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Old 11th July 2013, 20:15   #1
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Cool Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

Ques: What does one do when life seems to be heading nowhere? When all the traveling is done for business and the medium is either a Boeing or Airbus?

Ans: When the problem took one year of “all work no vacation”, the solution has to be a multi-stepped approach.

Step 1: Identify an opportunity

I work for an Ahmedabad based company and during the performance review of the team, some of them complaint that I haven’t visited Ahmedabad in a long time. Even peers say that my physical presence will be better than presence through Webex. I first write an email to the travel desk to book the tickets and then call them and ask not to book the tickets. I sense an opportunity for vacation along with the official trip. So decision taken, I will drive to Ahmedabad.

Step 2: Finalise the destination

Ahmedabad is like a second home for me so it could have never been the vacation spot for me. Two options that existed were Diu and Kutch. The opinions and recommendation for both the places were almost equally split. Finally, I decided that it will be Diu. (Thanks SS-traveler for helping me with the decision. I am glad that I went to Diu instead of Kutch)

Step 3: Logistics
  • Where to stay: Office arranged the stay in Ahmedabad at company’s guest house and I booked a room in Sugati Beach Resort in Diu for 2 nights. Then extended the stay by one more night and stayed at the Hotel Palms, Kodhidhar Beach
  • Which car: This was the most interesting and difficult decision for me. The two contenders were:
    • Crusoe

      Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-crusoe.jpg

    • Neil

      Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-neil.jpg

Since I couldn’t decide, I decided to let them arrive at a conclusion. The discussion went on like this.

Quote:
  • Crusoe: Nothing doing. I will go
  • Neil: You have been to Kalatop, Khajjiar, Mcleodganj, Agra, Shimla and Kasauli. I have never been to anywhere. This time I will go.
  • Crusoe: You are too young for the trip
  • Neil: So what? you were younger than me when you went on the Shimla trip. I have only travelled 3200 KMs while you have done 19,700.
  • Crusoe: I will be faster and more stable on the highway
  • Neil: I will be better on broken roads as I am taller (higher GC) than you and I will save money too. I sip Diesel not petrol.
  • Crusoe: Ok you go but I will go to Ladakh then. Don't let Biraj down
  • Neil: Thank you bro!
Anyone who finds talking cars weird, should read the travelogue that was written from Crusoe’s perspective.
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...la-4-days.html (Crusoe climbs new heights – Kalatop, Khajjiar, Mcleodganj and Dharmshala in 4 days)

Step 4: Objectives of the trip:
  1. Life is heading nowhere, so it needs direction

    What can be better than a lighthouse?

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-light-house.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-light-house-1.jpg

  2. Attain some spirituality

    Somnath

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-somnath.jpg

    Gangeshwar

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-gangeshwar.jpg

    Diu Church

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-church.jpg

  3. Accept everything that life offers with a pinch of salt

    Beautiful roads

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-beautiful-roads.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-great-roads.jpg

    Pathetic roads

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-pathetic-roads.jpg

    Pinch of salt? Naah, dune of salt.

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dune-salt.jpg

  4. Feel like a king

    Alone on beach

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-vacant-beach.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-vacant-beach1.jpg

    Top of Fort

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-top-fort.jpg

    Bottom of Earth

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-bottom-earth.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-bottom-earth-1.jpg

  5. Head till where roads take and beyond

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-beyond-roads.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-beyond-roads1.jpg

  6. Learn to fit into the space

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-fit-into-space.jpg

  7. Enjoy the sands of time

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-sands-time.jpg

  8. Gain wisdom

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-wisdom.jpg

  9. Come back with glitter in eyes and smile on face

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-glitter.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-smile.jpg

Enough gyaan, now time to compile the travelogue.

Last edited by Biraj : 11th July 2013 at 20:18.
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Old 12th July 2013, 20:41   #2
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Default re: Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

Since the trip was for over a month, I will focus only on the major parts as the rest of the time was spent in commuting to office and local places of interest in Ahmedabad.

