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Old 27th December 2011, 15:54   #1
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Arrow Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore

Route: Bangalore->Vellore->Kanchipuram->Chengalpattu->Tindivanam->Pondy

Reference: http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/route-...-required.html

Many thanks to all who have helped make this trip a memorable one for us.

Day1:
Got up early at 4:30AM and started off from ORR at 6AM to hit NH7 in no time. Reached Vellore and camped for breakfast at Aryas as suggested by many TBHPians in the above thread. We spent around 25 mins there and started our journey after having a sumptuous b/f.

We reached Kanchipuram around 10:45AM and headed straight to Kailasanathar temple which is an age old beauty and also a historic monument. We spent 20-25 mins clicking snaps in and around the place before heading to Ekambareshwar temple. This is a huge temple with many pillars having beautiful inscriptions all over. We had a good darshan of Lord Shiva, 3500 yrs old mango tree that gives 5 different varities of mangoes in a single tree. We had the tamarind rice that was distributed as prasadam over there which was mouth watering. As it was getting late for our checkin at Pondy we resumed our journey again at 12PM after topping up the tank and reached Pondy city around 1:15PM.

Kanchipuram - Kailasanathar Temple:

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0181.jpg

Kanchipuram - Ekambareshwar Temple (Pillars inside the temple)

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-ktp05.jpg


Kanchipuram - Ekambareshwar Temple (3500 yrs old Mango tree)

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-ktp01.jpg

While we were heading to our resort on ECR, we saw ponnuswamy hotel and decided to stop over for lunch. It was a wise decision made as we got a real taste of tamilnadu food. All of us enjoyed the lunch and finally checked into St. James Court beach resort at 2:30 PM.

The resort was clean and well maintained with huge space for the kids to play around. It also has a very neatly maintained swimming pool.

We had booked a super deluxe A/C room (double occupancy). This room was a perfect one with a beautiful view of the sea from balcony. It also has a small refrigirator to store the beverages which is very thoughtful of the management.

Pondy - View from the balcony of our room 01 & 02

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0188.jpg

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0187.jpg

The kids were eager to hit the beach which is just 2 mins walk from our room which we did around 4:30 PM after refreshing ourselves with some hot masala tea.

The weather was cloudy with patches of rain all along the route to Pondy and it remained same throughout the night.

We spent around 2hrs in the beach where we also got to speak to some fishermen who asked us to come early in the morning to have a view of the catch. Now this was exciting for all of us and we added this to our list of to-dos.

Crab @ the Beach:

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We had a very good dinner (thanks to a wide range of items in the menu reasobably priced) before signing off for the day.


Day2: Pondy-Velankanni-Pondy
Got up around 7AM and we missed our planned visit to see the fresh catch made by fishermen. Since we had 2 more days we decided to do the next day. We started off to Velankanni at 8:45AM after having a good breakfast. The weather gods once again blessed us with cloudy/rainy weather all thru our journey. The roads to Velankanni were pretty good except for a 5Km stretch in cuddalore which was a nightmare.

We stopped over for lunch in chidambaram before reaching Velankanni around 12:30PM. The church was neatly maintained and that was the only plus point and the rest of the area was filled with filth and stink. Wonder where all the money that comes in by means of donation goes. We spent approx 1hr in and around the church before heading back and reached the resort at 5:30 PM. Kids headed to the lawn to play around and we spent some more time in the beach and signing off.

Velankanni Church:

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0218.jpg


Day3: Pondy sight seeing
This time wife and kids got up at 5:30AM and headed to the fishing boats to have a look at the fresh catch. I was too lazy to get up so I stayed back in the room. But, I managed to capture them under my canon 75-300mm lens that was pretty good. My family had a great time near the catch where they got a chance to see and feel variety of stuff such as tiger prawn, stingray, octopus, sea urchin, starfish apart from the normal sea fishes. They also collected sea shells, counches and corals that came in different colors.
After they were back to the room, it was time to head to the swimming pool with the kids. We spent 45 mins in the pool before getting ready and heading off for sight seeing at 9AM. We had booked a cab for sight seeing as I wanted to relax and enjoy the tour. We covered Auroville, Arabindo Ashram, city beach, shopping for christmas decorations and other stuff. Spent a good amount of time before reaching back to the resort at 5PM.

@ the early morning fishing catch:

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0227.jpg

Junior holding Tiger Prawn

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0228.jpg

StingRay

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0231.jpg

Octopus/Squid

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-img_0232.jpg

Caught on the 75-300 zoom lens from the room while returning from the fishing catch

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-ktp04.jpg

@ the Pool

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-ktp03.jpg


Day4: Pondy-Kanchipuram-Bangalore
At last the day of our return had arrived even before realizing that we had actually spent 3 memorable days during our stay there. We thanked the manager for the hospitality and the food. We also had some suggestions for them that they shoud be more variety in the breakfast they serve. This was the only negative we found there since serve the same stuff everyday (Idly, vada, pongal, poori, bread, omlet) for breakfast.

