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Old 14th December 2010, 16:01   #31
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Default Re: If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Agra!

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Originally Posted by canonguy View Post
Lovely pics and wonderful narration, Ravi. Good to know you got stuck at the Narmada bridge only once
Thanks, canonguy. I didn't get stuck at Narmada bridge even once. I drove smoothly, but slowly, on both the occasions.
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Originally Posted by StarVegabond View Post
Wonderful pictures and flash back narration till now.
Thanks, StarVegabond, for the compliments.
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Old 16th December 2010, 19:44   #32
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DAY 8 - 25 NOV 2010 - THURSDAY

After buffet-breakfasting at Ginger Vivek Vihar, we left at 10 am directly to Akshardham. We were prepared for the tight security arrangements. We left all our personal belongings inside our Linea's boot. We enjoyed a film show on a giant screen, robotic/animatronic sound-and-light programme, a boat-ride depicting India's cultural heritage, garden of India and visited Swaminarayan temple. Later, we bought some souvenirs and lunched at the food court, which had numerous delicious multi cuisine food items at affordable prices.

Our next port of call was Bahai House of Worship, followed by India Gate. From there, we visited my cousin's home at Dwarka, had homely dinner with them, returned to Ginger Vivek Vihar and called it a day.

Here are some photographs.
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To be continued.
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Old 16th December 2010, 21:04   #33
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DAY 9 - 26 NOV 2010 - FRIDAY

My last visit to Delhi was in January 2008 in connection with official work. From then to now, I found a whole lot of development of infrastructure comprising expressways, flyovers, extension of Delhi Metro to new areas, wow!

We had an early breakfast at Ginger Vivek Vihar and left for Qutb Minar. Later, we visited Humayun's Tomb, followed by Teen Murti Bhavan and ending with dinner at Hotel Saravana Bhavan at CP. Then, we were back to Ginger for well-earned sound sleep.
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Old 18th December 2010, 19:23   #34
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Default Re: If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Agra!

DAY 10 - 27 NOV 2010 - SATURDAY

Delhi's civic administration is looked after by New Delhi Municipal Corporation [NDMC] and Municipal Corporation of Delhi [MCD]. New Delhi, famous for its wide, tree-lined boulevards, is considered one of the best capitals in the world. It was planned by the British architects, Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker and inaugurated by Lord Irwin, the then Viceroy of India, in 1931. I would like to visit New Delhi again and again. But, today, we had to leave!

We got up early in the morning, got ready, packed and checked out of Ginger Vivek Vihar by 6:30 am. We went straight to Raj Ghat. It was a pleasant drive to Raj Ghat, where we paid homage to the Father of the Nation. Then, we headed to Red Fort. We were at the Red Fort by 9 am and it was open. The car-parking area was disorganised. We were the first few early visitors to Red Fort on that day. We spent about three hours in the Red Fort. Our next port of call was Jain Lal Mandir, located opposite the Red Fort. Then, it was time for brunch. We explored Chandni Chowk by walk. Then, we barged into Haldiram's and had delicious brunch comprising chole bhatura, raj kachori, special dahi Bhalla, lassi, chai, etc. When we reached back to the car-parking lot, we were shocked to see both the entry and exit were totally blocked with cars parked haphazrdly. By the time we extricated our Fiat Linea delicately with many forward and reverse manoeuvres, it was 1:45 pm already. Last night itself, my Linea had tankful of petrol at BP Gymkhana Service Station near Aurangazeb Marg, costing Rs 55.50 per litre of petrol.

