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Old 19th November 2009, 10:36   #886
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how is the road to banaglore via north, say cochin - calicut - mysore - bangalore.
Speed / fast drives are not a concern, but i would like to know is it in good condition scenic, best road, turns etc.
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Old 19th November 2009, 10:55   #887
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Just returned from a Bombay-Bangalore-Ernakulam-Idukki-Thekkady-Madurai-Kanyakumari-Trivandrum-Bombay trip, so here are some comments on the road to Kerala.

BANGALORE-ERNAKULAM


I left Bangalore HSR Layout at 515 am on Nov 14, 2009.

Bangalore-Salem, 194 kms, 2.28 hrs

Despite a slow drive till Hosur and a 5 m refuelling halt after Hosur, the drive was fast and smooth. Truck traffic was high all the way and city traffic slowed me down as I approached Salem at 745 am.

The humps in the Toppur Ghat section are terrible.

I decided to try out the 4-laned Salem instead of the shorter Toppur-Mettur-Bhavani route.

Signages are excellent on Salem bypass.

Salem-Coimbatore bypass (beginning), 153 kms, 2.10 hrs

Leaving NH7 for NH47 at Salem meant 2-laned roads till Sankari, and the 48 km took me 41 kms, but the initial 10 kms out of Salem were very slow and one has to be careful with the miscellanous traffic and buses which spill all over the road. Some 5 kms from Salem, 4-lane roads are under construction. Sankari town also slows you down.

The next 69 kms till you cross Perunthurai when the 4-lane road ends took me 49 m, since it is a lovely 4-lane stretch.

After the fast drive so far, it is a hellish drive from hereon for the next 43 kms, which took me 43 m, and some breakneck driving to overtake the umpteen buses and other slower-moving vehicles, crossing the messy small towns like Avinashi in between and beating peak morning traffic. It was almost 10 am when I reached the beginning of Coimbatore bypass.

Coimbatore Bypass, 27 kms, 27 m

Very frustrating 2-lane road with 2 many toll gates, one before every intersection (Trichy, Pollachi), means 5 toll gates, could L&T not figure out a better way to regulate entry/exit. Although you take one through ticket, the toll gates stop you to check every time and are terribly inefficient. I had to pick up a fight with one of the toll gate guys, that was the level of frustration with the state of affairs. The intersections can also do without signals (why not a roundabout instead) - the sparse traffic means that for most part, traffic ignores the signals and moves on increasing risks of collisions.

Coimbatore-Trissur (bypass beginning), 95 kms, 1.47 hrs

You can see how slow the drive was on the 2-lane roads through Palghat to Trissur. Traffic was quite high, overtaking difficult, but happily the roads were good throughout including the notorious Palghat-Trissur section.

The TN-KL border checkposts looks the most inefficient in India, judging from the trucks piled up for over a km on both sides - but luckily well-regulated and parked in an orderly fashion, but I can imagine the jam that will erupt if anyone goes out of line in the narrow road.

Trissur-Ernakulam Vytilla Jn, 75 kms, 1.40 m

That was really slow, my best time on this stretch being 60 minutes.

4-laning work is on from Trissur onwards, and there are some major deviations (e.g. go into Chalakudy town), and one has to be slow and patient in the busy KL roads. High tIme to build a couple of flyovers off Aluva town instead of the clumsy signal points.

Signages are good.

The Bangalore-Ernakulam drive of 545 kms took me 7.47 m.
First 200 kms from Bangalore to Salem took me 2.30 hrs
Second 215 kms from Salem to Palghat took me 3.15 hrs
Last 135 kms took me 2.45 m, best time has been 2 hrs

TRIVANDRUM-BOMBAY

Left Trivandrum at 9 pm, on Nov 16, 2009

Trivandrum-Ernakulam

212 kms, 3.18 hrs, slower than my fastest time of 2.25 hrs, had refuelling halt for 5 m, but quite OK considering my previous run time of 3.05 hrs. Despite the late hour (after 9 on this highway is late), there was traffic and progress was quite slow till I crossed Kollam.

