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Old 22nd April 2015, 02:43   #1
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Default Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud



Kattan Chaya (black tea) amidst natural lush forests is an experience beyond compare!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-img_20150421_164337495.jpg


The dark forests
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The abandoned tea factory
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The endless mountains
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-mountain-view.jpg

The crystal clear water!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-water.jpg

The hidden mystery
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The freshness and purity
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The majestic beauty
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The tenderness
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Green forever!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-img_20150421_164810994.jpg



Last edited by freakmuzik : 25th April 2015 at 15:04.
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Old 25th April 2015, 15:40   #2
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Default re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

I've always wanted to know the essence of life, the reason we exist and think what not! I always have dreams of moving away from a city to a deep forest - live there peacefully away from the fast moving life around me. Nature has always attracted me and that's how Bonacaud fell into my Radar.

Thanks to the posts of nuttynair and other bhpians, i got the name of this place, so green, so pure and serene they told.

That's when the poojari (priest) who comes to our house and who is also very close to the family mentioned once about this place and told that he goes to the temple there to perform poojas every month in his bike and mentioned various incidents of witnessing wild elephants, cobras, deers and all. I got really excited and he promised to take me there when I get sometime free.

Three years passed with lots of un-successful plans of going there, thanks to my musician schedules, hectic college life and lack of any proper holidays. And then came this day

The ride was a Hero Honda NXG 100cc bike.

You may find photos of him riding without the helmet at certain points, which are moments of lost battle of words between us. So kindly ignore them for the moments you go through this photologue.


We started from Trivandrum by 8.30am and en-route, he showed me many places around Nedumangaad (where he also had his ancestral home) and the Nedumangad Palace!

Very traditional architecture BTW.


Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-img_20150421_093350281.jpg

But the palace was closed down for maintenance and would be open only after six months. So I had to be contended with its exterior views.
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-img_20150421_093406582.jpg


That's the palace pond, deep within, with utmost privacy.

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-img_20150421_093316649.jpg

After this, we visited a Govt School in Vithura where our Priest has a very close friend. And interestingly, during that time, the SSLC results were announced and for the first time ever, the school had a 100% pass which even many of the Govt Schools in the city couldn't manage. So we attended the function and then again commenced the journey to Bonacaud.

We passed through a H-U-G-E cattle farm full of Jersey Cows and then the surroundings were gradually transforming from a countryside to a hill station.

Right after crossing the check post, the forest starts getting darker!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-1.jpg

A bike ride is the best, with the purest air right on your face!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-2.jpg

There are innumerable types of plants and trees along with creepy noises all around you!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-3.jpg

Yay! That's the Peppara Reservoir seen halfway en-route Bonacaud

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Zooming in a lil bit

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There isn't an inch of space which the Canopies haven't covered

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He told me to look for some fruit that grows near the roots - something I've never seen
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-7.jpg

As soon as we found a few, we stopped the bikes, got down a bit into the cliff and plucked a few and put in our bags!

There it is! If anyone knows the name, kindly share!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-8.jpg

One rare sight in this route - a tree without leaves

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-9.jpg

Straight roads through utmost silence
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Remains after a Pongala Celebration by the tribals of Bonacaud and other locals

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Stopped at a spot and walked towards this watch tower which was sadly closed,


Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-12.jpg

but we walked around it and got these beautiful views!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-13.jpg

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Next we found a tree house and immediately stopped! I climbed into it and was great to successfully reach the top using those squeaky steps

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It didn't have such a great view though it still was amazing to be at this height in a forest.

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We further began travelling. The green hills were welcoming in the best possible way!

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Some animal friends finallly!

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And a couple of humans!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-27.jpg


Last edited by freakmuzik : 27th May 2017 at 10:21.
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Old 30th June 2015, 18:33   #3
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Default re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

There are lots of such spots throughout the route.

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-28.jpg

In the meantime, we found some tea plantation workers walking with bags of tea. He was very familiar to all these workers and immediately grabbed a few of these bags to drop them off in the Town in our bike. No wonder they love him so much!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-29.jpg

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Look at that beauty!!

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That's the abandoned Tea Factory! This is the final point that normal visitors are allowed up to.

