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Old 21st November 2016, 12:17   #1
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Default 12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR

I dedicate this travelogue to my travel interested parents, without their co-operation this travel would not have been possible. My respects to them for their unshakable trust in me and my 12+years old Wagon R Lxi

During July 2009, when my father was playing with my kids in Club Mahindra Coorg resort, he fell down & landed upside down on his head. It took full five minutes for him to gain consciousness. By September his left side was not functioning, by Grace of God he got admitted in Satya Sai Super Speciality hospital, Whitefield, Bangalore by my sister and he had a brain surgery. Doctors drilled his skull at two places to suck the accumulated blood .

I flew into Bangalore only next day morning & spent few days with my father talking to him about various things. I promised to him I will return back from Kuwait to India, buy a car and take him on an all India self drive travel trip.

I repatriated to Chennai, India in summer 2012, I took my parents on Jyotirling temples & various other places by train, yet at the back of my mind self drive all India exploration trip was there as it was my promise to my father.

As I spent my 18 years living in Kuwait since 1994, driving on the right side of the road, in mostly less populated roads, in automatic transmission cars, My left leg reflex was not confidence inspiring tome to handle clutch operations in densely populated Indian roads.

Hence I decided to buy a cost effective, used manual transmission car to train my reflexes suiting to required levels demanded by our Indian roads, traffic, dense population scenarios.

I considered a used Wagon R Lxi as Maruti is better for spares, wider service network. I wanted a pre 2005 Wagon R as it came with 50:50 split rear seat flexibility. Finally I discovered & bought as a third owner, a 83k done, 2002 December made Wagon R Lxi. The engine & transmission was found to be butter smooth. With few hours of driving in Chennai roads amidst thick traffic, I got my reflexes functioning and learnt to drive effortlessly.

Due to some compelling circumstances within the family, I kept postponing my self drive trip.

The main theme of the trip is to circumbulate India as in the map as mother land in itself is a temple. Besides I never got any opportunity to travel to north-eastern India, I only studied in geography subject about Brahmaputra river, Assam state etc..

So the circumbulate India trip was to start from Chennai and conclude in Chennai covering maximum places enroute.

Finally we decided to take up the journey on 24th Feb 2014 during Mahashivratri celebrations.

The idea is to travel as much possible in comfort keeping my parents' s 77 & 71 years age into consideration. Maximum to travel 250kms in a day and see as much temples enroute as my parents' are interested in pilgrimage, taking holy bath in as many holy rivers possible.

I checked & found my Wagon R in satisfactory condition.

Travel Preparations :

1) Minimum luggage for three of us.
2) Thermal flask for coffee/tea on board, water bottles for door pockets.
3) Hand fans, Five liter size Plastic bucket with lid, mug.
4) Ready cash for 25K, two debit cards with sufficient funds.
5) Medicines, some eatables.
6) Full Tools kit, Music kit usb->FM modulator, portable DVD player.

The culminated 33days travel of 12500 kms trip route upon completion of my circumbulate India trip has been:

Chennai-Maduranthakam-Cuddalore-Pondy-Chidambaram-Tirunallar-Mayooram-Vaidheeswarankoil-Tiruvarurrai-Rameshwaram-Tiruchendur-Tirunelveli-Kanyakumari-Tiruvananthapuram-Chottanikara-Kaladi-Guruvayur-Mangalore-Shringeri-Udupi-Murudeshwar-Gokarna-Goa-Mumbai-Ahmedabad-Ambaji-Ranakpur-Uadipuaishnodevi-Delhi-Lucknow-Varanasi-Patna-Siliguri-Darjeeling-Kamagya/Guwahati-Kolkata-Puri-Vizag-Annavaram-Rajamundhry-Vijayawada-Chennai.


I must confess through my readings at team bhp forums I got my auto-quotient enhancement & I got immensely inspired by travelogues of bhpian adc and other fellow bhpian's Safari tales in the terrains of Ladakh, Kinnur, Spiti.

