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Old 16th September 2016, 21:00   #16
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Default A Peek into the Abode of 3 of Seven Sisters

Day 14: 24-Dec-2015 – Tawang Monastery, Ropeway, Other Local Visit

Today we had planned to do the local visit. We had a great breakfast and decided to visit the famous Tawang Monastery. By 11am we were out and quite lucky that the Ropeway service to “Gyangong Ani Gompa" was operational.

Gyangong Ani Gompa is a beautiful Nunnery, having about 50 Buddhist Nuns. The Nunnery is located on top of a beautiful hillock about 5 km away north of Tawang Monastery and is also controlled/administered by Tawang Monastery (even provides for all day-to-day needs) . The Location of nunnery and the customs being followed here by the nuns reminds one of a bygone era, when Buddhism was preached in a calm and serene atmosphere under the shades of a tree.
We had a wonderful journey from “Tawang Monastery” to “Gyangong Ani Gonpa". This is my first visit to Monastry/nunneries of Ladies. We met few of the nuns (I could not even guess that the nun is SHE and not HE (bald head and being a kid makes it hard))
After this we proceeded to “Tawang War Memorial”. I felt so humbled by the sacrifices made by such great warriors. We paid our homage and proceeded for lunch.
As we were free between 3 and 6pm we strolled in the local market and decided to fill the tank of the vehicle for next day.
By 5:30 pm we were ready for the film show of Indo-china war which is organised by army. By 7pm we were back at the hotel and we decided to pack as we have to leave early in the morning (by noon, the snow/ice melts at the Sela pass and it would be difficult for 2 wheel drive vehicles to cross.


Destination: Tawang
Route: Tawang – Tawang
Odometer Start: NA
Odometer End: NA
Kilometres: Approx 20 KMS
Number of Tolls: None
Toll Charges: NA
Start Time: 09:00AM
End Time: 08:00PM
Running Time: 11:00 Hours
Hotel: Circuit House, Tawang, Arunachal Pradesh 790104
GPS Coordinates: 27.596551N, 91.872135E
Rating: Good Rooms, Good Service. What else can you expect in Tawang? No generator backup, so brace up for frequent power cuts (which means room heater won’t work)

Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Tawang Monastery
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Ropeway to Ani Gompa
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Gyangong Ani Gompa
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Gyangong Ani Gompa
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Gyangong Ani Gompa
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Gyangong Ani Gompa
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Gyangong Ani Gompa
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Young Nun
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Praying for everybody's Wellness
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Price List and Timings (in case anybody needs it)
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Ariel View of Ani Gompa
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The Cable Car
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Tawang War Memorial
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Tawang War Memorial
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Tawang War Memorial
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Statue of Buddha near Circuit House
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Film show of Indo-china war
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Last edited by kozhissery : 16th September 2016 at 21:51. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 16th September 2016, 22:00   #17
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Day 15: 25-Dec-2015 – Tawang to Tenga

We got up quite early and started @6.00am from Tawang. The drive was uneventful and we did not stop anywhere. Reached @Jaswant Garh by 8:45am where had our breakfast and paid our tribute to the great warrior Rifleman Jaswant Singh. In another hour we reached Sela-Pass and it was snowing quite a bit and the temperature was below -6 Degree Centigrade. The vehicle was skidding quite a bit at few places so our pace was quite slow (almost travelled in 1st and 2nd gear without the use of throttle or brake till we crossed Sela-pass). Rest of the roads were pretty ok.
We parked our vehicle and went with the other vehicle to see the local places.
First we headed to the place where ashes of Late First Prime minister of India Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru is kept. This was totally news for me. I never knew that his ashes were kept in Tenga. As per the local story, when India lost to china during 1962 war PanditJi accepted it as his mistake and wished to keep his ashes in Arunachal Pradesh (I think it was the basecamp of Military).
After paying our respect we proceeded to the famous monastery “Sang-Ngag Choekar Dargyeling” more commonly known as Chillipam Gompa. It was a breath-taking view from the hill. It was quite windy so was not comfortable staying out to enjoy the scenery for a long. Went inside the monastery to see (before it closes for the day). Took few photos from the outside and escaped to the warm interiors of the vehicle. By 6pm we were back at the rooms. Had a quick dinner and hit the bed by 8pm.



