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Old 1st February 2011, 07:29   #1
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Default Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Thanks all for viewing this thread.

I need to attend my friend's marriage at Guruvayoor on 7th of february. We are planning to drive down for an extended weekend, from Chennai to Guruvayoor. Need help/ suggestions with the planning.

There are some threads asking for munnar travel directions, but my query is a bit more complex, and hence starting a thread.

Here is the plan we have in mind.
  • Car- Mahindra Logan diesel. 5 people.
  • Friday night. Start from Chennai. Reach munnar by morning.
  • Take a room (Hopefully 24 hours).
  • Spend Saturday morning and night at munnar.
  • Evacuate the room on Sunday morning, visit any other location (Nelliyampathi?) and proceed towards Guruvayoor.
  • Sunday night stay at Guruvayur. Monday afternoon, vacate Guruvayoor and visit another location (Not decided!).
  • Monday night and tuesday morning at that location, and tuesday night drive back to chennai.
Questions i have in mind-
  • Chennai to munnar. I believe the best route may be through Dindigul, theni? Is it safe to cover this route overnight?
  • Any ECONOMICAL & NEAT hotels recommended in Munnar? How much should we be prepared to spend?
  • Sunday morning, should we spend at Munnar/ Anamudi itself? Or proceed towards any other location? How about driving Munnar - Nelliyampathi - Guruvayoor via Pollachi?
  • Monday night and tuesday morning location not decided. Choices are alapuzha/ nelliyampathy. More inclined towards nelliyampathy after seeing some wonderful travelogues recently. How much will this add to our running, and will any hotels/ lodges be available at nelliyampathy.
  • Is it better to drive tuesday morning (Return to Chennai), and visit some other places on the way to Chennai? (Rather than visiting one place, and driving back to Chennai at night?).

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 1st February 2011 at 07:42.
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Old 1st February 2011, 10:44   #2
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Chennai-Trichy: Yes definitely good at nights.
But the same cannot be said about Trichy-Dindigul.

Its not about safety, but more to do with diversions owing to 4L conversion work which is not over yet.
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Old 1st February 2011, 10:58   #3
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Its not about safety, but more to do with diversions owing to 4L conversion work which is not over yet.
How about driving down to Madurai, and taking NH49, via usilampatti and theni? Is it a better option?

Google maps show an increase of 40 kms over the dindigul route! But i guess it should be covered in less than 30 mins.
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Old 1st February 2011, 11:33   #4
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

you can check Chennai - Madurai - Theni - Kumily - Munnar instead.

This would be around 20-30 kms more than Chennai-Trichy-Dinidigul-Munnar but should be having good roads.

Chennai-Madurai --> good to drive (4L)
Madurai-Munnar should be good (around 170 kms) but not sure about current road condition.
HVK sir can update?
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Old 1st February 2011, 11:54   #5
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
How about driving down to Madurai, and taking NH49, via usilampatti and theni? Is it a better option?

Google maps show an increase of 40 kms over the dindigul route! But i guess it should be covered in less than 30 mins.
Yes, that seems to be a better option. I am not sure of night driving on NH49. Can some one comment on that?
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Old 1st February 2011, 12:05   #6
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post

Friday night. Start from Chennai. Reach munnar by morning.
Since you are doing a night drive,IMO,going via Madurai-Theni would be a better option
  • Quote:
    Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
    Take a room (Hopefully 24 hours)
    Plenty of places in the town,you could check out John's home stay,its a good place for a overnight/-04865-231823/9447331831.Should be in the range of INR1500-2000,Munnar Inn is another budget option.
  • Quote:
    Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
    Spend Saturday morning and night at munnar
    You could drive to Top Station via Mattupetty,then go see the Nilgiri Tahr at Eravikulam.
  • Quote:
    Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
    Evacuate the room on Sunday morning, visit any other location (Nelliyampathi?)
    IMO Nelliyampathi is way out of the way for you,.The only place that I can think of is Thekkady or the backwaters at Alleppey or else go to Athirappilly/Vazhachal and then onto Thrissur and Guruvayur.If you do opt to go to Guruvayur from Alleppey then take the NH17 from Edappally and enroute do a stop at Snehatheeram,its a new beach location being promoted by KTDC,its lovely clean and has a nice restaurant as well,Google the location for more info.
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Old 1st February 2011, 12:59   #7
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Going via Madurai and taking NH49 may be a better idea compared with NH45 from Trichy to Dindigul in view of the road widening work. You can take the Madurai bypass without getting lost in Madurai city.

