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Old 16th February 2011, 22:09   #16
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Default Re: Travel tales - idukki,ramakkalmedu,vagamon,valparai,thattekadu,id amalayar and mo

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Originally Posted by anb View Post
I remember seeing your car in Kattappana
oops. did u try flashing lights or a wave?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Antonian View Post
Great start buddy. Go on. Especially the view from Moolamattom is amazing. Could you please add the Google route map or track ?
below is the route from kochi
Kakkanad, Kakkanadu, Kerala to Idukki, Kerala - Google Maps

Quote:
Originally Posted by MadBiker View Post
Awesome Pictures! Just a curious question, How did you get the Idukki Arch Dam picture? Last time i was there - We & our bags were completely checked to see if we carried any camera inside the dam area.

Sorry to Hijack your thread - Did you visit Kalvari Mount too? Couple of pictures from my last trip at Kalvary Mount - Offers spectacular view of Idukki Reservoir (July 2010).
The pics looks great.didnt try kalvari mount as we were short on time.
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Old 16th February 2011, 23:09   #17
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Default idukki to ramakkalmedu

From idukki there are 2 routes to Ramakkalmedu 1)via erattayr 2)via kattappana, puliyanmala. We took the second one which is about 49kms(the 1st one is around 48kms) enroute we picked up some snacks from a small roadside shop and continued. We had to ask around for the correct route in 2-3 places and had to take more frequent loo breaks
as it was very cold and rainy . We reached ramakkalmedu by around 2.45PM. parked the car at the base and went straight to the kuravan-kurathi statue. We could feel the strong wind and photography was getting difficult due to the wind+drizzle which made the lens full of water spots (You can see that in some pics below). And as we reached near the statue, there was a special gift awaiting us. A huge rainbow!!!. We were all very happy on this unexpected treat. We decided to trek to the hill top where you can view a good part of the kambam, theni in tamilnadu.

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the rainbow
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rainbow2
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rainbow again
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kuravan and kurathi statue
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We started our trek to the top of the hill which is a hard trek which was made even harder by the rain and slippery rocks. Progress was slow and it took us around 20 mins to reach halfway through The view from there itself was stunning. drizzle +wind made sure that we all got wet even with umbrellas. We took a small halt there to catch our breath and continued
to top.
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drizzle was getting stroner
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view of the plains
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view of the plains
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view of the plains
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view of the plains
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all wet
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climbing up


It took another 20 mins to reach the rocks where its a bit difficult to climb up on top to get to the vantage point. There were some people already there, so we had to wait for our turn. With some difficuly we climbed up and the view was simply heavenly. I really feel great that we decided to visit on a rainy day as that made sure that were not much tired
and the temperature was just right. Put the cam to self timer mode and took a photo of us on top of the hill. Was wondering whether the camera would be blown away in the wind. The wind was that strong!!. We stayed there for 10-15 mins and started back.
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very misty
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The mist started to clear up as we started down and we could see the plains below. Took lots of photos and these are some of the best shots that I have got in my camera till date. It was a really really wonderful sight.
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The descent took around 45 mins. we had a tea and pazham pori (banana fry) from a shop and started to visit kattadi padam (the windmill farm) which is around 4kms from there. Went near a wind mill and just had a llok. Couldnt get into it as we couldn't find a single soul nearby. Decided to start back as the rain was getting stronger and the day was getting darker.

Took the same route back. Took a dinner halt at Thodupuzha and we could reach kochi back by 11PM. That concludes the ramakkalmedu trip which was one of the best day trips that I've ever had

Coming up next- Athirapally->Valparai
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Old 16th February 2011, 23:32   #18
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Default Re: Travel tales - idukki,ramakkalmedu,vagamon,valparai,thattekadu,id amalayar and mo

last set of pics from ramakkalmedu
Travel tales - Idukki,Ramakkalmedu,Vagamon,Valparai,Thattekadu,Id Amalayar and more-img_1569.jpg

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the rock with the vantage point

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Old 21st February 2011, 22:13   #19
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Default to valparai

This was my 2nd valparai trip. That was good and only thing bad was it was the dry season. Wanted to see more greenery and had planned to do a trip after the monsoons when the forests are at their very best. Also wanted to go somewhere after a very hectic project got over. Booked the
valley view bungalow,Waterfalls Estate (Got the info from a t-bhp travelogue). paid 1000rs as advance. they called up 2 days before and asked whether we can change it to tennis court bungalow since som VIPs are coming there. We agreed as we were fine with any of the two.

