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Old 22nd August 2009, 01:25   #1
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Default Kolhapur to Karnal in a red Indigo CS LX Tdi

Respected seniors and dear friends,

I had joined Team-BHP because of this one trip that was taking shape in my mind about a month ago. The membership paid off as I was able to read senior members' travelogues on the best Bombay-Delhi route. After going through those threads, I decided to take the following route from Kolhapur to Karnal:

Kolhapur to Navi Mumbai on NH-4
Navi Mumbai - Thane - Vasai to reach NH-8
Vasai to Surat on NH-8
Surat to Ahmedabad on NE-1
Ahmedabad to Udaipur (I halted for the night there)

So, on day one I started at 7 am from Kolhapur and hit Thane around 11:30 am but then the horror of a Mumbai traffic jam started, which kept me stuck in the vicinity of Vasai till almost 2 pm. I won't blame the traffic completely as I was taking it a little easy and had lunch somewhere close to the end of the Ghodbunder road. Maybe if I had pushed on, I would have escaped the traffic jam, which was in supreme control of the road when I hit the Vasai neighbourhood.

I had it at the back of my mind that if this jam lets me out of Greater Mumbai by 2, I would hit Surat by 5 and I did just that. Ahmedabad was with me by 8 pm and I decided to push on to Udaipur before taking a nap. At around 9 pm, my 2 months' old son started crying himself hoarse and my wife and I decided to stop for a while. That while became half an hour before the child felt soothed a little. Anyway, I pushed on and at 12 midnight, we were fast asleep in Hotel Madan Palace in Udaipur.

Summarising day one, I had done 1200 kms if not more. Barring one incident while coming out of the Vasai jam where my impatience led to a small dent close to the right hand side rear light, it was a smooth ride. In some stretches, I managed to hit speeds close to 160 kmph and plus especially between Surat and Ahmedabad on the NE-1. The 1200 kms took nearly 15 hours of driving if I exclude the lunch break, the time off for calming down the kid and couple of re-fuelling stops etc. The car gave an average of 16 kmpl.

Let me share the rest of the route to Karnal at this juncture,

Udaipur to Chittor, Chittor to Bhilwara, Bhilwara to Jaipur, Jaipur to Bharatpur, Bharatpur to Vrindavan, Vrindavan to Delhi on NH-2 and then Delhi to Karnal on NH-1.

The distance could have been shorter if I had done Jaipur to Delhi on NH-8 and then Delhi-Karnal via NH-1 but I had to visit a couple of temples on the route that I actually used. It could have been even shorter if I had done Udaipur to Jaipur via Kankroli but as I had read some other travelogues on this forum and they recommended the GQ road via Chittor, I went in for that. It was a high speed track and I am thankful to Team-BHP seniors for pointing it out. On the way, I raced with a Ford Endeavour and beat it. Maybe I even touched 170 but did not pay attention. I remember seeing the dial cross 160 for sure.
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Old 22nd August 2009, 08:29   #2
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How was the traffic situation in Surat Bypass and Ankleshwar town?
And is the hotel in Udaipur inside the city - and what were the tariffs?
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Old 22nd August 2009, 23:44   #3
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160 for a CS TDI sure is a first. Mate drive carefully but yes on GQ one cannot resist.
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Old 22nd August 2009, 23:45   #4
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Dear Kumar,

The traffic situation was perfect close to Surat and I remember that the nearest distance to Surat I saw on the way was about 18 kms. So, even though I was scared of getting stuck, it never really happened. Although, I must say that the Gujarat truckers are the most undisciplined lot because it was in Gujarat that I had to apply the most sudden of brakes several times as a result of some trucker or the other abruptly deciding to shift lanes. I saw some heavy traffic close to Valsad, if I remember the name and the situation correctly. When Ankleshwar came and went, I don't even remember now. So, presumably there was no complication in the traffic flow there either.

One thing will remain etched in my memory. There was one Toyota Corolla (Gujarat number plate) with an Indian flag and CNG written on the rear wind-screen. This Toyota had a long race with me and I think we drove close to each other for over 50 kms. He was mostly ahead of me but I kept coming at him again and again. Once or twice I took the lead but he would reclaim it yet again. Close to Surat, I went ahead but I now think that he may have gone into the town at that juncture.

