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Old 20th July 2015, 22:22   #1
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Arrow Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Monsoon was supposed to hit Bangalore by 01-June, one week earlier than normal. However, one month past that date and it was playing hide and seek with the speed breaker city. Hence we thought of going in search of monsoon.

Deciding the location was easy, Chikmagalur was one place we have been planning to go since a while. Also, we felt it will be a perfect place to just relax and enjoy the rain, sipping tea from porch.

11- July - 2015

A late morning start and we take NICE road out of Bangalore, it was 06:10 AM by time we reach NICE road Hosur side toll booth.

By the time we reach Tumkur road, traffic was building up.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2163.jpg

We had decided to take Tumkur road instead of the straightforward Hassan - Belur road to try new road and also to visit Ishvara temple, Arasikere.


During our earlier trips to reach Arasikere / NH 206, we have taken road through Tumkur town. However, latest updates mentioned that Tumkur bye-pass road is patched up. Hence decided to give it a try.

Road condition was decent, however we felt the time taken via bypass and via city was almost same.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2169.jpg


Road condition once we reach NH 206 is good and traffic moderate

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2173.jpg


Soon we reach Arasikere, Ishvara temple is about 1 KM off to right from main road. We take the turn and find the roads inside Arasikere in bad shape.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2174.jpg



Ishvara Temple

Location

Temple is maintained in good condition by ASI, we were the only one visiting the temple that time. Time was 09:10 AM and trip meter read 212 KM.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2175.jpg


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2179.jpg

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2177.jpg

The main attraction of the temple is the 16 pointed mantap. I was not able to capture the entire roof in one picture even in the widest zoom.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2188.jpg

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2192.jpg


We start off by 09:25 AM. Thanks to waking up early, we are already hungry and decide to stop at Cafe Coffee day soon after Arasikere for breakfast. After a 25 mins break for breakfast, we start at 10:00 AM.

At 10:20 AM we reach Kadur and take left towards Chikmagalur, enroute we decide to stop at Ayanakere.


Ayana Kere

Location

This is a tank made during Hoysala period for irrigation of surrounding areas.


Ayana Kere is a deviation of 4 KM's from main road. The deviation is marked by couple of sign boards. Once you cross the town of Sakrepatna, you need to keep a look out on your right for the deviation.


The road is narrow but with decent surface.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2211.jpg


We encounter traffic block

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2215.jpg


Just before reaching the lake, there are a few government buildings. It looked like the buildings belonged to fisheries department.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2236.jpg


Though it was not raining till now, we can see dark clouds forming.

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Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2259.jpg


Apart from enjoying the scenery there is nothing much do around here.


Optimus gets a photo session

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2243.jpg

We start off towards Chikmagalur by 11:10 AM.


Road between Kadur and Chikmagalur is beautiful and a biker's dream, especially as you are approaching Chikmagalur. It has both straight and curvy stretches, saw few bikers enjoying the curves.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2287.jpg



Chikmagalur welcomed us with rain

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2303.jpg


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2308.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 21st July 2015 at 23:28.
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Old 21st July 2015, 20:06   #2
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Default Thippanahalli homestay

Our stay was booked at Thippanahalli homestay

Website

Homestay is located on Chikmagalur - Mullayanagiri/ Kemmannugundi road. The road from Chikmagalur is in good condition, few KM's down the road we need to take a left towards the homestay.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2629.jpg


Turn off to homestay


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Once you get off the highway, you need to drive for around a KM through the coffee plantations which are owned by the homestay owner.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2634.jpg

The homestay is surrounded by coffee plantation and has superb view of Mullayanagiri peak.

The main building is around 80 years old

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2697.jpg

Even car parking gets a superb view, the hill in background is Mullayanagiri peak; the highest hill in KA.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2328.jpg


They have few rooms in the main building and also two separate cottages. Separate cottages are called 'Mountain view' cottages and are named after different varieties of coffee - 'Robusta' and 'Arabica'.

Our stay was booked in Robusta

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2321.jpg


Room interior

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2317.jpg


Mandatory bathroom shot

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2318.jpg


Dining area, view from here is also superb

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2323.jpg


The resort is owned by Mr Nithin & Mrs Arpitha, who come from a long line of coffee planters.


Property is very well kept and we found the food very homely.


The place has a envious list of birds, on the first day we were able to hear peacock calling in the evening from estate very near to room.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2720.jpg


We reached homestay at 12:00 PM, trip meter stands at 307 KM's.

After lunch, we just roam around the homestay and decide against going out.