Our plan was to start from here by around 6.30AM. Picked up all friends by around 6.45 and we proceeded to athirappally which was the first item on our list. Took the ankamali, karayamparambu, ezhattumukham road to athirappally through the palm plantations. We reached by around 7.30 @ ezhattumukham. Decided to have the breakfast from the hotel in front of silverstorm water theme park.
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After breakfast we could reach Athirappaly by around 8am. Parked the car and had a tender coconut and we walked towards the falls. Its a distance of around 1km and the roads are paved with rocks.
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We reached the top of the falls in around 10 mins. Since it was crowded there we decided to trek to the bottom of the falls immediately. The path to the bottom of the falls is a bit difficult and after the rains there were lot of rocks and craters in the path which made it was even more difficult. Each step were very carefully put and soon we had the first casualty. My friend slipped and fell down . We all had a very good laugh. My grandmother used to say if somebody falls you have to laugh. if you dont laugh, it means the person is your enemy and you enjoyed the plight of him falling down. Bit more cautious we reached safely on the bottom of the falls. The waterfall was in full force after the monsoons. There is a rope which prevents you from reaching too close to the falls. But even with that, the spray is strong enough to make you fully wet in 5 miniutes. I went around clicking and my friends sat on the rock close to the rope enjoying the beauty of the falls. After a while I also joined them and we sat there chit-chatting while we were getting a free water wash. lol

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There is also some nice bamboo canopy which helps you escape from the sun. We sat down to rest for a while and had some snacks. Got up to walk back when the crowd started to increase. It took around 15 mins to trek back to the top of the falls. We were all tired by the time we reached top. There are some benches and all scattered on the top of the falls where you can sit and relax for a moment. We all crashed down there....
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After catching our breath we started back to the car park. Had another tender coconut and we started to vazhachal. Enroute to vazhachal I stopped the car on the place where I had stopped in my last trip also. I am posting the photos of the same place taken on two different times.
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The rain does wonders to the forests face. But i liked the dry face of the forest more through photo and the green face of the forest through my eyes. We reached vazhachal in another 15 mins. Just roamed around the park for some time. We were all hungry by now and ecided to have lunch from the hotel near vazhachal. Good meals and fish cury (fresh water fish). yummy!!!. Our stomach filled up we decided to move on to Valaparai. We had informed the resort owner that we would be reaching by evening only.
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We reached valparai by around 5PM and the first stop there was the hotel. In our last trip we stayed there and had chicken 65 and gobi manchurian fry -which is still the best i have had till date . We ordered around 3 chicken 65 and 2 gobi fries which were all finished within an eyes blink. Had tea also and we decided to proceed to the waterfalls estate. Mist was beginning to spread as we started from valparai. Soon we reached rottikadai after which the hairpins starts. Drove very slowly as there was a slight drizzle also. Visibility was very low and after the 32nd hairpin bend , we parked the car and went out to have a quick look from the view point. We couldnt view anything below the road, but it was very cold out there with a gentle breeze. After sometime we resumed our journey to the estate and reached the entry point to the estate from main road. The bungalow was around 2kms from the entry point and we reached there quickly. The caretaker n cook were waiting for us. Felt good to be greeted by the happy faces. There was a covered parking for the car. We parked the car and took the luggages and they guided us to the bungalow. Note that only BSNL mobile has coverage here.

Only one word to describe the bungalow- Its awesome with the old architecture and the well planned layout. Put the luggage on place and we went through all the rooms. The place was very comfy. Ordered for a tea and we went to take a bath. Hot water is available. Bath freshened up us and we went out to the garden and the old tennis court. The cold wind was very strong which made us get back to the warmth of the bungalow in no time. Dinner was getting ready and soon we sat down for the dinner. Food was real good and tasty. The homely feeling of it makes you feel special. Finished off our dinner and we checked with caretaker for the arrangements for camp fire which we had specifically mentioned when we made the booking. But the caretaker said they were not given any info about this. So we called the owner and asked him if he can arrange the campfire. He said he will check with caretaker and get back to us. He called back and assured that camp fire will be arranged as there is enough wood available in the bungalow. Happy to hear this we laid down on the sofa to have a quick nap while the camp fire was being set up. About half an hour later the caretaker called us and said its ready. happily we proceeded to the palce near the car park where the camp fire was setup. Punto ICE helped to set the mood for the dance right and we danced into the night........

