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Old 1st January 2011, 12:13   #211
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Coming back to the trip log

Day04, 22.08.2010
Vaalparai

We started from Parambikulam WLS by 14:00PM and drove towards vaalparai. I was supposed to be at the cottage by 14:00PM for lunch, and already the schedule slipped.

But nevertheless we enjoyed a cool and interesting drive up the Vaalparai ghats. We reached Aliyar Dam by 14:45PM. We had already visited Aliyar Dam during the Nelliyampathy trip, so we drove on to Vaalparai.

Some pictures enroute.

View of Aliyar Dam from the Ghats
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Monkey Falls
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Did the falls get the name due to these Fellows??
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A warning about the Ghat roads
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Loams View Point
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Some Views of the Ghat Roads
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A beautiful Peak
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View of Aliyar Dam from Loam's View Point
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We reached Attakatty by 15:30PM
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continued...
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Old 1st January 2011, 13:06   #212
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Day04, 22.08.2010
Vaalparai

From Attakatty we drove on to reach the Tiger valley and then Waterfalls. We were booked at the Waterfalls Estate's Valley View Cottage.


Tiger Valley
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Civvy at Tiger Valley
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Tiger Valley panorama
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We reached waterfalls by 16:00PM

Waterfalls
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A small waterfalls at Waterfall
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Beautiful Views at Waterfalls
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The Waterfall Estate
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We reached the way to Valley View Villa and found the caretaker waiting for us on the road. He told us that the cook of Valley View had to take a sudden leave and we are now booked at Tennis Court Villa. Was a bit upset about this goof up, but still since we only needed a place to sleep - just let it be. So we finally reached Tennis Court Villa and settled down by 16:30PM.

Tennis Court Villa
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The Tennis Court itself is in a dilapidated condition
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Had some nice refreshing tea and snacks and got out again to explore the cool air of Vaalparai by 17:00PM

continued...
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Old 1st January 2011, 13:55   #213
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Day04, 22.08.2010
Vaalparai

Vaalparai was very calm this day. Not much visitors at this time, everybody has either left the town or settled in their cozy stays. The temperature was dipping, and little bit of mist and drizzle the weather was just perfect for us to laze around.

Vaalparai is another 20 odd kilometres from the cottage. Decided to go to the Annai Velankanni Church and subsequently to the Balaji Temple.


The beautiful empty streets at Vaalparai
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Junior PPG capturing the beauty of the place
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At Aiyarpadi the road forks and to your left is the way to Balaji Temple and the church.

Aiyarpadi
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The different spellings and directions for Balaji Temple
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Somewhere along the way we saw this board
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A little later we found the board about Annai Velankanni Church
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Civvy Parked near the Church
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Beautiful stream near the Church
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Beautiful - The Church and its environment
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The Church
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Mother Mary's picture at the Church
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The interior of the Church
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We returned from the church after some peaceful time thanking for all the nice things that have happened to us and to keep blessing us for the rest of the trip.

The steps to the church
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Wifey enjoying the beautiful views
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Malabar Whistling Thrush - These cutie birds were singing all around
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We reached Balaji Temple by 18:00. Photography was prohibited. I was turned off by a huge board in front of the Temple stating that it is built by some private trust and some statements about Money in building the same. Looked commerical and not spiritual.


Panorama near Balaji Temple
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Around 18:30 decided to call it a day since it was getting very chilly and dark. Reached the cottage back by 19:45PM for a very hot and tasty dinner. We all ate like there was no tomorrow. Amazing cook. We thanked him a lot, and went with the bulging tummies for a good nights sleep.
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Old 1st January 2011, 14:23   #214
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Hey Lalu, Thanks a lot for coming back and updating this thread, waiting to see more on Valparai and Gavi....
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Old 1st January 2011, 18:19   #215
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

This is a treat. My first log in on the first day of the new year and wah bhai wah. The blue on the Malabar Whistling Trush is amazing.
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Old 1st January 2011, 22:54   #216
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Great snaps there! Finally you are back! Waiting for more.
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Old 2nd January 2011, 10:42   #217
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Quote:
Originally Posted by RSimonS View Post
Hey Lalu, Thanks a lot for coming back and updating this thread, waiting to see more on Valparai and Gavi....
Will do that

Quote:
Originally Posted by khoj View Post
This is a treat. My first log in on the first day of the new year and wah bhai wah. The blue on the Malabar Whistling Trush is amazing.
khoj bhaiyya, those birds were all around whistling a peculiar tune.