Last edited by mpksuhas : 21st July 2015 at 23:32.
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Old 21st July 2015, 21:03   #3
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Default Day 2

Mullayanagiri Peak

Location

This is the highest peak in Karnataka and about half hour drive from homestay. Nithin had warned that Saturday sees maximum crowd at the peak, this was one of the reason we decide against driving there the same day we reached.

After a heavy breakfast, we make a late start at 10:40 AM, the hilltop is 12 KM's from homestay.

There were a line of cars going to the peak

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2335.jpg

Few KM's from homestay, road forks into two, we take the left towards Mullayanagiri. The right fork leads to Baba Budangiri and Kemmannugundi.

Road condition is good at start, roads though narrow and you need to get off to make way for oncoming vehicles.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2367.jpg


Beautiful twisties

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2556.jpg


View from top

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2445.jpg

Couple of KM's short of the peak, we reach Seethālayanagiri Temple (Location). Many people park their cars here and walk the remaining ~ 1KM towards the Mullayanagiri peak. The walk will take around 40 mins and is not that steep.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2503.jpg


We decide to drive all the way till the peak, roads are in bad shape past this and also narrow. You need to check vehicles coming from opposite side ahead and wait at wider sections of road to let them pass.


However, do note that this section can be done on any vehicle.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2390.jpg


Broken roads

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2468.jpg


It was misty when we reach on top, crowd was building up. Hence we decide to climb to peak soon.

Parking area

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2395.jpg

From parking area you need to climb few hundred steps to reach the peak.


Start of steps

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2397.jpg


View down, towards parking area half way from the steps

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2398.jpg

Though it was half past noon, it was cold due to mist and wind. Soon, we reach the peak.


Main entry

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2402.jpg


In earlier pics, I have seen only this structure as temple

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2406.jpg


However, there is a new building which I guess is a recent addition.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2408.jpg


We wait for a while near the peak to catch our breath and also for the mist to clear

And in steps it clears

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2417.jpg


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2430.jpg


We start our climb down and start back to homestay.

It was getting sunny now, also there were lots of vehicles going uphill. As per our homestay owner, traffic blocks is a regular sight on top of the hill during weekends.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2555.jpg


After a heavy lunch, rest of the evening is spent around homestay.

Last edited by mpksuhas : 21st July 2015 at 23:36.
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Old 21st July 2015, 21:47   #4
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Default Day 3

After breakfast Nithin takes us on a walk around estate. Since it was around 10.30 AM and sunny, we are not able to spot much birds. Guess we should have started earlier.

The estate covers an area of 600 acres, out of which 200 acres is taken care by Nithin.

Estate walking path

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2724.jpg

Returning after the walk, we check out by 11:30 AM.

Our plan is to take Chikmagalur - Belur road and take deviation few KM's past Chikmagalur towards Belavadi to visit Sri Veeranarayana temple.


Chikmagalur - Belur road is bit patchy at start due to some road work. However, condition improves and is a beautiful 2 lane road.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2731.jpg


Around 18 KM's from Chikmagalur, we take left at this junction (left few meters further at the blue Canara bank board) -

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2737.jpg


Though the tourism department signboard at this junction mentions about Belur and Halebeedu, it does not mention Belavadi temple which is closer.


Roads are patchy after taking the turn and traffic is minimal.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2750.jpg


Soon we reach Belavadi, we miss the temple initially and have to turn back. The temple signboard is covered by a medical shop board

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2769.jpg



Sri Veeranarayana Temple, Belavadi


Location

Time is 12:30 PM, the place is 40 KMs from homestay.

We are the only people visiting the temple

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2774.jpg


Timings

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2775.jpg



Temple has a three layered structure

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2777.jpg


This temple was constructed almost during same time period as Halebeedu temple, hence the architecture is very similar.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2780.jpg

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2795.jpg

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2799.jpg

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2806.jpg

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Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2815.jpg

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2818.jpg


It takes around half hour for seeing around the temple and we start by 01:00 PM towards Halebeedu.

Road from Belavadi to Halebeedu is in good condition, we also noticed widening work almost getting over.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2836.jpg


From Halebeedu, instead of the usual route via Belur or Hagare, we decide to try different route to Hassan.

We deviate to SH 21.

Road condition soon after Halebeedu is good, however some 15 KM's later it becomes real bad.


Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2868.jpg


We decide not to get in to Hassan town and instead take Hassan bye-pass

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2880.jpg

Soon we reach NH 48, it is 02:00 PM.

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2923.jpg


We have a 30 min lunch break at Hotel Mayura and start towards Bangalore by 03:20 PM.


Traffic is minimal till we reach Nelamangla and we reach NICE road toll booth by 04:30 PM.

NICE road

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2974.jpg


Soon we are in the peak hour Bangalore Outer ring road traffic



Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-suh_2977.jpg

Last edited by mpksuhas : 21st July 2015 at 23:40.
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Old 21st July 2015, 22:24   #5
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Default Epilogue

Route details

Day 1

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-day1.png

Day 2

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-day2.jpg

Day 3

Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain-day3.jpg



Total KM's - 631 KM's


Epilogue
  • Bangalore route details (Bangalore to Chikmagalur - Best Route & Road Status?)
  • We did not visit Kemmanagudi since roads are in bad shape.
  • Another popular tourist location is Dattagiri /Baba budangiri. Named after the 17th century Sufi saint who is said to bring coffee seeds to Chikmagalur, and starting coffee plantations here. Sadly, Dattagiri is in between a communal / political slugfest and add to that broken roads. These reasons made us decide against visiting the same.
  • Enroute you can visit Belur and Halebeedu temples also, we skipped the same since we had visited earlier.


Few other travelogues on TBHP that would be helpful in planning trip -

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...mountains.html (The Flipped "C" of Chikmagalur - Call of the Mountains)
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...ikmagalur.html (A Trip To Chikmagalur)
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...lur-belur.html (A long weekend trip to Chikmagalur and Belur)
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...mmangundi.html (Swifted : Bisle, Belur, Halebid, Chikmagalur, Kemmangundi)


A tourist map I got online was very helpful in identying locations - Link

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Last edited by mpksuhas : 21st July 2015 at 22:47.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 07:29   #6
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section). Thanks for sharing!
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Old 22nd July 2015, 08:55   #7
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Awesome travelogue Suhas! The capture of the twists was the too good. Seems like red soil twist. By the way, where did you leave your car on that twist to take pic?

And your Optimus (the cheetah), too loves water and hill it seems. After all it's a wild animal tamed by you

Bookmarking this thread - will repeat it to the minute detail, except that Temples are not on my priority list
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Old 22nd July 2015, 10:02   #8
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Smile Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Nice Travlogue Suhas. Came at a right time for me as we are planning to ride to Mullayangiri Peak from Mangalore this weekend. Thanks for the detailed pictures.

For one thing I'm sad to know that the curves are so muddy... It's risky taking corners out there on bikes

May I ask you how much do they charge for homestay?

Thanks for the travelogue again..Will stay glued!

Cheers!
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Old 22nd July 2015, 11:26   #9
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Quote:
Originally Posted by abirnale View Post
The capture of the twists was the too good. Seems like red soil twist. By the way, where did you leave your car on that twist to take pic?
Thanks Avinash.

All the hairpin bends are really wide, for taking the pic you mentioned I had parked the car in the shoulders behind me. Infact along with my car, there was another car also there. So you can get an idea how wide the HP bends are.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Car_Freak_911 View Post
For one thing I'm sad to know that the curves are so muddy... It's risky taking corners out there on bikes
Thanks.
No worries, you can ride without any issues. Just be careful since the roads are narrow.

Home-stay has different tariff options, you can check out the same here.

One thing I forgot to mention in the travelogue - Though this is the highest peak in KA, roads are not that steep. There are many smaller hills which has roads with higher gradient (Nandi Hills, Kundadri hills Agumbe).
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Old 22nd July 2015, 12:49   #10
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Quote:
Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
Chikmagalur was one place we have been planning to go since a while.
So finally Chikmagaluru happens. Nice travelogue. But did you get the monsoon? Nothing in the photos, though!

Quote:
Temple is maintained in good condition by ASI,
You guys might have covered all the ASI maintained temples in Karnataka, eh? Or at least the Hoysala ones

Quote:
At 10:20 AM we reach Kadur and take left towards Chikmagalur, enroute we decide to stop at Ayanakere.
Is this the same Ionkere referred in KA's stories

Quote:
The place has a envious list of birds, on the first day we were able to hear peacock calling in the evening from estate very near to room.
Nowadays Iam waking up to the call of a peacock and a Malabar Hornbill everyday in our apartment

Quote:
[*]We did not visit Kemmanagudi since roads are in bad shape.
Even for your brute?
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Old 22nd July 2015, 13:07   #11
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Thanks for the lovely travelogue and highlighting our beautiful state , Sakkarepatna is famous for its Jackfruit ( assuming you are interested in them).
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Old 22nd July 2015, 13:57   #12
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Wonderful travelogue Suhas

I had been to the same spot last week, the week after your trip and I am not penning down my travelogue as rain played spoil sport and could not enjoy to the fullest.

I have posted couple of pictures in my ownership thread taken from my phone.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 14:17   #13
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Thank you for sharing your experiences Suhas. The travelogue is lovely and the pics are super. It is always a treat watching the green of the western ghats during the monsoon.

I guess you returned to Bangalore on Monday. If so, I'm surprised the homestay owner did not suggest to you to visit Mullayyanagiri on Monday morning. That way, you would have had the whole peak to yourself and probably could spent some time alone in the clouds. Mullayyanagiri is a mess during Saturday and Sunday with the crowd.


Quote:
Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
From Halebeedu, instead of the usual route via Belur or Hagare, we decide to try different route to Hassan.

We deviate to SH 21.

Road condition soon after Halebeedu is good, however some 15 KM's later it becomes real bad.

We decide not to get in to Hassan town and instead take Hassan bye-pass
Actually, this road (Hassan-HaLebidu) was in fact used by most cars to reach Chikmagalur from Hassan. This was 10 years ago though. The usual Hassan-Belur road was in terrible condition then.

The 'bypass' you took is actually known as the Hassan ring road. This was originally planned (even before the NH48 bypass going towards mangalore) to connect NH48 to Halebid road, Belur road and then finally NH 48 after Hassan in a semi circular form. But unfortunately, it was done only upto Halebid road (or Salagame road as it is known locally).

Quote:
Originally Posted by mallumowgli View Post
Is this the same Ionkere referred in KA's stories
Yes indeed. This is the same place.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 14:31   #14
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Quote:
Originally Posted by mallumowgli View Post
But did you get the monsoon? Nothing in the photos, though!
Apart from the 'Greeting' rain which happened as soon as we entered Chikmagalur, it did not rain till we were crossing Chanarayapatna during our return day.

Unfortunately, it is raining heavily in J&K. Leh trip of next week hangs in balance.

Quote:
You guys might have covered all the ASI maintained temples in Karnataka, eh? Or at least the Hoysala ones
Yes, as of now we hope so. We had thought the same last year too, till we came to know about these temples. Who knows!

Quote:
Is this the same Ionkere referred in KA's stories
Yes, the one he mentions in the Alum Bux story. Link
Saying about Kennath Anderson, need to make a one day trip to forests around Anchetty and sometime.


Quote:
Nowadays Iam waking up to the call of a peacock and a Malabar Hornbill everyday in our apartment
Hornbill!! Ahh, so one more reason for putting Neliyampathy plans to execution.

Quote:
Even for your brute?
Yes. Kemmanagudi roads are in bad shape as per home-stay owner. As per him, they have stopped suggesting anyone to visit there since time wasted in negotiating the bad roads does not justify the views.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mazda4life View Post
Sakkarepatna is famous for its Jackfruit ( assuming you are interested in them).
Thanks. Was not knowing that, we saw few places around Kadur were jack fruit was sold. However, since rains has started we assumed that they wont be tasty.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fusionbang View Post
I had been to the same spot last week, the week after your trip and I am not penning down my travelogue as rain played spoil sport and could not enjoy to the fullest.
Yes. Saw the post yesterday, noticed that you took Kadur route finally.


Quote:
Originally Posted by addyhemmige View Post
It is always a treat watching the green of the western ghats during the monsoon.
Exactly. Another added advantage is, due to rain the places are less crowded.

Quote:
I guess you returned to Bangalore on Monday. If so, I'm surprised the homestay owner did not suggest to you to visit Mullayyanagiri on Monday morning. That way, you would have had the whole peak to yourself and probably could spent some time alone in the clouds. Mullayyanagiri is a mess during Saturday and Sunday with the crowd.
We had thought the same earlier. However, the day we reached (Sat) it was cloudy and drizzling most of the evening. Hence when we saw a bright and sunny morning on Sunday we decide to visit the peak and come. We did not want to wait till Monday and try our luck, just in case it starts to rain again.

Quote:
Actually, this road (Hassan-HaLebidu) was in fact used by most cars to reach Chikmagalur from Hassan.
Irrespective of the bad roads, one should be grateful to successive political leaderships of KA who has planned bye-pass for almost all major cities. Bangalore, Mysore, Tumkur, Hassan all have ring roads which were planned well before it was required.

Last edited by mpksuhas : 22nd July 2015 at 14:38.
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Old 22nd July 2015, 15:40   #15
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Default Re: Wanderlust Traveller: Chikmagalur (KA) in search of rain

Excellent travelogue and great pictures as usual Suhas, thanks for sharing
Liked the choice of places en route, the temples look so good, if not for any religious reasons, definitely on my list for their architecture. Surprised the places were hardly crowded, but then that's rare and a boon these days
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