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Old 8th October 2015, 21:47   #8956
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by bejoy View Post
Wagamon or Peerumedu is a good option if you love the hills. I am also planning this during the coming holidays.
Wagamon, I feel is a bit shorter (distance wise) and have been currently marked as Plan B. Peermade, I had gone their earlier and I feel travel time is a bit more.

Plan A is to find a good place near a river/lake/sea. And for all you know there could be a Plan A Special (family functions, which would cancel all others).

BTW: Are you on air now? (VHF - 145.650)

Last edited by sachinpk : 8th October 2015 at 21:50.
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Old 10th October 2015, 19:18   #8957
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Drove from Bangalore to North Paravur today. Started at 5:00 AM from Marathahalli outer ring road and reached at destination at around 4:45 PM. Took the regular highway till Omallur. Turned off to Tharamangalam to bypass Salem and soon realized it was a mistake. Several sections were full of potholes. Must have lost about 30 minutes on that stretch. It was then smooth sailing till Madukkarai. Madukkarai- Walayar stretch was ok with several patches of the newly constructed roads open and both way traffic routed through one half of the four lane road. Need to be careful here though with potential for accidents happening due to folks assuming that it is one way. Walayar check post had no delays at all. Walayar to Vadakkancherry was good new four lane roads. However had trouble in the Vadakkancherry to Mannuthy stretch with potholes, traffic, rain and maniac bus drivers. The potholes are relatively fewer in number; however some are pretty deep. Lost about 30 minutes there as well. Took about 2 hours of breaks and drove at very sedate speeds.
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Old 10th October 2015, 22:10   #8958
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Default Travel to Varkala

Travel to Varkala (Kerala) from Bangalore and back

I have tried to divide the trip into the following sections:

Introduction
My Car
Past long driving experiences
Route I am planning to take
Travel time
Suggestions

Introduction:
I am planning for a week's trip to Varkala with my family comprising of my mother, wife and two sons. It's part of my yearly travel that I do with my family. Every year a new destination to explore! Why Varkala? As I wanted to go to a place where I could drive, has sea beaches and a place away from hustles of the city life. And to top it all, one of my friends had recently visited Varkala and had nice things to say about the place. This all sealed the deal for Varkala. We will be there for around 4 days and return back to Bangalore on the 5th day.

PS: Being a new member, this is my first post and I am quite excited and in the excitement I may miss writing a proper post. Please excuse me for that.

My Car
Currently I own a Hyundai i10 1100cc since 2008. My car has been my good companion in all these years and many a long drives that I have done.
Earlier I owned a Santro Xing for almost 5 years.

Past long driving experiences
If anyone asks what is the one thing that I like to do the most then without thinking it will be DRIVING! Because of which I have traveled a lot during these years. And longest being around this time last year when I drove (around 2500 Kms -- round trip) from Bangalore to Vizag for a vacation. I remember it was a Sunday when I drove back and exactly a week after (Sunday) Hudhud cyclone struck Vizag and surrounding areas.

Here I have to specially thank my family for supporting me in those long drives. My mother being 64 years also enjoys the drive.

Route I am planning to take
I was planning to take the Bangalore->Salem->Namakkal->Madurai->Tirumangalam->Rajapalayam->Tenkasi->Kulathupuzha->Varkala



Today one of my apartment mates, who I know for quite some time now and is from Kollam suggested a little different way then what I had planned earlier. He also loves to drive and has traveled quite a few times in that route. As he suggested, instead of taking the bypass to NH208 after Tirumanglam from NH7 (1st picture below) continue on NH7 after Tirumanglam and take the SH76 after Kovilpatti (2nd picture below) which connects the Kollam - Tirumanglam Rd. This saves a lot of time, as I will be on NH7 for longer time and the connecting SH76 is also a good drive-able road.

Picture 1:


Picture 2:


Thanks to Anoop (my apartment mate) for the suggestion. Looking forward to trying this new route.

Travel time
Google maps shows a total distance of around 680 Kms from Bangalore to Varkala and estimated travel time to be around 11 hrs 30 mins.

I am planning to start at around 4:00 in the morning and cover the NH7 part of the distance as soon as possible so that I have some time to drive off NH7 roads to Varkala and reach my destination before the sun sets.

Since we are starting early, we are planning to carry our breakfast and have it in car and possibly also parcel our lunch. As I understand we may not get a decent place to eat during lunch time. With kids and ladies I feel it will be better if we carry our food. (Suggestions please).

