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Old 19th June 2007, 15:07   #1
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Question Suggestions on Road Trip From Trivandrum to Shimla

Me along with two other friends are planning for a road trip to Shimla from Trivandrum, starting on July20th. Our ride will be a Santro.

The route I am considering to take is Trivandrum - Banglore - Hyderabad - Nagpur - Jhansi - Agra - Delhi - Shimla. I want to reach shimla in max 5 days. Looks like a bit ambitious target when I want to avoid late night driving.

Could you suggest me whether this is the best route to take, the best spots to take the stay for each day.

Do pour in all kinds of suggestions and advice.
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Old 19th June 2007, 15:16   #2
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Wrong route. Go via Mumbai. Distance is similar+ roads are much much much better and safer.
6 days is doable.
1. Day one : Reach north kerala
2. Day 2 : Reach Goa
3. Day 3: Reach beyond mumbai
4. Day 4 : Reach udaipur
5. Day 5: Reach Delhi or Karnal
6. Day 6 : Reach shimla(8 hours from delhi, 5 from karnal)
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Old 19th June 2007, 15:32   #3
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Trivandrum-Kozhikode : 414
Kozhikode-Mangalore : 218
Mlore-Ankola-Dharwad : 407
Dharwad-Pune : 416
Pune-Mumbai : 135
Mumbai-NH8-Delhi : 1425
Delhi-Shimla : 355kms
Total : 3370

why i bypassed goa? From dharwad to Mumbai, its all four lane. distance wise, both routes are same, but you reach faster via dharwad.
3015kms would mean around 56 driving hours. add in breaks and all, and you should comfortably reach shimla on the 5th day.

But why just shimla? why not go in deeper to feel the real himachal?
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Old 19th June 2007, 15:32   #4
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Agree with tsk, take NH17 along the coast to Bombay and proceed to Delhi via Gujarat and rajasthan. Great roads and lots of options to break.

My suggestion would be somewhat similar to tsk.

But you have to be very fast, and if you do a bit of night driving, you can quicken your trip by, say, cutting 1 day.

Distance will be TVM-Bombay 1,750 kms, Bombay-Delhi 1,450 kms, Delhi-Shimla 400 kms

Kumar
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Old 19th June 2007, 15:37   #5
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guys we aware, that is the peak rainy seaon in Himalyas. keep woolen handy. It has become colder in last weekend during rains.
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Old 19th June 2007, 15:59   #6
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I prefer a night drive in GQ...and also if u have 2 drivers u can easily do Bombay - Delhi in the night, then u can get enough time in Shimla...

Probably Kumar can throw some light on that stretch in the night...

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Old 19th June 2007, 16:12   #7
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If you are an aggressive driver, and there are 2 drivers, I would do the following:

Day 0/1 - Leave Trivandrum at night, cross Mangalore in morning, touch Hubli by noon (instead of Goa) and stop near Pune by night. This will spare you the chaotic day traffic in North Kerala (will delay you by at least 3-4 hours)

Day 2 - Drive from Pune to Udaipur, and if inclined continue driving till Delhi. Best is to stop at Udaipur

Day 3 - Drive from Udaipur to Delhi and beyond, maybe Panipat or Karnal (good Haryana Tourism resorts), avoid staying in Delhi.

Day 4 - Arrive at Shimla by noon, ready for the rest of the day.

Alternatively,

Day 1 - Drive from Trivandrum, reach Kannur or Kasargod by night

Day 2 - Reach Pune through Hubli by night

Day 3 - Leave Pune ealy and drive through Bombay, Gujarat, target reaching Udaipur by late evening, and continue to drive on through the night so that you can be in Delhi by morning. Take a short break, leave for Shimla by noon and reach by night.

Kumar
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Old 19th June 2007, 16:37   #8
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assuming all of you can drive, you have a perfect 8 hrs shift per day i.e. 3 x 8 = 24. But let the night driver drive for all nights, just to keep him in routine.
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Old 19th June 2007, 20:04   #9
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Ok, here are some details. Up to Dakshina Kanara.

TVM - EKM/Kochi - 3 hours
Kochi KZKD - 4 hours.
KZKD - Kannur - 2 hours
Kannur - Kasargod - 2 hours
Kasargod - Mangalore - 1 hour. (lesser)
Mangalore - Udupi - 2 hours.

All timings for day time travel in company of "Yamrajs" from Edappally Bye pass junction up to Mangalore on our Notional Highways. (believe me - on several stretches, you can lean on the wall of building on one side and spit on wall of the building on the opposite side.

