Hyderabad, you cover almost 200 kms extra. However, roads are much nicer on the Hyderabad stretch. You will spend about 12 hours on the road this way.
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Old 21st April 2016, 11:56   #6
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Default re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

It depends on your mode of travel from Kozhikode. Do you intend to drive to viziawada and then hire a local taxi?

If you intend to drive upto viziawada, do the rest of trip also your self. It is not that difficult

I suggest stick to Bangalore-Naidupet-Viziawada route. It is not only 200 km less in distance, road surface is also fine. Only 200 km is old two lane road with good surface. Rest all is 4 lane from Bangalore.

Second: How much time do you have for this trip? It is important because, if you have more time , you can cover some important places on the route without deviating much

Now, regarding Pancharama temples, You can cover Amaravati by taking deviation from NH5 at Tenali or Guntur and then go to viziawada. Alternately you can cover on the way back

From Viziawada-Bhimavaram-Palakollu-Antervedi-Draksharamam-Samalkot-Dwaraka Tirumala-Vijayawada.
total distance will be approximately 550Km.
Can be done in a day, but little hectic.
Two days you can do leisurely.
There are some more important places nearby like Ryali Jaganmohini temple( one of its kind)
It is there in route map included.
Need anymore information, you are most welcome. Did this section two year back in May.
But keep in mind it will be very very hot and humid in April-may

Draksharamam temple has reasonable good AC cottages next to temple. I had pais Rs 700/ per suite. They have two suites
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Last edited by rkg : 21st April 2016 at 11:58.
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Old 21st April 2016, 21:52   #7
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Default Re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

How useful a reply - thanks RKG! Thanks for all replies so far.

To answer you, I will be driving from Kozhikode. I would like to be at some middle place and take a cab so that I don't end up tiring myself.

I am looking at 5 days to cover this distance.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rkg View Post
It depends on your mode of travel from Kozhikode. Do you intend to drive to viziawada and then hire a local taxi?

If you intend to drive upto viziawada, do the rest of trip also your self. It is Now, regarding Pancharama temples, You can cover Amaravati by taking deviation from NH5 at Tenali or Guntur and then go to viziawada. Alternately you can cover on the way back

From Viziawada-Bhimavaram-Palakollu-Antervedi-Draksharamam-Samalkot-Dwaraka Tirumala-Vijayawada.
total distance will be approximately 550Km.
Can be done in a day, but little hectic.
Two days you can do leisurely.
There are some more important places nearby like Ryali Jaganmohini temple( one of its kind)
It is there in route map included.
Need anymore information, you are most welcome. Did this section two year back in May.
But keep in mind it will be very very hot and humid in April-may

Draksharamam temple has reasonable good AC cottages next to temple. I had pais Rs 700/ per suite. They have two suitesnot that difficult

I suggest stick to Bangalore-Naidupet-Viziawada route. It is not only 200 km less in distance, road surface is also fine. Only 200 km is old two lane road with good surface. Rest all is 4 lane from Bangalore.

Second: How much time do you have for this trip? It is important because, if you have more time , you can cover some important places on the route without deviating much

Last edited by convivial : 21st April 2016 at 21:56.
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Old 22nd April 2016, 09:47   #8
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Default Re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

5 days time schedule is from calicut and back to trivendram or only for Pancharama temples?

You will not be tired at all. do it yourself.
You have not mentioned when you are planning, this May or June?
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Old 22nd April 2016, 15:45   #9
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Default Re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

I don't know; I may be wrong too. I am looking at 5 days to go from Calicut to AP, cover the temples and drive back to Trivandrum. Is that too short?

I am planning week after next - I know I will be baked. Right? I had been to Srikalahasti 2 weeks back and realized how hot it is even at 0630AM!

Thanks much for your time to help.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rkg View Post
5 days time schedule is from calicut and back to trivendram or only for Pancharama temples?

You will not be tired at all. do it yourself.
You have not mentioned when you are planning, this May or June?
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Old 23rd April 2016, 09:34   #10
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Default Re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

5 days is too short for to and fro from calicut, especially in summer. Almost all the temples close in the afternoon from 12 or 13 hours to 16/17 hours . so you need more time.
Try to make it full week sunday to sunday(8 days). you can cover many more in a leisurely way.
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Old 13th May 2016, 12:28   #11
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Default Re: Help with planning: Pancharama Temples, Andhra Pradesh

I am sitting here at Vijayawada after having covered a good portion of the journey and mentally & physically preparing to drive back to Trivandrum. Here is how it went - posting this here so that it could help anyone trying to venture in this route.

