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Old 16th April 2013, 11:29   #4981
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Originally Posted by rajivr1612 View Post
Guys I am planning a trip to my hometown in Kerala on 18th of this month. I will start from Tambaram in Chennai and my hometown is in Thiruvalla. As per Google maps the shortest route seems to be Tambaram-Trichy-Dindigul-Kumily-Thiruvalla.This will be my first long drive and I understand there is a ghat section involved in the route. My wife,two year old son and my mother will be with me. I will be the lone driver. I plan to start at 5.00am and reach home before dark. The other slightly longer route is Tambaram-Krishnagiri-Salem-Coimbatore-Thrissur-Ernakulam-Thiruvalla route. This route doesn't involve any major ghat sections. My major concern is to avoid driving after dark. So if I leave at 5.00am in the morning will I be able to reach by evening?
Please help me to decide guys. Would be great if I can get some suggestions by today evening.
I would reccomend the Cumbum route.You can consider this route of Ulundurpet-Salem-Namakkal-Karur-Dindigul-Kodai Road-Vathalakundu-Periyakulam-Theni-Cumbum-Vazhoor-Karukachal-Thiruvalla.

http://goo.gl/maps/RvO0n

Can be easily done in a day,the ghats sections are quite ordinary nothing treacherous.Go ahead and drive safe.
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Old 16th April 2013, 11:56   #4982
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Default re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by rajivr1612 View Post
So if I leave at 5.00am in the morning will I be able to reach by evening? Please help me to decide guys. Would be great if I can get some suggestions by today evening.
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Originally Posted by ranjitp1 View Post
I would reccomend the Cumbum route.You can consider this route of Ulundurpet-Salem-Namakkal-Karur-Dindigul-Kodai Road-Vathalakundu-Periyakulam-Theni-Cumbum-Vazhoor-Karukachal-Thiruvalla.
+1 to Ranjit on the route option via Dindigul. But to reach Dindigul, I would say take the regular route via Trichy. Full 4-lane and its shorter.
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Old 16th April 2013, 12:19   #4983
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Default re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by rajivr1612 View Post
Guys I am planning a trip to my hometown in Kerala on 18th of this month. I will start from Tambaram in Chennai and my hometown is in Thiruvalla.
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Originally Posted by longhorn View Post
Highway driving will be much less tiresome that ghat driving. Slot it in 5th and maintain a steady speed of 90-100 km. Must I must say that traffic will be on the higher side after crossing Kerala border if you go via NH 47.
While your opinion about highway driving vs. ghat driving is true, no way I would classify the drive from Palghat to Thiruvalla on NH47/MC Road as "highway driving". A steady drive at 90-100 kmph would be just a pipe dream, and my experience has been that the 200-250 kms on that stretch would be far more stressful than the 20-30 kms of ghat roads on the Cumbum-Mundakayam sector.

So I'll also go with Ranjit's recommendation - nothing to really worry about those ghat roads even if you are not a vastly experienced driver. The only advice from my part would be to start slightly earlier from Chennai (may be 3AM / 4AM) so that you can drive that stretch before nightfall - that way you could really enjoy the lovely views that this scenic drive offers.
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Old 16th April 2013, 12:27   #4984
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Default re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by kala View Post
While your opinion about highway driving vs. ghat driving is true, no way I would classify the drive from Palghat to Thiruvalla on NH47/MC Road as "highway driving". A steady drive at 90-100 kmph would be just a pipe dream, and my experience has been that the 200-250 kms on that stretch would be far more stressful than the 20-30 kms of ghat roads on the Cumbum-Mundakayam sector.

That comment was for the drive upto KL border and not beyond. Once you are across maintaining even 70 kmph would be a tough ask.