Day 1: Route : Chennai-Mathuranthakam-Pondycherry-Cuddalore-Chidambaram : Distance Travelled 245Kms

Car packed with minimal luggage:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-car-loaded-travel.jpg

On Chengalpattu bypass road:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-started-off-chennai.jpg

We started from Chennai towards Mathuranthakam a town 90kms from Chennai. This town is geographically 20feet below a huge lake. Here a historic Ram temple is there. Legend is Lord Ram Protect this town from the floods of this lake. Hence the temple is called Mathuranthakam Yeri Katha Ramar temple.

Even during 2015 Chennai-TN floods this town remained un-affected by this lake.

Tindivanam -Pondicherry Highway:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-pondichery-highway.jpg

We moved on to drive 85 kms to reach Pondicherry by 2pm. Spent some time wandering in old French residential colony and beach. By 5pm we had good darshan of Lord Ganesha at Sri Manakula Vinayaka temple.

Pondicherry Sri Manakula Vinayaka temple:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-manakula-vinayakar-temple.jpg

Wagon R the Warrior hero on Pondicherry beach road:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-real-hero-pondy-beach-road.jpg

By 5. 30 pm we started to drive 25 kms & reached historic Lord Siva temple at Tirupathiripuliyur-Cuddalore & had hearty darshan.

Historic Lord Siva temple @ Cuddalore:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-tirupadiripuliyur-siva-temple.jpg

In Cuddalore it is dusk 6:15pm, in twilight we drove 45kms & By 8:15pm wereached Lord Nataraja temple in Chidambaram had a very quick darshan before temple closed.

By now I was tired as the last 45kms drive was on single road with Vehicles coming on with their high beam lights, had dinner and retired for the day. I made a decision to drive only from 6am to 7pm in a day.

Chidambaram Lord Sri Nataraja Temple:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-chidambaram-natarajar-temple.jpg

Chidambaram place of stay:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-stay-chidambaram.jpg


Early Morning we went again to Lord Nataraja temple, the scenario was mesmerizing with bakthas waking up Lord Siva with blowing conches, playing drums, singing songs, chanting mantras. The place was as though inside Lord Siva's abode Kailash itself. Great divine experience that gave me Goosebumps.

Had nice breakfast and moved towards Mayooram Choza Era historic temple town on the banks of river Kaveri in delta.

Inside Historic Choza Era Mayooram Lord Siva Temple:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-mayuram-temple.jpg

On the Kollidam-Kaveri Bridge:
12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-kollidamkaveri-bridge.jpg

Thanks for reading. Its a long travelogue to cover 12,500kms covered in 33 driving days. I wish to share in a compressed mode. Keep watching this thread.

Last edited by GTO : 26th November 2016 at 09:49. Reason: Taking live :)
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Old 21st November 2016, 12:39   #2
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Default re: 12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR

Day 2,3 & 4 : Chidambaram--Mayooram-Tirunallar-Vaidheeswarankoil-Tiruvarur-Tiruvidaimaruthur-Kumbhakonam-Tanjore-Trichy


We reached Mayooram a town on the banks of Kaveri in its delta, here in this historic Choza era temple Lord Siva & Parvathi sit in a higher level holding the Kumbh that has all the seeds(bheeja) of all species of the universe to manifest again. Here Lord Shiva is seen in his full form unlike his linga form.

Paddy loads offered to Lord Siva:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-mayuram-temple-amidst-paddy-donated-temple.jpg

Even today, to this date People donate paddy to this temple in Mayooram during harvest season, harvest from temple lands brought to the temple as seen in photo.

Tirunallar Historic Lord Siva + Sani temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-thirunallar-sivasani-temple.jpg

By bathing at Nala tirtha tank, by praying @ this temple Lord Siva removes all I'll effects of planet Saturn/ Sani.

We travelled to reach Sri Vaideeshvaran temple a historic temple where the Lord Siva is believed to be playing as a doctor for curing any disease. This is also a place for Lord Subramanya who removes ill effects of Mangal/Mars planet.