The routes:

Delhi to Ahmedabad and return:

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Delhi to Jaipur is bad due to construction and the remaining stretch is excellent. The return leg from Jaipur to Delhi was the worst during entire trip. It took 7 hours and got stuck in terrible jams near Kothputli and Manesar.

Ahmedabad to Diu via Somnath and Madhavpur

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I wanted to visit Somnath and show Madhavpur to my friend so took a detour towards Madhavpur. It’s 50 KMs before Porbandar so the detour was about 160 KMs but completely worth it.

Diu to Ahmedabad via Bhavnagar

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I tried the alternate route back to Ahmedabad. First 50 KMs are terrible with craters and some as big as the car. The stretch from Bhavnagar to NH8A (Bagodara) is an arrow straight road through salt fields. There’s hardly any traffic and no run off area. I wouldn’t recommend this road after dark. Better to stick to the road via Rajkot and Junagadh.

The total distance traveled during the month long trip was 3,687 KMs. The average fuel consumption was 15.2 KMPL (I would blame it on aggressive driving).

Last edited by Biraj : 16th July 2013 at 18:59.
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Old 15th July 2013, 20:02   #3
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The drives:

Delhi - Ahmedabad: June 09, 2013:

In all my previous trips I have been the only driver so, I have never had the luxury of getting somebody else to drive when I feel tired. This time, it was a step beyond. Not only was I the only driver, but I was the only traveler. A solo drive from Delhi to Ahmedabad (~1000 KMs) in one day.

I started at 6 AM from my home in Ghaziabad and reached Ahmedabad at around 10 PM. The stretch from Delhi to Jaipur was bad due to construction work and took the maximum time. Then I got stuck in a terrible traffic jam at Udaipur bypass. It took 2-3 hours more than what I assumed.

The last 150 KMs were extremely tough as the fatigue of the drive was catching up on me. The fact that I slept only for 3 hours on the night before the drive made it worse. Thus, I drove at a much lower level than my normal highway speeds for the last 150-200 KMs. Driving solo isn't as easy as it seems to be. The concentration required is much higher as the fatigue kicks in faster. With a companion at least one can talk and ensure that the monotony doesn't set in.

I couldn't click many pics as I was driving alone and the focus was on watching the roads than capturing them.


Ahmedabad to Somnath (June 25, 2013):

I along with a friend started from Ahmedabad at 4 PM and reached Somnath at 10 PM. The roads from Ahmedabad till Junagadh was excellent and it took only 3 hours to reach Gondal. We took our first stop at Gondal for 20-30 minutes and then started towards Somnath.

The road after Junagadh is under construction and one should very careful if travelling after dark. I had a scary moment when I was travelling close to 90-100 KMPH and had to take a right because of diversion. I could see the diversion from a distance so slowed down to 60 KMPH and took the right. The moment I took the right, the car started sliding as the surface was loose gravel. Fortunately for me the car had wide tyres and I have over 150K KMs of driving experience behind me so, I could manage the slide and get the car back in control.

Overall we could manage Ahmedabad to Somnath in a respectable 6 hours that too during evening hours.

Beautiful roads and weather
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atos.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atos1.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atos2.jpg

Newly built Swaminarayan temple on the route
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atos3.jpg

The road before Rajkot
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atos4.jpg


Somnath to Diu via Madhavpur (June 26, 2013)

After covering all the temples in Somnath, we started around 12.30 PM from Somnath and headed towards Madhavpur. Madhavpur is ~50 KMs before Porbandar on the route from Somnath to Dwarka. It was completely off our route to Diu but I had been there in 2011 and wanted to see it again. The road from Somnath to Madhavpur is two lane but decent. It took about 75 minutes to reach Madhavpur. Then we had to trace the same route back towards Somnath and take a left from Somnath towards Diu. This detour was about 160 KMs but I will strongly recommend a drive to Madhavpur to anyone visiting this part of India.