Last edited by longhorn : 16th April 2013 at 12:28.
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Old 16th April 2013, 14:35   #4985
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Originally Posted by rajivr1612 View Post
Guys I am planning a trip to my hometown in Kerala on 18th of this month. I will start from Tambaram in Chennai
The road condition of Dindigul - cumbum stretch is better as compared to the NH via salem- Kovai- ekm. The drive would also be pleasant with greenery and the beauty of nature keeping speed with you. However, since you are traveling with a small kid and two ladies in company, you should consider the availability of rest rooms and decent places for food; which might turn out to be a premium on the cumbum route. Else, you will have to plan it nice enough to hit major towns enroute at times of food calls. Given that the flexibility with a two yr old kid is an imaginary quotient, you should consider carrying packed food along for better ease. Additionally, if the kid is prone to be car sick, it will slow you down considerably. In which case, you will not reach your destination before sundown. Also make sure that the kid gets proper sleep the night prior, lest he/ she will remain cranky the whole journey.

Weigh your options and take a considered decision. If you are taking the cumbum route, do not forget your camera
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Old 16th April 2013, 14:53   #4986
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Originally Posted by pramodpk View Post
Where did you get the speed ticket? Was the speed limit marked? This is very frustrating.
It was just after Mysore town and nowhere the limit was marked. They may claim that Mysore city speed limits applicable here. We didn't bother to argue, just paid Rs. 100 without a bill and left the place. Interestingly, the officer was a Mallu.
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Old 16th April 2013, 16:18   #4987
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It was just after Mysore town and nowhere the limit was marked. They may claim that Mysore city speed limits applicable here. We didn't bother to argue, just paid Rs. 100 without a bill and left the place. Interestingly, the officer was a Mallu.
Hopefully they were authorised to collect fines.sigh.Thanks for bringing this up.
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Old 16th April 2013, 16:33   #4988
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Originally Posted by ranjitp1 View Post
Hopefully they were authorised to collect fines.
An official receipt, demanded, would have clarified this.
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Old 16th April 2013, 17:49   #4989
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Originally Posted by Boomerang View Post
Bangalore - Krishnagiri:

It took us 3 hours to reach Krishnagiri flyover. The diversions because of 6-lane road work funnels to single lane. My suggestion is not to start in the night. We did and it was horrible.
You should typically be able to cover this stretch in about 90 minutes. (1.5 hours). What I have experienced is instead of 4AM, if you start at 3AM, there is very low traffic on this stretch. I could cover in 90 minutes without going above 90 itself.

At 4AM the truckers slowly come alive and the mess starts.
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Old 16th April 2013, 20:10   #4990
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Originally Posted by RSUDARSANAN View Post
I might just try the Pollachi - Alathur- Trissur this time, braving the Kuthiran stretch as NPV has reported significant improvement. Did the Shoranur route last Kochi trip.
@RSUDARSANAN sir, I'm not sure if you intend to try the Kuthiran stretch ?

I only traveled upto Alathur on NH47 from Chandranagar, Palakkad to Alathur (driveable) and then took the Alathur-Pazhayannur road (excellent) upto Kavasseri.
I did not try the Kuthiran stretch and I would suggest you don't do it especially in the beemer
I have heard 2 accounts from friends who traveled 2 weeks ago that it's a horror, one of them repents taking his Skoda Rapid there and the other friend was in a KSRTC Volvo bus that was stuck for 2 hours in a horrible traffic jam in the morning 6-8am types

If you do plan to do the Pollachi-Alathur route then you should not go via Gopalapuram as I did (my destination was Chandranagar, Palakkad).
Instead you should go via Kollengode to reach Alathur directly and I think the roads are good on this stretch. At Alathur you will merge with NH47 and you need to proceed to the other side of NH47 to get onto the Alathur-Pazhayannur-Chelakkara road (look for the Chulanoor Peafowl Sanctuary signage, this is the road where you need to turn right).

Last edited by NPV : 16th April 2013 at 20:14.
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Old 16th April 2013, 23:56   #4991
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Default re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by Boomerang View Post
Hi Guyz, Just completed a round about trip from Bangalore to Thrissur Via Salem - Coimbatore - Walayar - Palakad - Vadakancherry - Thrissur.

Bangalore - Krishnagiri:
It took us 3 hours to reach Krishnagiri flyover. The diversions because of 6-lane road work funnels to single lane. My suggestion is not to start in the night. We did and it was horrible.