NH49 to Theni is apparently not in great form, has some rough patches and roads through the towns en route are also below par, but I think that is the best route for you.

You can also try out SN Tourist Home and SN Annexe in MUnnar town.

Going from Munnar to Guruvayur, you can take the Kothamnagalam route and drop in at Atirapalli which is a detour off Chalakudy between Angamali & Trissur. Alternatively, you can go from Munnar to Udumalaipet, and take the Valparai-Athirapalli route to get to Chalakudy and proceed to Guruvayur.

In case you want to go to Nelliyampathi, you can do that after Guruvayur on your way back home.
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Old 1st February 2011, 18:38   #8
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

HVK,
Is it not that the Udumalpet option is quite a roundabout to hit GVR?

Adimali Chalakudy should be the best option. Is it not?
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Old 1st February 2011, 20:22   #9
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

First of all- thanks ampere, nfsfreak, ranjitp1 and hvkumar sir for helping me out.

So, Route through Madurai is decided. I am quite familiar with the drive down to Madurai, and will try NH49 from Madurai to Munnar via theni.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ranjitp1 View Post
You could drive to Top Station via Mattupetty,then go see the Nilgiri Tahr at Eravikulam.[*]IMO Nelliyampathi is way out of the way for you,.The only place that I can think of is Thekkady or the backwaters at Alleppey or else go to Athirappilly/Vazhachal and then onto Thrissur and Guruvayur.If you do opt to go to Guruvayur from Alleppey then take the NH17 from Edappally and enroute do a stop at Snehatheeram,its a new beach location being promoted by KTDC,its lovely clean and has a nice restaurant as well,Google the location for more info.[/list]
Top Station. Noted.

How about Anamudi? Possible to visit Top Station and Anamudi same day? I remember going there to see Nilgiri Tahr, when several years back. Its also in Eravikulam, right?

Athirappilly is one option i missed. Thanks. As per google maps, it looks to be en-route Guruvayoor!
Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
Going from Munnar to Guruvayur, you can take the Kothamnagalam route and drop in at Atirapalli which is a detour off Chalakudy between Angamali & Trissur. Alternatively, you can go from Munnar to Udumalaipet, and take the Valparai-Athirapalli route to get to Chalakudy and proceed to Guruvayur.
I believe the Udumalaipet- Valparai- Athirapalli route will be very scenic. How good are the roads, and how many kms will it add, compared to the other route?
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Old 1st February 2011, 20:43   #10
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Climbing up Anaimudi is a long affair and you need permissions. But you can always visit Eravikulam National Park to see the Nilgiri Tahr assuming that it is open during this period.

You can do the Munnar-Mattupetty Dam-Kundale Dam-Top Station & back to Munnar is half a day. Eravikulam is on the way to Udumalaipet from Munnar and can be covered en route.

Athirapalli is not en route Guruvayur, but a detour of 35 kms from Chalakudy which is halfway between Angamali & Trissur.

Udumalaipet-Valparai-Athirapalli-Chalakudy route is indeed scenic, but the road was bad between TN-KL border (25 kms from Valparai, at Malakkiparai) and Peringalkuthu Dam (before Athirapalli). It is not on the way, as ampere points out, but merely a suggestion since you wanted a driving circuit that would ultimately lead you to Guruvayur!