The road from Somnath to Diu isn't as bad as it was 2 years ago. The road now is much better but there are the odd pot-holes + craters that are there. One should be careful and preferable cover it during daylight. It took us about 90 minutes to reach from Somnath to Diu.

The road from Somnath to Madhavpur
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-stod.jpg

The road at Madhavpur
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-stod1.jpg

Entry to Diu
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-stod3.jpg


Diu to Ahmedabad (June 29, 2013)

Decided to try the other route between Diu and Ahmedabad. This route is almost 100 KMs shorter than the route via Junagadh and Somnath. The first 50 KMs is absolutely treacherous. There are huge craters and one has to be extremely cautious to ensure that no damage is done to the car or passengers. At a particular bus stop near IIRC Rajula, there's a crater that's as big as a bus and the depth must be that of a car. So, cars go down that crater and then climb back. It's definitely the largest and the most dangerous pot-hole I have ever seen in my life.

After Mahuva the road surface is fine but two lane without any divider. The road after Bhavnagar becomes extremely desolate. There's hardly any traffic or population on the entire stretch from Bhavnagar till one hits NH8A. The roads are arrow straight and pass through salt-fields. A funny thing happened with the GPS before entering Bhavnagar. For some reason, the GPS wanted us to take a narrow coastal route instead of NH8E. 100 meters into the road and I decided to ignore the GPS and stick to NH8E.

After reaching Bagodara, the route is 4-lane and one can zip through to Ahmedabad. The total time taken was about 7 hours which I believe is pretty good considering the road condition.

Terrible roads
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dtoa.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dtoa1.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dtoa2.jpg

Crossed Palitana
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dtoa3.jpg

Driving through salt-fields
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dtoa4.jpg

Passing through Velavadar National Park
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dtoa5.jpg

Back to salt-fields
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dtoa6.jpg


Ahmedabad to Delhi (July 04, 2013)

Took the same route back and the drive was pretty uneventful till Jaipur. Started at 6 AM from Ahmedabad and reached Jaipur around 3 PM. From there on it was absolutely pathetic traffic and reached my home in Ghaziabad (border of Delhi and Ghaziabad) at around 11 PM. It took almost 90 minutes to cross a jam at Kothputli and another 2 hours to cross Manesar.

A full tank of Diesel from Ahmedabad
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atod.jpg

Intermittent showers
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atod1.jpg

Perfect surface for aquaplaning
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atod2.jpg

A beautiful pit-stop before Udaipur
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atod3.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atod4.jpg

Some huge road-blocks
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-atod5.jpg

Last edited by Biraj : 16th July 2013 at 19:00.
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Old 16th July 2013, 16:21   #4
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Madhavpur

Quote:
Madhavpur (Ghed) is a small but culturally significant village in state of Gujarat, India. It lies on the seashore, close to Porbandar.
According to folklore, Krishna married Rukmini at Madhavpur after first kidnapping her. This event is memorialised with a temple dedicated to lord Madhavrai and by an annual fair held in the village.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Madhavpur_Ghed

The first time I found out about Madhavpur was a coastal trip of Gujarat in 2011 when I drove from Somnath till Dwarka. I remember how it affected our travel plans by making us stay there for an hour when we were already late for Dwarka. So, this time I decided to take a detour and show Madhavpur to my friend who accompanied me from Ahmedabad. What makes this place even more beautiful for me is that on both the visits, mine has been the only car on the beach.

I won't write much about it and let the pictures do all the talking.

