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Old 5th February 2014, 11:09   #1
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Default Travelogue - Royal Escape 2013

26th, 27th and 28th December

Gurgaon- Alsisar- Jaisalmer

A drive that takes you to a dynasty to feast royally and to do what 4x4 enthusiasts do best – dune bash…well that sounds like one power packed adventure drive, isn’t it? Well it sure was and what added to the experience was the bone-chilling cold of Rajasthan.

A day after X’mas a bunch of adventurers arrived at the Hotel Trident, Gurgaon to be part of the Royal Escape 2013. At the break of dawn adventurers loaded their bags into the 25 Mahindra expedition ready vehicles and took on the road from Gurgaon to the land of Maharajas. Driving for almost 250 kms the convoy reached its first destination in Rajasthan – Alsisar, by lunch time. Sitting by the fire in the ‘chowk’ (inner courtyard) of the Alsisar Haveli, we all got a chance to get acquainted. It’s when you realize everyone seeks a dash of adventure driving in their lives…irrespective of their age… We had young couples with children, an elderly couple, a lady drive who choose to drive alone, friends, cousins, it was their time away from home.

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The next morning each convoy member was all wrapped in woolens, warmed up for what awaited us in Jaisalmer. The temperature dropped to almost 2 degree Celsius the night we spent in Alsisar.

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For most of them the convoy driving experience was new. They soon began enjoying the radio banter, which followed after the roll call. Saturday (28th December) was marathon drive day. The convoy drove almost 600 kms. What kept them going was the royal lunch at Bikaner’s Lalgarh Palace. That’s what the drive was all about to have a road-trip in King style. That night we stayed at Fort Rajwada, Jaisalmer.

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It was the welcome at each place we cherished…the tilak and garland was such a warm gesture that even after a long drive everyone smiled bright.

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29th December


The golden city –Jaisalmer entices you with its dunes and so what better than dune bashing. That’s how convoy members spent their day driving on sand dunes in their Scorpios and Thars, some even tried duen bashing in a Rexton. For many this was a first time experience and a few even managed to burn their vehicle’s clutch. Adventurers were overwhelmed by the capabilities of their 4x4 drive.

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The evening was spent on the Sam dunes – dinner and a cultural show, by the very popular Queen Harish. Everyone was on the make-shift dance floor. Even the chilling weather didn’t curb adventurers from dancing in to the wee hours of the night. Some of us had to be dragged down the dance floor and packed into our desert tents.

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30th December

Jaisalmer to Gajner

Driving in Rajasthan’s beautiful roads makes you feel like you driving in nature’s territory, with camels, peacocks and deer crossing as they please, they put your driving skills to test especially when you are driving in a convoy, at times it becomes a wild goose case when a camel decided to cross by the time the vehicle waits for the camel to cross, the vehicle in front has already zoomed ahead at a reasonable distance.

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On the morning of December 30th the convoy drove 300 kms from Jaisalmer to Gajner. By now the adventures have gotten a hang of their vehicles and are comfortable speeding on clear roads. The lunch halt was at Fort Pokhran and then on we made a dash to Gajner Palace Hotel, a heritage property and our home for the night.

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The evening was alive with local folk song and dance performances. While some shook a leg with the folk dancers, others preferred sitting by the fire, keeping warm in the cold breezy weather.

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31st December


The morning of 31st was special, every faces was brimming with joy, awaiting to usher in the New Year like a king. The convoy drove into Bikaner’s Lalgarh Palace, that’s where we’d bid goodbye to 2013 and welcome 2014. It was relatively an easy day and so most adventurers stepped out to explore the township. First on the agenda was the famous Karni Mata Temple (also referred to as the Temple of Rats) followed by the Junagarh Fort. Without doubt everyone bought the popular ‘Bikaner Bhujia’ (crispy snack).

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Later that evening, from travelling pants and tees, everyone wore their best for the New Year party. We let our hair down and danced to our hearts’ content.

The next morning the convoy drove nearly 400 kms to Delhi with a lunch stop at Churu’s 1920 year old haveli - MaljiKaKamra.

Royal Escape 2013 was a majestic treat for adventurers!

Here’s the official Royal Escape video for you to enjoy.

Video Link -
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Old 5th February 2014, 11:48   #2
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Default Re: Travelogue - Royal Escape 2013

Let me be the first to comment. Please hold something in Bengal/Jharkhand, can provide inputs.

Paanch Sitara ...straight away!
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Old 12th February 2014, 02:45   #3
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Default Re: Travelogue - Royal Escape 2013

@vinod_nookala: Thanks for sharing the pictures and log. I am planning on joining this year's Monastery Escape Leg 1 or 2.

Originally Posted by 1100D View Post
Let me be the first to comment. Please hold something in Bengal/Jharkhand, can provide inputs.

Paanch Sitara ...straight away!
@1100D, for that i think we need to request Mahindra Adventure for some action here, down east, Bengal/ Jharkhand as you mentioned.
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Old 12th February 2014, 13:27   #4
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Default Re: Travelogue - Royal Escape 2013

Originally Posted by subhodeep.g View Post

@1100D, for that i think we need to request Mahindra Adventure for some action here, down east, Bengal/ Jharkhand as you mentioned.
Dear Subhodeep, Vinod Nookala is as much Adventure as you need, Mahindra or otherwise!
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