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Old 20th June 2024, 12:50   #14746
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Here's the latest between Aroor and Thuravoor. Had to go via this stretch today morning. Some of those potholes were huge. I almost got stuck in one and had to reverse.

Go via Vaikom or Aroorkutty - Thycattussery - Cherthala (took this while coming back). Map showed 1 hour 50 mins from Cherthala to Vytilla at 10am today.





Car wash didnt last 12 hours .

All Roads to Kerala-img_20240620_124225520.jpg
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Old 20th June 2024, 16:15   #14747
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
I was thinking between MC road and Ranni option and suggested MC because of rain and more ghat sections in the latter. How does the equation change with monsoon?
Maybe someone who's been that side recently could update the status. The Ranni roads were in good nick and appeared to last like the the Shornur-Ottapalam SH1.
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Old 20th June 2024, 19:31   #14748
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Is there a specific entrance from where we should enter the Padmanabhaswamy temple for Darshan or are there multiple entrances to get in ?
You can take any entrance. If you are coming from Kollam through TVM bypass, then you will be reaching West Nada first. You can check if the cops allow parking there. If yes, you can proceed through there itself. If not, then proceed to the KSRTC parking and walk to the East Fort/East Nada (the most active area). Do note, apart from the bit about traditional wear, not even car remote is allowed inside.

Quote:
Any suggestions for breakfast somewhere near the temple after our darshan?

Would prefer something nearby so that we can then walk to the Swathi Thirunal palace for a visit.
sorry, don't know enough to suggest. I know that Mother's Veg Plaza serves traditional TVM-style sadya for lunch though.

A couple of things more:
Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple is not your wait-in-line, have-darshan, come-out kind of temple. Since the Lord is the titular ruler of Travancore and the Royal Family is closely associated with day-to-day running of the temple, the rituals and pooja timings are vastly different. You may end up with a quick darshan or you may end up waiting for a long time.

If you have time, also consider Pazhavangadi Maha Ganapathi Temple, just a few mins of walking, in East Fort itself. This used to be the deity of Travancore Army when the capital was at Padmanabhapuram. Later, when the capital was shifted to Thiruvananthapuram in 1760, the army brought the idol along with them, and later after independence, Indian Army took over.
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Old 21st June 2024, 14:44   #14749
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Hello

I am planning for a trip with family to Poovar from Bangalore around the mid of August, I'll be driving from Bangalore.
Route : Bangalore - Salem - Madurai - Nagercoil - Poovar.
Need suggestion, if this is a good time to be driving to Poovar. Will the monsoon be intense around this time, with flooding concerns on the way.
Thanks in advance.
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Old 22nd June 2024, 09:38   #14750
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Hi,
Which is the best route to take from Coimbatore to Ashtamudi? Travelling for the first time in an EV so inputs on EV chargers with amenities on the way will be added bonus. TIA
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Old 22nd June 2024, 10:42   #14751
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by JC_Redstreak View Post
Hello

I am planning for a trip with family to Poovar from Bangalore around the mid of August, I'll be driving from Bangalore.
Route : Bangalore - Salem - Madurai - Nagercoil - Poovar.
Need suggestion, if this is a good time to be driving to Poovar. Will the monsoon be intense around this time, with flooding concerns on the way.
Thanks in advance.
The rains are not very heavy down here in Trivandrum now. Mild showers on and off but met department says heavy rains are expected. But the seas are pretty rough and while i can't say much about the beaches in Poovar now, the Trivandrum beach has been commandeered by the sea.

And sorry for free advice, i find beaches to be depressing in the monsoon and rather prefer the forest areas during this season But hey just my opinion

And as for flooding concerns, the route you are taking would be safe from that.

Have a nice trip.
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Old 23rd June 2024, 12:36   #14752
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Planning a trip to Munnar in the last week of July. Are there timings for the Munnar-Udumalpet road?
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Old 24th June 2024, 19:18   #14753
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Planning a trip to Munnar in the last week of July. Are there timings for the Munnar-Udumalpet road?
While there is no time restrictions, it is not at all recommended during the night for elephant and other animal movement, and road is very narrow with hardly any traffic in the night

I travel frequently on Munnar Bangalore stretch, and the last one is as recent as last week. Most of the people have dropped Udumel route against Pooppara, Bodi for the excellent roads and views in the Pooppara Munnar part (known as GAP road). Even Google should be showing this as the primary option now. You may want to reconsider unless you have plans to visit Chinnar or Marayoor. Even this road can have elephant movement and is best done during the day.
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Old 24th June 2024, 23:02   #14754
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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While there is no time restrictions, it is not at all recommended during the night for elephant and other animal movement, and road is very narrow with hardly any traffic in the night
Initial plan was to enter via Theni-Bodhimetu. But Gap road is something that I’m including in my trip anyway and quite substantially. And I want to see the Gap road when I’m fresh. My drive from Bangalore would be quite tiring so was thinking of exploring some other route. I was also planning to visit Marayoor so Chinnar route could have been a logical entry point.

During the day, how’s the traffic and road condition in this Chinnar route?

Topographically, Chinnar route seems to have the most gradual ascent?