We headed back to Bangalore at 8:45AM after filling up the tank for Rs 69/litre . We took the same route via Kanchipuram as we wanted to cover the remainng two temples that were in our plan. We reached Kanchipuram at 10:30AM and headed straignt to Sri Varadaraja Perumal temple (Vishnu Kanchi and the place of Golden Lizard). We were shocked to see such a huge crowd as soon as we entered the temple. We finally came out at 1PM after having the darshan of lord Balaji and the golden lizard. At this time, we thought of skipping the Kanchi Kamakshi temple from our plan as it was too late and the temple was closed till 4:30PM. We had lunch at Saravana bhavan before resuming our journey at 2PM. We did a non-stop from Kanchipuram back to our home in ORR and reached at 5:15PM.

Summary:

The Ride: ANHC
Total Distance covered: 1220 KMS
Avg Fuel consumption : 15.25 KMPL
MMI Navigation : Excellent with 98% accuracy.
Roads: Very good during the entire journey both ways.

Hope you liked reading this travelogue.

Happy Holidays!!

Cheers,
Kiran

Last edited by kirantp : 27th December 2011 at 16:00.
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Old 27th December 2011, 16:12   #2
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore

hey kiran a well written travelogue and neat description. Would be of help sometime in future

Note from the Team-BHP Support Team: Please avoid quoting an entire large post. It inconveniences our small screen & mobile readers.

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 27th December 2011 at 16:17.
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Old 27th December 2011, 16:14   #3
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore

Nice travelogue. How about putting some more pictures of local sightseeing in Pondy ? (Ashram, beach etc).

What was the cost / rate @ the resort ? I plan to do a similar trip in Feb.

Thanks !
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Old 27th December 2011, 17:20   #4
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore

Somehow I think the number of photos posted don't do justice to the sites you have seen. Please see if there are any more photos of the temples, from different angles. It's a good travelogue and I enjoyed reading it.

Any pictures of the rooms at the resort, so that we can get an idea of the space and amenities offered?
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Old 27th December 2011, 19:27   #5
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore

Quote:
Originally Posted by neo45007 View Post
Nice travelogue. How about putting some more pictures of local sightseeing in Pondy ? (Ashram, beach etc).

What was the cost / rate @ the resort ? I plan to do a similar trip in Feb.

Thanks !
@neo45007: Cost was Rs 3,880 per night (inclusive of tax). This includes complementary breakfast as well.

Quote:
Originally Posted by honeybee View Post
Somehow I think the number of photos posted don't do justice to the sites you have seen. Please see if there are any more photos of the temples, from different angles. It's a good travelogue and I enjoyed reading it.

Any pictures of the rooms at the resort, so that we can get an idea of the space and amenities offered?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfa Romeo View Post
hey kiran a well written travelogue and neat description. Would be of help sometime in future
Thanks friends. Am glad you liked it. Very soon, I will post some more pics of the temples and also of the room we stayed.

Cheers,
Kiran
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Old 28th December 2011, 16:38   #6
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore

Nice narration @kirantp. We had been to pondicherry in December 2009. We had taken the bangalore-krishnagiri route. After reading your travelogue, definitely this route will be in my mind next time we go to Pondicherry.
This being the holiday season how was the traffic on NH7?
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Old 29th December 2011, 13:48   #7
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Nice narration @kirantp. We had been to pondicherry in December 2009. We had taken the bangalore-krishnagiri route. After reading your travelogue, definitely this route will be in my mind next time we go to Pondicherry.
This being the holiday season how was the traffic on NH7?
Thanks Samish_g. The roads especially NH7, NH46 and NH66 were pretty empty as we started on a weekday and I maintained steady 100-120KMPH all along. However, traffic was slow on NH45 (Chengalpattu-Tindivanam) due to the pilgrimage season at MelMaruthuvar and all the vehicles were heading there. Once you pass MelMaruthuvar, you can breeze thru all the way to Pondy. Our return was also a breeze inspite of being Sunday and there was not much crowd at all either on any NH or near the toll
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Old 29th December 2011, 15:00   #8
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Default Re: Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore

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Originally Posted by neo45007 View Post
Nice travelogue. How about putting some more pictures of local sightseeing in Pondy ? (Ashram, beach etc).

What was the cost / rate @ the resort ? I plan to do a similar trip in Feb.

Thanks !
As promised, some more snaps of Pondy, the resort and the room we stayed.