Destination: Tenga
Route: Tawang – Sela Pass - Tenga
Odometer Start: 61524
Odometer End: 61726
Kilometres: Approx 202 KMS
Number of Tolls: None
Toll Charges: NA
Start Time: 06:00AM
End Time: 03:00PM
Running Time: 9:00 Hours
Hotel: Not Applicable
GPS Coordinates: NA
Rating: NA

XUV Ready for next Leg of Journey
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Mortal Remains (Ashes) of Pandit Nehru
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Chillipam Gompa
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Last edited by kozhissery : 16th September 2016 at 22:50. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 16th September 2016, 22:58   #18
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Default A Peek into the Abode of 3 of Seven Sisters

Day 16: 26-Dec-2015 – Tenga to Ziro
Got up quite early and started our journey to Ziro. 2 hours into the drive we stopped for our first break which was for breakfast at Bhalukpong and entered Assam. Reached Balipara at about 9.15 am. The roads were quite fine and we could make good progress. Reached Hallongi (Check post to Arunachal Pradesh) by 11:30am. We continued our drive till Itanagar (for lunch) where we reached by 1.pm.
Progress beyond this point started to drag as the roads were quite bad. After the place from where “Ranganadi Dam“ dam is visible, the roads became quite horrible and driving became quite tiring (even felt why I wanted to see this place?).
By 5pm or so we reached the place which was quite mesmerizing. We had a wonderful dinner at the house and hit the bed bit early as the driving had tired us quite a bit.
Before hitting the bed we had asked the owner of the Home Stay Mr. Punyo Chada to arrange a cab for local tour and the tour guide came the same day to discuss the places to go and the rates.

Destination: Ziro
Route: Tenga – Bhalukpong – Balipara – Gohpur- Rono Basti-Yacholi-Ziro
Odometer Start: 61726
Odometer End: 62095
Kilometres: Approx 369 KMS
Number of Tolls: None
Toll Charges: NA
Start Time: 06:00AM
End Time: 17:00
Running Time: 11:00 Hours
Hotel: Hibu Tatu’s home-stay
GPS Coordinates: 27.515220N, 93.839097000E
Rating: Fantastic Ambience, Worth the money

Road under construction
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Machine Cut roads
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Sandstorm
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New Roads under construction
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Map of Ziro Village
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Last edited by kozhissery : 16th September 2016 at 23:54. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 16th September 2016, 23:59   #19
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Day 17: 27-Dec-2015 – Ziro Local Visit

As the cab was to arrive at 9:00am we did not wake up very early. Woke up quite relaxed at about 6am. Went out for a local stroll and was back by 7:30 am. We had good coffee/breakfast and were ready by 8:45 or so and the cab arrived on time.

First Stop: Apatani Village – Hong Village
The main reason for visiting Ziro was to see the village of Apatani. As we had taken the local guide it was quite easy for us as he took us around the village and explained the strange customs.

2nd Stop: Sun Temple - Danyi Piilo Meder Nello, Hong, Ziro
We met with few of the locals. We even paid our tributes to Sun God. We were lucky to witness the monthly congregation. It mainly consisted of Old Age People.

3rd Stop: Ato Nature Park
Nice stop. I feel it would have been better if we came here in August/September as it would more green in color.

4th Stop: A small Hill top near Ziro Airport.
We can have a birds view of Ziro. Nothing special to write about.

5th Stop: Shiva Lingam of Sidheswar Nath Temple (SHIVA LINGAM AT KARDO FOREST)
This is basically a new discovery. As per the guide this was an accidental discovery. One of the woodcutter was cutting a tree and that he had planned it to fall on one side but defying physics it fell on the other side (of a small rock jutting out of soil). This perplexed him and he said that to local people and they decided to dig and lo a huge Sivalingam was actually buried inside. I think this should be about 20ft in height. Thank god nothing is touched here and its still in virgin condition, thought we could see construction has started and it will become a concrete jungle in a short period of time (when we went there, there was not even any shelter – any building concrete/wood or otherwise).

It was almost 4 pm and the local trip ended.
We had wonderful time at the Home Stay. Mrs/Mr Punyo are very good hosts and they explained to us the local culture , their living conditions etc. We even got the taste of the local Rice Beer and food cooked inside bamboo.