Got up by around 7am the next day and I decided to take a walk in the estate roads. My friends were fast asleep and so made my way out quietly. The morning was chilly like the night and I wandered here and there. Met a guy on the way who said to be careful as there is a bear roaming around. Didnt want to take a chance and i turned back to the bungalow. Around 1.5 hour had passed now. My friends ahd woken up by now. We ordered breakfast and started watching the TV. Breakfast was ready in another 10 mins. Dosa, Iddli, Uppuma and chappathy was available with kurma, chutney, sambhar as side dishes. Lost count of the no of dosas and chappathies that I had. LOL. We had asked for a tea factory visit and a small trek. The guide was there by this time.
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continued...

Last edited by Soccerfan : 21st February 2011 at 22:22.
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Old 4th March 2011, 22:20   #20
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Default valparai 2

We started to the tea factory which is around 200 mtrs from the bungalow. Guide took us through the different stages that a tea leaf passes through before taking the final shape of dust tea. It was an interesting process. But some stages seemed similar though..
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Afterwards he took us to a tribal settlement which was just outside the tea estate. The trek was through leech infested areas and all got bitten by them. There were fresh elephant droppings on the way and the guide was telling that a herd was seen there day before. From the tribal settlement we could see a lake which looked from the distance like Indias map. We soon returned to the resort as it was getting hotter outside. Ordered lunch after returning and we waited. All settled down with the magazines and TV for sometime
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Lunch was ready by this time. The food here is really awesome which makes you take more time than usual to fill up the stomach . After lunch we decided to visit "Nallamudi pooncholai" which is around 30kms from the resort. We started by around 12.45 while there was a slight drizzle. The roads were mostly empty which helped to have a soothing drive all the way. Fog was also present as ever. Reached by around 1.45 near the view point. Parked the car by the road side. Took the tickets and they warned that it is foggy there now and we might not be able to see anything. We decided to try our luck and hoped lady luck will help us just like she did @ Nadukani on my earlier trip. It takes around 10 mins to walk up to the view point. Just like the guards said it was very foggy and we couldn't see anything down below. We waited there hoping that the fog will clear away eventually. Around 10 mins later the fog started to clear off and we could view down clearly. There were so many small small waterfalls. We went on a spotting spree and could spot around 9 waterfalls. That was really an awesome sight and a sight to remember for ever. We started back as it was getting time for us to bid adieu to Valparai. We reached back to the bungalow in another 40 mins. Started packing the luggage . Tea was getting ready by this time. We asked the resort owners for the bill. The caretaker said we have to pay it at their office. This was not a nice thing.
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foggy
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Had the tea and we packed the bags for Kochi. The caretaker did a quick wash of my car in this time. We started in no time to their office and paid the bill there. We also conveyed them that it would be good if they can arrange the payment in the resort itself instead of their office.

We took a brief halt in Loams view point. To our luck we could also spot 2-3 Nilgiri Tahrs above the mountain.

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The drizzle started getting stronger and soon became heavy rain. By the time we reached Pollachi it was pouring like anything. Took the diversion to Palakkad before Pollachi and the road was terrible. The roads became better as we joined the Pollachi-Palakkad route. The road condition deteriorated again as we reached Kollengode and the car fell into some huge potholes . Punto took quite a beating. We reached Vadakkanchery by around 9PM and had dinner from a hotel there. Reaching Thrissur took another hour as the road condition was terrible due to the monsoons. By 11.30 we managed to reach Kochi after what had been another great trip to Valaparai which was in sharp contrast to my first valparai trip did in summer.
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Last edited by Soccerfan : 4th March 2011 at 22:22.
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Old 4th March 2011, 23:12   #21
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Default Re: Travel tales - idukki,ramakkalmedu,vagamon,valparai,thattekadu,id amalayar and mo

They picked up the payment from the cottage, when we stayed. Food is the best part, rest is all so so. Considering the other option which is a rip off, this place is VFM I guess.
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Old 6th March 2011, 20:24   #22
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Default Re: Travel tales - idukki,ramakkalmedu,vagamon,valparai,thattekadu,id amalayar and mo

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They picked up the payment from the cottage, when we stayed. Food is the best part, rest is all so so. Considering the other option which is a rip off, this place is VFM I guess.
for us they asked to pay at the office. the cook is excellent and it all feels so tasty
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Old 7th March 2011, 21:14   #23
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Default The one day trip to "paniyelil poru"

Recently it has become a habit to do a trip (mostly one day trips) on a weekend. I was searching for an apt location for a 1 day trip and my friend suggested "Paniyelil poru" near Kodanad, Perumbavoor. It may sound like "paniyillel poru" which means "if you dont have any work, come" . "paniyillel" in malayalam means "no work" and "poru" means "come". Literally the place is just like that. A nice place to spend a jobless day

