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Old 5th September 2023, 17:44   #14476
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Would be great if there are any recommendations for a good hotel to stay post Salem for a night. Would be travelling with my family.
Salem has Grand Estancia and Radisson, there was an option around Namakkal that I used once and was good for an overnight stay, but I am unable to recollect the name now
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Old 5th September 2023, 19:01   #14477
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Would be great if there are any recommendations for a good hotel to stay post Salem for a night. Would be travelling with my family.
We often travel this route, and sometimes we start in the afternoon around 2 pm, and drive until 8 pm or 9 pm. We have stayed in Karur and Dindigul, and we mostly prefer clean & budget accommodations as it's just about getting a night's sleep. I think you can easily reach Karur by 11 pm.

In Karur, you can consider Sri Murugan Residency for a decent budget stay, and if you're open to spending more, The Residency is a good choice. If you plan to go all the way to Dindigul, Vivera Grand and Vari Park are good options.

All these hotels have ample parking space.
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Old 10th September 2023, 21:57   #14478
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Guys - The Hosur TVS factory road to attibele is in great shape now. A while back it was very bad.
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Old 11th September 2023, 08:02   #14479
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

I happened to drive in Kerala after the implementation of the new speed limits. Here are my observations-
1) The new speed limits are more than sufficient honestly. I never thought I'd say this. It really is. In fact, you're pushing it if you try to maintain that speed for which there is no space or infrastructure. This is coming from someone who drives faster than the average Joe. 90 kmph on a two lane NH is crazy. In comparison, the 100kmph limit on the Bangalore Mysore expressway is really slow.
2) Watch out for reduced limits when you enter a town especially during early morning/night drives. I prefer to use Radarbot to warn me in advance and it's accurate 85% of the time during my travel in Kerala. No issues during the day - plenty of traffic to keep you at bay.
3) Despite the increased limits, I feel people are driving at more or less the same pace as before
4) Plenty of AI cameras to check for seatbelts and lane discipline - a welcome move IMO since some people try to overtake in blind corners.
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Old 11th September 2023, 11:43   #14480
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Those using Waze - the warnings for speed cameras are not accurate. The app sometimes warns about cameras on the other lane, while ignoring some cams on the driving lane. The speed limits are however more reliable.

Travelled in and around the Thootha - Kongad - Mannarkad areas. A lot of road work and expansion happening in the area, especially on Tipu Sultan road. Depending on where one is headed, these roads can be used instead of the Palakkad-Kozhikkode NH.
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Old 11th September 2023, 12:08   #14481
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Apart from speed do these cameras also flag trucks for hogging the right lane?

Asking because I did a trip from Palakkad to Thrissur last weekend saw a truck on the right lane and hence had shifted to the left lane to overtake when the truck suddenly swerved to the left.

Then i saw the speed cameras coming up and also there were signs through the highway asking heavy vehicles to stick to the left lane. Must say most trucks were abiding by the same which was a huge difference vs TN or KA roads.
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Old 11th September 2023, 18:39   #14482
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

I am planning to do a drive from Coimbatore to Mahe. How are the roads along this route ? Palakkad to Malappuram is completely new to me. I just hope the roads are well paved with minimal potholes. I know it'll be the notorious 2 lane road all the way through. Any advice on what route to take ? Do i trust Google chechi or not ?
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Old 11th September 2023, 18:42   #14483
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by Turbohead View Post
I happened to drive in Kerala after the implementation of the new speed limits. Here are my observations-

I prefer to use Radarbot to warn me in advance and it's accurate 85% of the time during my travel in Kerala.
+1 to Radarbot App. It was very helpful during our recent drives to Kerala in particular. The Radarbot app gives advance warnings before 500 meters and once again nearing 100 meters, and also notifies regarding the type of camera (Fixed speed camera, AI camera, seat belt warning etc). Found it quite useful even during our drives through some KL State highways where KL Govt has installed AI cameras.

Radarbot also gives warning for manual speed cameras but these aren't that accurate since the cops and their vehicles move around.

We can also contribute with information about any camera presence, incorrect information on speed limits etc can be reported through app.

Overall found Radarbot app to be quite useful during these drives.

cheers,
narayanang76
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Old 11th September 2023, 18:56   #14484
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by anandhsub View Post
Apart from speed do these cameras also flag trucks for hogging the right lane?

Asking because I did a trip from Palakkad to Thrissur last weekend saw a truck on the right lane and hence had shifted to the left lane to overtake when the truck suddenly swerved to the left.

Then i saw the speed cameras coming up and also there were signs through the highway asking heavy vehicles to stick to the left lane. Must say most trucks were abiding by the same which was a huge difference vs TN or KA roads.
I think so. In a recent drive towards the end of June, from Bengaluru to Angamaly, I found almost all the trucks sticking to the left lane once in Kerala. And this was after midnight. Almost nobody including cars was speeding although the traffic was really sparse at that time.
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Old 11th September 2023, 19:30   #14485
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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I think so. In a recent drive towards the end of June, from Bengaluru to Angamaly, I found almost all the trucks sticking to the left lane once in Kerala. And this was after midnight. Almost nobody including cars was speeding although the traffic was really sparse at that time.
There was a crackdown on the practice of hogging the rightmost lane by truck/bus drivers few months back. I guess MVD/Traffic Police/Highway Police are still at it.