Destination: Ziro
Route: Ziro Local Tour
Odometer Start: NA
Odometer End: NA
Kilometres: NA
Number of Tolls: None
Toll Charges: NA
Start Time: 09:00AM
End Time: 16:00
Running Time: 7 Hours
Hotel: Hibu Tatu’s home-stay
GPS Coordinates: 27.515220N, 93.839097000E
Rating: Fantastic Ambience, Worth the money.
Contact: Punyo Chada, +91.9436047891, +91.9856209494

In and Around Home Stay
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In and Around Home Stay
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Brother basking in Sunshine
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In and Around Home Stay
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In and Around Home Stay
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Room Heater
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Room Heater
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Cheetah Resting under Tree
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In and Around Home Stay
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In and Around Home Stay
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-10.jpg

In and Around Home Stay
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-11.jpg

In and Around Home Stay
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In and Around Home Stay
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In and Around Home Stay
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Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 01:02. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 17th September 2016, 01:10   #20
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Default A Peek into the Abode of 3 of Seven Sisters

Day 17: 27-Dec-2015 – Ziro Local Visit

First Stop: Apatani Village – Hong Village

Let the photos do the talking

Entrance to the biggest Aptani Village
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Streets
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Bamboo - The main source of income
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More Bamboos
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Remains of Some Ritual
Refer: Dree Festival
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Remains of Some Ritual
Refer: Dree Festival
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Remains of Some Ritual
Refer: Dree Festival
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-21.jpg

Remains of Some Ritual
Refer: Dree Festival
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-22.jpg

Real Apatani People - New Generation people does not wear these
The nose studs are made from wood. This was done to make the face look bad so that the ladies are not taken by force by the adjacent villagers during the fight.
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-23.jpg

Real Apatani People
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Real Apatani People
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Bamboo House
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Bamboo House
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Notice!!!
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Crθche - Even here!!!
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Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 11:16. Reason: Added Photos and Captions
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Old 17th September 2016, 11:19   #21
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Default A Peek into the Abode of 3 of Seven Sisters

Day 17: 27-Dec-2015 – Ziro Local Visit

2nd Stop: Sun Temple - Danyi Piilo Meder Nello, Hong, Ziro

Sun Temple
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Sun Temple
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School Near Sun Temple
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3rd Stop: Ato Nature Park

Random Photos
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Random Photos
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Random Photos
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Random Photos
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4th Stop: A small Hill top near Ziro Airport.
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-37.jpg

Photo Session@Ziro
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Just and Enterance
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5th Stop: Shiva Lingam of Sidheswar Nath Temple (SHIVA LINGAM AT KARDO FOREST)
Entrance to Temple
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Idol
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Idol
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The Home Stay
Kitchen/Dining Room with Natural Room warmer
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-43.jpg

Stuffed Food inside a Bamboo - Keralites can compare it with Puttu made inside coconut shell or Bamboo
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What it really looks like
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Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 11:38. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 17th September 2016, 11:42   #22
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Day 18: 28-Dec-2015 – Ziro to Guwahati

As days were running out we decided to start our return journey. I woke up bit early so decided to explore out early morning. It was pretty cold and the water in the pipe had frozen. The vehicle was covered in frost. By 6:30am we got hot coffee and waited for breakfast which was ready by 7:00 and could start by 7:45am. The first 20km kilometres of the road was quite horrible and the drive was quite slow. As this ride was made first thing in the morning we were ok compared to the day when we reached there (that was in the evening - last leg). The drive was uneventful till we reached Guwahati after which the traffic snarls started. We checked into the same hotel.

Destination: Guwahati
Route: Ziro – Yazoli – Holongi – Balipara – Tezpur – Kalibor – Nellie – Guwahati
Odometer Start: 62095
Odometer End: 62558
Kilometres: 463
Number of Tolls: None
Toll Charges: NA
Start Time: 07:45AM
End Time: 20:00
Running Time: 13 Hours
Hotel: Hotel May Flower, Guwahati
GPS Coordinates: 26.1850674N,91.7432477E
Rating: Good, Pretty good service

Early Morning@Home Stay in Ziro
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Early Morning@Home Stay in Ziro
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-2.jpg

Early Morning@Home Stay in Ziro
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-3.jpg

Cheetah Got Ready to Attack the Concrete Jungle
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-4.jpg

Early Morning@Home Stay in Ziro
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-5.jpg

Parting Shots of Ziro
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Dam View
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Dam View
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Random View
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Random View of the Road - En-route to Guwahati
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Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 13:11. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 17th September 2016, 13:15   #23
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Day 19: 29-Dec-2015 – Guwahati Local Visit

As we had planned to go and see Kamakyha Temple, we decided to take a break at Guwahati.
Got up bit late and had great breakfast (got Idly and dosa too). Went to the temple by 9am and was back by 12pm. Went out to the city for some purchase of tea and had lunch@Sagar Ratna.

