Go Back   Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues > Route / Travel Queries


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 28th March 2015, 12:36   #1351
Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Pondicherry
Posts: 21
Thanked: 3 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Planning to drive to Bangalore next week. Thinking of taking TV Malai, Harur, Karimangalam, Krishnagiri route. Heard from the Bangalore-Thiruvannamalai thread that TV Malai to Karimangalam is good. What about Villupuram-Vettavalam-TVMalai (since Tindivanam-TVMalai is bad)? Anybody has tried Villupuram-Vettavalam-TVMalai-Harur-Morappur-Karimangalam-KGiri recently?
ns94 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28th March 2015, 16:04   #1352
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,429
Thanked: 8,299 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Quote:
Originally Posted by ns94 View Post
Planning to drive to Bangalore next week. Thinking of taking TV Malai, Harur, Karimangalam, Krishnagiri route. Heard from the Bangalore-Thiruvannamalai thread that TV Malai to Karimangalam is good. What about Villupuram-Vettavalam-TVMalai (since Tindivanam-TVMalai is bad)? Anybody has tried Villupuram-Vettavalam-TVMalai-Harur-Morappur-Karimangalam-KGiri recently?
Just answered to your question on the other thread.

On other thoughts: Just saw that your location says Pondicherry. Surely you should put a post of what all is there to eat in Pondicherry and which are the places to go to for the various cuisines ! (Given this thread is so popular)
ampere is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 28th March 2015, 17:23   #1353
Newbie
 
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Pondicherry
Posts: 21
Thanked: 3 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

@ampere I am not much of a foodie and honestly don't know much about cuisine. However I can suggest places where you can get a decent meal in case you are visiting pondy
ns94 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 28th March 2015, 20:20   #1354
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,429
Thanked: 8,299 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Quote:
Originally Posted by ns94 View Post
@ampere I am not much of a foodie and honestly don't know much about cuisine. However I can suggest places where you can get a decent meal in case you are visiting pondy
Nothing like that @ns! Especially since this thread is so live and there is always a talk of fusion of cuisines in Pondicherry, I thought why not someone post on the same !
ampere is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th April 2015, 21:04   #1355
BHPian
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 442
Thanked: 33 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Looked at a number of threads here before heading to Pondy a couple of weeks ago.

All the ones I read recommended heading via Vellore-Cheyyar-Vandavasi-Tindivanam. However we ended up following the MapMyIndia GPS, went via Kancheepuram instead of Cheyyar, missed the bypass in all three towns and ended up going through small, crammed alleyways and markets in all three towns. The roads after Vellore were also in terrible condition.

Our stay at the tourist-trap Dune Eco Group 15 kms from Pondicherry was such a major disappointment that we decided to come back early. The only saving grace was a marvelous lunch we had at Villa Shanti. If our accommodations were any better, I am sure we would have loved Pondy more.

One thing that made us happy though was driving back to Bangalore. It so happened that we missed a turn and ended up returning via Arani (Tiruvannamalai district). This road is apparently freshly tarred all the way to Vellore. We even saw many road rollers, etc. on the way side. This road has more vegetation and even some tree tunnels. No need to look for a bypass as the only major town on this road is Arani and even then the road to get in and out is wide and straight forward.

We really enjoyed driving back on this road and I thought others should know about it. I am not sure, but I guess this is the Tiruvannamalai route that members asked to avoid perhaps because it was in a bad condition earlier.

Last edited by mobike008 : 4th April 2015 at 23:09. Reason: Lets avoid alcohol subject on forum...Thanks
nowwhat? is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th April 2015, 21:23   #1356
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,429
Thanked: 8,299 Times
Default

That's why I always say GPS should be used for shorter sections. You should always have a handle on the high level routing.