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-sands-time.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-vacant-beach.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-m1.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-m2.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-m3.jpg

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Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-m8.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-m9.jpg

Last edited by Biraj : 16th July 2013 at 16:26.
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Old 16th July 2013, 16:43   #5
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Default re: Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

DIU

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-diu.jpg

History:
Quote:
In 1535 Bahadur Shah, the Sultan of Gujarat, concluded a defensive alliance with the Portuguese against the Mughal emperor Humayun, and allowed the Portuguese to construct the Diu Fort and maintain a garrison on the island. The alliance quickly unraveled, and attempts by the Sultans to oust the Portuguese from Diu between 1537 and 1546 failed. The Siege of Diu by the Ottoman Empire in 1538 was unsuccessful at repelling the Portuguese. The fortress, completed by Dom Joćo de Castro after the siege of 1545, still stands. The island was occupied by the Indian military on 19 December 1961.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diu,_India

The local administration deserves a pat on its back. The city has been maintained beautifully. The roads are fantastic and the local services (healthcare, etc) seem adequate for the population. Diu is an ideal location for a quiet and peaceful holiday. I went during the off-season perhaps why I enjoyed it so much.

The places of Stay:


Diu Fort

Quote:
The importance of the Diu Fort was highlighted by an opinion poll conducted (through the Internet and telephone when 239,418 people participated in Portugal) by the Portuguese (Portuguese government’s initiative) to list out the New Seven Wonders of Portugal built during their colonial rule. The Diu fort and the Basilica of Bom Jesus in Old Goa were chosen as the two wonders from India, among the seven from across the world, out of a list of 27 monuments built in 16 countries during the Portuguese rule. This list of new monuments was declared on June 10, 2009 on the occasion of the Portuguese National Day held in Portugal.
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diu_Fort

Diu Fort is a magnificent structure and deserves much more attention that what tourists give it. I have been there twice and on both the occasions, I saw people rushing through the trip of this massive and amazing fort. If one really wants to explore the fort, then one should keep at least 3-4 hours to see the fort and appreciate its beauty. I have tried to capture some of the beauty through my lenses. I hope the pictures do justice to the beauty of this fort.

The fort's story
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-story-fort.jpg

I wish they allowed entry into the jail that's on an island (similar to Alcatraz).
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-jail-island.jpg

Temple near the entry
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-temple-entry.jpg

Cannon balls and bells
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-cannon-balls.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-bells.jpg

The giant structure:
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-fort-1.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-fort-2.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-top-fort.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-beautiful-fort.jpg

Giant and inspiration to modern cannons
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-giant-cannons.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-modern-cannon.jpg

Some with face
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-face-cannon.jpg

Serene light houses
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-light-house.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-light-house-1.jpg

Last edited by Biraj : 16th July 2013 at 18:56.
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Old 16th July 2013, 18:39   #6
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Gems of Diu

Apart from the fort and the two famous beaches (Nagoa Beach and Ghoghla Beach) there some gems in Diu that I missed during my previous visit.

Naida Caves:
I never knew about these caves till I saw the board while driving towards Gangeshwar Temple. The caves are wonderful and one must visit them. Some say that the caves are man made and others say its natural. Whatever was the way of their formation, they are simply amazing.

Let the pictures describe the place
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-bottom-earth-1.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-bottom-earth.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02195.jpg

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Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02206.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02207.jpg

Red ants marching
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02211.jpg

Neil waited outside while we explored the caves
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02214.jpg


Gangeshwar Temple
Gangeshwar temple is a divine experience for two reasons:
  1. The approach road
    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-beautiful-roads.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02181.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02182.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02183.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-img_1388.jpg

    Neil enjoying the road
    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02177.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02176.jpg

    Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02188.jpg


  2. This



Kodhidhar Beach

Just a few meters away from Nagoa is Kodhidhar Beach. Anyone that has a car should go and stay at The Palms Resort at Kodhidhar beach for at least 1 night. It's in the middle of nowhere and the sights are beautiful. Just be careful after dark as I spotted many crabs that camouflage with the sand.

Saw this dead (dolphin???) fish ahead of Nagoa Beach. The holes around it are made by crabs.
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-img_1353.jpg

Once the road next to Nagoa ends
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-img_1334.jpg

Take this route
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-beyond-roads1.jpg

Road looks beautiful but the surface is
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02215.jpg

But the sights are
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02216.jpg

Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02225.jpg

It's a shell collectors delight
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02248.jpg

The waves are rough so beware while stepping into water
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-dsc02254.jpg

A colourful village not too far from Kodidhar
Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto-img_1405.jpg


Anyone planning a trip to Diu or curious to know more about the trip/places, please feel free to comment or PM.