This part of Tamilnadu is Choza Kingdom, known for huge Siva temple complexes. Walking around temples a task in itself as temples were built in 100+ acres land having several prakaras inside temples to have darshan of Lord Siva & Parvathi.

Tiruvarur Sri Thyagaraja Swamy temple:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-tiruvarur-temple.jpg

Tiruvarur Sri Thyagaraja Swamy temple is one such huge temple complex, first Vidanga sthalam for Lord Siva. The temple's Rathothsava is very famous and the Ratham is so huge, tall & wide it takes months to circumbulate the temple once.

While travelling towards Kumbakonam, we found a huge temple @Govindapuram for Lord Panduranga which is new built in Marathi style, which has a Goshala that takes care of 200 cows.

Panduranga temple @Govindapuram:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-govidnapuram-panduranga-temple.jpg

We travelled to reach Sri Mahalingaswamy temple in Thiruvidaimaruthur which is a huge Choza Era temple complex that has a 25feet clay Nandhi and the soaring temple granite walls to a height of 40feets. Amazing architecture.

Thiruvidaimaruthur Sri Mahalingaswamy temple:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-tiruvidaimarutur-srimahalingaswamy-temple.jpg

Finally we reached Kumbakonam visiting Sri Nageshwar & Uppiliyappar Temples, around 8pm and stayed overnight in Kumbha-konam City.

Dusk view of temple tank:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-dusk-view-temple-tank.jpg

Lord Uppiliappan is elder brother of Tirupati Balaji. The name Uppiliappan literally means person without salt, Legend is that at this place Lord Vishnu Married Mahalakshmi even before she learnt to cook prpoerly, hence here the Neivedayam to the Lord is made without salt.

Even now also Most of us menfolk have endured to live with wife's learning of proper cooking in early months/years of our marriage.

Kumbakonam is home to some Good ethnic vegetarian food delicacies:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-good-food-kumbakonam.jpg

Morning we visited Kumbheswar Temple, Legend Here is that the Amirth Kalasam(Kumbh) came in river Kaveri and hence the city gets the name Kumbha-konam and the Lord of Main temple is known as Sri Kumbeshwarar.



Kumbha-konam is a temple city on the banks of river Kaveri with over dozen Choza Era huge temple complexes. Once in 12 years Mahamaham festival is very famous southern Kumbhamela event.

Sarangspani temple Kumbha-konam:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-kumbhakonam-sarangapani-temple.jpg


Tiruvalanchuzi Swetha Vinayaka temple sculpture:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-what-sculpting-tiruvalanchuzi-swetha-vinayaka-temple.jpg

Swamimalai Murugan temple:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-swamimalai-murugan-templearupadaiveedu.jpg

Last edited by harimakesh : 24th November 2016 at 01:02.
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Old 24th November 2016, 00:17   #3
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Key highlights:

1) Total distance traveled Chennai-Chennai: 12,500kms.

2) Fuel consumed 25 refils of 31 Ltrs = 775 Ltrs approx.

3) Maximum mileage in single filling 32liters fuel@ Srinathji(Udaipur) to Delhi R.K.Puram 610 kms= 19kmpl

4) Max price of petrol Rs 84 @ Mumbai(Powai).

5) Min price of petrol Rs 68 @ Goa.

6) Toll charges throughout the trip: 15K

7) Total fuel expenses : Rs 62K

8) Average milege : 16kmpl

8) Mostly driven at 80km/hr speed

9) Maximum speed 130km/hr between Vizag & Vijayawada.