As usual got up early and started with friends by 6.30AM. Tanked up from the usual COCO outlet near irumbanam and we proceeded via Kakkanad, kizhakkambalam, pookatupadi to permubavoor. Stopped near pallikara to have our break fast. had appam and egg roast and tea. From perumbavoor you have to take the MC road to anakamaly direction. "Paniyelil poru" is right from the junction "vallom". Passing Kodanad you have drive for around 20 mins more to Paniyeli poru. Its a place on the bank of the periyar river. there are some small small islands in the river. You can walk through the river in summer to reach these islands. Barring a stretch of 1-2 kms the road is good till the poru. we reached there by 8.30AM. Stopepd the car beside the ticket counter, but couldn't see anyone in the counter. There was a road tarring work going on and the guys said we can proceed to the poru. The road down was steep with lot of rock sticking up their heads here and there. Had to be careful with the Punto. As we started driving down, a lady in official dress came to us and asked if we were to the poru. Asked my friend to go with her to the counter and get the tickets (10rs/head). After getting the tickets we drove down around .5kms to reach the parking area. We were the 1st bunch of people to reach there. he asked us to park the car and said since its a weekend crowds will be high by around 11am. He guided us to the small road to the poru and said he will be coming for the routine checks by noon. Also told that there is a small waterfall in the river. Started the long walk....

Since the summer has already started, the whole place wore a dry look. The pathway was through a teak plantation. walking about half a kilometer we reached the river bank. there were steel railings present to prevent tourists from getting down to the dangerous spots in the river. The downstream of the river was very beautiful. We spend around 10 mins there and resumed our walking...

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path to the parking lot
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walkway to poru
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walkway to poru
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trying to be tarzan
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tarzan friend!!
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reached the river side
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view near the river side
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down stream of periyar
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down stream of periyar - a closer look
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the watch tower kind of thing

A few 100 meters ahead we saw some kind of a watch tower kind of thing. but there were no ladders/anything to climb it. My friend tried to try his luck in climbing it but couldn't. He tried for around 5 mins and got tired and left the idea of climbing it. BTW he has vowed to come back once specifically to climb this watch tower . Then I tried my luck and could climb it easily. I still wonder what could be the reason for its presence there. maybe its just for the visitors. there were also some bamboo benches beside it. Took rest for 5 mins there. Afterwards we continued. the path was getting narrower now and was through thick bushes. Soon we reached near the first island. We started crossing the river .The rocks were very slippery. Myself almost had a fall. Took the further steps very cautiously and we reached the other side. there onwards the journey was mostly a repetition of this exercise. We crossed around 3-4 islands and reached a bigger island. we all decided to take a bath. River was split into small small streams by the rocks here. Got down into the river and the water was so cold. Fully wet we slowly traversed through the river searching for a better place to take bath. The water was flowing down through the rocks in full force. We stuck ourselves between the rocks and lied down in the water and felt like all the tiredness is getting washed away. There was this beautiful red colored algae growing on the rock which gave the river bed a red color. By this time we reached the waterfall. It was a very small one. But the water there seemed very dangerous as we knew by this time that the rocks will be slippery. So we didn't risk ourselves to reach there...

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first point to cross
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careful...
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inside the canopy
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near where we bathed
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the small islands
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after the bath

We spend around 2 hours in the water. The heat was building up now and we decided to start back. There is a forest department building on the way back, from where we had a tea and gooseberry pickles.
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on the way back
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return to childhood
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head started spinning after sometime
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The "revolver"...

While walking back we came across a lot of people.They were all coming for - poru, the bath and the joy of spending time with your family in the canopies.
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Old 29th June 2011, 21:15   #24
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Default Thattekad

Another 1 day trip. This time was to Thattekad bird sanctuary, Bhoothathankettu and Idamalayar dam. Thattekad near Kothamangalam is famous after Dr. Salim Ali. As usual I started by around 6.30AM. Drive was in a leisurely pace and this time was a lonely trip. Took the Kakkanad->Pallikkara->Pookkattupady->Perumbavoor->kothamangalam route

On the way to thattekad, there is a place where the view is really good on both sides. Looks like the picnic spot for tourists. Took my Punto to the edge of this, where it looked like a road to some estate. Felt the road is navigable only by Jeeps/SUVs.
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Reached thattekad by around 8.30. I was one of the first one to reach there. Just before the entrance to sanctuary, there is a bridge. Since it was early morning, the lights were brilliant enhancing the view from the bridge. The dominant sound as you would expect were birds calls. Parked my car on the bridge( Frequeny of vehicles was very low) .It was really wonderful see the reflections of clouds on the water

