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Old 8th January 2007, 10:03   #1
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Default Bangalore(KAR)-Valparai(TN) trip advise.

Hello.

I was planning for a Bangalore(KAR)-Valparai(TN) trip in Mar07. Since I am not sure about the following, it would be great if someone could give some advise on the following.
1. Route ( I assume go straight from salem to Madurai. thats all I know.)
2. Good reasonable place to stay in Valparai.
3. Safety ( with spouse and children)
4. Interesting places to see ( No trekking please.. should be Jeep-able)
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Old 8th January 2007, 10:43   #2
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No, you dont go from Salem to Madurai, you take NH47 to Coimbatore (150 kms). From Coimbatore go to Pollachi (40 kms). At Pollachi, take the Valparai road (just outside town, on the Udumalaipet road, please ask for directions). Valparai is a great drive from here, some great ghat roads. It is normally a good road, although am not sure about its current condition.

Ideally, leave Bangalore early in the morning so that you can reach Valparai by evening. The ghat road is fine but there are around 30 hairpin bends so you may want to avoid driving after dark. Road is totally safe.

In case you want to reduce travelling distance a little, you can turn off NH47 at Avinashi, go to Tiruppur and thereon to Pollachi, but I will recommend the NH47 itself sinc eit is fast and in good shape. You do not have to enter Coimbatore city, take the Coimbatore bypass and watch out for the left turn off to Pollachi.

There are some hotels in Valparai, but I do not know any. Ideally, you should stay in a tea estate bungalow - heard there are some there for hire. There is relaly nothing muchy to do at Valparai, except for some view points here an there but teh tea estates are splendid - at Malakkiparai 25 kms away are the highest-yielding tea estates in India. In case you want to have a good day outing, drive on another 50 kms on teh Chalakudy road - this is the best reserve forests and shola jungles you will see in the Western Ghat region - although I must caution you that it is also infested with elephants (at night) and there are no facilities. If you take this road, you can visit Athirampalli waterfalls and Vazhachchaal, which are great. Further, all the way, you will hear giant cicadas chirping - they make a din!

In and around, you can go trekking in Valparai area - easy treks for family. Don't forget to visit the Balaji Temple near Valparai.

In case you are still not satiated, on the way back, you can plan a detour to Top Slip/ Parambikulam via Anamalai (on the way to Pollachi), and spend a day there or idelally one night.

Kumar
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Old 8th January 2007, 11:26   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
It is normally a good road, although am not sure about its current condition.
Still a very good road, as of December end.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
The ghat road is fine but there are around 30 hairpin bends so you may want to avoid driving after dark. Road is totally safe.
40 hairpin bends. You need to make sure you're up the ghat by about 5 pm, which means that you need to reach Aliyar Dam at the foot of the ghats by about 3 pm.


Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
In case you want to reduce travelling distance a little, you can turn off NH47 at Avinashi, go to Tiruppur and thereon to Pollachi, but I will recommend the NH47 itself sinc eit is fast and in good shape. You do not have to enter Coimbatore city, take the Coimbatore bypass and watch out for the left turn off to Pollachi.
This is recommended - please stick to NH 47 and turn off somewhere down the byepass.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
There are some hotels in Valparai, but I do not know any. Ideally, you should stay in a tea estate bungalow - heard there are some there for hire. There is relaly nothing muchy to do at Valparai, except for some view points here an there but teh tea estates are splendid - at Malakkiparai 25 kms away are the highest-yielding tea estates in India.
Hotel Green View at Valparai is the ONLY hotel available, and you wouldnt want to stay there as the rooms are just an extension of the bar.

Contact Zakkie (Speedzak on the forum) and he will give you the numbers of the tea estate where we stayed. They have different bunglows at the tea estates to cater to most budgets. These estates are run by Parry Agro, and the food is first class. The estate bunglows are at Sholayar Dam. There is also the Anamalais Club just outside Valparai.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
In case you want to have a good day outing, drive on another 50 kms on teh Chalakudy road - this is the best reserve forests and shola jungles you will see in the Western Ghat region - although I must caution you that it is also infested with elephants (at night) and there are no facilities. If you take this road, you can visit Athirampalli waterfalls and Vazhachchaal, which are great.
Highly recommended, but the "road" is in bad shape. Check out the Kerala Meet report here (we visited the same places):

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/showthread.php?t=20228 (Rumble in the Jungle - Report)

Since you're on holiday may I suggest that you do Bangalore-Mysore-Gundlupet-Masinagudi-Ooty-Coimbatore-Pollachi instead of the boring and dry NH 47? Or at least take the Sathy (Satyamangalam) route to Coimbatore.

Last edited by Steeroid : 8th January 2007 at 11:27.
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Old 8th January 2007, 11:35   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steeroid View Post
Since you're on holiday may I suggest that you do Bangalore-Mysore-Gundlupet-Masinagudi-Ooty-Coimbatore-Pollachi instead of the boring and dry NH 47? Or at least take the Sathy (Satyamangalam) route to Coimbatore.
Let me caution you that although Mysore-Masinagudi-Kalhatti road is OK, the rest of Nilgiris, especially the Kalhatti-Ooty-Conoor-Mettupalayam road is a disaster, although there are some parts which are OK. This is thanks to the Nov rains and the ensuing landslides, and no repair work has started (as of Jan 1, 2007). Hence, you may have a miserable ride this way to Coimbatore.