Later booked the ticket for the Bhramaputra Cruise from “Alfresco Grand”. It’s a normal cruise with free “Mosquitos” to give you company. You need to stay inside the cabin as outside its full of deadly Mosquitos.

Returned back by 9pm and hit the bed.

Destination: Guwahati
Route: Guwahati
Odometer Start: NA
Odometer End: NA
Kilometres: NA
Number of Tolls: None
Toll Charges: NA
Start Time: NA
End Time: NA
Running Time: NA
Hotel: Hotel May Flower, Guwahati
GPS Coordinates: 26.1850674N,91.7432477E
Rating: Good.

Restaurant Tried: Sagar Ratna, Nepali Mandir Point, Paltan Bazar, Guwahati, Assam 781008
GPS Coordinates: 26.178798540656263N, 91.75065100193024E
Rating: Can be tried, not so great.

Kamakyha Temple
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Kamakyha Temple
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-2.jpg

Kamakyha Temple
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View from the deck of Alfresco Grand
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-4.jpg

DJ@Alfresco Grand
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-5.jpg

View from the deck of Alfresco Grand
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Alfresco Grand
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-7.jpg

Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 13:31. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 17th September 2016, 19:27   #24
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Day 20: 30-Dec-2015 – Guwahati to Farakka

Got up quite early and started by 5:30am. We decided to drive till all of us got tired.
As it was foggy, the drive was bit slow in the morning. We could cover 430 odd kilometres before lunch time (around 7 hours of driving). Till Raiganj we could cover pretty fast. Covered around 640 kilometres in about 12 hours of driving. After Raiganj the pace became quite slow and we could cover just 140 kilometres in 6 hours. Lost quite a lot of time in and around Malda. We lost quite a lot of time near Farakka Barrage.
As we had decided to drive till we get tired, we continued our drive.

Destination: Farakka
Route: Guwahati – Rangia – Chalsa – Siliguri – Surjapur - Farakka
Odometer Start: 62,558
Odometer End: 63,342
Kilometres: 784
Number of Tolls: 3
Toll Charges: 146.00
Start Time: 05:30
End Time: 23:59
Running Time:17 Hours
Total Time: 18 Hours 30 minutes
Hotel: NA
GPS Coordinates: NA
Rating: NA

Restaurant Tried: Laddoo Gopal - Pure Veg, No. 31, 1st Floor, Jeevandeep Building, Rashtriya Ghaipatha, Ward 42, Salugara, Siliguri, West Bengal 734008
GPS Coordinates: 26.765003N, 88.444990E
Rating: Good Food and lots of other bakery items. We did try some and liked it


Misty Start - Somewhere in Assam
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-1.jpg

Lunch Time - I'm not Chotta Bheem
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-2.jpg

Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 19:48. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 17th September 2016, 19:50   #25
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Default A Peek into the Abode of 3 of Seven Sisters

Day 21: 31-Dec-2015 – Farakka to Vizag

We continued our journey without any stops apart from coffee/tea/washroom/diesel stops. The first stop was for tea at about 6am and then at the outskirts of Kharagpur breakfast and diesel at about 8:30am. The next stop was for lunch at Cuttack which was done at 12:30pm. Next stop was at 16:15 for diesel and coffee.
Reached Vizag by 19:00 hours and my battery was almost dead. Ajay wanted to continue till we reach Trivandrum but I was not ready to do that. What worried most was that the day being 31st December the chances of people coming onto roads without any sense scared me the most. Add to that I was quite tired (I cannot sleep much in the car, can take couple of winks but not proper sleep).
We just slumped onto the bed.

Destination: Vishakapatnam
Route: Farakka – Kharagpur – Balasore – Cuttack - Vishakapatnam
Odometer Start: 63,342
Odometer End: 64,417
Kilometres: 1075
Number of Tolls: 13
Toll Charges: 824
Start Time: 00:00
End Time: 19:00
Running Time: 17 Hours
Total Time: 19 Hours
Hotel: B&W Motel, NH5, M.V.P Opp Krishna Mandir, Sector 9, MVP Colony, Visakhapatnam, Andhra Pradesh 530017.
GPS Coordinates: 17.744162N, 83.328811E
Rating: Satisfactory

Random Photos from CoCo Pump somewhere after Cuttack En-route to Vizag
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-1a.jpg

