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Old 28th January 2019, 09:01   #11941
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Originally Posted by victoriacc View Post
4. Any other tips, headsup suggestions from folks who have travelled recently in this route?
Adding few more apart from Binands post.

1) Watch out for the barricades till Salem. Some are dangerously placed and can test your reaction time and car's stopping power .
2) There are many speed cams (normal and average speed ones) after Walayar. If you driving KL registered car, do note. Occasionally, there might be interceptors which will stop any speeding vehicle.
3) After Palghat, the traffic and signal can really slow you down. Be prepared as it will really test your patience. Same along Angamaly-Perumbavoor stretch.
4) MC road is well laid and wide. Don't be surprised to see many dangerous overtakes.
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Old 28th January 2019, 10:24   #11942
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Yes, just follow that route. No deviations from that suggested route is recommended and is to be tried only during localized accentuated circumstances.
I do Bangalore-Perumbavur in about 8.5-9 hours with meal stops. Google's estimate sounds spot-on.
Thanks a lot, @binand and @naveen.raju. Very helpful tips. And the excel sheet with list of eateries would be super handy as well.

One clarification on the point "Be very careful on the Coimbatore bypass. I can't stress this point enough, especially to new drivers along this route." What exactly are we referring to? : possibility of overtakers at very high speed or bad/uneven roads or typical highway scams that we keep hearing about or something else?

Also, on the following reference: "I do Bangalore-Perumbavur in about 8.5-9 hours with meal stops. Google's estimate sounds spot-on.". Btw, Google's estimate said 10.5 hours without any breaks in between (or so I think). While 1.5 hours will be for the distance after Perumbavoor, still the figures of 8.5-9 hours till Perumbavoor (with meal breaks) looks like it is beating Google's estimate by a good 1-2 hours. Is it an exception or it typically takes only as much? Just checking the avg speed it takes for this.

Last edited by ampere : 28th January 2019 at 10:27. Reason: trimmed quoted post
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Old 28th January 2019, 10:49   #11943
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One clarification on the point "Be very careful on the Coimbatore bypass. I can't stress this point enough, especially to new drivers along this route." What exactly are we referring to?
The Coimbatore bypass is 28 km long, with two lanes of undivided carriageway. It is dead straight for sections with some shoulder space, but there are bridges with no shoulder at all. There are 6 toll booths in this section and two major (Coimbatore-Trichy and Coimbatore-Pollachi highways) intersections, not to mention innumerable smaller junctions.

On this road, many drivers simply let loose with no care or concern. Buses, trucks, cars etc. are driven by maniacs. Right of way, overtaking protocol, signalling - all are ignored. Be very careful and don't get carried away; it is considered one of TN's most dangerous roads.

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Is it an exception or it typically takes only as much? Just checking the avg speed it takes for this.
I think I confused you. 9 hours is for solo drives. When I'm with family it takes a bit longer (10 hours, let us say). This is because I drive practically non-stop when solo. I think 1.5 hours for Perumbavur-Kottayam is probably correct (I have driven only till Ettumanur which had taken me about an hour).

The last direct drive I did (with family; in last summer) I started at 1.30 PM from Indiranagar and reached Perumbavur at 11:30 PM. The last solo drive, I started at 5 PM and arrived at 2 AM.
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Old 29th January 2019, 12:14   #11944
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Took a Bangalore Kottayam round trip last week. Took Maddur-Malavalli- Chamarajanagar-Dhimbam route onwards and Salem highway route on return.

There was construction around Chamarajanagar but as traffic was scarce it wasn't much of a trouble. Road surfaces are excellent especially at TN side of the route. Only real challenge was heavy fog in the morning. Started 4:30 am from Bangalore and reached Kottayam at 4:00pm (557 KMS) with two breaks at Nijaguna chamarajanagar and KTDC Alathoor.

Return was typical highway run. Started 2:30 am and reached Bangalore by 11 with one break.
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Old 31st January 2019, 07:39   #11945
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Has anyone tried the coastal roads from Kochi to Alappuzha? I see this in google maps: https://goo.gl/maps/v4DzbBxVA852


But not sure how good this route is? Any good beaches along this route?
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Old 31st January 2019, 12:26   #11946
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The roads between Kochi and Alappuzha are good, but narrow and have lots of people on them. There are some good beaches right next to the road. Have driven this route a couple of times and it was interesting. Once we had seen a beached ship or dredger close to the road.
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Old 31st January 2019, 13:25   #11947
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Has anyone tried the coastal roads from Kochi to Alappuzha? I see this in google maps: https://goo.gl/maps/v4DzbBxVA852


But not sure how good this route is? Any good beaches along this route?
Usually this route is recommended for those who travel from south (Alapuzha) to Fort Kochi, avoiding the highway and traffic intensive junctions.
The Mararikulam beach is a good one and I have been there several times. Of course, you would not find on specific spot, but some white spaces in between village residents that you can freely enjoy. Also I have heard the Arthunkal beach is equally good for light wetting.
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Old 31st January 2019, 17:19   #11948
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Recently traveled by cab from Kochi (Edapally junction near Lulu) to Kottayam (near Thirunakkara temple). Being a Sunday, traffic was a lot less (we were told by the cabbie) and the route taken was this

* On this route, Vytilla junction was a mess due to the flyover + Metro construction work
* Roads were good throughout but it took a good 2.5 hrs in the morning/noon time, thanks to narrow roads and random bottlenecks due to traffic near junctions and other places of interest en route. Similar time on the return journey as well late afternoon/early evening.

From Manjoor we could have also taken the longer route via Kumarakom, but the cabbie mentioned roads aren't great and will take longer, but not sure about this.
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Old 31st January 2019, 20:48   #11949
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Recently traveled by cab from Kochi (Edapally junction near Lulu) to Kottayam (near Thirunakkara temple). Being a Sunday, traffic was a lot less (we were told by the cabbie) and the route taken was this
In my view, you should have taken Vytila, Kundannur, Thripunithura(kannankulangara), poothotta, Kanjiramattom, Thalayolapparambu, Kaduthuruthy, Ettumanoor, Thirunakkara. I drove this route till Ettumanoor last Friday and was all good.
There are a few shortcut roads in between stretches on this main route as well.
I know Ettumanoor could be a bottkeneck at times.
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Old 31st January 2019, 21:00   #11950
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In my view, you should have taken Vytila, Kundannur, Thripunithura(kannankulangara), poothotta, Kanjiramattom, Thalayolapparambu, Kaduthuruthy, Ettumanoor, Thirunakkara. I drove this route till Ettumanoor last Friday and was all good.
That is the exact route we took
I guess since there were no via points in my map, gmaps defaulted it back to its regular routing (I had changed it to same route you mentioned - MC road from Ettumanoor to Kottayam. Crossing Ettumanoor was pretty quick actually. There was also a new flyover (rail overbridge) that apparently was opened recently near Kottayam Nehru stadium.

How is the route from Manjoor to Kumarakom and Kottayam ? The cabbie said it isn't in good condition and will take longer, but my uncle said that route used to be good few years ago.

Last edited by SmartCat : 1st February 2019 at 13:04. Reason: as requested
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Old 1st February 2019, 10:36   #11951
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How is the route from Manjoor to Kumarakom and Kottayam ? The cabbie said it isn't in good condition and will take longer, but my uncle said that route used to be good few years ago.
For going via Kumarakom from Ernakulam, it is better to go via Vaikom, Vechoor. Distance is almost similar and after Vaikom, roads are a bit narrow, but good.
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Old 2nd February 2019, 11:42   #11952
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Drove from Hyderabad to Kochi last week.

Once you enter Kerala after Walayar check post every 4 to 5kms you have cameras for speed check. Need to maintain speeds. The Ghat section Kuthiran is better now no toll has started as yet as the tunnel road is yet to open.
The roads are definitely better what I saw 2 years ago.
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Old 2nd February 2019, 12:15   #11953
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Originally Posted by gajadonga View Post
Drove from Hyderabad to Kochi last week.

Once you enter Kerala after Walayar check post every 4 to 5kms you have cameras for speed check. Need to maintain speeds.
If the vehicle is non Kerala registration, no tickets are being issued as RTOs are not integrated.
I'm in no way advocating to drive beyond the specified speeds, but just say that you will not receive a ticket even if the limit is crossed with an outstation registration.
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Old 2nd February 2019, 13:03   #11954
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Once you enter Kerala after Walayar check post every 4 to 5kms you have cameras for speed check. Need to maintain speeds.
This is actually good for this stretch since one can maintain a healthy 90kmph as the best case and these cameras are mostly before a toll or signal where one would have to be driving in lower speeds. Add to this usually traffic volume is high with mix of local slow moving traffic as well and lanes aren't as wide as other 4/6 lane NHAI highways.
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Old 2nd February 2019, 15:40   #11955
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When you drive long distance, its the average speed that matters most. This is what takes a royal beating once you enter Kerala. Signals are dime a dozen between Walayar and Palakkad, so people tend to step on the gas when the road is relatively free of traffic. They should have built flyovers or underpasses at junctions so that local and long distance traffic don't merge and long distance travellers don't get stuck at every other signal. If the traffic is smooth sailing, people tend to stick to a speed they are comfortable with and the tendency to drive rashly is relatively lesser.
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