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The entrance to the sanctuary is on the right side just after the bridge. The security asked me to park the car on the side of the entrance. Have to take a 10rs ticket for entrance. There is a small zoo kind of thing on the left side. I just skipped past it. To the right side there is a small garden through which u can proceed for boating. There is no boating now as there was a boat tragedy some 2-3 years back due to overload. The view of the bridge from there was amazing. It was a cool morning and I just sat down enjoying the morning light for some time.
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The road leads to the forest through a lake on the left side. There were some birds in the lake. The view of the lake from the road is really good. I just walked till the entry of the forest. You have to book a guide to enter the forest. I was not very keen on this and returned

On the way back to kothamangalam there was one plantation on the side. Took the car inside the plantation for a set of photos and i started driving towards Bhoothathankettu and idamalayar
Travel tales - Idukki,Ramakkalmedu,Vagamon,Valparai,Thattekadu,Id Amalayar and more-img_2001.jpg
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Old 4th January 2014, 12:17   #25
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Default Thattekad to Athirapalli and Valparai

I am going to be Thattekad from 19th to 21st of this month. I will drive up NH 47 from Palakkad to Angamaly, then catch the road through Kalady-Perumbavoor-Kothamanglam to Thattekad. On my return on 21st morning I was considering a detour through Athirapalli - Valparai and back to Palakkad. I want to know if there is a shorter route to Athirapalli from Kothamangalm or Perumbavoor bypassing Angamaly and Chalakudy so that I can avoid the traffic on NH 47. I will be grateful for any inputs on route, road condition and eateries on the route. Thank you.
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Old 5th January 2014, 21:14   #26
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Default Re: Thattekad to Athirapalli and Valparai

Quote:
Originally Posted by woodcrawler View Post
I want to know if there is a shorter route to Athirapalli from Kothamangalm or Perumbavoor bypassing Angamaly and Chalakudy
I am not sure, but as you said from Thattekad, you have no choice but to come down to Kothamangalam. And I think you dont have a choice but to take the MC Road/NH47 to Chalakudy. Others can confirm. The interior roads may not be worth taking.
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Old 5th January 2014, 22:20   #27
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Post Re: Thattekad to Athirapalli and Valparai

Quote:
Originally Posted by woodcrawler View Post
I am going to be Thattekad from 19th to 21st of this month. I will drive up NH 47 from Palakkad to Angamaly, then catch the road through Kalady-Perumbavoor-Kothamanglam to Thattekad. On my return on 21st morning I was considering a detour through Athirapalli - Valparai and back to Palakkad. I want to know if there is a shorter route to Athirapalli from Kothamangalm or Perumbavoor bypassing Angamaly and Chalakudy so that I can avoid the traffic on NH 47. I will be grateful for any inputs on route, road condition and eateries on the route. Thank you.
plain answer is NO. but:
from Kothamangalam there is a road passing through dam sites reaching Malakkappara. it is fit for Jeeps and I hardly hear anyone taking that route.

I read there existed a very old route to reach Pollachi from Kothamangalam which was a Kaalavandi chaal or Bullock cart road (source:Mathrubhumi local news a decade or back!).

after the finishing of bridge at Malayattoor Adivaram, will be interesting if it helps bypass traffic from Perumbavoor and MC road to reach Chalakudy or other areas if they ever develop a highway connecting both.
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Old 5th January 2014, 22:33   #28
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere

I am not sure, but as you said from Thattekad, you have no choice but to come down to Kothamangalam. And I think you dont have a choice but to take the MC Road/NH47 to Chalakudy. Others can confirm. The interior roads may not be worth taking.
There is a road inside Plantation Corporation Estate to bypass Chalakudy. This road was decent one year back but Chalakudy should be faster and smoother.

No idea about any road to bypass Angamaly.

Last edited by coolclouds : 5th January 2014 at 22:35.
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Old 6th January 2014, 21:19   #29
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Default Re: Travel tales - Idukki,Ramakkalmedu,Vagamon,Valparai,Thattekadu,Id Amalayar and mo

Thanks guys. I was looking at the deviation from Kaladi - Malayatoor - Plantation road and thereon to Athirapalli. Any other ideas? There seems to be a route from Kothamangalam- Idamalayar road but on Google Earth it looks like a track running parallel to a canal.
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