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Old 8th January 2009, 12:56   #31
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Thank you for the lovely tour! Very informative!
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Old 8th January 2009, 13:26   #32
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hotstuff great job indeed, have travelled so many times but never had so much patience to document and later narrate...kudos to you man this way you have captured some good memories forever!
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Old 8th January 2009, 15:24   #33
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Thanks a lot for making this part of Karnataka visible to me. Your vivid descriptions and photos have made me want to visit these places asap.
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Old 8th January 2009, 17:24   #34
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Thank you for the lovely tour! Very informative!
magiceye, I appreciate your patience in reading on till the end :-)

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hotstuff great job indeed, have travelled so many times but never had so much patience to document and later narrate...kudos to you man this way you have captured some good memories forever!
Everytime we get back from a trip I dump all our photos into a hard-disk and I rarely find myself looking though them again... and slowly memories of the trip begin to fade out. Thought of writing down the experiences when they are still fresh.

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Thanks a lot for making this part of Karnataka visible to me. Your vivid descriptions and photos have made me want to visit these places asap.
I would certainly encourage you to make the trip. As I mentioned earlier, this route is quite family-friendly and you will not feel stressed out. Chitradurga is just around 3 hours away from Bangalore and you can do a day trip. The 'Hampi - Aihole - Pattadakal - Badami' trip can be done over a 3 day weekend. With some advance planning, even Bijapur can be included in the circuit. Just ensure that you give yourself enough sightseeing time at each place.
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Old 8th January 2009, 19:01   #35
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Very well written travelogue and very detailed & informative pictures. Well done.
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Old 9th January 2009, 16:04   #36
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Very well written travelogue and very detailed & informative pictures. Well done.
Thank you @prabhusati
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Old 10th January 2009, 17:47   #37
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Just read the travelogue completely. Fantastic! I always wanted to visit that area and this one makes me yearn to go there. Very well written and very good pics as well.
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Old 10th January 2009, 21:42   #38
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Very well written detailed travelogue

It was indeed a interesting read.
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Old 10th January 2009, 22:08   #39
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Kudos hotstuff for such a descriptive narrative and pictures. You have taken all of us on a virtual tour of the entire place.
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Old 11th January 2009, 01:44   #40
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Well written, good snaps.. n would also like to know.. where next ?
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Old 11th January 2009, 18:43   #41
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Hotstuff, thank you for this comprehensive travelogue.

You clicked 3 Gb worth photos? that would be thousands ! then selecting few, resizing them to post on the forum, and such a detailed narration. Great efforts.

Seems like you had Xingalala time Xinging around on your Xing !

Next is where
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Old 11th January 2009, 21:29   #42
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Originally Posted by hondadude View Post
Just read the travelogue completely. Fantastic! I always wanted to visit that area and this one makes me yearn to go there. Very well written and very good pics as well.
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Originally Posted by cvvikram View Post
Very well written detailed travelogue
It was indeed a interesting read.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sudev View Post
Kudos hotstuff for such a descriptive narrative and pictures. You have taken all of us on a virtual tour of the entire place.
Quote:
Originally Posted by JMaruru View Post
Well written, good snaps.. n would also like to know.. where next ?
- Thanks guys!


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Originally Posted by BomBatt View Post
Hotstuff, thank you for this comprehensive travelogue.

You clicked 3 Gb worth photos? that would be thousands ! then selecting few, resizing them to post on the forum, and such a detailed narration. Great efforts.

Seems like you had Xingalala time Xinging around on your Xing !

Next is where
- Bombatt, I must say that you were one of the original inspirations behind the route and the travelogue. Now a days, everytime I come across a CoffeeDay on a highway, I can't help but think about your travelogue and your experience... :-)


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n would also like to know.. where next ?
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Next is where
- Thinking about a short 3 day trip from 24 - 26 Jan. Still in planning stage. Hopefully something a little different...
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Old 19th January 2009, 14:31   #43
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Default 3 days - may not be enough!

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Originally Posted by hotstuff View Post
Chitradurga is just around 3 hours away from Bangalore and you can do a day trip. The 'Hampi - Aihole - Pattadakal - Badami' trip can be done over a 3 day weekend. With some advance planning, even Bijapur can be included in the circuit. Just ensure that you give yourself enough sightseeing time at each place.
Giving the distance from Bangalore, I think one will need 4 days to cover 'Hampi - Aihole - Pattadakal - Badami' -

1 - onward journey
2 - Badami - Pattadkal - Aihole
3 - Hampi
4 - return journey

I am finding it tough to include Bijapur there. I am planning to do this from 24th - 27th Jan.
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Old 19th January 2009, 15:06   #44
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I saw you suggesting guides, which is definitely a good idea to explore the places. But
a) How we can ensure good (authorised?) guides?
b) Will they be conversant in English?
c) When you took the guide from Badami and after Pattadkal and Aihole, you proceeded onwards to Hospet, how did the guide go back?

Also charges for the guides will be helpful.
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Old 20th January 2009, 17:28   #45
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Giving the distance from Bangalore, I think one will need 4 days to cover 'Hampi - Aihole - Pattadakal - Badami' -

1 - onward journey
2 - Badami - Pattadkal - Aihole
3 - Hampi
4 - return journey

I am finding it tough to include Bijapur there. I am planning to do this from 24th - 27th Jan.
'Badami - Aihole - Pattadakal - Hampi' can be done in 3 days. Including Bijapur will require some extra planning / driving adding another 1/2 day into the trip. If you don’t mind driving long distances non-stop or you have 2 drivers, Bijapur also can be included.