Which route you said was freshly tarred? Tindivanam Tiruvannamalai? Or was it Tiruvannamalai Arani Vellore?
ampere is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th April 2015, 21:26   #1357
Senior - BHPian
 
suresh_gs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: KA-01 / TN-22
Posts: 1,913
Thanked: 1,134 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Quote:
Originally Posted by nowwhat? View Post
We really enjoyed driving back on this road and I thought others should know about it. I am not sure, but I guess this is the Tiruvannamalai route that members asked to avoid perhaps because it was in a bad condition earlier.
No Mate, This is not the dreaded T V Malai route you are talking about. That route is via Krishnagiri, Uthangarai, Singarapettai.
The route you are talking about is via Hosur, Krishnagiri, Vellore, Arani, Chetpet, Vandavasi and Tindivanam. The first choice route is via Hosur, Krishnagiri, Vellore, Arcot, Cheyyar, Vandavasi and Tindivanam.
suresh_gs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 4th April 2015, 21:55   #1358
BHPian
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 442
Thanked: 33 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere View Post
That's why I always say GPS should be used for shorter sections. You should always have a handle on the high level routing.

Which route you said was freshly tarred? Tindivanam Tiruvannamalai? Or was it Tiruvannamalai Arani Vellore?
The problem is that I didn't have a good bearing of Tamil Nadu not having looked at the route properly on a scaled map, hence had to rely solely on the GPS. On top of that, I am not comfortable with MapMyIndia and find it difficult to use. As expected MapMyIndia gave the route via Salem, so I had to split it in two: To Vellore and To Pondy.

We never touched the town of Tiruvannamalai, but we saw a few "Welcome to Tiruvannamalai district" signs and I am not entirely sure whether we went through Tindivanam town.

AFAIK, it was Pondy-Arani-Vellore.

Quote:
Originally Posted by suresh_gs View Post
No Mate, This is not the dreaded T V Malai route you are talking about. That route is via Krishnagiri, Uthangarai, Singarapettai.
The route you are talking about is via Hosur, Krishnagiri, Vellore, Arani, Chetpet, Vandavasi and Tindivanam. The first choice route is via Hosur, Krishnagiri, Vellore, Arcot, Cheyyar, Vandavasi and Tindivanam.
Thanks to stand corrected.

My recollection of the route is a bit foggy as what really happened is that I entered Vellore into the GPS and we were on our way when we reached a fork in the road and we took a left and seeing that the GPS rerouted to that route, we kept going straight. We must have driven on that road for close to 2 hours before we reached Arani. We then kept going until we reached Vellore town. All through, the road was smooth as butter. Some 10-15 kms before Vellore, one could see road rollers and paving work on one side of the road forcing us to drive on the other lane.

I know what I have said so far may be confusing and perhaps may not be of much help. But if anyone really wants, I can take a look at the MapMyIndia GPS in the car as I think it has a trip log feature.

Last edited by nowwhat? : 4th April 2015 at 22:00.
nowwhat? is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 5th April 2015, 08:40   #1359
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,429
Thanked: 8,299 Times
Default

I You need to go beyond Vellore. In fact you need to go till Arcot. It's here you exit the four lane. If you chart out the route its relatively very simple. Its only a five and a half hours of drive time at a sedate pace.

Villa Shanti is indeed a good place to dine. As regards to to the high end places to stay even I heard contrasting views. Example: the most luxurious hotel as per trip advisor is ocean spray. But I heard from someone as to how thoroughly disappointed he was when he stayed there.

On the GPS part I meant to say keep it on all the time but make sure you own the high level routing. I would suggest Garmin 24XX/25XX series devices loaded with MMI maps.

Last edited by ampere : 5th April 2015 at 08:42.
ampere is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th April 2015, 08:48   #1360
Senior - BHPian
 
suresh_gs's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: KA-01 / TN-22
Posts: 1,913
Thanked: 1,134 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Quote:
Originally Posted by nowwhat? View Post
The problem is that I didn't have a good bearing of Tamil Nadu not having looked at the route properly on a scaled map, hence had to rely solely on the GPS. On top of that, I am not comfortable with MapMyIndia and find it difficult to use.
If you ask me which is the best option to guide you in case of doubt, my answer will be scroll down your window and ask the locals how to go to your destination.
suresh_gs is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 6th April 2015, 18:33   #1361
BHPian
 
luvurride's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 517
Thanked: 281 Times
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by nowwhat? View Post

Our stay at the tourist-trap Dune Eco Group 15 kms from Pondicherry was such a major disappointment that we decided to come back early. The only saving grace was a marvelous lunch we had at Villa Shanti. If our accommodations were any better, I am sure we would have loved Pondy more.
Can you elaborate please? I thought that was one of the most sought after concept stays atleast a few years ago.
luvurride is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2015, 01:08   #1362
BHPian
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 442
Thanked: 33 Times
Default Dune Eco Group, Pondicherry