Random Photos from CoCo Pump somewhere after Cuttack En-route to Vizag
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-2a.jpg

Random Photos En-route to Vizag
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-3a.jpg

Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 20:01. Reason: Added Photos
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Old 17th September 2016, 20:04   #26
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Default A Peek into the Abode of 3 of Seven Sisters

Day 22: 01-Jan-2016 – Vizag to Komarapalayam

After a refreshing sleep we started our last leg of the journey at 4:15 am. First stop was for breakfast@7:30am, next @11:30 for diesel and Lunch@13 hours. On afternoon session first stop was at 15 hours for tea and then @21:30pm for dinner. Last stop was at 23:00 for coffee.
Nothing much to write as this was continuous drive without any hassle. The average speed was above 60KMPH. We continued on without any break.

Destination: Komarapalayam
Route: Vishakapatnam – Vijayawada – Nellore – Nayadupeta – Kalahasthi – Renugunta – Vellore – Krishnagiri – Komarapalayam

Odometer Start: 64,417
Odometer End: 65,636
Kilometres: 1,219/-
Number of Tolls: 19
Toll Charges: 1,074/-
Start Time: 04:15
End Time: 23:59
Running Time: 18
Total Time: 19 Hours 45 Minutes
Hotel: NA
GPS Coordinates: NA
Rating: NA

Cheetah Relaxing after a long Lap
XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)-3a.jpg
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Old 17th September 2016, 20:06   #27
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Default A Peek into the Abode of 3 of Seven Sisters

Day 23: 02-Jan-2016 – Komarapalayam to Kazhakuttom (Trivandrum)
We continued our drive and the first stop was at 1:45 am for diesel, entered Kerala at 02:30. Next proceeded to Ottapalam where we had major stop as I had to pick my mum. Reached Tripunuithura@06:50 where by brother got down. Proceeded to Haripad where the car was changed and continued by drive back home. Reached home by 11:30am

Destination: Kazhakuttom (Trivandrum)
Route: Komarapalayam – Walayar – Ottapalam – Thrissur – Tripunithura – Haripad – Kazhakuttom (Trivandrum)

Odometer Start: 65,636
Odometer End: 66,119

Kilometres: 483/-
Number of Tolls: 7
Toll Charges: 300/-
Start Time: 00:00
End Time: 11:30
Running Time: 8 hours
Total Time: 11 hours 30 Minutes
Hotel: NA
GPS Coordinates: NA
Rating: NA



Conclusion

Thus ends our dream drive.
This is the second long driving tour that we (Ajay and Me) made together; I meant a tour which spans for more than 2 weeks and 5000+ kilometres. The first one was to Ladakh way back in 2010.


Statistics (XUV500 only - does not include other vehicles that was used in Tawang and Ziro)

People: 3
Vehicle: XUV500 W8
Days: 23
Elevation (Minimum): 0
Elevation (Maximum): 4500
Kilometers: 9,297
Kilometers (Minimum a day): 38
Kilometers (Maximum a day): 1,219
Kilometers (Average a day): 404

Total Number of Fuel Stops: 19
Diesel Consumed: 696.297
Average Fuel intake per Stop: 36.65 liters
KMPL: 13.35
Cost of Fuel: 34324.78
Average Cost of Diesel (Per Litre): 49.29

Total Number of Tolls: 76
Total Toll Charges: Rs. 4202/-

Last edited by kozhissery : 17th September 2016 at 20:44.
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Old 17th September 2016, 21:40   #28
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Default re: XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)

Thread moved out from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section). Thanks for sharing!

Wow! A First Log and an Epic Log!

Its not a log, its like a novel, which needs savoured inch by inch! 5 Stars!

Last edited by ampere : 17th September 2016 at 21:44.
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Old 18th September 2016, 10:44   #29
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Default re: XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)

Perfect sunday morning read! Thanks for sharing your journey in such detail Will surely help all folks who like me keep dreaming of a drive to the NE states. Rated a well deserved 5 stars.
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Old 18th September 2016, 13:01   #30
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Default re: XUV500: Drive to the abode of 3 of the 7 Sisters (North-East)

Fantastic travel log! That Shivling really felt like the highlight of my read. I think each of the NE states deserve a trip unto themselves. Your log has gotten me thinking in that direction. 3 weeks with each of the seven sisters (not all at one go ofcourse). So much to see and explore in our own country.

Time to get the gear in place.
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