10) Non-stop drive stretches:
i)Goa to Mumbai(Powai) 625 kms in 14hrs
ii)Mumbai to Ambaji Mandir 695 kms
iii) Nathdwara to Delhi R.K.Puram 610kms
iv)Haridwar to Wagah border 450 kms
v)Katra to Delhi(R.K.Puram) 660kms
vi)Delhi to Lucknow 570kms
vii)Patna to Guwahati/Kamagya: 900kms (Sleeping inside car at Bihar border)
vii) Guwahati to Kolkata 990 kms (Sleeping inside car at Bihar border)
viii) Kolkata to Puri 500kms
ix)Puri to Vizag 450 kms (Sleeping inside car at odissa border)
X) Vijayawada to Chennai 460kms in 7 hrs

Last edited by harimakesh : 24th November 2016 at 00:41.
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Old 24th November 2016, 19:44   #4
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We can't pray Lord Siva without his grace.

With the grace of Lord Siva, 2014 Mahashivratri day we spent at three distinct temples 1) Tiruvaiyaru Sri Iyarappar, 2)Tanjore Sri Brahadheeswarar & 3)Tiruvanaikkaval Sri Jambukeswar temple.

Tiruvaiyaru Sri Iyarappar Temple:

This temple is located on the banks of Kaveri where Five Rivers confluence hence the Lord Siva is named as Aiyarappar (in Tamil Aiyaru=Five Rivers)

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140227-16.40.52.jpg

Tanjore Big temple:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140227-18.34.40.jpg

Sivarathri Crowd of bakthas:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140227-18.37.36.jpg

Tanjore was the Capital of Choza Kings. Tanjore Big temple is the architectural master piece of Choza Dynasty.

Tanjore is geographically located amidst pure plains of paddy fields. No mountains, hills nearby. Choza kings brought Granites from far away places to build this master piece.

Big temple main Gopuram tower is made of single granite piece, Built in such a way that tower's shadow will not fall on the ground any part of the day:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140227-18.40.02.jpg

Huge 25feet tall granite stone Nandi statue:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140227-18.42.32.jpg

Artists bee line to come to this temple on Sivarathri day offer their performance to Lord Siva by means of Music & Dance.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140227-18.40.26.jpg

We Reached Trichy by Sivarathri evening by 8pm on to spend the night with Lord Siva at Tiruvanaikkaval Jambukeswar temple.

This temple is representing Water one of the Pancha bhutas (Jala sthala). What an experience. Every where people taking the name of Lord Siva, temple was reverberating with divine vibration.

Tiruvanaikkaval Sri Jambukeshwar on Nandi :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140228-03.55.32.jpg

Early Morning we moved to nearby Srirangam, took bath in River Kaveri at Amma Mandapam. The water level was just few inches depth. River Kaveri used to be ferociously flowing above 12feet depth with @ Srirangam Ammamandapam ghat.

Srirangam temple Rajagopuram :

This is Tallest Temple Gopuram in Tamilnadu.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140228-11.23.33.jpg

Tiruvedakam Lord Siva Temple:
On the banks of River Vaigai close to my mother's home town

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140302-11.06.41.jpg

Madurai Meenakshi Temple

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140302-18.14.53.jpg

Grew up visiting Meenakshi temple during my school summer holidays. Now after many years grace of God had great darshan.

Last edited by harimakesh : 24th November 2016 at 21:02.
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Old 24th November 2016, 21:24   #5
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03rd March 2014 started @ 8:30 am to Visit Madurai's

Tiruparankundram Lord Sri Subramanya Swamy temple:

This is a historic rock temple. The main Sanctum is carved out of a Monolith granite rock. One of Six Arupadaiveedu temple of Lord Muruga.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-09.25.37.jpg

By 9:30 am From Madurai we travelled 190kms to reach Rameswaram. I wanted drive over this sea bridge for a long time as I never had a chance to visit this place before.

Historic 100+ years old, 2. 4kms long Rameswaram rail bridge on bay of Bengal sea:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-14.09.05.jpg

Watching train bridge from Road bridge :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-14.09.22.jpg

View of Vast blue sea with contrasting aluminium painted iron bridge:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-14.11.17.jpg

Parallel view of rail & road bridge :

My Dad & Wagon R both are old yet un-parallellaby trustable :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-14.02.11.jpg

Rameshwaram Agniteertham Samudra snan Ghat:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-15.36.32.jpg

SriRamanathaswamy temple

There are twenty two wells inside the Rameshwaram temple. After taking holy bathing in sea one has to bath in all these twenty two theerth as and then change dress to have darshan.

