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Old 22nd March 2007, 18:08   #1
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Default Bangalore - Chennai - Bangalore : Route Queries

Last weekend took me to Bangalore. While heading from Chennai, I decided to travel on the GQ. It was very nice. comfortable and extremely fast. There was however, one stretch between the 1st and 2nd toll booth that was quite uneven, and caused a lot of turbulence in the car. However, the ride quality was nice on the rest of the way. The roads, the hills, the mountains, sometimes you wonder if you would have ever seen a road like this in India. On the return journey, we decided to take the more scenic route, that is the old madras route, via palmaneer and chitoor. The route was a lot more scenic and slower, yes, but far more enjoyable. Things are not fast, but a lazy comfortable pace, and this was even more enjoyable, as the route is familiar and the road is a lot better.

Highways have been the lifeline of this country, while i was coming back, i remembered the scene from "Cars" where they talk about how the town gets bypassed in the interstate, and the charm of the old highway is never noticed in the new one. That is exactly the feeling that I got. The route brought back old memories, of the m800, picnics, and we wonder, why is life so fast, that you do the entire 8 hour trip in 4 hours, and see nothing along the route.

I did enjoy the trip, and reccomend that route to people who wish to experience true highway driving, ala indian style.
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Old 22nd March 2007, 18:23   #2
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Definitely agree. I like the OMR (Old Madras Road) far better than the Golden Quadrilateral. One is the beauty of OMR. Winding roads, less traffic, scenic route. Two, you have plenty of shade and even in summer you can drive without a/c.

GQ is fast, has some good scenic sections like Hosur to Krishnagiri and Krishnagiri to Vaniyambadi. But try driving on it during summer after 9 am. Pray that you don't have a flat tyre. There's absolutely no shade anywhere. My brother's car broke down around 12.30 in the afternoon and they did not have any shade to stand while the car was being fixed.

If you want to have lunch under a tree you better find one of the side roads and get into it to get to a tree !!!

Also GQ can get you into a sense of complacency. Believe me, there are sections where you get tractors, scooters, mini lorries, cycles coming down the wrong side and that too on the inner most lane !!!

Do you'll know that most of the Chennai-Vellore-Ambur-Vaniyambadi-Krishnagiri road had really huge trees planted by the British and that not even one of them stands today. All have been cut down in the name of progress !!!
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Old 22nd March 2007, 19:36   #3
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Around 10 years ago, I would have said that the old madras road is one of the best roads to drive on in the south of India, in the sense that the road was completely traffic free during day times, it was scenic, well maintained, and wide compared to other roads from that time. Some of my friends had jokes about how I was in love with that road...

But these days, it does not really feel the same anymore. Too much traffic compared to how it was before, many stretches are not in the pink of health, and the stop go grind gets on my nerves every time I take to that road. I am sure I will find that road enjoyable if I had a lot of time to make that journey, but then, life ain't so kind many of these days.

So that takes me on the GQ, to play Russian roulette with the suicidal tractors and trucks which keep turning up on the wrong side of the road...
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Old 22nd March 2007, 20:14   #4
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Another thing with the krishnagiri route is its too monotonous and night driving puts most people if not all to sleep .. The old madras road rocks though , specially the palamner ghat section and the restaurant at chittor ..
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Old 22nd March 2007, 22:36   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by madan80 View Post
......... The route was a lot more scenic and slower, yes, but far more enjoyable. Things are not fast, but a lazy comfortable pace, and this was even more enjoyable, as the route is familiar and the road is a lot better.

............... we wonder, why is life so fast, that you do the entire 8 hour trip in 4 hours, and see nothing along the route.

I did enjoy the trip, and reccomend that route to people who wish to experience true highway driving, ala indian style.

Is it not that we have two choices and can chose which ever suits you at a given time. If one is on an emergency, one will definitely chose the faster one over scenic one.
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Old 23rd March 2007, 11:10   #6
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Nostalgia apart - and its justified, the need of the hour for this country is a no-nonsense highway system. A fast, safe and well-developed highway system is a main marker in a country's development. While 2-lane highways with 6-lanes of motorized/nonmotorized traffic that cuts thru every village and town along the route is ideal for a picnic, its not recomended for reasons mentioned above.
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Old 25th March 2007, 18:46   #7
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As long as you have water and a few snacks, its the GQ for me. Tadu and I got to the track in 3 hours 15 min despite two "p"it stops/ smoke breaks. Return took about 4 hours since we stopped for a long coffee and traffic before hosur was slow
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Old 16th April 2007, 16:02   #8
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If you want to get to Chennai from Bangalore in a tearing hurry and don't need food along the way, take the GQ. The road is fantastic and the view is great BUT there is only 1 decent restaurant (with clean toilets) on the way - Motel Rosin between Vaniyambadi and Ambur.

