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Old 20th August 2009, 11:51   #61
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Hi gpa,

I will also be travelling to Pondicherry. Will leave bangalore on 21st Morning and leave pondicherry on 23rd afternoon.

Lets catch up if possible.
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Old 20th August 2009, 12:28   #62
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Hi gpa,

I will also be travelling to Pondicherry. Will leave bangalore on 21st Morning and leave pondicherry on 23rd afternoon.

Lets catch up if possible.
devrajman,

We can surely catch up. Mine will be a dash to Pondy early morning on Sunday and I will be driving back the same afternoon as well.

I'm looking at a 2 hour stop once I reach there so, plan to start the drive back by 1.30 pm at the latest. What time do you plan to leave Pondy on Sunday afternoon?

Will PM you my contact number.

Cheers,
gpa
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Old 24th August 2009, 12:14   #63
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Smile BLR to Pondy Update

So as planned, I commenced my drive to Pondicherry leaving home at 4.05 am sharp. I had already tanked up with Petrol the previous night and so decided to drive non-stop.

The route I took was as follows: Bangalore-Hosur-Krishnagiri- Chengam-Tiruvannamalai-Gingee-Tindivanam-Pondicherry.

I live close to the new airport, so it took me an hour to reach Hosur and then was smooth sailing on the beautiful roads upto Krishnagiri.

From Krishnagiri, you have to get onto NH-66 which is a two lane road which calls for a lot of disciplined driving. Since, I was driving in the twilight hours of the morning, I maintained a max speed of 80-90 km/hr on the narrow roads.

Update on Road Conditions

The roads till Krishagiri are beautiful sans the bit as you reach electronic city in Bangalore. Once you are on the NH-66, there are minor portions of bad patches of road on the initial stretch just after you turn in after Krishnagiri to Chengam.

Certain stretches after Chengam heading towards Uthangarai were just breath-taking with the early morning sun coming from in between the trees and smooth black tarmac on the road. The roads are tree lined and twisty and its best you maintaing a speed of 80-85 km/hr for safety.

There are also weavy dips in the shape of a wave like this ~ with portions at the dips non-existant or covered roughly with stones mixed with mud.

Once you corss Tindivanam, there is 4 laning work that is happening in full swing with constant diversions. as each stretch on either sides (left and right) get laid with tarmac. This will be a beautiful road once work is completed.

Something to look out for is dogs and people straying across the highway. Make sure your horn is working (if possible upgrade it from the stock ones) and use it frequently as people will just decide to jaywalk on the road when your cruising at 90 km/hr.

The most frustrating part of this drive was the fact that 2-wheelers (usually loaded with 3 people) and share autos (people from Chennai will know about this) do not give way and putter along in the middle of the road at 30 km/hr I encountered this more on my return trip as it was during the afternoon.

Private TN bus drivers are very cooperative and will let you pass on a clear stretch of road. Just honk once or twice and look out for a hand signal from the driver. He will signal you to either hold back or pass.

The drive from BLR to Pondy took me ~5 hours as I did it non-stop and left early in the morning. I reached Pondy city limits (the landmark to note is Rajiv Gandhi Statue) by 8.55 am.

The drive back took me 5 hours and 45 mins with a 25 minute stop over for lunch at Gingee.

Conclusion

The Alto travelled a total of 682 kms and sipped on 31.99 litres of Shell's unleaded normal unleaded brew. This was a flat out drive (with 4 people on board, with a full boot one way) and the a/c was on for the entire trip. This means an overall mileage figure of ~21 kmpl for the entire trip.

Thanks to Abhi for starting this thread which made my drive all that easier. Melvyn, I hope this helps you during your trip.

Cheers,
gpa

Last edited by gpa : 24th August 2009 at 12:15.
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Old 24th August 2009, 18:30   #64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gpa View Post
The route I took was as follows: Bangalore-Hosur-Krishnagiri- Chengam-Tiruvannamalai-Gingee-Tindivanam-Pondicherry.

...The Alto travelled a total of 682 kms and sipped on 31.99 litres of Shell's unleaded normal unleaded brew. This was a flat out drive (with 4 people on board, with a full boot one way) and the a/c was on for the entire trip. This means an overall mileage figure of ~21 kmpl for the entire trip.