If you have brought Ganga theertham, its is showered onto Lord Siva the main deity Sri Ramanathapuram swamy. Offering Ganga water abhishekam to Lord Siva pleases him. We did that.

Here at Rameshwaram Lord Rama built Siva linga and prayed him before crossing the sea to Lanka.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-15.10.53.jpg

Had great darshan. Thought of staying in Rameshwaram, then Quickly changed decision to keep travelling to reach Tiruchendur.


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-18.02.59.jpg

Fishermen boats at dusk on wide shiny sea

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-18.02.19.jpg

Bye Rameshwaram.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140303-13.58.45.jpg

Last edited by harimakesh : 24th November 2016 at 22:49.
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Old 24th November 2016, 23:01   #6
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04th March 2014 after driving 230kms from Rameshwaram via Tuticorin, We Reached Tiruchendur Murugan temple.

Tiruchendur Temple is located on the roaring bay of Bengal sea shore.

Even During 2004 deadly tsunami waves did not do any harm to this temple.

Salt farms in full production of sea salt (see heaps of salt):

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-06.31.31.jpg

Tiruchendur Murugan temple

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-09.59.29.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-09.58.27.jpg

Tiruchendur sea waves kissing the temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-10.04.00.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-10.03.15.jpg

We had a great darshan of lord Murugan and had a hearty breakfast and moved on 60kms towards Tirunelveli.

Enroute on the banks of Tamirabharani river, there are nine historic Vishnu temples called Nava Tirupati.

Southern TN village with a huge tree:
12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-14.48.49.jpg

Only place in Tamilnadu river canal brimming with water.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-14.55.51.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140304-14.56.04.jpg

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Old 24th November 2016, 23:38   #7
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Day 12: March 05th,2014 :

From Tirunelveli we travelled 90kms On 05th March 2014 We reached Kanyakumari early morning by 5am to witness the sun rise at triveni Sangam of three seas Bay of Bengal sea & Arabian sea merging with Indian Ocean.

New dawn & the sun rise from the southmost tip of India :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-06.29.20.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-06.34.54.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-06.39.41.jpg

Orange Sun ball dawning on Tamil poet Thiruvalluvar statue & roaring waves:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-06.40.43.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-06.44.33.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-06.43.47.jpg

Dangerous rough rocky sea :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-06.25.25.jpg

Kanyakumari although in TN influence and density of Malayalam language is significant.

At bathing ghat Granite Stone engraving in Tamil & Malayalam language

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-07.38.14.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140305-07.42.15.jpg

Had great darshan at Sri Bhagavathi Kanyakumari Amman temple. The scintillation from the diamond nose ring of the deity is still recollectable.

We moved on to Ende Keralam through Thiruvananthapuram. Had great darshan of Sri Ananthapadmanaba swamy.

Temple is large with a large temple tank at entrance. Lord Vishnu is in Ananth Sayanam pose.

On the prakaras granite pillars our ancestors did not shy away to depict sex in details, as sex/progeny is key for the manifestation of KARMA.

Our ancestors were wise enough to introduce Sex education in detail to common public inside temple complexes in a divine environment.

Cameras / phones not allowed inside the temple, so no photos.


Kept moving to reach Chotanikkara.

Last edited by harimakesh : 25th November 2016 at 09:07.
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Old 25th November 2016, 00:14   #8
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Day 13 : March 06th, 2014

We Reached Chotanikkara early morning. Temple had good bathing facilities.

Had good darshan and the prayer type has changed significantly. Blasting explosives is a type of prayer called Vedi vazipaadu.

In Kerala Temple architecture too has changed entirely different. No towering Raja Gopuram. Slanted roof temples with wooden pillars.