Day 1 - Calicut to Vellore - The leg from Calicut to Palghat (Via Perinthalmanna) is the most treacherous. Roads are good on the surface; the traffic & the width of the roads make it extremely difficult to gain speed. In my words, I felt I washed a lot of my sin (which I probably accumulated shouting at those who tend to get insensible on the roads) by driving this route and that too starting at 1000! As if my day was destined to be worse, Google Maps kept confusing me and trying hard to make me go around in circles. This stretch took 3 hrs because of some road works too. Went to Coimbatore & from there to Salem. This is a breeze though the L&T isn't purely expressway in its modern form. You can still maintain a good average. Next was Salem-Vellore (via Krishnagiri). Went over a (possibly) dead dog on a bend and it was only after I hit hard on my right shock, that I realized how hard it was. Hope my brand new Bilstein didn't get hurt. Was already tired by the time I reached Krishnagiri and looking for good restaurants - Saravana Bhavan was a blessing! What an awesome experience. The drive from Krishnagiri-Vellore was like a splendid Tiramisu dessert after a horrendous soup, starters and an average main course! Retired at GRT Sameera - which helped me close an arduous day with a smile. Very courteous and friendly staff - the only thing the security staff couldn't comprehend was the way I started cleaning my car right after checking-in to the hotel (and also before I stepped into the room). But that's what makes us wait for the next morning - I thank Jetta every time for being such an awesome companion!

Day 2 - Vellore to Vijayawada - Didn't know what was in store on Day 2 was even worse. It was the first time I was going that side and didn't know what to expect. Kept yearning for good roads for such a long time. Lack of restaurants like the ones you get pampered with, in Tamilnadu. Started at 1030 and stopped over for lunch at Saptagiri somewhere before Tirupati. It was very good though we stepped in with some skepticism. As soon as I crossed Nellore, Jetta showed an engine fault for the first time in over 5 years and over a lakh on the odo! I knew the sound of the engine was a little different and the ECM had gone into a safe mode not allowing me to pick up the rpm. Had close to 300 kms to reach Vijayawada, which was my destination. Called up VW Trivandrum and then RSA (thankfully! Everyone who drives long distances, need it - please be very sure about it). RSA guy wouldn't arrange a flat bed truck to take me to Vijayawada, but to Tirupati. I called up one of my friends who used to work in Skoda DXB for close to 15 years and he asked me to drive slow without kicking the turbo - he sensed it could be an issue with the turbo/intercooler. I went to a TATA truck dealership (didn't find anything else near and it was already 1730 with 1 hour lost in the process with RSA) & asked them to check the hoses. I would tell them clearly what to check & asked them if they heard anything unusual. They said they didn't find any sound unusual. So, gathering all courage, started for Vijayawada. The next 270+kms was driven under 1500 rpm with speeds around 70! What a punishment! More sins burnt! Reached Hotel Innotel in Vijayawada around 2300! I had a strong feeling this had something to do with the EGR.

Day 3 - Darsan @ Amaravathi - Hired a local Innova (my favorite for the drives to remote locations) and had darsan at Amararama temple at Amaravathi. This is just 50kms and came back by noon. Was working that day, so didn't venture out anywhere. There is always light at the end of the tunnel - I called up my driver last night and told him my state & his reply brought cheer to my dead spirits that the 270 kms wasn't all that painful. I had booked a hotel right opposite the VW dealership! It was in fact an issue with the EGR, but not bad. There was some error code that they scanned and erased. They said it could be a communication problem that could have caused this - will have to do a detailed check. The Service Manager was very helpful and came with his technician to go for a drive around 30 kms to make sure all was well! He even gave me all contact numbers from Guntur to Vellore so that I feel protected when I go back. The biggest surprise then was the RSA guy who never told me about Guntur! My idea to drive was basically fuelled by the thought that if I covered around 150 kms and then called up RSA again, should the red light come on, they would take the car to Vijayawada and I can ask my driver to come pick me up.

Day 4 - Remaining 4 temples - Started at 0745 and headed straight to Bhimavaram. Reached around 1030 and then after darsan went to Palakollu which is just 30 min from there. Finished the darsan around 1200 and then went to Rajahmundry for lunch. Found Hotel Shelton which had a restaurant that served food that was tasty & very reasonably priced. Its a good place to stay & dine. Relaxed for a bit and went to Samarlakota (an awesome temple that has a rich history) which is around 40 kms. Went frrom there to Draksharamam which is around 30 kms away. Hit the Chennai-Vizag highway and proceeded back to Vijayawada. Close to 650 kms and done in a day! The biggest challenge for me was to find good restaurants along the way. Is it like this all throughout the highways in AP? I am planning few more trips to places like Srisailam and wanted to know if I should almost always carry food along. We had some dry fruits that really helped. Lunch was easy since even a detour to Rajahmundry was not too long.

I will write my drive back to Trivandrum in the next post. Doing Vijayawada-Vellore tomorrow and staying at GRT again and then to Trivandrum. Waiting for a chance to hit my favorite Burma Kadai again!

I want to take a moment to thank this community which adds a lot of value to my life on the road. This group and its people are priceless!

A special thanks to @jkdas who tried to help me during my state of confusion.

Last edited by convivial : 13th May 2016 at 12:33. Reason: More text
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