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Old 3rd February 2017, 18:08   #1
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Default Vacations in South India - Suggestions needed

Hi All:

Planning a vacation in South India - need suggestions/advice.

Tentative plan - Last week of May + 1st week of June

Questions:
- How is the weather that that time of the year?
- Between Munnar and Ashtamudi -- which one should I choose? Keeping the weather and other things in mind?
- Is it at all advisable to goto Kerala? or should I completely drop it from the plan?
- on the other places ---- how is the weather? Is it a good plan to do in summers?
- Need help for hotels/stay in Bandipur. Being suggested Jungle Lodge - but that is very expensive! Any other options that are good? but not so expensive? Also they say that staying in Jungle Lodge - you get a preference of Jeep safaris. Is this the case?
- Any other advice that I should be aware of?

Please pour in the suggestions.
Thanks.

Itinerary


Day1:
- Fly into BLR
- Self Drive / Taxi to Bandipur

Day2:
- Bandipur

Day3:
- Bandipur to Coorg

Day4:
- Coorg

Day5:
- Coorg

Day6:
- Coorg to Munnar/Ashtamudi

Day7:
- Munnar/Ashtamudi

Day8:
- Munnar/Ashtamudi

Day9:
- Munnar/Ashtamudi to Ooty

Day10:
- Ooty

Day11:
- Ooty

Day12:
- Ooty to BLR

Day 13:
- Fly back
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Old 3rd February 2017, 19:01   #2
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Default re: Vacations in South India - Suggestions needed

- Climate wise, it is going to be tough. May is very hot. June first week sees monsoon starting in KL and within couple of days of that in western parts of KA too.
- Munnar is hill station, Ashtamudi is backwaters. You can take a pick out of the two. Since you are planning of covering other hill stations (Ooty, Coorg) you can opt for Asthamudi.
- Summer is a good time to visit jungles (Bandipur). However, not so good time to visit any of the other places mentioned. Temperatures will be manageable, however you will find the scenery dry.
- For Bandipur, JLR is the best bet. It is not about preference in jeep safaris, JLR conducts jeep safari, prices of which is included in the stay package. If opting for government safari, you may have to be happy with mini-bus ones since they are known to stop jeep safari during summers if there are any patrolling / forest fire issues. In any case JLR, govt safari and govt stay option near the safari can be booked online.
- Another option is to drive few KM's further, cross over to TN side and check in any of the numerous stay options at Masinagudi.
- Your itenary has bit of up down travel. You can consider Coorg - Bandipur - Ooty - Munnar / Asthamudi. However, I would suggest you drop either KA or KL part and concentrate only on few of the places mentioned. Else you may end up traveling most times and may not get much time for sightseeing.
- Do note that Bandipur - Ooty road closes between 09:00 PM - 06: 00 AM since it pass through wildlife reserve.
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Old 3rd February 2017, 19:06   #3
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Default re: Vacations in South India - Suggestions needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by sach.sri View Post
Hi All:

Planning a vacation in South India - need suggestions/advice.

Tentative plan - Last week of May + 1st week of June
Consider this small change - Coorg lies in a different direction, so it would be better to cover in this order to reduce unnecessary travel:

Bangalore - Madikeri (Coorg)
Madikeri - Bandipur
Bandipur - Ooty
(I would also add Athirapally falls here - as the season would be starting)
Ooty - Munnar
Munnar - Bangalore

Instead you could Skip Coorg, and do Kodaikanal (another very beautiful hill station) as follows.

Bangalore - Bandipur
Bandipur - Ooty
Ooty - Munnar
Munnar - Kodaikanal
Kodaikanal - Bangalore

Note that most of the routes, you will be driving in hills, so a 100 km distance might take 3 hours to complete. Plan accordingly.