Outside Chotanikkara Sri Bagavathi temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-09.22.01.jpg

Had nice Udupi style breakfast with Idly, sambar & nice coffee just outside temple

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-09.21.28.jpg

We then moved on towards Kaladi a small town on the banks of Poorna river, the birth place of Sri Adi Shankara.

Driving through rubber estates :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-09.58.10.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-10.01.15.jpg

Ende Keralam :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-10.01.36.jpg

We Reached Kaladi by noon.

Jack fruit emerging :
12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-13.29.22.jpg

Close up of Jack fruit blooming :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-13.29.45.jpg

On the banks of Poorna river:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-13.36.16.jpg

Kaladi Adi Shankara Veda patashala :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-13.39.34.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140306-13.39.21.jpg

Last edited by harimakesh : 25th November 2016 at 00:42.
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Old 25th November 2016, 00:55   #9
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Day 14 & 15 : March 07th & 08th, 2014

I needed some rest & relaxation and Kaladi gave so much peace of mind. We stayed at Adi Shankara Guest House for three days 06-08th March,2014.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140307-13.36.23.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140307-13.36.42.jpg


I liked the quietitude at the Poorna river bank, Adishankara temple, Sri Krishna temple.


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140307-12.40.49.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140308-06.43.59.jpg

Sun rise at the Poorna river side :


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140308-06.51.48.jpg

Sri Krishna temple where Adi Shankara performed Pooja:

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12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140307-13.33.05.jpg



Here a crocodile caught the leg of Adi Shankara and while his mother was looking at him bathing in Poorna river, the crocodile left Shankara only upon his mother agreeing that hencefirth Shankara will live a life of a sanyasi.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140308-06.50.56.jpg

After rejuvenated ourselves with good relaxing 3days stay at Kaladi, on 08th March 2014 we drove 60 kms to Thrissur early in the morning to have darshan of Lord Siva in the form of Vadakkunnathan.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140308-10.06.41.jpg

Thrissur Lord Sri Vadakkunnathan temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140308-09.12.32.jpg

Had good breakfast. Saravanabavan brand name used in Kerala vegetarian eateries too.

From Thrissur we drove 30kms to reach Guruvayur by 10am for the darshan of Sri Guruvayurappan.

There was crowd and took some time to have darshan. While standing in darshan queue we observed they were preparing milk Payasam as Prasad in huge very thick bronze vessels by slow heating method to get the taste.

We have to look at deity from a good distance, baby/kochuu Krishna was not very clear to me. Krishna is present everywhere.

Happily had traditional lunch with temple Prasad Payasam. By 2:30pm we decided to travel to Mangalore.

Last edited by harimakesh : 25th November 2016 at 09:03.
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Old 25th November 2016, 06:37   #10
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Day 16 : March09th,2014

We drove 350 kms from Guruvayur to Mangalore on NH 17(Kanyakumari to Panvel) which was surprisingly single road passing through Kerala towns that have Maximum population density.

Thick traffic on single road NH 17 reduced our speed, overtaking was not possible as traffic was thick and I guess 70℅ Kerala population live just on both sides of NH 17 that runs south to North 425 kms in Kerala from Kaliakkavilai in south to Kasaragod in North tip of Kerala.

The non-existent road between Kasaragod in Kerala and Mangalore in Karnataka were most nightmare to drive. Why both states keep their bordering 30kms in such a bad condition, its a shame on Govt of India +Kerala for the maintenance of an important National Highway so horribly.

NH 17 road in Kerala was the first bottle test of fitness to my elderly parents & my 12+years old Wagon R, both successfully passed the test.

I only hope NH 17 road in Kerala has improved by now.

It took over 12 hours drive to do 340 kms Guruvayur to Mangalore stretch, second slowest travel in my entire trip. We pulled the car to the side for 2 hours rest putting a/C intermittently.

Finally We reached Mangalore at dawn 5:30 am, we wanted to bath in Nethravathi river, but tired, on enquiry a helpful Muslim auto driver suggested we can bath in Kadri Adi Manjunath temple.