Dear Kumar,

Sorry to miss the point. The hotel where I put up, Hotel Madan Palace is inside the city and the tariff was very reasonable. Including bisleri, tea and all I just ended up paying 400 rupees for the night. This hotel is easy to reach because when we enter Udaipur from the Ahmedabad side, it is the first reasonable hotel to be seen almost a km before the Udaipur bus stand.

Note from the Team-BHP Support Team : Please use the "edit" button if posting within 20 minutes of the first post, instead of creating another back-to-back post.

Last edited by .anshuman : 25th January 2011 at 18:11. Reason: See note in the post.
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Old 23rd August 2009, 11:36   #5
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I'm a bit puzzled about the route you took to Delhi from Jaipur unless you wanted to visit Banke Bihariji.

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Originally Posted by Akadian View Post

Let me share the rest of the route to Karnal at this juncture,

Udaipur to Chittor, Chittor to Bhilwara, Bhilwara to Jaipur, Jaipur to Bharatpur, Bharatpur to Vrindavan, Vrindavan to Delhi on NH-2 and then Delhi to Karnal on NH-1.
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Old 23rd August 2009, 12:13   #6
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Yes, I visited Banke Bihari Ji in the evening around 8:30 pm and then slept in the Yamuna Dham hotel/lodge. In the morning, I left Vrindavan at 2 am and hit my hometown Karnal at 5:30 am. Was a good decision as I missed the Delhi traffic rush hours completely
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Old 23rd August 2009, 12:32   #7
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Dear GD,

You guessed it right. Now, I would like to share the details of the trip after Udaipur. I left Udaipur at 10 am and took a re-fueling and tea break at around 11 am. Jaipur was with me by 2:40 pm but then I ended up wasting a lot of time there. I was not able to find my dad as he told me that he was waiting for me at the Delhi-Bharatpur junction and I had entered from the Chittor road and went directly into the Agra bypass. After wasting around 1 hour trying to figure out the situation, I finally met an old man who was able to exactly point out where my father should be waiting for me. Then, I hit the trail for the Gopalpura bypass and went from in front of the Rajasthan assembly etc.

At 4 pm finally, I was with my dad and we went further ahead. Halted at Mehandipur that night and started for Vrindavan the next afternoon. Halted at Vrinadavan and started for Karnal the next morning at 2 am and reached home by 5:45 am.

That was the entire journey in a nutshell.
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Old 23rd August 2009, 15:03   #8
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Akadian, hows the route between Surat till Vadodara as that stretch was under constructions till few months back, how was the road condition?
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Old 23rd August 2009, 15:21   #9
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Hi Vijay!

In one place, there was an over-bridge that was not yet complete and the board for the passing traffic said, "Heavy vehicles to the right and light vehicles to the left". Due to this sign, I actually entered a small town and re-joined the NE-1 after around 15 minutes. I realized that the sign did not mean get off the highway as soon as I entered the "kacha road" but it was not too long. I don't remember the name of that town but apart from this one instance, it was a smooth flow all the way from Surat to Ahmedabad. Road condition on the expressway was great and close to Ahmedabad, it was all 3-lanes on either side.
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Old 23rd August 2009, 18:28   #10
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Akadian, No travelogue is complete without pics. Where are they?

Nice writeup though.

Abhi
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Old 23rd August 2009, 21:38   #11
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Dear Abhi,

I'm really sorry to disappoint you but I was carrying a digicam without the batteries, which were forgotten in Kolhapur by me. It is one major regret that I am carrying these days because I see everyone else posting cool pics but I have none to show. Anyway, it is not the last time that I have done this route and the next time I shall definitely fetch some nice, cool pics for all BHPians.

Thanks for appreciating the write-up. I would love to improve by bringing along the pics next time.
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Old 23rd August 2009, 22:35   #12
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@VT: The road is perfect as perfect can be. A friend just came by from Mumbai. He didnt touch 100 on the gps but managed a 80+ running average all through gujarat. He rode down on his bike but he's confirmed that cars have it easy peasy too
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Old 23rd August 2009, 23:32   #13
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I agree, the Surat-Ankleshwar-Baroda stretch is no more a nightmare and traffic flow is consistently smooth of late.
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Old 21st January 2011, 21:55   #14
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Default Re: Kolhapur to Karnal in a red Indigo CS LX Tdi

I am planning to travel from Gurgaon to Mehandipur Balaji temple tomorrow morning. Can someone urgently advise me the best and correct route
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