We headed straight to Jodhpur. I knew, a long drive was in store for me. Driving on Delhi - Gurgaon Expressway was superb. But, after Gurgaon, road-widening [from 4 lanes to 6 lanes] work on NH 8 was going on until Jaipur with a lot of crossings and multi axled heavy vehicles until Manesar hampered our speed. Thankfully, there was no big traffic jam. We bypassed Jaipur city and continued our journey on NH 8. Somewhere between Jaipur and Ajmer, we had our night dinner at Gujarat Palanpurwala Hotel New Jaipur [located on LHS of NH 8 from Jaipur to Ajmer] comprising tava chapatis, dal fry and chai, which was not only delicious but also very economical. Entire sumptuous dinner for five of us cost mere Rs 250 or so. Toilets were clean with ample parking space for our Linea. Now, it's time for petrol refuel for our Linea, which had its tankful at a Reliance pump. Then, I drove on and on till I reached my destination at Jodhpur at 2 am the next day after more than 12 hours of driving with two breaks.

Here we break for photographs!
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I found Gujarat Palanpurwala pure vegetarian hotels in GJ & RJ were good.
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Note this milk van [I thought this was a tanker!] is for sale!
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More to follow.

Last edited by J.Ravi : 18th December 2010 at 19:26.
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Old 18th December 2010, 19:57   #35
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Default Re: If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Agra!

There is a saying that befits here.

"If I have done any deed worthy of remembrance, that deed will be my monument. If not, no monument can preserve my memory."
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Old 18th December 2010, 20:27   #36
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Quote:
Taj Mahal Now, after a few decades, here I am with my wife and triplet children:
This photograph is worth driving all the way to agra ! Congratulations sir ! A super long drive with family is priceless !

OT - we were kids when a movie with the same name as your log title ( replace agra with belgium !! ) was very popular ( around 1977 ? ). I remember those days - bell bottom pants ( 30cm ! ), long hairs with stylish comb in the hind pocket, super tight shirts - almost open chest, Bob willis, derek randall, GRvishwanath, brijesh patel, Abba, Boney M, Osibisa .... oh ! how i miss those days !!

Last edited by FlyingSpur : 19th December 2010 at 20:01. Reason: Fixed the quote tags.
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Old 19th December 2010, 19:10   #37
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Thanks a lot, MohsinRoadster and roamingrao, for the compliments.

Travelogue continues.

DAY 11 - 28 NOV 2010 - SUNDAY

We got up late, had brunch while our Fiat Linea had a good car wash thanks to an attendent of Mandore Guest House, where we stayed. My Linea got rid of all accummulated muck and dirt due to rains in Jaipur, Agra and en route Delhi. It got back its glitter and shine.

My host, Raj Gehlot advised me to visit Mehrangarh Fort first as it would take more time and keep Umaid Bhawan Palace for tomorrow. Accordingly, we visited the fort first. It took about three hours.

When we were about to get into our Linea, a friendly cab driver drew our attention and pointed to the rear right wheel of our Linea, which had less air pressure. I knew, what was in store for me. But, I was in no mood to replace the wheel then and there. So, we went to BP dealer Ram Petrol Service at Maha Mandir Circle, Jodhpur, where my Linea had tankful of petrol costing Rs 56.41 per litre and all the four wheels of my Linea had full air pressure of 36 psi and we returned to our guest house after shopping en route. The guy, who filled air for all the four wheels at the fuel pump, refused to accepted my tip of Rs 5, saying it's company's free service! Later, we enjoyed bonfire followed by candle-lit dinner before calling it a day.

Here are the photographs.
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More to follow.

Last edited by J.Ravi : 19th December 2010 at 19:14.
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Old 19th December 2010, 19:43   #38
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DAY 12 - 29 NOV 2010 - MONDAY

I got up early in the morning as I had a hectic day ahead of me. The first thing I did was to inspect my Fiat Linea's rear right wheel. As expected, the air pressure was again less. This was my Linea's first encounter with puncture. So, I opened the boot, took out the tool bag and removed the wheel jack assembly. I was surprised to see the inscription 'Made in Brazil' on it! I replaced the rear right punctured wheel of my Linea with the spare steel wheel. My host guided me to a tyre repair-wala near Maha Mandir Circle and advised me to get that work done on my way to Umaid Bhawan Palace. Accordingly, after breakfast, while heading for Umaid Bhawan, I gave the punctured alloy wheel for repair and on my way back, I had the repaired alloy wheel refitted at the same spot, while the spare wheel went back to its slot in the boot. The tyre repair-wala charged me Rs 50 for repairs. On our way back, we visited Mandore Garden.