...Melvyn, I hope this helps you during your trip.
GPA, excellent report and and an equally outstanding FE on your Alto, given the weight + AC factor. My mouth is already watering as I hope to do the Goa-Bangalore-Pondi & back trip in the first week of Sept. Will follow your route to the tee. Will keep you informed.

May I get your mobile number? I may need some advice on some decent hotels in Bangalore to stay overnight. I'm totally out of touch with Bangalore as I was last there a long, long time ago...in 1990 when brother-in-law was working at St John's hospital. Regards, Melvyn
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Old 24th August 2009, 19:37   #65
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Hi GPA,

Thanks for the update. It is really helpful as Pondicherry is in my list of places that I would like to visit after Ramzan.
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Old 25th August 2009, 14:11   #66
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Smile

Thanks guys.

Am uploading a few pics that I clicked on the journey. The one with the statue is Rajiv Gandhi Square-a prominent landmark to know that you have reached city limits.

@Melvyn: Will PM you my contact number.

Regards,
gpa
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Last edited by gpa : 25th August 2009 at 14:15.
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Old 25th August 2009, 16:15   #67
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Gpa, nice update of NH66. Is the 4 laning of TIndivanam - Pondi not yet over? When I went there last year it was WIP.

Abhi
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Old 25th August 2009, 16:35   #68
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I been to Pondicherry this weekend also. Stayed there for 3 days. Was burning hot. But plesant winds. Breeze at beaches were very high. Even the sea was rough.

We stayed at Devaki Elite on bussy street. Its a pretty decent hotel. Good for people who just wanna crash on bed after full day sight seeing. Also its pretty close to Rock Beach.

I loved the food at Pizzeria on bussy street. Less choice but awesome preparation. Also opp. that is 41 cafe, there is some chinese fish there in tank. It responds to your calls. It will keep seeing you while youre having food!

Overall had a great time. It was mine first time to Pondicherry.

Paradise beach was the best of all, spend almost a day there with loitering at rock beach Le Cafe.

Journey was smooth overall. Traffic was less. Rainy only near Krishnagiri. Few amazing sights on the way.

It took us 7Hrs from Blore to Pondy and 8hrs from Pondy to Blore.

On our way back we stopped at few places like Gingee Fort and Jain Temple. Also was raining very heavily near Hosur.

I would love to visit this place again. However plan it better and in Winter.

here are few snaps.

gpa,
Sorry couldnt co-ordinate with you as i lost your number.

We started at 2PM and reached at 10PM.
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Weekend Travelogue: Bangalore - Pondicherry-pondychery_410.jpg  

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Old 26th August 2009, 10:20   #69
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Gpa, nice update of NH66. Is the 4 laning of TIndivanam - Pondi not yet over? When I went there last year it was WIP.
Thanks Abhi. Nope, the 4 laning is till WIP at a snail's pace. I last visited in February this year, and now noticed that they have completed quite a lot in the past 6 months but


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gpa,
Sorry couldnt co-ordinate with you as i lost your number
Devang,

It would have been a tight call anyway as I reached Pondy by 9.00 am and was on my way back by 1.00 pm. Not to worry, we shall meet up at one of the meets in BLR
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Old 2nd September 2009, 03:17   #70
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The Alto travelled a total of 682 kms and sipped on 31.99 litres of Shell's unleaded normal unleaded brew. This was a flat out drive (with 4 people on board, with a full boot one way) and the a/c was on for the entire trip. This means an overall mileage figure of ~21 kmpl for the entire trip.
GPA, I forgot to ask you, what is the price of petrol in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry. Over here in Goa, it is about Rs 46 per litre (normal fuel). I estimate my distance to be a little over 1000 kms each way (Panjim-Belgaum -- 156 kms, Belgaum-Bangalore -- 510 kms, Bangalore-Pondicherry -- 345 kms). Going by my estimated mileage of 20 kmpl, I would need a little over 100 litres to cover the entire distance to and fro. I plan to top up the tank for two reasons -- to check the FE during the journey and since price of petrol is cheaper in Goa as compared to Belgaum. So, with a tankful of petrol in Porvorim (where I stay), I plan to add more fuel only when I reach Hubli or thereabouts.

Point is, if petrol is cheaper in Tamil Nadu, I would be more inclined to fill more fuel in TN rather than in Karnataka.

