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Old 30th December 2009, 18:15   #1
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Smile Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata

Hi Guys,
I am all set for a second trip to Puri with my parents, wife and a 4 months old. My primary destination is Vizag while I'll use Puri to halt and at most spend a single day there to vist the temple and do the usual stuff. If someone with experince in Vizag could plan my stay and get around there it will be really nice. In a nut shell this is how I've planned it

Day 1 - Jan 10th Reach Puri (Night stay)
Day 2 - Jan 11th Stay At Puri.... (make sure my boy has coped with the journey and then head on Vizag)
Day 3 - Jan 12th Head to Vizag (Night Stay)
Day 4 - Jan 13th Vizag ... Araku ... I dont know what else to fit in here, I need some suggestions on the road conditions as well
Day 5 - Jan 14th Vizag .. May be a night at Araku
Day 6 - Jan 15th Back to Puri (night stay at Puri, relax before going back to Kolkata)
Day 7 - Jan 16th Start for Kolkata.

I need some suggestion for Day3 and Day4. I know of a conducted tour by APTourism which visits Bora caves and Araku in a day trip but I'm not sure if I may do that with the baby with us. Please let me know how I can cover the best of the locations in car, do not want to do a lot of run around and stress the baby but also do not want to get locked up in hotel rooms, need to strike a good balance.

I'll try to make it to Vizag on day 2 itself if we are not fatigued too much, so an optional extra day may also be planned in Vizag.

I'll eagerly wait for help and suggestions from you all thanks!
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Old 31st December 2009, 06:41   #2
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your plan looks perfectly alright, except squezze one more day in Vizag for Local Sightseeing , one day conducted tour to araku may be too much too bear for your baby .

My suggestion is to relax a bit & enjoy the trip , you might consider a stop at Rambha on way in/out to vizag .

Cheers

Last edited by Captdey : 31st December 2009 at 06:42.
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Old 5th January 2010, 19:45   #3
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Thanks Captain, I'll keep it in my options, worried a little about current road conditions, Suman Nandy went for a trip in Dec 09 I guess, waiting for an update from him, any other info captain please let me know.
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Old 6th January 2010, 14:05   #4
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Arindam,

I did couple of Trips Vizag - Kolkata during 2009 ,
this my last travel on 5th august.


Road Conditions update - 4/5 August 2009.

Vizag - Icchapuram - Good 4 Lanes NHAI Expressway.
Ichhapuram - Checkpost area Terrible Road Condition.
After Checkpost till Berhampore Bypass ( Gopalpur Xing ) - Good
but lot of Speed Breaker , Careful if Driving at Night .
Gopalpur X ing Till Rambha - Again Road Bad to Worse , some
place toiling through heavy red mud.
Rambha till Sunakhala - Good , single lane .
Sunakhala - Bhubaneswar - Cuttack - Bhadrak - Nice
4 lane Toll expressway by NHAI ,
Bhadrak - Baleswar - Moderate to Bad in some strectches,
lot of Diversions, you will be Zig-Zaging all way through
Baleswar, Baleswar to Kolkata - Again 4 lane Toll expressway
till Kolkata , ( Except Kolaghat Bridge approaches and bridge ) .
From Baleswar when you enter NH 60 , small portion is single
carriageway , becareful about numerous speed breakers at
this Strecth.

Time at avg. 80 kmph driving speed .
Vizag - Rambha - 5 Hours.
Rambha - Puri - 4 hours
Puri - Kolkata - 8 hours.

Cheers

Last edited by Captdey : 6th January 2010 at 14:06.
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Old 6th January 2010, 16:04   #5
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Thanks Captain, thatís exactly what I was looking for.

Captain, how about an idea about forming a group of like minded road travelers like us? We may club together our resources and experiences and share each others company on these lovely trips. I'm sure there must be some group some where amongst these lovely people who travel together. Is there a decent way to connect to such a group? If not can we not form such a group? We will give it a name and share our experiences which will help others. We can then arrange trips and share the dates in advance and join together on the trip. We can have a few coordinators who will administer the group on each journey, much like a music band. Then we will know the good places to visit and bad places to avoid, we will lay down a set of protocols to which the member should abide by...please share your thoughts. Iíve been harboring such an idea for a long time now. I know itís difficult but not impossible.
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Old 7th January 2010, 05:44   #6
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Right Arindam, Lets have a meet T Bhp and chalk out ,
some of the Members like ADC, Sudipto have a quite
wide range of travelling experience and some of their
travelogues were really fantastic , its like "Manas Darshan"

Anyway I will be in Kolkata after 16th of January , I will
ready for any kind of "Bongo Bondhu " meet after that.