We reached Kadri Adi Manjunath temple and to our surprise there was a natural spring Gomukh tirth which is fed to nine tanks named different. Had a refreshing holy bath in all nine tanks and finally at Gomukh and then had hearty darshan of Lord Kadri Adi Manjunatha Swamy.

Kadri Manjunatha Swamy temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-08.49.59.jpg


Kadri Temple in architecture & in practices of worship is similar to Kerala Temples. This Chera kingdom temple architecture legacy seen up to Kollur.


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-08.50.08.jpg

Mangalore Gokarnath temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-09.33.37.jpg

Mangaluru Gokarnath temple is like a theme park on Hindu mythology with water light & sound.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-09.49.14.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-09.53.26.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-09.43.46.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-09.34.40.jpg

Mangala Devi temple :

Mangaloru gets the name because of this temple, meaning the city that has Mangala Devi temple.


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-10.26.12.jpg


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-10.26.24.jpg


Driving to Udupi :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-12.31.46.jpg


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-11.30.54.jpg

Prior to reaching Udupi from Mangaluru, we took a right direction and visited Kateel Durga Parameshwara temple situated in middle of a river. Crowded temple. Parking the car was a problem due to narrow road.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-12.52.21.jpg


Udupi temple entrance :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-07.15.57.jpg

View of Temple tank with Gopuram & temple car

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-08.50.09.jpg

Udupi Temple Car :
12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-08.22.18.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-08.46.37.jpg

Teppotsava of Lord Krishna :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140309-19.57.48.jpg

Stayed at temple run Gita guest house which is conveniently inside temple campus behind the main entrance.

Had hearty darshan of Lord Krishna through the window. Kanakanna kindi is the window though which Kanakanna a devotee got Krishna darshan.

Had tasty Prasad bhojan which is still cooked using fire wood.

Last edited by Aditya : 28th November 2016 at 07:51.
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Old 25th November 2016, 09:10   #11
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Day 17 : March 10th, 2014

We drove From Udupi to Shringeri. The hilly route was Blissful. Enroute at Augumbe sunset point you can see the valley of western ghats.

Blissful hill driving :

In the Ghat roads to Shringeri Wagon R was purring like a kitten. Enjoyed manual transmission Driving pleasure in the climbing of hair pin bends.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-11.23.36.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-11.40.03.jpg

Augumbe Sun set point :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-11.37.29.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-11.36.35.jpg

Shringeri Sharda Temple :

Shringeri Shankara mutt accommodation was very comfortable. We had a comfortable two days stay.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-14.17.14.jpg

Looking at the Jumbo itself is very refreshing :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-18.34.53.jpg

Had great Darshan at Shardha temple & chanted Sri Rudram, chamakam & pancha Suktams at Vidya Shankar temple.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-17.10.58.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-17.07.44.jpg

Had Darshan of Jagadguru Sri Bharti teertha Swamy

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-17.21.30.jpg

The Tunga river had so much of large fishes. Unable to take bath:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140310-14.27.08.jpg

Two days stay in Shringeri rejuvenated the body & Mind got relaxed in the serene environment.

Last edited by harimakesh : 25th November 2016 at 19:43.
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Old 25th November 2016, 12:52   #12
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Day 18 : March11th , 2014:

From Shringeri we drove to Horanadu Annapoorneswari temple.

Had great darshan of Goddess Annapoorneswari. Deity is in standing position. After darshan had great Prasad bhojan.

Horanadu Annapoorneswari temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-12.36.03.jpg

Drive through nature Kudremukh reserve forest

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-14.01.19.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-13.59.08.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-10.15.29.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-10.18.28.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-10.15.49.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-10.17.29.jpg

Low altitude tea plantations enroute Kollur Kudremukh

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-13.19.11.jpg


12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-13.15.50.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-10.09.33.jpg

Kollur Mookambika temple :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-17.13.38.jpg

Special mast lit lamp looks great

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-19.25.29.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-19.25.58.jpg

After the darshan in the night by 8 pm special medicinal herbal syrup kadhayam is given to bakthas. This syrup is belived to up keep good physical health.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140311-19.25.43.jpg

Last edited by harimakesh : 25th November 2016 at 19:46.
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Old 25th November 2016, 14:54   #13
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Day 18 : March 12th, 2014

Early Morning We took bath in Sowbarika river in Kollur and again had hearty darshan of Goddess Sri Mookambika.