Quote:
Originally Posted by suresh_gs View Post
If you ask me which is the best option to guide you in case of doubt, my answer will be scroll down your window and ask the locals how to go to your destination.
We had a strange experience in one of the towns at around noon. Thinking that we may be going the wrong way, we stopped our car amid a group of shops that were open. I went to the first shop and there was no one there, the second shop also had no one, so I trudged over to the third shop which was a giant hardware shop with a fan running at full speed and was surprised to find no one there too. I then crossed the road and finally found someone who said that the owners had all gone to their homes for lunch and some respite from the stifling heat.

I don't think MapMyIndia works all that well on the routes we went in Tamil Nadu. We drove all the way to Ernakulam with no problem (except near Tiruppur, Tamill Nadu) using only the GPS and on our recent trip to Sakleshpur too, it took us on the Hassan and Channarayapatna bypass on its own.

Quote:
Originally Posted by luvurride View Post
Can you elaborate please? I thought that was one of the most sought after concept stays atleast a few years ago.
Where do I begin?

We paid a discounted rate of ₹9K a night (compared to ₹10.8K a night since we said we might extend for 2 more nights) including an extra bed for our 14 year old son. Now for that money, one would expect a comfortable, even luxurious stay in a boutique hotel in Bangalore (such as The Paul) or even Pondy (We checked at Villa Shanti).

Not so in the case of Dune Eco Group. They expect you to pay top dollar and rough it out the entire time you are there. The problems were simply too numerous in our case.

First and foremost, their hospitality which is so atrocious that it must be called "inhospitable". These people simply have no concept of what hospitality means. We were met by the (in)famous Hotel Manager (who people keep talking about on TripAdvisor) who was the least bit hospitable and showed zero interest in us. The same goes for their restaurant manager who simply couldn't care. Everyone else seems to be in fear of the Hotel Manager that even when I came across a bunch of workers who were engaged in an animated conversation among themselves in Tamil, they stopped abruptly. Making small talk to them in Tamil elicited no response. No one in this resort from the top down seems trained in hospitality or has any liberty to interact with guests, except the one person at the top, the Hotel Manager, who wants to be the sole point of contact for everything.

When we arrived, I asked the Hotel Manager if the Dome Cottage we selected was suited for the season. I told him that we simply do not have the energy to visit all the cottages and make a selection and he told me that the cottage they have provided was the best. This cottage was a single room with three alcoves, one with a bed wedged in it, with the other two being a bathroom and a toilet. The bathroom had just a shower curtain made of a few plastic strips which meant that we had to send our son out every time my wife took a bath. The toilet was strange in that it only had a 10 feet sliding door, but the top was open, which meant that all the odours would permeate the room. The unique positioning of the bed meant that either my wife or I had to jump over the other to go to the toilet or open the door.

The property is spread over 35 acres, so they provide 2 bicycles to every cottage. However the person who provided us the keys told us that we should be careful to lock our bicycles as several have been stolen from within this gated property before. Then in the same breath, she admonishes us that in case our bicycle is stolen, we should not steal someone else's bike but instead pay for a replacement. As a result, we never touched those dilapidated bicycles.

Now beat this. We went to Pondy end of March which was the wrong season, but we were counting on the AC. The room itself is around 20X20 feet not including the alcoves which are all part of the same structure, the roof was domed to a height of 25 feet, and there was a puny 1.5 ton AC that kept huffing and puffing all day and night. Given the dimensions of the room, it took around 2 hours for the AC to cool the room down and there was no fan! The AC itself was placed across the room and its positioning was such that it was blowing on to a closet. The main door was a sliding door around 12-15 feet tall that every time someone came in or out, the room would instantly heat up and then take 1-2 hours to cool down. This went on all day.