We packed, checked out of Mandore Guest House at 1 pm and headed for Udaipur. We saw 'Palace on Wheels' parked at Jodhpur railway station, while going out of Jodhpur. The 2-laned NH 65 upto Pali was not good. After Pali, the road condition of NH 14 improved. We had late lunch at Hotel New A-1 [a Gujarat Palanpurwala] pure vegetarian hotel somewhere on NH 14 between Pali and Sirohi. The food was good and VFM. My MapMyIndia Lx130 navigator took us inside Pindwara before joining 4-laned toll road NH 76, which was excellent.

We reached our abode Jaiwana Haveli, Udaipur, by 9 pm. The last km drive was very thrilling and challenging to my driving skill as Jaiwana Haveli was located at Lal Ghat, atop a hill with a small lane serving as its only access! I heaved a sigh of relief, when I parked my Linea in the small parking lot of Jaiwana Haveli. I decided that I would take out my Linea out only on day-after-tomorrow early morning when we check out. We checked in, unpacked, refreshed and dined at roof-top restaurant of Jaiwana Haveli with a magnificient view of Pichola lake. Then, it was time to call it a day.

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More in the queue.

Last edited by J.Ravi : 19th December 2010 at 19:48.
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Old 20th December 2010, 10:54   #39
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Amazing structures!!! Please Open up the Queue..
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Old 20th December 2010, 12:32   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by J.Ravi View Post
DAY 3 - 20 NOV 2010 - SATURDAY



Here are the highlights of Mumbai - Ahmedabad trip:


* Most of the drivers of multi-axled heavy vehicles and trucks were well-mannered gentlemen to the core as compared to their counterparts in south India. The moment they saw my Linea in their rear-view mirrors, immediately they used to go to the left lane and give way to my Linea!Invariably, I used to overtake these big brothers from the left only! But not in MH, GJ and RJ!


* After crossing the Narmada bridge, we drove to BP COCO retail outlet at Luvara, on NH 8, just opposite a Gurdwara. My Linea and its occupants had stomachful at the vegetarian Ghar Dhaba. The food was finger-licking and tasty. The tea was simply superb. The toilets were clean. The unleaded petrol cost Rs 56.05 per litre. I decided to have a stop-over here during my return trip.

>>>

Nice to hear that the lorry drivers showed correct sense.

My thanks to you for this info. re. BPCL COCO, opp. the gurdwara. I managed to locate it separately in Google Maps; I reckon it to be about four kms after crossing the Narmada bridge in Bharuch.

I intend to refuel here during my journey (to Baroda).It seems from your description that I can cross over to the other side, on my return trip, i.e., when coming from Baroda toward Bombay. Correct?

Quote:
Originally Posted by J.Ravi View Post
DAY 10 - 27 NOV 2010 - SATURDAY

Then, we barged into Haldiram's and had delicious brunch comprising chole bhatura, raj kachori, special dahi Bhalla, lassi, chai, etc.

.. But, after Gurgaon, road-widening [from 4 lanes to 6 lanes] work on NH 8 was going on until Jaipur with a lot of crossings and multi axled heavy vehicles until Manesar hampered our speed.

Somewhere between Jaipur and Ajmer, we had our night dinner at Gujarat Palanpurwala Hotel New Jaipur [located on LHS of NH 8 from Jaipur to Ajmer] comprising tava chapatis, dal fry and chai, which was not only delicious but also very economical. Entire sumptuous dinner..

I found Gujarat Palanpurwala pure vegetarian hotels in GJ & RJ were good.


More to follow.
>>>

Your Delhi post and the pics evokes nostalgia- once a Delhiwalla always a Delhiwalla!