The traffic on the old route through Palamner and Chittoor will get on your nerves if you're in a hurry but this route has more choices in terms of places to take a break - Cafe Coffee Day / Kamat Upachar / Woody's at Kolar, IOC Nandini at Chittoor, MGM Virundu at Ranipet.
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Old 16th April 2007, 17:04   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mclaren1885 View Post
Another thing with the krishnagiri route is its too monotonous and night driving puts most people if not all to sleep .. The old madras road rocks though , specially the palamner ghat section and the restaurant at chittor ..
Absolutely right pal. Sometimes these modern highways are boring. agreed that you can reach faster etc etc., but you really miss the thrill of driving on an Indian highway, missing a cycle, dodging a stone, screeching your brakes, eluding the on coming traffic etc. I love the motels on the OMR.

But it is great though that we do have 2 choices & our priorities can decide which route to take.
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Old 16th April 2007, 17:18   #10
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absolutely agree. If I'm in a tearing hurry its the GQ. But if I want to have a "real" drive. then its the OMR. Also during summer the OMR is cooler (due to trees all along till Ranipet). The GQ can be extremely hot during summer with no shade.
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Old 16th April 2007, 17:28   #11
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Guys!!! Enlighten me!!!
How do I get to GQ ....

I have travelled to Chennai using OLD MADRAS ROAD ..........
Can someone give me specifics...on how I use the GQ......

I am familiar with HOSUR ....
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Old 16th April 2007, 17:31   #12
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Quote:
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....

I am familiar with HOSUR ....

Thats the GQ, my friend, the Golden Quadrilateral dream of an old & wise man.
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Old 16th April 2007, 17:48   #13
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Dude..... I got the expansion ..... I wanted specifics on how start from BLR and reach Chennai ...via GQ .....

Pit stops.... and pointers (sector points....) so that I know I am in the right direction......
I might be going with family...that is the reason... I do not want to take chances....
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Old 16th April 2007, 18:32   #14
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raajks, simply go down Brigade Road to begin with. You should cross Forum mall at Koramangala (?), then some diversion to the left that almost takes you onto Sarjapur Road, but then turn right again to join Hosur Road.

Other landmarks include Silk Board flyover, Electronics City, Shell bunk in Bangalore. The pointer that you are near the TN border is your side of the road blocked by trucks waiting for the permit. You should see Ashok Leyland's factories just after entering Hosur.

Hosur is ~42 km from Bangalore and further down NH7, you will come across Sulagiri (~61 km) and then Krishnagiri (~90 km).

At Krishnagiri, follow the signs that say Chennai. There is a flyover after which you will have to turn left onto NH46. Just after you turn left, you will find a turn to the right which leads to Tiruvannamalai & Pondicherry. Ignore this and head straight onto Chennai.

NH46 takes you through Bargur (~109 km), Nattarampalli (~127 km), Vaniyambadi (~142 km), Ambur (~158 km), Pallikonda (~193 km), Vellore (~207 km), Ranipet (~240 km).

Motel Rosin between Vaniyambadi and Ambur is a good place for a break. It comes almost immediately on the left side after the Vaniyambadi toll plaza.

Just after Ranipet, NH46 joins onto NH4, after which the route is:
Walajapet (~243 km), Sriperumbudur (~312 km), Poonamallee (~331 km), Chennai (~352 km).

At the flyover after Walajapet, where you can turn left for Arakkonam, SLOW DOWN while climbing up - else the bump at the top can catch you unawares.

The 4 laning ends at Poonamallee and you will find an unfinished flyover here. My suggestion is to continue till Koyambedu junction and then ask for directions, if you are not very familiar with Madras.

Watch out for suicidal motorcyclists and moped riders coming at you in your lane!
Oh and the total toll would be around Rs. 120.

Last edited by hrag : 16th April 2007 at 18:33. Reason: Added toll rates
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Old 16th April 2007, 18:44   #15
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Thanks hrag!!! that sums it up for me!!!
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