Breakfast is provided by Dune, all the other stuff is expensive and a-la-carte and none of it is cuisine local to Pondicherry. They boast two restaurants, but both serve pretty much the same menu. Their sea food restaurant does not serve local sea food and has two different items, the shrimp and calamari, which I wonder come frozen. Breakfast was the same on all the days we were there. Idli, chutney, sambar, cut fruits, 2 juices (watermelon, musk melon, papaya), cereal with milk and some cold bakery items. In addition, there was an egg station and 3 specials every day such as poori masala, pancakes, french toast or porridge. The porridge was watered down milk with maybe 5 oats thrown in. Cooking is not their forte despite at least 5-10 people in the kitchen. The pooris were made in reused oil given the black stuff that was stuck on to the poori. Pancakes were nothing one would recognize and the french toast was mere toast. The funny thing is that the cut fruits and the juices were always identical and the juice in particular was more like the pulpy version with bits and pieces of the fruit in them.

Now we are people who like to pampered and don't go around complaining for every silly thing. On reaching, we each took a bath and we noticed that the water was ice cold and never turned warm. We then noticed the TV remote was missing. Despite paying extra for my son, there was no bed inside the room. We had to call the Hotel Manager for each and everything and get things done like getting the hot water pump fixed. The number of people who came in and out meant that the room was hot and unbearable. For the extra bed, they simply moved a bed that they kept in the sit-out for lounging outside.

We had lunch at the Dune and my wife puked that day and my son puked at night. My wife wasn't sure if it was the "Dune water" which is "not only pure water, but revitalized water" that we ended up buying 2-liter Bisleri bottles and hoarding them.

Despite having a TV, one can only play movies on the TV which rents with a ₹100 deposit per DVD which they are very adamant about. During the world cup finale my son's happiness was momentarily dashed when he found out, but he then soon started renting DVDs. There in cropped the next problem. Most of the DVD's are so badly scratched that one can barely watch the first 30 minutes of a movie.

The only activities here are to milk a cow, walk to the beach and laze around in the swimming pool. We quickly got bored of the beach as it was too hot and we never did try milking a cow as nobody told us.

Dune claims to be serious about eco-tourism and social responsibility, both of which we found to be hogwash. All the gray water from the cottages goes out and is watered to the adjacent foliage by drip irrigation. But this clearly does not suffice as one can see laborers spending all day liberally watering the plants despite it being a water stressed area. As far as I could make out, their eco-tourism consists of some Fab India shampoo and a few bars of Fab India soap. Regarding social responsibility which they make a brouhaha about, it so happened that we mistakenly took the turn after Dune and ended up in the nearest fishing village which is accessible from the beach near Dune. But no one in the village had heard of Dune and in fact directed us to the Ocean Spray resort nearby.

Everything in this resort feels fake. Everything is pricey and dollar denominated.

We booked for 3 nights and had planned to stay for 5 nights, but my wife decided the first day itself that she couldn't take it any more and we cut our trip short to 2 nights. When we told the Hotel Manager the next day, he realized that we were upset, the wheels spurred into motion and finally he started showing us attention which itself was creepy.

As we were leaving, we picked up some items we had stored in the small fridge whose original ingredients we never touched as they were outrageously priced at 3-5 times MRP. The driver who came to pick us up for their in-house shuttle service for one-time pick-up and drop-off service then started a witch-hunt going over all the stuff both in the fridge and in our bag, checking labels which he had difficulty reading, all in an effort to decipher whether we had replaced some of the items in the fridge. Finally after 20 minutes, he tells us that he is unsure but in case the management ever finds out that there is a discrepancy, he would have to pay for the item at the inflated price out of his own pocket.

As we paid the bill, the Hotel Manager asks my wife to fill their feedback form with him watching over her shoulder. For the question which asks for the employee who has been most helpful during our stay, the Hotel Manager chimes in that he is an employee too, so she wrote his name.

Our entire trip was part of a corporate junket, so we did not pay a dime. Nevertheless I feel angry that we were sucked into it as Dune came at the top of the list for dog friendly hotels in India which too it isn't.

On the long way back, we tried to analyze why the trip was a disaster. We recalled the good moments we had in Pondy proper and convinced ourselves that since we lived in the city, 15 km away in the boondocks was perhaps the reason. We decided that we should stay only in cities from now on.