Cheers
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Old 7th January 2010, 22:41   #7
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Yes lets gets things together and start forming a group. I'll be back home on 16th itself its saturday, you may let me know the details on your return. It would be nice to meet ADC and Sudipto too. I been knowing you guys for a long time now, so the names are not new to me. I've been reading their logs and its all very well written both literally and also in terms of information ideas and suggestions. TBHP long live.
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Old 9th January 2010, 12:48   #8
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Nice idea Arindam, of forming the group. All the best wishes to you all for that. That's the advantage of being a metropolitan city like Kolkata. I wish there were few such petrolheads here at Lucknow too! But, sadly there aren't any! Pooling the resources and combining the journey will be not only economical, but even more joyful!

Enjoy your rides.
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Old 18th January 2010, 11:47   #9
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Hi, all back from Vizag, let me know about the "Bongo Bondhu Meet", the cold is gripping here, Captain read about comments on picnic...nice idea. Lets try some progress on the Traveller Group thing, if it comes good, we're going to have lots of fun. Where Is Everyone ?
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Old 18th January 2010, 12:26   #10
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After collecting all the required information it was finally time to leave home

10th Jan 2010, we started at 5 AM, reached Kolaghat a little before 6:30AM, at 7 Am were speeding down NH6 again and crossed Khargpur and kept breezing along NH60. This being the second time on that route was a routine experience, not much changed in the last one year. We were not getting bored like last time I travelled since this time we were 4 adults and a tiny 4 months old, he was sleeping most of the time but did every bit to entertain us as soon as his sleep was over. He's goon be a traveller soon.

Here's a snap after reaching Victoria Club at Puri.
I see its a big sea!!!! that was the look on his face. He is Rehan at home and good name is Pradipta.

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03049.jpg

We were a little tired and decided to stay back at Puri on 11th Jan. My Parents wanted to relax a bit and I didn't try convincing them too hard to get going, we decided after a lot of pondering that we will go for Vizag.

11th We were at the puri temple, offered puja to Jagannath and also had a chance to have the Bhog delivered to us by a sober "Panda" before being taken around in the temple for a close view of lord Jagannath.
Rehan ignored the massive crowd and kept looking around with a very stern look the man was good and really didn't harass us at all, at the end of the day were a happy lot.

I had not taken much pictures of the Kolkata puri part of the trip since I had loads of them last time and nothing changed much, few places got worse between Balasore, Soro and Bhadrak and few were a tad better. Work is in progress thats positive.

I finally managed to convince Wife, Mom and Dad that we should go for Vizag and then come back as soon as possible to Puri to relax again for a couple of days before we start home wards.

We planned to set off for Vizag on 12th Jan 2010 around 5 AM, will come back with the Vizag part soon! . . .
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Old 25th January 2010, 20:07   #11
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Awaiting for your Trip report and Photographs,
Your 4 months looks quite enthrilled and excited.

I know the toughest part of the Trip is to Convince
wifey and other family members.

Cheers

Last edited by Captdey : 25th January 2010 at 20:08.
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Old 14th February 2010, 16:12   #12
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Default Reaching Vizag from Puri

Sorry Captain it took me while to get some time to sit and write again!

We left Victoria Hotel at around 5:30 AM. The morning was a little chilly but that was the not the problem as was the fog around. Dense as it was, reduced visibility considerably. Though I do a bit to get the blood circulation going but normally reflexes are low when I just begin to drive. We kept going towards Bhubaneswar knowing that we had to turn left at some point named ďHathaChakiĒ. We stopped for tea at a local shop and came to know that we need to keep going until Pipili, the turn as we came to know on reaching is just before the Pipili police station. This road goes through Jatni and a number of remote villages. By the time we reached Khurda we have already travelled 65 KMS. I must mention here that this Pipili Khurdah connection has numerous speed breakers and you will not lose the one you are crossing in your rear view mirror before you are already crossing the next one, hence we crossed nearly 50 to 60 speed breakers before we finally reached NH5 again.

As already informed by Captain, the road till Sunakhala was absolutely gorgeous, 4 laned and pretty nice landscaping, after Sunakhala till Rambha was tough at certain parts for a small car like my Indica, but could be managed if driven carefully. We were always surrounded by at least 5 to 6 trucks or containers. We soon crossed Bulagaon and Barkul. The road here was pretty congested as we were passing around 10:30 to 11:00 AM. As we crossed Rambha the road started a steep climb and was quite fascinating. Before I realized we could see the Chilka lake from the top. The road suddenly got terrible almost vanished and we were rattling through loose stone chips. Here is a snap that shows exactly the spot Iím talking about, construction is on in full swing and itís a nightmare, but the worst was yet to come.

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03066.jpg

After we crossed this absolute turmoil we were now going through another long unfinished part of NH5 and this now was going to continue until we crossed Ichchapuram, still very far away. From here on one could maintain good speeds but with numerous diversions one needs to be very careful.
Here are some of the pictures of the part Iím trying to describe here.