Also, there are these types of enforcement on Kerala roads that I'm aware of:

1. Old style cameras, mounted on roads: catches speeding, signal jumping.
2. Newer AI cameras also looks for seat belts/helmets, overloading.
3. Interceptors of various departments - MVD, Excise etc.
4. Read in the paper earlier today that they are planning to deploy drones to overcome the problem that people drive nicely at known, fixed locations and like madmen elsewhere.
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Old 12th September 2023, 10:57   #14486
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by Varkey1896 View Post
I am planning to do a drive from Coimbatore to Mahe. How are the roads along this route ? Palakkad to Malappuram is completely new to me. I just hope the roads are well paved with minimal potholes. I know it'll be the notorious 2 lane road all the way through. Any advice on what route to take ? Do i trust Google chechi or not ?
My usual route is(or was) Palakkad - Cherupulassery - Perinthalmanna - Malappuram - Kondotty. The roads are in decent condition, though driving through the 2 lane "Highway" is beyond frustrating.


An alternate would be Mannarkad - Pandikkad - Manjeri - Thamarassery - Perambra - Vadakara, though I havent driven along this route in a long time.

The last time I drove home, it took me a solid 11 hours, 4 of that from Kozhikode to Thalassery. Completely switched to trains after that. National Highway my ass.
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Old 12th September 2023, 12:18   #14487
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by Varkey1896 View Post
I am planning to do a drive from Coimbatore to Mahe. How are the roads along this route ? Palakkad to Malappuram is completely new to me. I just hope the roads are well paved with minimal potholes. I know it'll be the notorious 2 lane road all the way through. Any advice on what route to take ? Do i trust Google chechi or not ?
Coimabatore-Palakkad-Mannarkkad-Perinthalmanna-Mankada-Manjeri-Areekode-Mukkam-Thamarasseri-Balusseri_perambra-Vatakara-Mahe.
Coimbatore to Perinthalamanna is a super smooth road. Good 2-lane highway from Palakkad to Perinthalmanna. Expect a traffic jam at the Angadippuram railway overbridge and the Thirumandhamkunnu temple area.
From Thirurkad to Manjeri via Mankada, expect heavy traffic. From Manjeri to Balusseri, a good 2-lane road has been newly laid.
Balusseri-Perambra-Vatakara is also good, but there is lots of traffic. Vatakara-Mahe NH construction work will be there with lots of diversion.

Taking this route helps you avoid major parts of NH work.
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Old 14th September 2023, 11:20   #14488
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Did a round trip Bangalore-Kollam-Bangalore last week in my new Alcazar P DCT (~1400Kms). This was my first long trip in the new vehicle and helped me get an overall feel. Onward on Thursday and return on Sunday.

Onward: Blr - Salem - Palakkad - Ernakulam - Kollam (683Kms)
Took this route for a stop at my in law's place at Ernakulam. Started at 5:40AM from BLR and reached Ekm around 4:20PM. Faced heavy traffic from Angamaly and almost crawling/standstill traffic from Kalamassery to our place in Palarivattom, took almost 1.5 hours for the last 25 Kms. Road conditions are good all the way.
Took a break of 2 hours in Ekm and started at 6:30PM to Kollam. This was the most tiring part of the entire trip. Heavy rains till Cherthala, bad traffic and above all the road expansion works. After a 45min break for dinner in Alleppey, reached my place in Kollam by 11PM. Almost 4.5 hrs for a 140Km journey. Roads are bad from Harippad to Karunagapally, need to be careful.

Return: Kollam - Punalur - Shenkottai - Madurai (byepass) - Salem - Blr (685Kms)
Excellent drive and roads all the way except some uneven stretches near Rajapalayam and Sri-Villiputhur. Started at 5:30AM and reached home in Blr by 6PM including 2 breaks. Barring Attibele, faced no jams at any toll booth. Traffic became heavy from Krishnagiri to Blr as usual.

Got an overall mileage of 14KMPL for the entire round trip. Just after this trip did my first service as well. Overall happy with the vehicle and its performance on the highways.

Usual breakfast place near Thirumangalam
All Roads to Kerala-temple-city.jpg

Last edited by pms : 14th September 2023 at 11:43.
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Old 17th September 2023, 06:04   #14489
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

We are planning a ride to Kochi from Bangalore. The plan is to take the direct route Salem-Palakkad-Thrissur-Kochi as all of us have fairly big bikes (VStrom 650, Versys 1000 and Ninja 1000).

I've been to Munnar a couple of times and always felt that it would be heavenly to ride there instead of going by car. So, we were thinking of taking this route on the return Kochi-Munnar-Theni-Dindigul-Bangalore. As per Google maps, it shows the distance as 100 km extra but the time is significantly more because of the hilly areas.

How crazy an idea is this? Should we just take the direct route?
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Old 17th September 2023, 08:25   #14490
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Usual breakfast place near Thirumangalam
Could you please share a Google Maps link or any other details to locate this place? I would like to add it to my list of highway food options. There are several Temple City hotels in and around Madurai, so would like to exactly place this one.
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