But all that changed when we went to Mugilu in Sakleshpur a few days ago. We stayed in the wilderness with nothing but bugs for company. There was no TV or AC. But we enjoyed every moment of our stay there. The difference was hospitality and the delicious food. In Mugilu, Chandan's help Mahantesh was so friendly, discreet and hospitable that we never missed a thing.
nowwhat? is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 9th April 2015, 06:54   #1363
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,429
Thanked: 8,299 Times
Default Re: Dune Eco Group, Pondicherry

Quote:
Originally Posted by nowwhat? View Post
I don't think MapMyIndia works all that well on the routes we went in Tamil Nadu. We drove all the way to Ernakulam with no problem (except near Tiruppur, Tamill Nadu) using only the GPS and on our recent trip to Sakleshpur too, it took us on the Hassan and Channarayapatna bypass on its own.
MMI map content is definitely good. Its the routing algorithm that you should look out for. If you need to go from Point X to Point Y and if you punch Y in the device it would take you through what it assumes is the correct way.

Now if you want to go to Y via points A, B, D, E then you will need to create ordered set so that the device can traverse through the ordered graph. X,A,B,C,D,E,Y. I do understand you employed this approach.


Bangalore-Vellore-Arcot-Cheyyar-Vandavasi-Tindivanam-Pondicherry.

But when you type Vellore (while coming back from Pondicherry), It will route you to the centre of the town. Because thats what it assumes for Vellore. So instead you need to create these waypoints on the highways through which you plan to go. Same applies for small towns as well. If there is a bypass, you need to go through the bypass by creating waypoints on these.

As as example: Tindivanam town has a bypass. So in my case, I represent crossing Tindivanam as a set of three waypoints. (While coming back from Pondicherry)

- NH66/NH45 Crosspoint
- NH45 Bypass exit
- SH5 (Vandavasi SH) Bypass Exit

(This is what I mean: Tindivanam Bypass

So I will never type Tindivanam in the device but the above three points in order. In other words as much as possible I wont let the device think.

In your case the device worked for Ernakulam or Sakleshpur because they are one straight destination points. No diversions NH7/NH47 or NH48. The moment you tried, it failed (in case of Tiruppur I think as you mentioned)
ampere is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2015, 19:04   #1364
BHPian
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 894
Thanked: 646 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Friends,

I'll be driving down to Pondy from Bangalore this wednesday (29th Apr) via Krishnagiri-Kariamangalam-Kambainallur-Morappur-Harur-Thirukoilur (Temple visit)-Villupuram-Pondy. Thanks to Suresh for suggesting this route

Obviously for an early morning start, i'll be stopping at Chinnar A2B for breakfast. But looking for any good/decent veg restaurants at Thirukoilur or Villupuram.
Is there any A2B or decent restaurants nearby when i cut across NH45 or in Villupuram town?

Thanks
-Ravi

Last edited by ravib : 26th April 2015 at 19:27.
ravib is offline   (1) Thanks Reply With Quote
Old 26th April 2015, 19:57   #1365
Team-BHP Support
 
ampere's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Bangalore
Posts: 15,429
Thanked: 8,299 Times
Default re: Bangalore - Pondicherry : Route Queries

Quote:
Originally Posted by ravib View Post
Obviously for an early morning start, i'll be stopping at Chinnar A2B for breakfast. But looking for any good/decent veg restaurants at Thirukoilur or Villupuram.
Is there any A2B or decent restaurants nearby when i cut across NH45 or in Villupuram town?
If A2B is crowded you can also break at Sarava Bhavan on NH7 2-3km after Chennai exit. No idea about lunch points at Villupuram. The other option is go to Pondicherry via the regular route (Arcot/Cheyyar). And visit Thirukkoilur temple on the way back. So that you dont have to break for food as you start after breakfast. You would be near Krishnagiri for lunch and you have options.

Last edited by ampere : 26th April 2015 at 19:59.
ampere is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Rajahmundry to Pondicherry : Route Queries penpusher Route / Travel Queries 11 11th November 2015 08:47
Bangalore-Pondicherry : Best route to take? binz Route / Travel Queries 4 27th May 2009 10:04
Bangalore -Thiruvannamalai - Pondicherry route. Ram Pratap Route / Travel Queries 2 25th September 2007 15:49


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 16:12.

Copyright 2000 - 2017, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks