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Old 7th December 2017, 23:02   #10936
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

What is the best route to drive from Malappuram to Munnar? Google map shows two routes with almost similar distance & time. Please advise based on your experiences.
1. Malappuram -> Palakkad -> Pollachi -> Udumalpet -> Munnar
2. Malappuram -> Thrissur -> Perumbavoor -> Kothamangalam -> Munnar

I haven't driven in any of these stretches except Malappuram to Palakkad.

How do these routes differ in terms of road conditions, traffic, ghat road sections etc? I'm planning to drive my Ciaz. Will it be comfortable driving this car to and within Munnar or should I consider taking Alto instead? I'll be starting in the morning or before noon. Thanks in advance!
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Old 8th December 2017, 07:55   #10937
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What is the best route to drive from Malappuram to Munnar?
I suggest you take the TCR route for your onward and Pollachi route for return. Both routes are beautiful. Start early in the morning from Malappuram.
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Old 8th December 2017, 17:14   #10938
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I suggest you take the TCR route for your onward and Pollachi route for return. Both routes are beautiful. Start early in the morning from Malappuram.
Thanks! Any particular reason for these suggestions?
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Old 8th December 2017, 18:03   #10939
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Friends, I am looking for the latest road conditions of BLR-Salem-Dindigul-Theni-Cumbum-Kumily-Ranni route. Although I have driven to Cochin multiple times, Salem-Ranni route is a first time for me. My plan is to start on 22nd Friday or 23rd Saturday early morning from Hebbal. It would be really helpful if regulars in this stretch could throw some light on the timing and food joints for a family. My return would be the usual Angamaly-Thrissur-Palakkad-Salem-BLR. There is a Plan B of touching Coonoor on return (no idea where to stay), reaching BLR on or before 30th.
Few concerns are:
1. Okhi after effects as I heard lots of trees were uprooted
2. Sabarimala season
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Old 8th December 2017, 18:59   #10940
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Originally Posted by Midas View Post
1. Malappuram -> Palakkad -> Pollachi -> Udumalpet -> Munnar
2. Malappuram -> Thrissur -> Perumbavoor -> Kothamangalam -> Munnar

I haven't driven in any of these stretches except Malappuram to Palakkad.

How do these routes differ in terms of road conditions, traffic, ghat road sections etc? I'm planning to drive my Ciaz. Will it be comfortable driving this car to and within Munnar or should I consider taking Alto instead? I'll be starting in the morning or before noon. Thanks in advance!
Both routes are good.You can go via one and return via the other that way you would have a taste of both the routes.Till Udumulpet on the first route sees good amount of traffic and on the other route you have good traffic all the way till Munnar

The Ciaz can easily do both the routes,no issues whatsoever.The Udumulpet Munnar will take you through the Chinnar wildlife reserve as the sandalwood place of Marayoor.I would not suggest driving this stretch after 4 or 5 in the evening as it can get very dark and isolated.
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Old 9th December 2017, 12:17   #10941
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Thanks! Any particular reason for these suggestions?
You will be climbing down on your return via comparitively narrow routes and less traffic when you reach back in Kerala (Assuming you leave Munnar around lunch time and starting from your home on an early morning)
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Old 9th December 2017, 12:28   #10942
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Originally Posted by shajufx View Post
Friends, I am looking for the latest road conditions of BLR-Salem-Dindigul-Theni-Cumbum-Kumily-Ranni route. Although I have driven to Cochin multiple times, Salem-Ranni route is a first time for me. My plan is to start on 22nd Friday or 23rd Saturday early morning from Hebbal. It would be really helpful if regulars in this stretch could throw some light on the timing and food joints for a family. My return would be the usual Angamaly-Thrissur-Palakkad-Salem-BLR. There is a Plan B of touching Coonoor on return (no idea where to stay), reaching BLR on or before 30th.
I am not sure if Ockhi has had any effects on the Cumbum-Kumily-Ranni route,so I do not have the current updates.

The eating joints are plenty ,till Salem you would anyways be familiar,after that they are not as many as you find on the Bangalore-Salem stretch.There is the popular Ponram at Dindigul just off the highway https://goo.gl/maps/LFvtixrbdMp and many places on your way at Theni as well.

At Coonoor,you might want to take a look at Teanest or Neemrana Wallwood
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Old 12th December 2017, 07:37   #10943
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Default Re: All Roads to Kerala

Another set of deadlines. However, as per report tunnel work is nearing completion.

There is no mention on progress of bridge work on coimbatore side of the tunnel. Couple of weeks back when I travelled on this route, I felt the bridge will take at least 3- 4 months based on the current status.

All Roads to Kerala-img_20171212_073051334.jpg
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Old 12th December 2017, 09:18   #10944
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Traveled between Bangalore ~ Thrissur three times back and forth continuously on all weekends starting 24th November. Left Bangalore on Friday evening / Saturday Morning and from Thrissur on Sunday evenings.
As I always mention to many of my friends who travel on long weekends highways and toll are not the same on usual weekends. It was uneventful on all 6 legs without any disruptions even on Kithiran stretch. Again weekdays are a different story in terms of traffic.
Few points.
  • Barricades on Tamilandu side remains and need to be cautious about it
  • L&T bye pass in Coimbatore still remains a pain and didn't fail to spot atleast one accident everytime I crossed, one involving Kallada Volvo Mutli Axle and Coimbatore City bus was scary and heard few lost their life, be vigilant on this stretch.
  • One of the flyover in Salem is now opened for public
  • Madukarai ~ Walayar is a smooth sail
  • Kuthiran work is at slow pace atleast to my eyes

Cheers!
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Old 13th December 2017, 09:15   #10945
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Barricades on Tamilandu side remains and need to be cautious about it
The mother of all stupidities is located near Hosur. The barricades placed before Hosur caused a good 25 minutes delay on 10th, Sunday. There was hardly any cross traffic at the break in the median, but the way these barricades were placed, caused long trucks to take a lot longer to traverse the area, and not having any signboards resulted in many drivers spotting them only when they were only a hundred feet or so away from the barricades.

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As I always mention to many of my friends who travel on long weekends highways and toll are not the same on usual weekend
+1. The traffic pattern is different in both the cases.
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Old 13th December 2017, 10:03   #10946
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and not having any signboards resulted in many drivers spotting them only when they were only a hundred feet or so away from the barricades.
While I was returning to Bangalore on 3rd Dec and this happened at third (if I remember correctly) such barricade after Salem around 10 PM. I was cruising around 100 KM/hr leading a pack of few other cars behind me. I noticed this barricade well ahead and reduced my speed gradually but then what took me for a surprise was as I approached one barricade in the middle was not having any reflectors on to it. Until then I could only see only two barricade on either side of the road and thought I have wide gap in the center to pass through.
It was like an obstacle at center of your lane. If you don't have vehicles ahead of you its hard to notice this death trap

So folks watch out for such surprises.
Cheers!
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Old 13th December 2017, 10:12   #10947
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Originally Posted by shajufx View Post
Friends, I am looking for the latest road conditions of BLR-Salem-Dindigul-Theni-Cumbum-Kumily-Ranni route.
It's in good shape, took this route during the onam weekend in September.
I have traveled to Chengannur through this route many times in the past & the roads have always been good on this stretch.

Theni town gets really crowded in the evening post 6 PM, will take some time to exit.

You will encounter vehicles heading towards sabarimala, check this link to find if your travel dates coincides with the pooja timings:
http://www.sabarimalaayyappan.com/festival_calendar.htm


Theni - http://abmhotels.in/, good place to have food.
Dindgul - Don't exact recollect the name, options are very very less. You need to take the service road adjacent to the flyover to exit the highway. Then immediately after taking right below the bridge, you will numerous hotels on the left.

Average speeds comes down once you enter kerala, bottlenecks being erumeli, mundakayam, patience is key. Four wheelers & Piaggio autos in the town are the worst.

Take it slow on the ghats, the roads can induce nausea for the passengers.

Happy journey.
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Old 13th December 2017, 15:04   #10948
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I too got the below response on my query wrt Paliyekara,Thrissur and L&T,coimbatore toll.
Interesting reply. Regarding the L&T Toll plaza not under NHAI jurisdiction, implies that the Coimbatore Bye Pass is not part of NH. So the NHAI still considers the road through the city as NH? And what are they doing about it? So looks like L&T have to hand over the deeds to TN Govt and then NHAI may take over it.
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Old 14th December 2017, 11:17   #10949
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Interesting reply. Regarding the L&T Toll plaza not under NHAI jurisdiction, implies that the Coimbatore Bye Pass is not part of NH.
I had figured this out through an RTI application filed around six months back. From what I could understand:-
1. This bye pass was built as a joint venture between NHAI, TN State Highway Dept & L.T (as contractor). NHAI's involvement seems to be bare minimum.
2. This was the first pilot study of a PPP (Public Private Partnership) model deal.
3. L&T would have the rights to levy toll till around 2023 (the RTI response has the exact date). The TN Highway & Roads dept. did not give a clear cut response on what they plan to do after this date. They also did not have a response for the question on why FasTag was not implemented here.

PS: I put up this RTI application after hearing rumours that L&T had long lost the rights to levy the toll, but they are doing it on behalf of some political big wigs of TN.
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Old 16th December 2017, 00:05   #10950
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The first flyover in Salem after the bridge (coming from Erode side) is nearly ready. We were allowed to go through it when I was coming from Chennai last weekend but now they've kept the barricades. They may open it for traffic shortly.
Forgot to update. The flyover is now open.
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