Taken by wifey

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03067.jpg

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03069.jpg

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03071.jpg

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03073.jpg

Taken by me

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03075.jpg

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03077.jpg

Crossing Ichchapuram was one of the aims in my life at that moment. We crossed Beherampur and reached Gopalpur Crossing, this place is again a hell to drive with a small car, roads area largely unfinished with huge blocks of it in perilous broken condition. I passed it very carefully and reached a decent filling station at a place called Golantra its in Ganjam district I believe. I quickly asked a person at the fuel pump how far we have to go before we reach Ichchapuram he indicated not much. We were soon on our way again hoping to reach Ichchapuram and finally we did.

If what I encountered till now was hell this is even worse. A huge line of trucks and containers at least a couple of kilometers long, no tarmac at all, read soil and I was toiling through that. I was a little scared of getting stuck in this turmoil with my 4 months old, both ways due to my car breaking down or getting no place to move on. I held my nerves and carried on squeezing through huge Trucks and container vehicles on my left that were standstill and ones that were approaching from the front. One of the lanes the left one was completely stuck and moving very slowly. I managed to pass through and entered the Ichchpuram village which had equally bad roads but not through what I just passed. After negotiating a lot of trucks, autos and local busses I managed to reach back the highway to my utter relief.

By then my Dad, Mom and Wifey were all expecting that we have travelled a lot and will very soon be reaching the destination, and even to my disbelief we had another 330 odd KMS to do. ( If I remember correctly)
What happened was that our average speed was really low hence it took us almost 7 hours to cross Ichchpuram.

The following factors did us in
  • Iím always slow in the first 30 mins that I begin to drive before my reflexes are good enough to negotiate higher speeds.
  • The fog was dense hence slowed us down.
  • Pipili to Khurda road is full of speed breakers and not much to write home about the condition of the road.
  • Sunakhala onwards there was never a smooth going until we reached and crossed Ichchpuram.
We kept going and I was really feeling the fatigue now. The roads were smooth now but I lost energy very quickly in the last 7 hours and I knew I had to keep going and there was no stopping. We were carry some nik nacks but were all exhausted at around 3:30 PM were all very hungry but I was not able to spot a decent place to stop and have some food. We finally got a place with some decent shops, had still about 200 odd kilometers to cover. I rang up the ISKON guy from here that we were reaching by 5:30 PM.

By the time we reached Vizag it was almost 5:30 PM and almost 6:30 PM to reach ISKON on the beach road, I already rang up ISKON @ Vizag,
that's where I planned to stay. The facility was new and hence all the services were still not upto the standard. I never knew that hence we had serious problems getting to eat something that evening. The ISKON people serve only veg but that was not the problem worst part was they had only rice, dal and sabji thats it! Well we would have missed that too had I not called them up before reaching. There were no nearby restaurnats that I could find while we entered ISKON, its located in a rather secluded place on the beach road, so that was not a good choice for me. I really tired and needed a good night sleep, the rooms were very good (non-AC) RS 1000/- (including the food I mentioned).

All of us were very exhausted and my mom and wife were equally tensed that we will have to get back through all that while returning Puri. I was begining to worry too since my Xeta took some stress that day but it never showed any signs of letting me down. I noticed that the threads of the front wheels (JK Tyre - Tornado - OEM, need some suggestions on which brand to choose depending on availability in Kolkata and a sugesstion of a good dealer in north kolkata, I'll need to change them soon) decreased a lot and it kept me worried for a while and before I knew I was in deep sleep.
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Old 28th March 2010, 01:52   #13
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Had to be offline for more than a month since my system broke down, lost all my pictures. I have them back now forgot that I had another copy on my Memory Sticks. Well! Reaching Vizag was easily the toughest part of the trip. This is 13th Jan morning we have planned to visit Araku today and will have to get back to Puri the next day.

Here is a view from Beach Road.

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03083.jpg

Another view of the beautiful Beach Road.

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03084.jpg

The beach itself, we did not have much time to enjoy it this time

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03085.jpg

We quickly stopped for some breakfast and tea and a road side stall served us just what we needed. Very delicious Sambar Vada and Parathas, the tea was also very well prepared. After all the ordeal the previous day this was all we needed.

We headed for Araku, I was following Google map printouts and were soon on our way to Araku.

Here are some of the pictures on the way

Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03093.jpg
Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03094.jpg
Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03103.jpg
Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03108.jpg
Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03118.jpg
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Road Trip Kolkata - Puri - Vizag - Puri- Kolkata-dsc03119.jpg  

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Old 28th March 2010, 15:07   #14
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From Ichapuram to Balugaon still the same which I had travelled in 2007.I think you could have taken the Ichapuram bypass so that you can avoid the truck traffic.
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