Suggestions
I will really appreciate to receive any suggestions/comments from forum members or some tricks/tips for the travel.
Attached Thumbnails
All Roads to Kerala-newroute.jpg  

All Roads to Kerala-tirumangalam.jpg  

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Old 11th October 2015, 23:16   #8959
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Hi, Planning to do Kozhikode - Pathanamthitta (10AM start), which route is preferable considering traffic and road condition:

Kozhikode Chertala Alapuzha - Thiruvalla Pathanamthitta

Kozhikode Thrisur Muvattupuzha Ranny Pathanamthitta

thanks
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Old 12th October 2015, 09:36   #8960
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Default

I'd say take
Kozhikode - Thrissur - Angamaly - Muvattupuzha - Ranny
Alwaye-Edapally-Vyitila is in very bad shape due to metro construction. Last week it took almost 2 hours for this stretch, that too on a Sunday.
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Old 12th October 2015, 13:37   #8961
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by kaushik_ch
Google maps shows a total distance of around 680 Kms from Bangalore to Varkala and estimated travel time to be around 11 hrs 30 mins.
It would be better to ask with people who have actually driven on this route to get the actual time they have taken on the ground. Google Maps, AFAIK does some kind of averaging out of the distance & speed.

Quote:
With kids and ladies I feel it will be better if we carry our food. (Suggestions please).
With kids and ladies, my main worry would be identifying spots which has neat & well maintained toilets. I feel a bio-break (if not two) would be required for such a long drive, and it would be better to identify some areas - good restaurants, good fuel pumps etc. etc.
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Old 12th October 2015, 17:38   #8962
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Did a Bangalore - Edappally today. Took the straight route NH7-NH47 via Salem-Palakkad-Mannuthy-Edappally. Good progress on the 4 laning of Madukkarai - Walayar section. Rest of the drive was as usual except,

patch work is being done on the Vadakkenchery - Kuthiran section which is a great relief from the pot holes we encountered during a drive last week. But since work is in progress there was a huge block at Kuthiran where traffic was being stopped and allowed alternately from either direction. That pain apart, you should be able to see the section patched up fully in a couple of days for a better ride (relative to what I saw last week!).
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Old 13th October 2015, 10:25   #8963
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Default Re: Travel to Varkala

Quote:
Originally Posted by kaushik_ch View Post
Travel to Varkala (Kerala) from Bangalore and back
...
As he suggested, instead of taking the bypass to NH208 after Tirumanglam from NH7 (1st picture below) continue on NH7 after Tirumanglam and take the SH76 after Kovilpatti (2nd picture below) which connects the Kollam - Tirumanglam Rd. This saves a lot of time, as I will be on NH7 for longer time and the connecting SH76 is also a good drive-able road.
...
I'm from Kollam too and have done this route a while back in my i10, about 1.5 years ago (coming back from Kollam). At that time, the route from Kovilpatti-Sankarankovil was having very little traffic, but I couldn't make up time since the road surface was rough and we encountered frequent speed breakers. Roads at Sankarankovil and Kalugumalai were narrow and I had trouble with a few one-ways which were not updated in Google Maps at that time. So, look up road signs when you reach these towns. I literally had to floor it once I entered NH-7. In the end, I took exactly the same time as I would have taken if I took the NH208 all the way till Tirumangalam.

But, if your friend has done this route recently and has first hand experience saving time, please ignore my comment and let us know what the current condition of the road is. I personally like to take NH208 as NH7 can become a bit monotonous and boring when it comes to driving.

Quote:
Since we are starting early, we are planning to carry our breakfast and have it in car and possibly also parcel our lunch. As I understand we may not get a decent place to eat during lunch time. With kids and ladies I feel it will be better if we carry our food. (Suggestions please)
Packing food is a good idea. why- you won't have to hunt for places for good food. Finding a spot with shade on NH7 will be your challenge, though. Couple of my favourite places with respect to cleanliness, for bathroom breaks - Hotel Temple City [Map link] and Monkey Bell Restaurant [Map Link]

Last edited by Horizon81 : 13th October 2015 at 10:35.
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Old 13th October 2015, 10:52   #8964
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Planning to drive to Ernakulam next week. Was planning to take the Thoppur - Mettur - Bhavani road instead of driving all the way on NH - which is boring. Also might end up saving some toll.

I am planning a day drive, so assuming the road condition will be good, anyone gone on this road recently? And we have to NH 47 at Bhavani only right?
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Old 13th October 2015, 11:16   #8965
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by Avenger_123 View Post
Planning to drive to Ernakulam next week. Was planning to take the Thoppur - Mettur - Bhavani road instead of driving all the way on NH - which is boring. Also might end up saving some toll.