All these places might get some monsoon rains starting from the end of June. It will be beautiful though, but not very suitable for a traveler. Please consider May or early June.
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Old 3rd February 2017, 20:58   #4
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Default re: Vacations in South India - Suggestions needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
- Climate wise, it is going to be tough. May is very hot. June first week sees monsoon starting in KL and within couple of days of that in western parts of KA too.
- Munnar is hill station, Ashtamudi is backwaters. You can take a pick out of the two. Since you are planning of covering other hill stations (Ooty, Coorg) you can opt for Asthamudi.
- Summer is a good time to visit jungles (Bandipur). However, not so good time to visit any of the other places mentioned. Temperatures will be manageable, however you will find the scenery dry.
- For Bandipur, JLR is the best bet. It is not about preference in jeep safaris, JLR conducts jeep safari, prices of which is included in the stay package. If opting for government safari, you may have to be happy with mini-bus ones since they are known to stop jeep safari during summers if there are any patrolling / forest fire issues. In any case JLR, govt safari and govt stay option near the safari can be booked online.
- Another option is to drive few KM's further, cross over to TN side and check in any of the numerous stay options at Masinagudi.
- Your itenary has bit of up down travel. You can consider Coorg - Bandipur - Ooty - Munnar / Asthamudi. However, I would suggest you drop either KA or KL part and concentrate only on few of the places mentioned. Else you may end up traveling most times and may not get much time for sightseeing.
- Do note that Bandipur - Ooty road closes between 09:00 PM - 06: 00 AM since it pass through wildlife reserve.
Thanks. But if I cross over to TN and stay in Masingudi - how do I go the safaris? My main objective to goto Bandipur will be to do safaris?

I can look at going to Coorg before Bandipur, but unfortunately cannot goto Ooty earlier than what I have planned - as I am a club Mahindra member and I am only getting availability at those dates in Ooty.

Also -I put the suggested order in google maps - there is not much difference in the driving distances.

Also - from coorg to AShtamudi - Google maps shows route along the sea --- is it a road along the see coast? meaning is the road parallel to the sea? If so - that would be simply awesome drive


Quote:
Originally Posted by hybridpetrol View Post
Consider this small change - Coorg lies in a different direction, so it would be better to cover in this order to reduce unnecessary travel:

Bangalore - Madikeri (Coorg)
Madikeri - Bandipur
Bandipur - Ooty
(I would also add Athirapally falls here - as the season would be starting)
Ooty - Munnar
Munnar - Bangalore

Instead you could Skip Coorg, and do Kodaikanal (another very beautiful hill station) as follows.

Bangalore - Bandipur
Bandipur - Ooty
Ooty - Munnar
Munnar - Kodaikanal
Kodaikanal - Bangalore

Note that most of the routes, you will be driving in hills, so a 100 km distance might take 3 hours to complete. Plan accordingly.

All these places might get some monsoon rains starting from the end of June. It will be beautiful though, but not very suitable for a traveler. Please consider May or early June.
Thanks. As I mentioned above - there is not much difference in driving distances.
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Old 6th February 2017, 19:12   #5
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Default Re: Vacations in South India - Suggestions needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by sach.sri View Post
Hi All:

Planning a vacation in South India - need suggestions/advice.

Tentative plan - Last week of May + 1st week of June

Q
Day 13:
- Fly back
You may look at clubbing Coorg, Ooty and Wayanad? It is easier and closer to each other. Check out this link since you are starting from Bangalore. It has ready made itinerary with route map. http://traveltwosome.com/road-trips-...-wayanad-ooty/
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Old 6th February 2017, 21:53   #6
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Default Re: Vacations in South India - Suggestions needed

Quote:
Originally Posted by sach.sri View Post
Hi All:

Planning a vacation in South India - need suggestions/advice.


Day 6 could get quite hectic. Kilometre is less but could get hectic if you enter Kerala between 8am and 8pm.

Head for Ashtamudi just because you are covering Coorg/Ooty. I think Kumarakom would be better than Ashtamudi.
As for scenic drive (parallel to sea) through Kerala, almost you can't see sea anywhere while driving. Even though it is parallel to sea its about 100 meters from sea and full of buildings.
I'd say Kerala is a big city and not state. You can get petrol bunks every 5 kilometres or so and hotels/small eateries everywhere.
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