Thank you for reading.

Last edited by Biraj : 16th July 2013 at 19:05.
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Old 17th July 2013, 17:01   #7
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Default Re: Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to Travelogues. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 17th July 2013, 18:49   #8
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Default Re: Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

Hi Biraj,

How are you? Looks like you had a great trip. Did you manage 'Gir National Park'? There is an alternate route that takes you to Diu through the Gir jungle, as far as I remember it is via a town called 'Dhari'.

Diu is always in fun in rains, isn't it?
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Old 17th July 2013, 20:39   #9
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Travelling alone might be fun for the initial few hours but after a while it does get boring, especially, when you run out of songs/music collection and have to play the same thing over & over.

Please do post some pics of Guju Delicacies, if you have any.

Place, Pics, Narration, Car - Just Awesome.
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Old 18th July 2013, 11:53   #10
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Awesome and I hope you have fully recovered from flu!

Wishlist : Checkpost details, LE harassment if any, FE of Neil over stretches, hotel and room quality, food options and weather overall during the period. Interaction with locals for road directions/information etc: friendly?
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Old 18th July 2013, 15:23   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nisarg80 View Post
Did you manage 'Gir National Park'? There is an alternate route that takes you to Diu through the Gir jungle, as far as I remember it is via a town called 'Dhari'.
Hey Nisarg, nice to hear from someone that I know outside of T-bhp as well. I didn't try to add Gir this time and have kept it for the next trip. I want to go to Gir during winters. There's a route through Gir but I preferred the Somnath route as a visit to the temple was part of the agenda and while returning from Madhavpur I didn't want to experiment with the route. I am not too sure but I have heard that they close the alternate route after sunset. That's what the dhaba guy at Gondal told me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by aviorp View Post
Please do post some pics of Guju Delicacies, if you have any.

Place, Pics, Narration, Car - Just Awesome.
Thanks Avinash, travelling alone is really overrated. I am not much of an audiophile (haven't changed the stock system on the both the Fiats) so, the USB stick only had 80 odd songs and I switch more songs that listening to them. I got so bored of listening to the same songs that I ended up purchasing some really crappy audio CDs from a Dhaba near Jaipur.

I am an absolute foodie so will compile a detailed post about the places to eat in Ahmedabad as well as Diu and some places in between. I might not have the pics but will try to describe the menu to the best of my memory.


Quote:
Originally Posted by lapis_lazuli View Post
Wishlist : Checkpost details, LE harassment if any, FE of Neil over stretches, hotel and room quality, food options and weather overall during the period. Interaction with locals for road directions/information etc: friendly?
Thanks Ranajay. Flu is much better now. The worst part of the flu was that it started on the day I left Ahmedabad. So the return journey was done with 102-103 fever. Humidity and AC always does this to me

That's a long wishlisht. will compile all that along with the places to eat, and post. Better would be to meet on Saturday and I can describe the trip in detail.
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Old 19th July 2013, 00:31   #12
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Default Re: Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

Beautiful travelogue, Biraj, with equally lovely photos. Brought back many old memories of Diu and Somnath.
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Diu to Ahmedabad (June 29, 2013)

Decided to try the other route between Diu and Ahmedabad. This route is almost 100 KMs shorter than the route via Junagadh and Somnath. The first 50 KMs is absolutely treacherous. There are huge craters and one has to be extremely cautious to ensure that no damage is done to the car or passengers. At a particular bus stop near IIRC Rajula, there's a crater that's as big as a bus and the depth must be that of a car. So, cars go down that crater and then climb back. It's definitely the largest and the most dangerous pot-hole I have ever seen in my life.
Reminded me of something anecdotal when we did our first trip of the Saurashtra region way back in October 1995, in a rented Amby.