Since your idea is to do the trip over the coming 3 day weekend, I would suggest the following:

Day 1: Hampi
Hampi is around 360kms from Bangalore. [200kms to Chitradurga on NH4, 160kms from Cdurga to Hampi on NH13]. The road condition till Chitradurga is excellent, since it is part of the GQ. The road condition from Cdurga to Hampi is also good. The road seems to have been repaired recently, with all the potholes repaired. I did not encounter too many ore-carrying trucks, probably since ore export has almost stopped. - Total drive time to Hampi from Bangalore, with a 30min break, will be 6 hours. A 4am start will see you in Hampi by around 10am.

Though Hampi as a whole is spread over 26sq kms, most of the main monuments are spread over a much smaller area, mainly around 2 clusters called the 'Royal center' and the 'Sacred center'. [See map below in this post. Courtesy: Hampi Ruin Map | India > Karnataka > Hampi]

You can cover Hampi till evening, first the Royal center and then the Sacred center, ending the day at around 6.00pm with the Virupaksha temple darshan being the last.

We did not have a lunch-break in Hampi, we were carrying bananas, chocolates, moongdal and just kept munching something all the time. And yes, we had plenty of tender-coconuts.

From Hampi, drive to Badami, (around 150kms) you should be in Badami by around 9.30 - 10.00, book into a lodge for the night. [You will actually drive through Pattadakal - Aihole, on the way to Badami. But there are apparently no good places to stay in either of these places, so Badami is your best bet.]

Day 2: Badami, Mahakoota, Pattadakal, Aihole
All these 4 places are close to each other and an early morning start at around 6am will see you cover all these four places by evening.

There are two main areas to cover in Badami, first is the 'Bhootnath temple complex' and then the 'Badami caves'. First head towards the Bhootnath complex, you don't need a guide here. This area is just 10 - 15 minutes drive from the town center. Reach by 6.30, spend time till 8.30 and then head towards the caves. Which are actually on the other side of the Bhootnath lake.

(Skip the 'Banashankari' temple, unless you want to visit for religious reasons, there is nothing much of architectural importance here.)

Reach caves and you'll find 'guides' approaching you offering services. Hire one for the entire day, to cover all the four places [with a brief stop-over at Shivayogi Mandira]. They quote anywhere between 500 to 800, Rs.700 seems to be the average rate. All of them speak ‘acceptable’ English since they routinely take foreigners around these places. [Ask them for an ID card, the ASI issues authorized guides with a photo-ID card.]

Since there are plenty of bus services between these places, you don't have to worry about dropping the guide back. Guides from Badami will accompany you till Aihole and they'll catch a bus back in the evening, or some of them are from Aihole itself who come to Badami every morning.

You can comfortably cover all the four places by around 6.00pm and then head towards Bijapur. Bijapur is around 140kms, you will reach Bijapur by around 9.00 - 9.30pm. Book yourself into a lodge for the night.

Day 3: Bijapur.
Start early by around 7.00am and you should be able to cover all the important places in Bijapur by evening, say around 5.30pm.

Start driving towards Hubli on NH63, Hubli-Dharwad is around 230kms, so you'll reach Hubli by around 10.00pm. Plenty of lodges / hotels for all budgets in Hubli, so halt overnight.

Day 4 : Back to Bangalore...
Hubli to Bangalore is one straight stretch of around 415kms, all of it on NH4. Just a couple of small-incomplete stretches along the way. If you start at around 6.00am, you should be in Bangalore by around 2.00pm.


Or you can also do the trip the other way round...
• Day0.5 ;-) Leave Bangalore at around 3.30pm on Friday evening. A non-stop drive to Hubli, with dinner break at Davanagere will see you reaching Hubli by around 11.30pm. Stay overnight.
• Day1: Start from Hubli at around 6.00am and reach Bijapur by around 10.30am and cover Bijapur till evening. Start from Bijapur at around 6.30pm and reach Badami by around 10.00pm and stay overnight.
• Day2: Cover Badami-Pattadakal-Aihole till evening and start driving towards Hospet by 6.30pm, you'll reach Hospet by around 9.30pm. Stay overnight in Hospet.
• Day3: Start early by around 6.30am and cover Hampi till evening 6.00pm, start towards Chitradurga, you'll reach C'durga by around 9.00pm, continue towards Bangalore and you'll be back in City limits by around 12.00 midnight.

Some 'Terms & Conditions' apply to these plans...
[1] Since it was just the two of us, we did not take too much time in covering all the places. Remember, the time taken by a larger group to cover a place is determined by the slowest member. While we spent ample time at each monument, took penty of photos etc. Not much time was wasted in getting from A to B.

[2] Have a good break-fast and a heavy dinner. We found that since lunch breaks involved going out of the way and losing atleast an hour during the day, we packed plenty of stuff to munch and skipped lunch.

[3] We were not very fussy about lodges to stay, as long as the loo was clean, we just needed a place to spread our sleeping bags. So not much time wasted in hunting for lodges.

[4] Since my ‘Navigator’ ;-) is very particular about being punctual, a 6.00am start meant just that… no ‘Indian Standard Time’ starts.

[5] If there are small kids / elderly folks in your group, I would suggest dropping Bijapur from the plan and work your way around the other places.
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'Xing'ing around ! - Temples, Hills, Forests, Caves, Ruins, Forts and Highways...-hampimap.jpg  

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