I am planning a day drive, so assuming the road condition will be good, anyone gone on this road recently? And we have to NH 47 at Bhavani only right?
Do note that lorry traffic on the Mettur Bhavani Road will be high as most of the lorries bound to Karnataka take this route. It will slow you down.
Instead take a diversion towards Omalur town and go via Tharamangalam and Sankagiri before joining NH47. By this you can save 2 tolls at Omalur and Sankagiri.
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Old 13th October 2015, 11:36   #8966
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Did Ernakulam-Wayanad-Ernakulam trip on 11th (Sunday).

Ernakulam-Trichur-Calicut-Bathery-Pulpally-Perikkalloor-Pulpally-Bathery-Erumadu-Vazhikkadavu-Perinthalmanna-Shornur-Trichur-Ernakulam.

Left Ernakulam at 7am and traffic all the way was moderate being a Sunday. On return, left Bathery at 7pm and took the Nilambur route as the Thamarasserry churam was crowded during my last trip.

Bathery to Vazhikkadavu is mostly good and scenic for a day drive. There was thick fog till Vazhikkadavu with visibility less than 10 meters and traffic was almost nil.

Bathery to Erumad is little bumpy but nothing to worry.
There were signs of landslides in Nadugani ghat but road was clear. Its a good alternate to those who are ok with twisted roads.

Pulpally - 6.30pm
Bathery - 7pm
Nadugani - 9.15 pm
Trichur toll - 12.20 am
Kaloor Stadium - 1.20 am
(Never exceeded 80 kmph)
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Old 13th October 2015, 12:06   #8967
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Folks, need some help for a friend.
He plans to rent a car (myles/zoomcar, etc) and drive from Bangalore to Kerala via the Punalur-Shenkottai route. So question on the RTO permit charges to be paid:
1. At Hosur (TN state entry)
2. Somewhere after the turn off to Kutralam falls ? (Kerala state entry)

How to locate the checkpost for #2 and what would be a good time to get there ? So working backwards what would be a good time to start from Bangalore ?
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Old 13th October 2015, 15:39   #8968
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by suresh_gs View Post
Instead take a diversion towards Omalur town and go via Tharamangalam and Sankagiri before joining NH47. By this you can save 2 tolls at Omalur and Sankagiri.
I did this stretch during a drive made last month. To be frank, I felt I made a mistake. The time was in the morning at around 0700-0730Hrs and Salem city may not have been really crowded. The road condition in the entire stretch was not very great. Small pot holes all across the roads, too many slow moving trucks etc.
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Old 13th October 2015, 17:44   #8969
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Default Re: Travel to Varkala

Quote:
Originally Posted by Horizon81 View Post
I'm from Kollam too and have done this route a while back in my i10, about 1.5 years ago (coming back from Kollam). At that time, the route from Kovilpatti-Sankarankovil was having very little traffic, but I couldn't make up time since the road surface was rough and we encountered frequent speed breakers. Roads at Sankarankovil and Kalugumalai were narrow and I had trouble with a few one-ways which were not updated in Google Maps at that time. So, look up road signs when you reach these towns. I literally had to floor it once I entered NH-7. In the end, I took exactly the same time as I would have taken if I took the NH208 all the way till Tirumangalam.
Last I spoke to him, he didn't mention any of these issues and said the road is good with less speed breakers. Probably they would have made the road good now! Anyways I will confirm with him again.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Horizon81 View Post
I personally like to take NH208 as NH7 can become a bit monotonous and boring when it comes to driving.
True, these roads (NHs) gets boring after sometime.

Otherwise how is the road condition of NH208?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Horizon81 View Post
Packing food is a good idea. why- you won't have to hunt for places for good food. Finding a spot with shade on NH7 will be your challenge, though.
Agree. Carrying food is more of a backup if we don't get any decent place to eat during lunch.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Horizon81 View Post
Couple of my favourite places with respect to cleanliness, for bathroom breaks - Hotel Temple City [Map link] and Monkey Bell Restaurant [Map Link]
I saved them as favorite in my map already!
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Old 14th October 2015, 09:41   #8970
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaushik_ch View Post
Otherwise how is the road condition of NH208?
My last drive was in the first week of September. Nothing to worry about road surface. Its an undivided, two lane road with enough shoulder width. During day time you could safely average 50-60 kmph throughout the 200 KM length.
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