This particular stretch leading up to Una was in much the same state even then - though I vaguely recall it was about 25-30 km long, not 50 km as you mention (obviously the Gujarat govt. is extending the off-road service!). The driver was most upset that we had to find the worst road in all of Gujarat to take his beloved car through, and he kept on grumbling for the rest of the trip. At a dhaba somewhere near Dwarka, we were in the process of catching up with a few sardarji truck drivers, and told them about the driver not being happy with the road condition (whereas I'd seen far worse on the NH2 in Bihar!).

The truckers rounded up on our driver, and gave him a proper sermon on the state of roads elsewhere in India. What still sticks in my memory is their comment: Oye suunn, Bihar ka raasta toh dekha nahin! Wahan gaddhon mein chaar chaar saal ka bachcha andar gir jata toh bahar nahin nikal paata. (You haven't seen roads in Bihar, so you're complaining. It's so bad there, if a 4-year-old child falls into a pothole, he can't climb up!)

We didn't get any more complaints from driver subsequently!!
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Old 19th July 2013, 14:58   #13
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Default Re: Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

Beautiful write up. I did a full circuit of the Saurashtra coast in March and it is a trip worth it for anyone. Ahd - Jamnagar - Dwarka - Porbandar - Veraval - Gir - Diu - Ahd. I have been planning to do a writeup for sometime, I guess I will finally get around to it this weekend.

I loved the Madhavpur pics, we passed it going the other way and all I could think of was how much I'd like to come back there on a bike sometime.
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Old 19th July 2013, 16:16   #14
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Beautiful travelogue, Biraj, with equally lovely photos. Brought back many old memories of Diu and Somnath.
Thanks dada, for the comments as well as helping me decide between Kutch and Diu. The call with you was really helpful in finalising the destination.

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We didn't get any more complaints from driver subsequently!!
That's one hilarious experience. That stretch can be easily used for testing the rovers that are sent to moon/mars, etc.

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Beautiful write up. I did a full circuit of the Saurashtra coast in March and it is a trip worth it for anyone. Ahd - Jamnagar - Dwarka - Porbandar - Veraval - Gir - Diu - Ahd. I have been planning to do a writeup for sometime, I guess I will finally get around to it this weekend.
Thanks teknophobia, I did the same trip in 2011 the only difference being that I traveled in the other direction. Ahd - Diu - Somnath - Porbandar - Dwarka - Jamnagar - Ahd

Madhavpur becomes a special experience when one takes the route from Junagadh towards Porbandar. As one drives through the trees and fields of state highway without knowing that the sea is getting closer, Madhavpur beach is quiety waiting to surprise the visitor. The sea almost appears out of nowhere and it is difficult for travelers to not stop their car/bike and admire the beauty in the ferocious face of Arabian Sea. The camera in my hand died at the turn and I missed capturing the first view of the sea. I want to go again to capture it in a video.

Look forward to your log about coastal Gujarat.

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Old 19th July 2013, 19:23   #15
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Default Re: Did the Diu! Delhi-Ahmedabad-Diu in a Punto

Beautiful pictures and great narration, Sir!

We did Surat - Rajkot - Junagadh - Somnath - Diu - Bhavnagar - Surat this March in Koleos. We were able to make great time until we hit the Diu-Bhavnagar road, that had those 50 kms that you mentioned, to negotiate. Although the SUV did a great job in accommodating the potholes in its stride, it truly undid the fun I had driving on the remainder of the stretch.

Azzaro is a beautiful resort to stay at, in Diu. We put up there for two nights, and I recommend it highly, for its food as well as the pool. For Somnath, Lord's Inn did a great job for us. I agree with your description of Gangeshwar temple, as well as the roads leading to it. Serene, uncrowded, picturesque and relaxing!

I'm going to keep the Madahvpur temple in my bucketlist for the next visit.
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