By the way, is there any thread on this forum or on any website that provides an updated price list of fuels -- petrol and diesel -- in different states all over the country. This would certainly be useful to motorists traveling between states.

Regards,
Melvyn

Last edited by misquitas : 2nd September 2009 at 03:36.
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Old 2nd September 2009, 03:42   #71
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GPA, another query. How are the weather conditions in Bangalore right now?

Last edited by misquitas : 2nd September 2009 at 03:47.
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Old 2nd September 2009, 10:01   #72
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GPA, I forgot to ask you, what is the price of petrol in Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry. Over here in Goa, it is about Rs 46 per litre (normal fuel). Point is, if petrol is cheaper in Tamil Nadu, I would be more inclined to fill more fuel in TN rather than in Karnataka.
Good question Melvyn.

Price of normal unleaded petrol in BLR retails at Rs. 50.66 a litre. At Shell bunks it is Rs. 50.65 a litre. I did not fill up petrol enroute but at a quick pitstop (5 mins) at a bunk in TN (just outside Hosur) petrol was retailing at Rs. 49.24. In Pondy, I noticed a few PSU pump signboards that mentioned Rs. 42.xx if I remember correctly.

Going by this, guess you can give BLR a pass when it comes to petrol if you are looking at the economics of it. I prefer not to fill petrol from pumps on the highways, but prefer to fill up in bunks close to towns as their stock of petrol will be fresher.

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GPA, another query. How are the weather conditions in Bangalore right now?
Melvyn,

Bangalore is having weather to die for over the past week to 10 days. Cloudy overcast skies with intermittent heavy spells of rain towards evening/night. Perfect weather to snuggle up with a book and a cup of hot cocoa by the window.

The day sees ambient temperatures of about 23-25 deg C and nights have a slight nip with the temp falling to about 16-19 deg C. Humidty levels during the day are about 40-50% with the sun playing hide and seek with thick clouds.

As for the weather in Pondy (spoke to my sister last night) there are heavy spells of rain through the day. It is fairly hot in Pondy though.

Regards,
gpa
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Old 2nd September 2009, 10:37   #73
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As for Petrol prices B'lore>TN>Pondy, so it will be advisable to tank up at Pondy. I would advise you guys to go to the Ashram Petrol bunk (BP) near the Aurobindo Ashram, which is owned and operated by the Ashram people themselves. This was referred to me by a friend and native of Pondy during my last visit and I tanked up on Speed 93. The Q&Q were excellent.

BTW the photos were excellent, guys!

Last edited by Gansan : 2nd September 2009 at 10:42.
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Old 2nd September 2009, 12:32   #74
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Nice pics guys ! Am also planning a trip to Pondi over the Dusshera weekend. Will most probably be taking the Omni and am planning to stay at Kailash Beach Resort. If any of you guys have either been there or heard any reports about the place, please let me know the pros and cons
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Old 2nd September 2009, 23:51   #75
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Good question Melvyn.

Price of normal unleaded petrol in BLR retails at Rs. 50.66 a litre. At Shell bunks it is Rs. 50.65 a litre. I did not fill up petrol enroute but at a quick pitstop (5 mins) at a bunk in TN (just outside Hosur) petrol was retailing at Rs. 49.24. In Pondy, I noticed a few PSU pump signboards that mentioned Rs. 42.xx if I remember correctly.

Going by this, guess you can give BLR a pass when it comes to petrol if you are looking at the economics of it. I prefer not to fill petrol from pumps on the highways, but prefer to fill up in bunks close to towns as their stock of petrol will be fresher.
Thanks for the details, gpa, and it was great chatting with you earlier today. From what you tell me, price of fuel is cheapest in Pondi. So, I'll try to tank up the Alto there (on our way back), with a fill in between Goa and Bangalore. difference in prices in Bangalore and Hosur is hardly going to get my wallet thicker.

Day 1, we leave Goa and go to Belgaum, take the NH4 and stay at Tumkur for the night.

Day 2, some kms after Tumkur, we will turn left at Dobbasapete and take the NH 207. This NH will take us to Hosur, thereby bypassing Bangalore, from where we proceed to Pondi.

Will let you know about the progress of our trip.

Regards,
Melvyn
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