Please be cautious in these parts - the TN police has several speed check posts and they fine you on the spot for overspeeding.
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Old 8th January 2007, 12:14   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steeroid View Post
Contact Zakkie (Speedzak on the forum) and he will give you the numbers of the tea estate where we stayed. They have different bunglows at the tea estates to cater to most budgets. These estates are run by Parry Agro, and the food is first class. The estate bunglows are at Sholayar Dam. There is also the Anamalais Club just outside Valparai.
Can the contacts be posted here?!?! will be more helpfull for some of my future trips too...

Quote:
Bangalore-Mysore-Gundlupet-Masinagudi-Ooty-Coimbatore-Pollachi instead of the boring and dry NH 47? Or at least take the Sathy (Satyamangalam) route to Coimbatore.
What is the condition of sathyamangalam road?? the 4-lane construction has started from krishnagiri all the way upto coimbatore in patches. expected to be complete in 08. If sathy road surfaces are good, future trips will be on this only, atlest till the krishnagir-darmapuri section improves.

BTW, it takes about 7 hours to reach coimbatore from bangalore nowadays.

Last edited by gkrishn : 8th January 2007 at 12:15.
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Old 8th January 2007, 12:21   #6
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EXCELLENT! thank you both hvkumar and Steeroid. Very very useful. I shall contact Zakie for tea estate. Hope I can book over phone.
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Old 8th January 2007, 12:58   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gkrishn View Post
Can the contacts be posted here?!?! will be more helpfull for some of my future trips too...

What is the condition of sathyamangalam road?? the 4-lane construction has started from krishnagiri all the way upto coimbatore in patches. expected to be complete in 08. If sathy road surfaces are good, future trips will be on this only, atlest till the krishnagir-darmapuri section improves.

BTW, it takes about 7 hours to reach coimbatore from bangalore nowadays.
go via thoppur-mettur-kovai.
pm zak for teh estate manager's number as posting his number in public forum wont be a good idea.

They have 2-3 places/bungalows; they can even arrange night safari and a tea factory tour. Check the link posted by steeroid
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Old 19th December 2007, 14:48   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steeroid View Post


40 hairpin bends. You need to make sure you're up the ghat by about 5 pm, which means that you need to reach Aliyar Dam at the foot of the ghats by about 3 pm.
Could you please help me out with the distance between Aliyar Dam and Valparai?

I was under the impression that Valparai can be reached from Coimbatore (app 100 kms) in max 3 hrs.

How far Aliyar dam is located from Coimbatore

Could you please help me with details
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Old 20th December 2007, 03:22   #9
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Oh my god! Why did you have to remind us now? Our sleeps will be gone for some weeks now.

If anybody want the details, please PM me. As the place we stayed is very exclusive, I don't think it's a good idea to post it up on a public forum.
But I guarantee you, the place is worth each and every DROP you spend.
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Old 20th December 2007, 06:28   #10
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I have been to Valparai driving in my ALTO Vx1.1 about 3 years back. More than hairpin bends, some of the turns were blind without even side barriers. It was a thrilling drive and at the same time you will enjoy the green tea plantations all along.

Have a safe and enjoyable trip.

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How far Aliyar dam is located from Coimbatore
Aliyar Dam is located about 25 kms from Pollachi. and it will be 40 kms from coimbatore to pollachi.
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Old 20th December 2007, 07:10   #11
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I just remembered. If somebody chooses to go further than Vaalpaarai towards Shekalmudi, malakkapparai etc.. That'll be another 25 hairpins or so! It's a breathtaking drive.
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Old 20th December 2007, 17:06   #12
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Been to Valparai couple of weeks ago. The road from Pollachi is in excellent shape. So is the road from Coimbatore to Pollachi. What is in really bad shape are the roads to Kerala. The one towards Athirappally is in real bad shape, so is the one from pollachi to Vadakancheri/Palakkad.

The Stanmore Bungalow, Valparai, Tamil Nadu. Expensive, but good place to stay. Details - http://www.mytravelog.in/PDF/The%20S...20Bungalow.pdf



They have other slightly cheaper places(~4000), like this one(I stayed here) -





You can call Sunil @ 9442202006 for reservations, or of course, use the contact info on the web page.
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Old 20th December 2007, 18:37   #13
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What would be the average travel time from Coimbatore to Pollachi & Pollachi to Valparai sections

Read in some blogs that Pollachi to Valparai (60+kms) itself will take a good 3 hrs journey as one need to cover 40 HP bends. Can anyone pls confirm
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Old 20th December 2007, 19:27   #14
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There is one alternate instead of going to Coimbatore.
You can take a deviation after Perundurai - Vijayamangalam - Uthukuli - Tiruppur - Palladam - Pollachi - Valparai.

You can avoid Avinashi - Coimbatore heavy traffic and also cutdown the kms.
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Old 20th December 2007, 19:30   #15
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Update on Blore - Thoppur - Bhavani.
I did this last weekend. Good to see majority of the potholes(90%) from Kgiri to Thoppur are closed. But there are uneven stretches due to this patch work.

The best part is Thoppur - Mettur - Bhavani.
Most of the potholes are patched, the sections which are worse are laid down completely. Awsome.
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