If you are planning day time drives, start from TVM early morning (4 AM). Try to have b'fast from some place on EKM bye pass, (near the new JBL show room - lol). Choose between LeMeredien, Whytefort, and BTH Sarovaram (veg). All are within 1 KM. If you reach EKM before 7, and still feel like driving, DONT - no good roadside eateries up to Guruvayoor (AFAICT), which is another 2 hours away) and still off the highway from Chavakkad. via Parur Kodungallur, Kunnamkulam, reach Kozhikode.

Have lunch from some place at Kozhikode here.(EKM to KZKD - 4 hours max) (sorry, not sure of eateries on byepass at KZKD). KZKD to Kannur will be 1 1/2 to 2 hours, depending on driving conditions. At Kannur, you can use the Golden Dish restaurant, opposite the KSRTC bus stand (just before Caltex junction).

Kannur to Kasargod will be another 1 1/2. You should be able to reach Mangalore in another 1 hour. Since there are plenty of good lodges there, try halting for the night at Udupi (2 hours from Mangalore), or if you are tired, stay at Mangalore itself.

BTW, are you sure that the Santro can accommodate all the required luggage?
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Old 19th June 2007, 21:29   #10
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Question More queries...

Thanks for all the suggestions,

How is the road condition of the route via Bombay, especially considering the monsoon?

We would prioritize it to high to visit Agra..You know the reasons. , So what will be the deviation to Agra when taking the route via Bomabay?

For an update on our plan, we won't be taking the car back with us. The car belongs to my friend, who just got relocated to Chandigarh.
After the trip to Shimla, the car will be given back to him and catch the flight back to TVM.

Is space such a constraint for three in a Santro for 6 -8 days?
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Old 19th June 2007, 21:53   #11
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Bangalore-Bombay is OK during monsoons except that Davangere-Harihar bypass can be a mess (no idea whether the doubling road work is complete).

BYpassing Bombay means having to deal with broken roads and tarffic jams.

North of Bombay, it is too early for the roads to react to the rains, but later on (Aug-Sep), roads in South GUjarat (Surat-Vadodara, 150 kms) can be bad.

I used to drive around in a matiz and it was quite tough to carry our stuff but we have succeeded in carrying 5 persons and their luggage through a 18-day North East India trip and also a 15-day Ladakh trip (4 persons).

Take NH11 from Jaipur to Agra via Bharatpur, 250 kms.

Kumar

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Old 19th June 2007, 22:53   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dodge3p View Post
Me along with two other friends are planning for a road trip to Shimla from Trivandrum, starting on July20th. Our ride will be a Santro.

The route I am considering to take is Trivandrum - Banglore - Hyderabad - Nagpur - Jhansi - Agra - Delhi - Shimla. I want to reach shimla in max 5 days. Looks like a bit ambitious target when I want to avoid late night driving.
Sure about the Santro part?

The rear is bumpy IMO. Not comfortable for a 5 day trip. But if you have already thought of that, its ok.
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Old 20th June 2007, 08:19   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dodge3p View Post
Is space such a constraint for three in a Santro for 6 -8 days?
I dont think so... If Alto can accomodate 4 adult + 1 kid and include big luggage like 20lit water bottle, potty tub, 2 big bags, 2 small snack bag, shoe packet, 3-4 water botles etc and peacefully drive around then for 3 in a Santro should not be a problem...

But at the same time, you need to pack up your stuffs thinking of the boot so that it can be efficiently placed..

Abhi
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Old 20th June 2007, 09:38   #14
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In my Matiz, we used to travel on long trips. Some tips:

- Use only soft bags - the overnighter type
- Each person to have his own small bag
- Don't carry any breakable stuff
- Keep things like the 20 ltr water bottles on the side just before the door
- Pack things in and do not open the door after that except to unpack
- Keep things that you need to take during the drive on the top such as food, water
- Wear woollens instead of packing them up - relieves the load once you start climbing up the hills
- Keep things under the seats
- Keep things in the gap between your foot and the seat bottom
- Don't keep anything above the dashboard, they will keep rolling around once you are in the hills
- Use the seat back rests to hang out objects like cameras, etc, that should not be inside the bags but available for shooting en route
- If the dicky door does not close because of the things stuffed in, remove some things, close the door and stuff them in from teh brear seat area
- Take care that the driver's rear vision is not obstructed by the things stuffed in the rear
- Remove teh rear tray and throw it out (i.e. leave it behind at home)

Kumar
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Old 26th June 2007, 00:45   #15
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Just one suggestion: Don't stop at Shimla. Carry on atleast till Narkanda. Hatu peak is a must visit.
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