Had Chow Chow bath typical Karnataka dish as breakfast (one large scoop Sweet Kesari and one large scoop of Rava upma) and hot coffee.

By 9am We are now set to drive to reach Murudeshwar.

Reached Murudeshwar sea side temple. It is built more like a temple theme park.

The temple tower very tall but without any sculptures.

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-09.38.02.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-11.08.07.jpg

The statue of Lord Siva is so majestic :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-11.23.22.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-10.19.14.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-10.31.03.jpg

Ravana giving Siva linga to Ganesha who appeared in disguise as a herd boy depicted :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-10.17.23.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-09.52.38.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-09.40.52.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-10.07.52.jpg

We reached Gokarna in the afternoon from Murudeshwar. Gokarna gullies are so narrow. Had my driving skills put on test to drive Wagon R in those narrow gullies.

The Gokarna Lord Siva temple was closed. Parked the vehicle in the beach.

There was special Abhishekam & Pooja going on for Lord Siva. The temple was entirely different from other parts of Karnataka. Temple is historic and the architecture was some what similar to Bhimashankar.

On the way entering into Gokarna town, we saw some salt fields.

Gokarna Salt fields :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-14.49.10.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-14.48.52.jpg

We decided to drive 145 kms to reach Goa. we just went past Karwar towards Goa. Karwar is a strategic nacel base for Indian Navy.

Karwar Naval base exhibition ship:

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-18.35.23.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-18.34.16.jpg

Total distance traveled from Kollur to Goa 275 kms.

Kali river is wide enough and so much water is going waste into Arabian sea.

On Kali river bridge Karwar on NH 17 :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-18.44.37.jpg

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-18.44.50.jpg

Mountains cut @ Karwar for NH 17 yet single road :

12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR-20140312-18.46.52.jpg

Last edited by harimakesh : 25th November 2016 at 18:46.
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Old 26th November 2016, 09:54   #14
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Default Re: 12,500 km drive circumambulating India : A road-trip in my WagonR

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

Hat's off to your folks for completing such a long road-trip, man . And of course, to you for fulfilling your promise .
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Old 26th November 2016, 10:19   #15
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Normally one'd associate long, arduous road trips with a large sized Innova or Xylo packed to the brim with food, clothing, tents, the kitchen sink and tablets, laptops, smartphones what have you. Or one might use a BMW or some other high end German cars claiming that anything less will not have the capacity or grip to crack the highways.

Then once in awhile we run across a little trooper like this used WagonR which calmly moves ahead and does what it's supposed to do - cover ground one mile at a time and this time it touched almost 10,000 of those miles without fuss and just like the proverbial story of the tortoise and the hare. Fantastic travelogue.. mainly due to simplicity of it, made my Saturday morning.

Visiting temples was never my sort of thing, though many in my family love to do so. Nowadays I do get it, its something we do to feel lighter, a bit cathartic when inside the temple and just.. doing so for the positivity of it all. I've always been a city guy but still I can identify with the simplicity and earthiness of a South-India temple expedition, the food is the best part, coffee, upmas and kesri-baths fuel you enough for the long drive ahead and yet not so much that one'd fall asleep. I remember visiting a temple during a Chennai trip once.. though I'm a Brahmin and should ideally feel comfortable everything overwhelmed me for a few minutes.. the sounds, the noise, the rituals, the slippers outside, I simply wanted to run away. A few minutes later I sat by the signature man-made pond inside the complex and finally got it, the serenity and a sense of being in a good place. I felt that same thing again when reading today.

Good one.
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