Vadakancherry - Kuthiran - Pattikad:
This stretch would need you to be cautious (nothing to be worried about). certain potholes to avoid. just regular gear change is needed. again...definitely do-able.
Kuthiran is good to go. Not much traffic. patched up. Irumbu Pallam is widened.

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Originally Posted by NPV View Post
I did not try the Kuthiran stretch and I would suggest you don't do it especially in the beemer
I have heard 2 accounts from friends who traveled 2 weeks ago that it's a horror, one of them repents taking his Skoda Rapid there and the other friend was in a KSRTC Volvo bus that was stuck for 2 hours in a horrible traffic jam in the morning 6-8am types
Information overload
Do I avoid Bangalore-Krishnagiri & Kuthiran stretch via
a. Nilambur (shorter) or
b. NH209 upto Pollachi - Alathur - Chelakkara (longer) ?
A 6 am departure is proposed for a late lunch arrival at Kochi.
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Old 17th April 2013, 00:10   #4992
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Default re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by RSUDARSANAN View Post
Information overload
Do I avoid Bangalore-Krishnagiri & Kuthiran stretch via
a. Nilambur (shorter) or
b. NH209 upto Pollachi - Alathur - Chelakkara (longer) ?
A 6 am departure is proposed for a late lunch arrival at Kochi.
If you start by 5am, you can still manage Bangalore-Krishnagiri (I started at 5:30 am last Thursday and managed easily).

For Pollachi route don't take NH 209, the route is Bangalore to Salem on NH7, then get onto NH 47 (Coimbatore route). At Perundurai, turn off into the town and go towards Kangeyam, then Palladam, Pollachi. From Pollachi go towards Kollengode, Alathur. At Alathur take Pazhayannur-Chelakkara-Thrissur-Kochi.
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Old 17th April 2013, 07:53   #4993
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Default re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by RSUDARSANAN View Post
Information overload
Do I avoid Bangalore-Krishnagiri & Kuthiran stretch via
a. Nilambur (shorter) or
b. NH209 upto Pollachi - Alathur - Chelakkara (longer) ?
A 6 am departure is proposed for a late lunch arrival at Kochi.
My notes:

- You need not avoid the Krishnagiri stretch. Its easier to drive. Just dont delay much beyond 5/5:30, as it crowds up pretty fast. The truckers "transform" to life after 4 ! You can do this stretch of 90km in about 90 minutes without break. Plan to have a break after Krishnagiri. Its a relief having known that you are past one pressure point !

- In my opinion Nilambur (Mysore-Trichur) is a route, which you do only for leisure and not for shortage of time. Or there is absolute reason for taking it in terms of a destination in this vicinity

- NH209 (Kanakpura Road) is a very good alternative till Coimbatore which you can choose to take. Many members are satisfied with this route. But just be aware that till 200km (Chamarajanagar) you dont get a decent hotel break. Though there are smaller places in between. You also encounter Dimbham ghats with 20+ hairpin bends on this route. If you chose to use this route then you can also bypass Coimbatore by :

Annur-Karumathampatti-Palladam-Pollachi. Below is the route link:

Route Link

So to summarize if you start early, just stick to 4-lane via Krishnagiri and take the route via Perundurai-Kangeyam-Palladam-Pollachi. (Just as NPV indicated)
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Old 17th April 2013, 10:02   #4994
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Originally Posted by Boomerang View Post
Kuthiran is good to go. Not much traffic. patched up. Irumbu Pallam is widened.
I returned via Kuthiran yesterday. Irumbu Palam surface is clear now, but not widened (IIRC)
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Old 17th April 2013, 10:04   #4995
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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
So to summarize if you start early, just stick to 4-lane via Krishnagiri and take the route via Perundurai-Kangeyam-Palladam-Pollachi. (Just as NPV indicated)
NPV and Ampere: Your inputs much appreciated. An early dep & NPV's route suggestion should be optimal. Thanks

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Originally Posted by coolclouds View Post
I returned via Kuthiran yesterday.
Your take on Kuthiran?

Last edited by Rehaan : 18th April 2013 at 15:56. Reason: Posts merged. Please use the MULTIQUOTE button instead of making multiple consecutive posts in the same thread. Thanks.
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