Can you tell us the exact location of the restaurant? Is it on the NH8 before Kishangarh? Near Dudu? Bagru?
I ask because I will be travelling on the Udaipur to Manesar leg and back.

Can you tell me the places where these vegetarian restaurants are located in Rajasthan and Gujarat?


The best pic for me is the trilogy of your life in front of the Taj-magnificent!

Regards, drive safe
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Old 20th December 2010, 18:16   #41
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Originally Posted by MohsinRoadster View Post
Amazing structures!!! Please Open up the Queue..
Thanks, MohsinRoadster, for nice words. The queue will be moving shortly!
Quote:
Originally Posted by issigonis View Post
I intend to refuel here during my journey (to Baroda).It seems from your description that I can cross over to the other side, on my return trip, i.e., when coming from Baroda toward Bombay. Correct?
Sure. Even I did that! There are two median openings located within 500 m on both the sides of BP COCO pump/Gurdwara, Luvara.
Quote:
Can you tell us the exact location of the restaurant? Is it on the NH8 before Kishangarh? Near Dudu? Bagru? I ask because I will be travelling on the Udaipur to Manesar leg and back.
Can you tell me the places where these vegetarian restaurants are located in Rajasthan and Gujarat?
The best pic for me is the trilogy of your life in front of the Taj-magnificent!
Thanks, issigonis, for the compliments. Apart from Luvara, we had enjoyed food/my Linea had tankful at the following eateries/pumps by the side of national highways:

1. Hotel New Jaipur [Gujarat Palanpurwala hotel as shown in the photographs] is located between Dudu and Kishangarh on LHS on NH 8 when going from Dudu to Kishangarh. I saw another outlet of the same hotel located on the opposite side of NH 8 spaced within a few km. If you come from Kishangarh to Dudu, you will see one on your LHS first. Similarly, while coming from Jaipur to Kishangarh, you will see one on your LHS first!

2. Hotel New A-1 [a Gujarat Palanpurwala] pure vegetarian hotel is located somewhere on NH 14 between Pali and Sirohi on LHS. Here, I found even the cups/saucers/cutleries were inscribed with a brand name with a Palanpur address!

3. Hotel Asopalav, located at Asal Kampa, on RHS of NH 8, while going from Ahmedabad to Jaipur, after Himatnagar. It has a big parking lot with roof for cars!

4. BP COCO OSTS [One Stop Truckers Shop] pump & Ghar Dhaba at Soniyana, NH 79, Gangrar, after Chittorgarh, located on the LHS while going from Chittorgarh to Jaipur. Both my Linea and all its occupants had bellyful here. Toilets were also clean.

5. There is one HP COCO pump located on the RHS of NH 8 from Ahmedabad to Jaipur, located between Ahmedabad and Himatnagar. My Linea had tankful of petrol here both during up and down journeys. On both the occasions, my Linea's windshield and rear windows were promptly cleaned. Median opening was there just opposite to this pump.

Last edited by J.Ravi : 20th December 2010 at 18:21.
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Old 20th December 2010, 19:03   #42
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DAY 13 - 30 NOV 2010 - TUESDAY

Today was the rest day for Cara Mia Fiat Linea, but not for us. Both the City Palace and Jagdishji Mandir were within walkable distance. So, after breakfast, we walked to the City Palace, came back to Jaiwana Haveli, lunched and rested. In the evening, visited Jagdishji Mandir, had a stroll around the local shops, returned to our abode, dined and called it a day.
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To be continued.

Last edited by J.Ravi : 20th December 2010 at 19:08.
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Old 20th December 2010, 21:44   #43
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DAY 14 - 01 DEC 2010 - WEDNESDAY

We got up early in the morning, got ready, packed and checked out of Jaiwana Haveli by 6:30 am mainly to ensure smooth passage to my Fiat Linea in the small lanes. My MapMyIndia Lx130 navigator guided me properly to NH 8 and then it was a pleasant drive all the way to Surat.