All Roads to Kerala-img_6145.jpeg

Map credits: Topographic Map

Last edited by krishnakumar : 24th June 2024 at 23:05.
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Old 25th June 2024, 08:29   #14755
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Quote:
Originally Posted by krishnakumar View Post
Initial plan was to enter via Theni-Bodhimetu. But Gap road is something that I’m including in my trip anyway and quite substantially. And I want to see the Gap road when I’m fresh. My drive from Bangalore would be quite tiring so was thinking of exploring some other route. I was also planning to visit Marayoor so Chinnar route could have been a logical entry point.
Udumalpet to Munnar is about 90km. Budget at least 3 hrs for this drive and like mentioned, plan this during day time. Also note, Chinnakanal is another 22km from Munnar town towards Theni. Thats another one hour easily in case your resort is located there.

The 90km drive should be leisure drive and hence I would say make sure you have ample time to stop, take pictures and still make it to the resort in day time. I would say mark at least 5 hours (Assuming a tea break at places like Marayoor)
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Old 25th June 2024, 10:45   #14756
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by krishnakumar View Post
I
I was also planning to visit Marayoor so Chinnar route could have been a logical entry point.

During the day, how’s the traffic and road condition in this Chinnar route?

Topographically, Chinnar route seems to have the most gradual ascent?
Adding to Ampere's comment

Traffic is thin on this stretch till the Eravikulam national park entry point (12 kms before Munnar town) except for the peak tourist days, but not too deserted to be worried for a day drive. It has been 6 months since I have taken this road, surface was broken but not too bad for any vehicle. Road is narrow in some part and can test your skills and nerves to make way for a truck or the occasional KSRTC bus with the deep gorge on one side

Yes, climb is more gradual than the initial steep hairpin climbs in Bodi stretch. It is a scenic route with a view of some of the greenest of tea estates, you also hold a chance of animal spotting in Chinnar

There are couple of Check Posts where you need to get down and make an entry, TN has a nominal entry forest entry fee with receipt.
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Old 25th June 2024, 19:53   #14757
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Also note, Chinnakanal is another 22km from Munnar town towards Theni. Thats another one hour easily in case your resort is located there.

The 90km drive should be leisure drive and hence I would say make sure you have ample time to stop, take pictures and still make it to the resort in day time.
That is great! I was actually planning to halt at Marayoor and explore the waterfalls there. Plus couple of really good properties there, so the plan was to enter via Chinnar route and stay in Marayoor.

Chinnakanal is being planned only for later days. We are taking a good 7 days to explore entire Idukki district. A bit ashamed to say that despite being a Malayali and growing up in Kerala, I have never really properly seen the beauty of Idukki.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gadadhar View Post
Traffic is thin on this stretch till the Eravikulam national park entry point (12 kms before Munnar town) except for the peak tourist days, but not too deserted to be worried for a day drive.

It is a scenic route with a view of some of the greenest of tea estates, you also hold a chance of animal spotting in Chinnar
Fantastic! All great inputs, thank you so much.

Not too worried about the roads because I grew up learning driving in the hilly roads of Kerala. Also have learnt to respect Anavandi, you always give way for Anavandi

We are planning to enter Chinnar on a Friday, so hopefully that should keep traffic low towards Munnar.

Last edited by krishnakumar : 25th June 2024 at 19:55.
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Old 27th June 2024, 21:39   #14758
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

Red Alerts and Travel Advisory

Heavy rains are expected/predicted in hills. Bettel check the advisory, before you plan your trips, if it involves high ranges

Many dams have partially opened their shutters . I am in Trivandrum now and its been raining almost every hour today

Regards & Drive Safe
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Old 28th June 2024, 09:44   #14759
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

What are the options for coffee/tea (fine with roadside stalls and coffee shops/restaurants) during a night drive anywhere between Salem and Kalady (Salem-Bhavani-Coimbatore-Palakkad-Thrissur-Angamaly route)? I have never doing a night drive in this route and hence the question.

Last edited by NPV : 28th June 2024 at 09:46.
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Old 28th June 2024, 10:29   #14760
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Re: All Roads to Kerala

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What are the options for coffee/tea (fine with roadside stalls and coffee shops/restaurants) during a night drive anywhere between Salem and Kalady (Salem-Bhavani-Coimbatore-Palakkad-Thrissur-Angamaly route)?
Every toll booth has all-night tea places. Plus, the Madukkarai junction (where the road that comes from inside Coimbatore city merges with the NH) has a decent place, next to the IOCL pump (for this you have to go under the junction flyover; but the flyover is closed for traffic for some time now anyway).

Once inside Kerala you might find "thattukadas" at junctions and town centres during the early part of the night (say, up to 1 AM or so). Then onwards I know of a person selling tea from his bicycle at Angamaly junction who stays till 3-4 AM. But he doesn't invest much in milk so all you might get is "kattan" (black tea).

Lastly, there are isolated one-off tea places in TN but I find most of them sell very watered down tea so I avoid them.

Edit: Forgot to mention - the large Apollo Adlux hospital on the NH in Karukutty has resulted in a few all-night stores in the area. MC Road also has several that I believe largely cater to the people going to/coming from CIAL.

Last edited by binand : 28th June 2024 at 10:37.
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