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Great snaps there! Finally you are back! Waiting for more.
Time is still at a premium, I'll give it a try.

Last edited by laluks : 2nd January 2011 at 10:44.
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Old 2nd January 2011, 13:13   #218
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Hi Lalu,

I think you found some time to inch your travelogue further.
As usual great pictures. We could not go to Valparai this time.
I think it deserves a weekend of its own.
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Old 2nd January 2011, 13:33   #219
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Oh thank god this thread has been brought back alive. Thanks Laluks. Hope you get enough time to complete. Waiting eagerly
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Old 3rd January 2011, 09:52   #220
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Nice pics there!!! the ghat section is very captivating
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Old 3rd January 2011, 10:27   #221
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

Lalu, where does the road beyond the Balaji Temple go - is it a dead end or does it rejoin the Valparai-Sholayar road?

Both the cottages you visited are the Stanmore Estates Group ones?

I suppose all the roads around Valparai have elephant/bison encounters after dark? Any night driving restrictions till Malakkiparai?
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Old 3rd January 2011, 11:04   #222
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

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Originally Posted by hvkumar View Post
Lalu, where does the road beyond the Balaji Temple go - is it a dead end or does it rejoin the Valparai-Sholayar road?

Both the cottages you visited are the Stanmore Estates Group ones?

I suppose all the roads around Valparai have elephant/bison encounters after dark? Any night driving restrictions till Malakkiparai?
The road from Aiyarpadi through Karamali goes to join Valaparai town finally. Along this road a left turn takes you to the Balaji Temple. That is a dead end. But if you continue with out taking this left to Balaji Temple, you'll reach Valparai town. You'll also get to see the Vellamalai Tunnel with a small detour.

The cottages are of Waterfalls. The cost to worth ratio is fine here. The Stanmore / Woodbriar group's rack rates I felt are just a rip off for the place. Their USP is LTMs, which are also found on the roads, as I've accidentally found out.

Driving restrictions - I do not know. In both occassions I was on the streets till 19:00PM. Heard about bisons and an elusive leopord story. Never encountered them, thankfully.

The CP at the T N side seems to allow you to go till Malakkiparai CP, but Malakkiparai CP closes by 18:00PM for vehicle to Vaazhachal.


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Nice pics there!!! the ghat section is very captivating
Quote:
Originally Posted by mallumowgli View Post
Oh thank god this thread has been brought back alive. Thanks Laluks. Hope you get enough time to complete. Waiting eagerly
Thanks. I shall try to finish the log.
It's better late than never

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We could not go to Valparai this time.
I think it deserves a weekend of its own.
Probably a weekend stay for a night would be better.
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Old 3rd January 2011, 14:54   #223
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

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I shall try to finish the log.
It's better late than never
Lalu, happy to see the rest of the Valparai TL. Any idea on the latest road conditions after rains?
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Old 3rd January 2011, 22:59   #224
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Default Re: Civved : Parambikulam, Gavi, Vagamon via Thekkady & Valparai

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Lalu, happy to see the rest of the Valparai TL. Any idea on the latest road conditions after rains?


The last time I visited Valparai was in September 2010. The roads from Valparai town till the CP had already been deteriorated. The Forest roads from Malakkaparai till Vazhachal was pathetic then. Now must be worse after the downpour Kerala has had.
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Old 3rd January 2011, 23:21   #225
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The last time I visited Valparai was in September 2010. The roads from Valparai town till the CP had already been deteriorated. The Forest roads from Malakkaparai till Vazhachal was pathetic then. Now must be worse after the downpour Kerala has had.
0n 1st Jan 2011, 5:45 PM, Forest officer at the Vazachal checkpost told us that it would take about 5 hours to reach Pollachi (140KMs). This discouraged us from taking the route via Vazachal-Valparai-Pollachi it would mean that we would reach Pollachi only by around 11 PM and Coimbatore by 12 midnight.

So we returned back to Chalakudi and drove through Thrissur BP-Pallakad-Coimbatore. We reached Saravana Bhavan on the Coimbatore bypass by 10:15 PM even after we stopped in between for about 25 minutes for the tea and buying the banana chips.

Last edited by StarVegabond : 3rd January 2011 at 23:23.
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