We breakfasted at Hotel Asopalav before Himatnagar, my Linea had its tankful at HP COCO pump after Himatnagar, bypassed Ahmedabad by driving on Sardar Patel Ring Road and then to NE1 up to Vadodara. From Vadodara, I drove on NH 8, crossed the Narmada river bridge smoothly and stopped at BP COCO Pump at Luvara after Bharuch. As usual, my Linea and its occupants had bellyful and continued the journey and reached Ginger Surat by 6 pm.
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We checked in, unpacked, washed, walked to the nearby ISKCON mall and had a stroll. Then, we enjoyed the street food for dinner and returned to our Ginger and slept.

DAY 15 - 02 DEC 2010 - THURSDAY

Today also, we got up early, got ready, packed and checked out of Ginger Surat by 6:30 am. Surat was a nice city with wide roads and a lot of flyovers. I was surprised to find 4 lanes each on either side of exit/entry ramps of flyovers on the Ring Road.

We breakfasted at Sugar-N-Spice Food Plaza attached to BP pump located at the centre of NH 8 with access to both the directions of NH 8 somewhere near Valsad. The food was lousy, so was their service. We were fooled by the appearance of this eatery. My Linea had tankful of petrol there. We continued our journey to Ginger Wakad, Pune. En route, we were caught in a big traffic jam for more than two hours.

We lunched at Vithal Kamats, Manor, and continued our journey. My MapMyIndiaLx130 navigator misguided me here. It guided me through the Eastern Expressway/Western Expressway/Dharavi/Navi Mumbai, and then, to Mumbai - Pune Expressway! Perhaps, it didn't make much difference since it was already 3:30 pm when we entered Ghodbunder. My Linea had tankful of petrol at BP COCO Pump, near Talegaon Toll Plaza and we had tea at the Ghar Dhaba. Finally, we checked in at Ginger Wakad by 6:30 pm. We dined at the in-house restaurant called 'Square Meal' and retired to bed.

DAY 16 - 03 DEC 2010 - FRIDAY

Already covered. Please see my post # 16 in page 2.

DAY 17 - 04 DEC 2010 - SATURDAY

Already covered. Please see my post # 14 in page 1.

DAY 18 - 05 DEC 2010 - SUNDAY

We reached home safely at 1:24 am today.

18 days. 6148 km. 7 states. 5 occupants.

But one car, Cara Mia Fiat Linea! One driver, that's me!

All's Well That Ends Well.

I thank Team-BHP for hosting this travelogue of my mega trip.

I thank all, who helped me plan this trip by giving their kind advice.

I thank all, who read this travelogue.

I thank all, who posted in this thread with their comments, appreciation and kind words.

I thank my MapMyIndia Lx130 navigator, which guided me [and sometimes misguided me too!] all along this mega trip.

The last, but not the least, I thank Cara Mia Fiat Linea for taking us safely to all these places and bring us back home safely.

Travelogue concluded, at last!

Last edited by J.Ravi : 20th December 2010 at 21:51.
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Old 21st December 2010, 22:25   #44
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Default Re: If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Agra!

Quote:
Originally Posted by J.Ravi View Post
Travelogue concluded, at last!
Hi Ravi,

Many thanks to your son for wonderful pictures, thanks to you for your wonderful and elaborate naration.

It appears you were in a hurry to complete the log.
I would have loved to continue reading your log.

The only thing i missed is the captions for the pictures. You could have put the pictures one below other or inserted in between the text instead of tile-ing them at the end of each post.

Neverthless, It is a great effort, planning, drive, safe return and then sharing the log with all of us.

Wish you many more such wonderful trips in future.
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Old 22nd December 2010, 09:34   #45
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Default Re: If It's Tuesday, This Must Be Agra!

Thanks, StarVegabond, for kind comments [noted for future guidance] and compliments [accepted with humility]. As I had umpteen number of photographs, I refrained myself from writing individual captions for each photograph as they were self-explanatory.
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