Ernakulam-Calicut, 202 kms, 3.15 hrs

Slower than my 2.53 hrs, since I took the much-better Kodungallur-Irinjalakuda-Trissur-Kunnamkulam route instead of NH17, same distance, but slower inside Trissur town

Calicut-Mangalore, 254 kms, 4.31 hrs

Best time 3.55 hrs, this is where I have lost lots of time, which included a refuelling halt of 5 m, lots of bad roads near Mangalore, peak hour traffic and rains. In Calicut, the bypass is not marked properly. The route through city has no signages. Despite that I know the city well, I veered off into the Wayanad road before getting back on track. Happily, since it was late at night (330 am), I did not have any traffic.

Last edited by hvkumar : 19th November 2009 at 10:57.
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Old 19th November 2009, 16:03   #888
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Quote:
Ernakulam-Calicut, 202 kms, 3.15 hrs

Slower than my 2.53 hrs, since I took the much-better Kodungallur-Irinjalakuda-Trissur-Kunnamkulam route instead of NH17, same distance, but slower inside Trissur town
Any specific reason? Is it that the NH17 is bad?
How was the roads from Kunnamkulam to calicut? Do we need a scorp
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Old 19th November 2009, 16:20   #889
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Quote:
Originally Posted by laluks View Post
Any specific reason? Is it that the NH17 is bad?
How was the roads from Kunnamkulam to calicut? Do we need a scorp
Frankly, I missed a turn in Kodungallur town and went onto the wrong road, realising it after a few kms. Signages are terrible on NH17. The state highway to Trissur was outstanding, better than the NH17 from Edapalli to Kodungallur. The distance is just 4 kms on this route. This takes you via Irinjalakuda into Trissur town and goes on the Guruvayur road to Kunnamkulam. Wouldn't do it by day being a congested corridor but at night, I whizzed through.

Road from Kunnamkulam - all freshly laid and in great condition, not a single blemish. I would prefer the road from Kunnamkulam on teh state highway to Valancherry instead of NH17 which takes a longer route via Ponnani.

Till I crossed Kasargod, NH17 was without any blemish.
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Old 21st November 2009, 00:40   #890
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Default Advice reqd on BLR->Thiruvalla route

Hi,
I am planning for to drive from Bangalore to Thiruvalla,Kerala and back during 24th December.
There are two routes which I see from maps. One is the regular BLR->Coimbatore->Trissur->Eranakulam->Kottayam->Thiruvalla.

The other being BLR->Salem->Karur->Dindigul->Kumily->Kottayam->Thiruvalla.

Please do suggest me a route depending on traffic, timelines, condition-of-road.
-Thanks!
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Old 21st November 2009, 00:49   #891
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While both routes are good, I think the easier route is the regular one via Coimbatore. But instead of going to Ernakulam, I would turn off NH47 at Angamali and go via Perumbavoor, Muvattupuzha, Thodupuzha and Kottayam. You will go off 4-lane roads after Avinashi and face oncominmg traffic on conventional 2-lane roads for the rest of the way.

The Dindigul route means you have the advanatge of 4-lane roads till Dindigul (some incomplete portions too), but you have to decide between whether KL roads have more chaotic traffic or TN, since you have to cross several small TN towns like Periakulam, Theni, etc before you climb up and down the ghats near Kumili - a scenic route but more time-consuming and difficult to drive.

The NH7-NH47 option via Coimbatore has excellent roads throughout.

The NH7-NH49-NH220 option means some patchy roads inside the TN towns, bad roads climbing up to Kumili and some bad sections descending down to Mundakayam. If you take this route, you do not have to touch Kottayam, you can turn off before after Ponkunnam and go directly to Changanaserry.

Last edited by hvkumar : 21st November 2009 at 00:52.
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Old 21st November 2009, 08:21   #892
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar
While both routes are good, I think the easier route is the regular one via Coimbatore. But instead of going to Ernakulam, I would turn off NH47 at Angamali and go via Perumbavoor, Muvattupuzha, Thodupuzha and Kottayam. You will go off 4-lane roads after Avinashi and face oncominmg traffic on conventional 2-lane roads for the rest of the way.
For reaching kottayam ,Thodupuzha can be skipped.Angamaly till Muvattupuzha roads are good.from Muvattupuzha towards south ,MC Road is winding and slow with many sharp turns.If Gone via Angamaly-Thodupuzha-Pala-Kottayam Route also the same Hilly Roads.