Fishermen returning with their catch early in the morning:
Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-pondy06.jpg

View of the resort from the beach:
Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-pondy05.jpg

A game of football in the lawn:
Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-pondy03.jpg

View of the Room: (Has LCD, Refrigirator, good view of the sea from the balcony and other stuff)

Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-pondy04.jpg

Pondy - @Auroville
Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-pondy01.jpg

Pondy- @City Beach
Travelogue: Bangalore-Pondicherry-Velankanni-Bangalore-pondy02.jpg
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Old 29th December 2011, 17:02   #9
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Good TL, Kiran. Thanks for sharing. I am not sure whether you tried the following

a) Visit to Matri Mandir and the sales counter @ Auroville for beautiful ceramic and paper products

b) Auroville Bakery for fresh bakery products. They are yummy. Not to be missed.

c) "Appachi" for excellent Chetiinad fare. Non-vegs will have a feast. Good for veggies too.

d) Ashram and Museum

e) Heritage walk in French quarters

f) Dinner on the terrace of Promenade hotel overlooking the sea. It is romantic. Table to be booked in advance

g) Cycling on the Marina

h) French cuisine in Randezvous

i) Pineapple on the marina.

These should pull you back to Pondy again!!

In Kanchi, did you visit excellent Vaikuntha Perumal temple? There are inscriptions in Old Kannada script in this temple!!
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Old 29th December 2011, 19:49   #10
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Originally Posted by Fauji View Post
Good TL, Kiran. Thanks for sharing. I am not sure whether you tried the following

a) Visit to Matri Mandir and the sales counter @ Auroville for beautiful ceramic and paper products

b) Auroville Bakery for fresh bakery products. They are yummy. Not to be missed.

c) "Appachi" for excellent Chetiinad fare. Non-vegs will have a feast. Good for veggies too.

d) Ashram and Museum

e) Heritage walk in French quarters

f) Dinner on the terrace of Promenade hotel overlooking the sea. It is romantic. Table to be booked in advance

g) Cycling on the Marina

h) French cuisine in Randezvous

i) Pineapple on the marina.

These should pull you back to Pondy again!!

In Kanchi, did you visit excellent Vaikuntha Perumal temple? There are inscriptions in Old Kannada script in this temple!!
Fauji: Thanks for providing this useful to-do list. We covered a,b and d this time. Shall surely make up next time for the ones missed above.

We did visit the Vishnu Kanchi (Vaikunta Perumal) temple and thats where we got stuck for 2.5 hrs to complete the darshan of lord Vishnu and the golden lizard. We did see the inscriptions but were unable to take snaps as it was over crowded on Sunday due to the Sabarimala and MelMarathuvar devotees.
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Old 2nd January 2012, 10:22   #11
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kiran a very well written travelogue man. I wonder how did you miss putting up pictures of the scenic beauty between Chidambaram and Velankanni ? The route beyond Chidambaram is one of the most picturesque I have seen in my travels along the route you have done.
Also how is the road between Seargazhi(Sirkali) and Karaikkal ? have they widened the roads of it's still the same. I am talking about the stretch wherein you have the palm trees(?) on either sides of the road.

Two of my old travelogues are here and here , where I have put up some pictures along the route I mentioned.
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Old 2nd January 2012, 11:05   #12
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My family also visited Pondicherry last week.

Quote:
Originally Posted by kirantp View Post
We had booked a cab for sight seeing as I wanted to relax and enjoy the tour. We covered Auroville, Arabindo Ashram, city beach, shopping for christmas decorations and other stuff. Spent a good amount of time before reaching back to the resort at 5PM.
But we did zero sight seeing in Pondicherry. We just stayed in the resort for two nights and returned quietly. You were probably one of the last tourists to see Auroville trees. We were too late for it. By the time Cylone Thane left, there was nothing left to see.

Cyclone Thane

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We headed back to Bangalore at 8:45AM after filling up the tank for Rs 69/litre .
Damn, why did you miss refueling at Pondicherry at 63.75/litre?
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Old 8th January 2012, 03:40   #13
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But we did zero sight seeing in Pondicherry.
Why, you did see all the stuff a regular tourist could never hope to see.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Damn, why did you miss refueling at Pondicherry at 63.75/litre?
I wonder too, maybe he refuelled in one of the TN pumps outside Pondy and still felt great.
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Old 9th January 2012, 20:33   #14
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Damn, why did you miss refueling at Pondicherry at 63.75/litre?
Hey that was my bad I mentioned 69/litre. You are right, I got it filled at 63.75/litre at the bunk just opp Pondy Engineering college on ECR. Thanks for correcting the numbers.
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Old 9th January 2012, 20:42   #15
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Originally Posted by rjstyles69 View Post
kiran a very well written travelogue man. I wonder how did you miss putting up pictures of the scenic beauty between Chidambaram and Velankanni ? The route beyond Chidambaram is one of the most picturesque I have seen in my travels along the route you have done.
Also how is the road between Seargazhi(Sirkali) and Karaikkal ? have they widened the roads of it's still the same. I am talking about the stretch wherein you have the palm trees(?) on either sides of the road.

Two of my old travelogues are here and here , where I have put up some pictures along the route I mentioned.
@RJ: Sorry for the late reply. I was busy enjoying the drive on this scenic route and didn't get a chance to grab some pics. It was also raining steadily thruought the journey. The roads are more or less the same except that they have extended 1/2 foot to 1 Foot on either sides with hard mud
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