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-33.jpg

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Lots of emotions, lots of wrinkles!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-35.jpg

A peek inside the factory. Everything is intact. As someone mentioned in the Daewoo Factory thread, an abandoned factory is a nightmarish place. There's a feeling of stillness, a sudden stillness!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-36.jpg

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-37.jpg

Through the side of the factory, there's a very narrow road that's partially closed with a barricade. He rode through that to get to the other side of the factory and that's where the town starts. A small Ganesha Idol welcomed us!



Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-39.jpg

Right after that was a bridge beneath which was something that we rarely get to see - crystal clear water! I could literally see the ground through the waters!!


Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-40.jpg

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That's where the water is coming from!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-43.jpg

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View of the Tea Factory from the waters! We had a nice dip and enjoyed and cherished each and every second in the purest waters I've ever been.

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-45.jpg

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Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-50.jpg
..to be continued...

Last edited by freakmuzik : 5th November 2015 at 16:04.
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Old 5th May 2016, 21:57   #4
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Default re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud


A banana tree stuck in the stream

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-51.jpg

Green Green everywhere! Try noticing a bunch of buildings on top - his friend was leading us there...

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-52.jpg

...which is where the tribals/ locals stay.

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-53.jpg

Some nice steps amidst lush greenery leading us into their residences

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-54.jpg

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-55.jpg

Now that's how their residences look. A very rural setting and do notice the water pipeline that was laid not so long ago.

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-56.jpg

As we entered into his house

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-57.jpg

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-57a.jpg

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-57b.jpg

Had some delicious Kanji, payaru and chammanthi! (porridge + beans)

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-57c.jpg

A sneak from the side of the house

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-58.jpg

Notice the water line

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-59.jpg

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-60.jpg

So yeah, that's the complete view I was blessed with

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-61.jpg

Some fresh and pristine spinach being readied for us!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-62.jpg

Me back to being 5 years old

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-63.jpg

Yet another tiny stream

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-64.jpg

Walking towards the temple

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-65.jpg

Gotcha!

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-66.jpg

This is the water being used for the temple activities

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A maturing banyan tree
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The small temple. I did quite feel sad about the concrete structure in the jungle

Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-71.jpg
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Hello, she says..
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-73.jpg

As we walk away from the temple
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Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-75.jpg
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And all of a sudden, I see this handsome fella.
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-77.jpg

Last edited by freakmuzik : 27th May 2017 at 10:22.
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Old 27th May 2017, 10:12   #5
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Default re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud


That's a beautiful road, isn't it?
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-78.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-79.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-80.jpg

Here is the next temple enroute to the Bonacaud Top
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-81.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-82.jpg

By the time we spent 15 minutes there, the whole place was filled with dense fog. Conditions changed so quickly!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-83.jpg

That's the Ration shop supplying stuff for the people of Bonacaud
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-84.jpg

And the next friend of mine. You can also notice the age of the buildings there
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-84a.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-84b.jpg

And we kept moving in extremely dense fog all around.
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-85.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-86.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-86a.jpg

Here is the entrance to the starting point for the Agastya Mountain Trek which is open during the first three months, every year!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-86b.jpg

..for those who can read Malayalam
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-86c.jpg

And we kept moving further towards the Bonacaud top
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-87.jpg

Water Water everywhere...and yes, you can drink all of them!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-88.jpg

There were no proper roads. I really do not know how he managed the feat using this bike. At certain points, I got down so that he could somehow pass the obstacles.
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-89.jpg

And there we reach - such a huge tree with those amazing roots
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-90.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-91.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-92.jpg

Yours truly standing right infront of the temple, which is hidden behind the rock and the tree seen in the previous.
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-93.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-94.jpg

And we started the journey back
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-95.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-100.jpg


Stopped over at this place where he knew someone
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-96.jpg

Look at that tree!
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-97.jpg
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-98.jpg

The view of the Peppara Dam as we kept moving away from Bonacaud
Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud-99.jpg


As we reached the city, I wasn't comfortable to take photos and with the immense happiness of visiting such a place, who would want to take photos of cities?

I met people - humble and beautiful, who understand and respect nature, who just want to live peacefully and also struggle to survive in the competitive world.

I saw nature, in its raw form, and how happy they are, to grow as they like, to be peaceful without the fear of having harmful humans around them, the way they enriched my existence, the way they cleansed my lungs and the way they freshened up my very life!