@santhosh_kumard:From Angamaly ,You can take NH47 till Alappuzha ,take Left turn for Alappuzha-Changanassery Road(Very good Condition ,did Yesterday) and to Thiruvalla.Frankly ,MC Road is avoidable.taking NH47 ,Kms are also not more.
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Old 21st November 2009, 23:33   #893
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Hello HVK, you were in Bangalore!
And you didn't even call me?
By the way thanks for the detailed status. I am planning to drive on coming Wednesday.
Your post was very useful and detailed (as usual)
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Old 22nd November 2009, 12:37   #894
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A bit off topic but important nevertheless. Before traveling to Kerala it would be prudent to check the Harthal schedule also along with the current road conditions.

Harthal Schedule- - www.harthal.com

-- Wind
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Old 23rd November 2009, 10:39   #895
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This is really cool !! Order amongst chaos.... What more to ask for !
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Old 23rd November 2009, 10:55   #896
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wind View Post
A bit off topic but important nevertheless. Before traveling to Kerala it would be prudent to check the Harthal schedule also along with the current road conditions.

Harthal Schedule- - www.harthal.com

-- Wind
+
Good piece of information.
besides these advance/notified hartals, there are few 'lightening' hartal which no one can predict -where/when a hartal being declared.
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Old 23rd November 2009, 21:10   #897
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You need not go to Todupuzha for reaching Kottayam. This Saturday I have done this stretch and roads are good, excellent till Muvattupuzha and good till Kottayam.
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Old 24th November 2009, 11:18   #898
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wind View Post
A bit off topic but important nevertheless. Before traveling to Kerala it would be prudent to check the Harthal schedule also along with the current road conditions.

Harthal Schedule- - www.harthal.com

-- Wind
Scheduled nuisances !
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Old 25th November 2009, 13:45   #899
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Hi

I am planning to drive down to Palakkad tomorrow (Thurs) from Bangalore leaving at about 2 pm in the afternoon.

Would you recommend

1) Bangalore->Krishnagiri->Dharmapuri->Thoppur->Mecheri->Mettur->Ammapet->Andhiyur->Athani->Sathyamangalam->Annur-> [/FONT] [FONT=&quot]Karumathampatti -> LT bypass -> Walayar -> Palakkad
or
2) Bangalore - Hosur - Krishnagiri - Thoppur - Mettur - Bhavani - Avinashi - LT bypass -> Walayar -> Palakkad
or
3) Go through Salem.

Innova, have two young kids so will need to stop on the way. Scenery etc is not important, time and safety are however.

Thanks.

UY

Last edited by Dippy : 25th November 2009 at 15:26. Reason: Post edited for font tags. Posting with such text formatting should be avoided on Team-BHP as it is inconvenient for members.
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Old 25th November 2009, 15:16   #900
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Quote:
Originally Posted by uy663z View Post
Hi

I am planning to drive down to Palakkad tomorrow (Thurs) from Bangalore leaving at about 2 pm in the afternoon.

Would you recommend

1) Bangalore->Krishnagiri->Dharmapuri->Thoppur->Mecheri->Mettur->Ammapet->Andhiyur->Athani->Sathyamangalam->Annur-> Karumathampatti -> LT bypass -> Walayar -> Palakkad
or
2) Bangalore - Hosur - Krishnagiri - Thoppur - Mettur - Bhavani - Avinashi - LT bypass -> Walayar -> Palakkad
or
3) Go through Salem.

Innova, have two young kids so will need to stop on the way. Scenery etc is not important, time and safety are however.

Thanks....

UY

Fastest will be through Salem as it is more or less 4 lane till about 100 kms this side of Palakkad. Towards Salem, you may find denser traffic. Last time I avoided this traffic around Salem by using the TN State Highway from Omallur to Sankiri. this road is about 40 kms 2 laned, but will save you time.

If you are starting at 2 pm you can expect to reach Palakkad by 9 pm with 30 minutes break and sticking to NH7 and NH47

from: sankagiri to: omalur salem - Google Maps

-tortoise

Last edited by Dippy : 25th November 2009 at 15:27. Reason: Editing font tags from the quoted post.
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