How much distance will the Valparai circuit add? It will be around 250 kms to Chalakudy from Munnar via Valparai, but the direct route will be 150 kms. If you add Chalakudy-Athirapalli-Chalakudy, that will mean an extra 70 kms.
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Old 2nd February 2011, 01:30   #11
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
Athirapalli is not en route Guruvayur, but a detour of 35 kms from Chalakudy which is halfway between Angamali & Trissur.
.
Thanks hvkumar and all.

So, the modified plan-
  • Friday night start from Chennai. Chennai -> Munnar via Madurai, theni.
  • Saturday morning + night at munnar.
  • Sunday morning drive to athirappilly, and finally Guruvayoor by evening.
  • Monday morning at Guruvayoor. Start by afternoon, and hit nellayampathi by evening.
  • Monday night + Tuesday morning at Nelliyampathi. Relax a bit in the afternoon, and drive back to Chennai on tueday night.
Yet to decide the stay in Munnar/ Nelliyampathi, though! Is it tourist season in munnar? Will rooms be available last minute?

Which is the best route to follow for the nelliyampathi - chennai drive?
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Old 2nd February 2011, 09:25   #12
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
.

Which is the best route to follow for the nelliyampathi - chennai drive?
Via Kollengode, Coimbatore, Salem
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Old 2nd February 2011, 11:52   #13
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by CrAzY dRiVeR View Post
.
Thanks hvkumar and all.

So, the modified plan-
  • Friday night start from Chennai. Chennai -> Munnar via Madurai, theni.
  • Saturday morning + night at munnar.
  • Sunday morning drive to athirappilly, and finally Guruvayoor by evening.
  • Monday morning at Guruvayoor. Start by afternoon, and hit nellayampathi by evening.
  • Monday night + Tuesday morning at Nelliyampathi. Relax a bit in the afternoon, and drive back to Chennai on tueday night.
Yet to decide the stay in Munnar/ Nelliyampathi, though! Is it tourist season in munnar? Will rooms be available last minute?

Which is the best route to follow for the nelliyampathi - chennai drive?
The forest CP at Nemmara(base of Nelliyampathi)might not let you in after 6pm(its not a rule,but they act fussy).The best place to stay in Nelliyampathi is the forest resort that Lalu stayed in,get in touch with him for the numbers.Not at all season in Munnar with the exams round the corner for kids,but its always better to call ahead and block a room.

Quote:
Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
Via Kollengode, Coimbatore, Salem
If you take the Pollachi-Coimbatore highway-NH209,no need to go into CBE town as you would intersect the L&T bypass,take a right at the bypass and head towards Salem.Please take into consideration that Nelliyampathi-L&T bypass is a time consuming drive as traffic is very dense on this road and remains dense all the way till Avinashi!
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Old 2nd February 2011, 12:07   #14
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

Quote:
Originally Posted by ranjitp1 View Post
If you take the Pollachi-Coimbatore highway-NH209,no need to go into CBE town as you would intersect the L&T bypass,take a right at the bypass and head towards Salem.Please take into consideration that Nelliyampathi-L&T bypass is a time consuming drive as traffic is very dense on this road and remains dense all the way till Avinashi!
The other option is Pollachi-Palladam-Tiruppur-Perumanallur and GQ then onwards.

CBE Bypass Option
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Old 2nd February 2011, 13:18   #15
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Default Re: Chennai- Munnar- Guruvayoor- Route + Planning Advice

@crazy driver :

I drove from Madurai to Munnar via NH-49 on 28th Dec. But this drive was done during daytime and i would recommend a daytime drive for the scenic views and it might be a little tougher to do a night drive. This road (NH-49) is so narrow in some places, that it is difficult to overtake or let the opposite vehicle pass you.

Later went to Guruvayoor from Munnar via Adimali-Kothamangalam-Perumbavoor-Kalady-Angamaly-Paravoor and i went thro Kodungallur - chavakkad - GVR ( on NH-17). From Angamaly, i went thro' Cochin Intl Airport and joined NH-17 at Paravur.

All the best and have a happy & safe journey !!!

Last edited by Rajesh K R : 2nd February 2011 at 13:27.
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