I saw religion, in it's usual form, trying to mobilize people every moment they could, with some missionaries opening up Bonacaud to the pubic with permission from the Govt. for over one month every year, with vehicles and all noise along the roads till the Bonacaud top and the small native population falling prey to the conversion battle between various religions. At a place like Bonacaud, no vehicles from outside, unless for something like a trek, should be allowed in. But, in my visit again in April 2017, I was shocked and disheartened to see hundreds of cars and bikes moving around Bonacaud in the name of religious festivals, with roads getting cleared and nature taking a back seat.

And then I saw the city, yet again, making me wonder the reason we exist the way we are. Are cities comfortable for our body? No. Are they enriching our lives deep within? Not really. Is there harmony? yeah right. We have economic, technological and intellectual progress which can be seen lacking in a place like Bonacaud. But it also reminds us of what we have lost. A deeper connection to nature, an understanding that we are part of nature - just like a bee, butterfly, dog, cat, horse, cow - and not some species that's meant to exploit nature. It also made me realise how unaware a generation are we. Every action of ours is doing immense damage to nature. The environmentalist in me was so happy to see the place preserved atleast the way it and I wish we find a way to incorporate both the aspects of the harmonious life and all the progress we have achieved through every moment of aware action.

Points to note -
  • 2015 was the year the Houses got electricity
  • They use satellite phones to communicate and all you can do is send messages through your mobile connection
  • Most of them travel to the city everyday for work
  • The tea collected goes to factories around in Thenmala, Munnar for processing
  • Many families have moved out of Bonacaud in the last decade
  • There are kids who are successfully enrolled in Govt.Colleges for degree courses
  • The nearest govt school had a 100% pass rate in the last three years

And this photologue has taken nearly two years because I really could not focus entirely on putting it up and thanks mods for providing the facility of Assembly line, which enabled me to put this up

Cheers!

Last edited by freakmuzik : 27th May 2017 at 10:31.
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Old 29th May 2017, 09:55   #6
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Mod note: Thread moved to Travelogues section. Thanks for sharing.

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Old 29th May 2017, 10:19   #7
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

What a sensitive report. Or i should call it a observation on the environment. And quality photographs too. Thank you for sharing.
A map showing the location and the route followed would be useful. Any home stay in the vicinity?
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Old 29th May 2017, 11:07   #8
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

Very nice travelogue. Nice pictures. Looking at those misty background, I feel like taking a bike and ride there.

I heard about this village in another forum and friends as well. Is this a haunted place really? :-)

In Search of the Haunted Bungalow at Bonacaud, Trivandrum - Kerala
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Old 29th May 2017, 12:24   #9
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

Thanks a lot for this! Myself being from Trivandrum, has done numerous rides to Bonacaud and Ponmudi during my college days! That too on my ex-Royal Enfield. It was heart warming to see the beauty of those hills again, that too on a Monday morning! It has really dusted up and brought back some good old memories. This place is a pristine beauty. I don't think I have gone this deep into Bonacaud. Maybe next time! Thanks again for sharing!
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Old 29th May 2017, 13:01   #10
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

freakmuzik - A very nice photologue of Bonacaud. Pls pm me your number. Always a pleasure to speak to a fellow rider.

Quote:
Originally Posted by earthian View Post
What a sensitive report. Or i should call it a observation on the environment. And quality photographs too. Thank you for sharing.
A map showing the location and the route followed would be useful. Any home stay in the vicinity?
AFAIK there are no home stays in Bonacaud. There are a few resorts in and around Vithura. Bonacaud is around 65 km from Trivandrum. So you can visit this place and come back to the city that day itself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgmuser View Post
Very nice travelogue. Nice pictures. Looking at those misty background, I feel like taking a bike and ride there.

I heard about this village in another forum and friends as well. Is this a haunted place really? :-)

In Search of the Haunted Bungalow at Bonacaud, Trivandrum - Kerala
Nope. It only looks like a haunted place.
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Old 29th May 2017, 14:49   #11
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

Very Nice Travelogue with some amazing scenic pictures.
With the details you have put in the post, I can feel the immense joy you might have actually experienced on this trip.
I liked the personal touch you penned down for us.
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Old 29th May 2017, 16:53   #12
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

Amazing travelogue and attention to detail, not to forget the splendid photography

Maybe you should consider contributing some of your pics to the National Geographic Yourshot library.. (link below, they have a lame collection as of now ):
Cheers!

http://yourshot.nationalgeographic.com/tags/bonacaud/
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Old 29th May 2017, 17:36   #13
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

Quote:
Originally Posted by freakmuzik View Post

The ride was a Hero Honda NXG 100cc bike.
"You don't need cc on a bike to enjoy a journey. As long as the bike gets you there" - your 'photologue' epitomises this thought. Beautiful work freakmuzik!! Your journey (although as a pillion I am guessing) reminds me of the days when people went to Khardungla on their M80s and Kinetic Hondas. I think there is a link on Team-BHP itself:
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motorb...ennai-leh.html (Bajaj M80 All the way from Chennai to Leh!!)
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Old 29th May 2017, 20:45   #14
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

Thank you !! I am planning to visit Kerala - Will include this spot it itinerary
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Old 29th May 2017, 21:40   #15
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Default Re: Heaven! A ride to the village of Bonacaud

Quote:
Originally Posted by earthian View Post
What a sensitive report. Or i should call it a observation on the environment. And quality photographs too. Thank you for sharing.
A map showing the location and the route followed would be useful. Any home stay in the vicinity?
Thank you so much! And I'l soon post the location details here. Sorry for missing it. There are no home stays or anything at Bonacaud. It's (thankfully) not yet a tourist destination.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sgmuser View Post
Very nice travelogue. Nice pictures. Looking at those misty background, I feel like taking a bike and ride there.

I heard about this village in another forum and friends as well. Is this a haunted place really? :-)

In Search of the Haunted Bungalow at Bonacaud, Trivandrum - Kerala
Thank you! And it definitely is not a haunted place haha ! It's so beautiful that I can't relate the word 'haunted' to 'Bonacaud'. The only possibility for a feeling of being haunted would be the Tea factory which exactly looks like it was stopped right while it was functioning and remained frozen forever.

Quote:
Originally Posted by man_of_steel View Post
Thanks a lot for this! Myself being from Trivandrum, has done numerous rides to Bonacaud and Ponmudi during my college days! That too on my ex-Royal Enfield. It was heart warming to see the beauty of those hills again, that too on a Monday morning! It has really dusted up and brought back some good old memories. This place is a pristine beauty. I don't think I have gone this deep into Bonacaud. Maybe next time! Thanks again for sharing!
Thank you so much! Going this deep needs some assistance for sure because it's not a purely public place and the people value their privacy and also maybe it's a little difficult to find the routes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nutty Nair View Post
freakmuzik - A very nice photologue of Bonacaud. Pls pm me your number. Always a pleasure to speak to a fellow rider.
Thank you so much! And thanks for posting your Bonacaud experiences which definitely was a motivation. I shall PM you asap.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vidyanand View Post
Very Nice Travelogue with some amazing scenic pictures.
With the details you have put in the post, I can feel the immense joy you might have actually experienced on this trip.
I liked the personal touch you penned down for us.
Thanks a lot.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abby28 View Post
Amazing travelogue and attention to detail, not to forget the splendid photography

Maybe you should consider contributing some of your pics to the National Geographic Yourshot library.. (link below, they have a lame collection as of now ):
Cheers!

http://yourshot.nationalgeographic.com/tags/bonacaud/
Thanks a lot! I shall do that. And I shot these using a point and shoot Sony WX80 as well as some from my Moto G2 and never got a chance to really halt and take a pic as we were constantly moving! I'm happy you liked the photos.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Indraneel Bhat View Post
"You don't need cc on a bike to enjoy a journey. As long as the bike gets you there" - your 'photologue' epitomises this thought. Beautiful work freakmuzik!! Your journey (although as a pillion I am guessing) reminds me of the days when people went to Khardungla on their M80s and Kinetic Hondas. I think there is a link on Team-BHP itself:
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/motorb...ennai-leh.html (Bajaj M80 All the way from Chennai to Leh!!)
Thanks a lot! Indeed. What vehicle you have does not matter at all if you are ready to experience what it offers. I had the same feeling when I took my humble Nano from Trivandrum - Coimbatore - Chennai - Madurai - Tenkasi - Courtalam - Trivandrum. I never thought I would be so happy driving a Nano like that. Thanks for the link too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by virgovencat View Post
Thank you !! I am planning to visit Kerala - Will include this spot it itinerary
Please do. I'm sure you will love this place.

Thank you all for your encouragement and feedback.
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