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Old 13th May 2019, 20:04   #16
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

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Originally Posted by haisaikat View Post
Dear carrot_eater, this is a nicely written travelogue with excellent set of appealing pictures that will attract anyone to conduct a road trip. Congratulations and another fact to note is that you have covered 6000+ KMs on road which is almost the distance between Delhi and London (6693 Km according to Google) that is one continent to another continent. So one more reason to congratulate you.

And to your other point of generalization, this is not just another trip to Bhutan, this is a trip on a Innova Crysta GX 2.8 AT variant which I am also contemplating for quite some time and this travelogue gives enough confidence to me and other prospective buyers like me to rest their investment on this base variant AT. I doubt if there have been many travelogues posted here on Innova Crysta AT variants.

You may want to highlight how easy or difficult this was with Innova Crysta and if you have any pictures of experience with bad or difficult roads like in hills that would be great too. I also wonder how to travel this far a distance with children on board, may be some guidance will always be helpful.
Thanks Saikat, well there other folks on this forum who have done 9000+ kms. And few of them have done that on a bike.
I personally don't think the car per-se is that important thing. It is to do with the road trip - there is always this thrill of changing scenery, mini milestones to reach and the small places you stop for tea breaks and food along the way, listening to music, pod casts, engaging in conversations with the family - all create that an experience that taking a flight can never do. I don't think anyone should wait for the perfect car for a road trip. As they say, "You go the war with the Army you got"

For me the Drive is part of the Vacation.

Now with the car itself, well I used a drive a Thar, I drove for 7 years and it was fun car to drive. No luxury , No safety features but it was a fun vehicle - I have written my experience in great detail on that. I did not mention or put up or really even take pictures of the Innova as I thought it was probably boring for anyone to read about. There are official detailed reviews on that and Innova is really omnipresent.

Innova 2.8G AT is a great cruiser, if you set yourself properly (seat height, steering height, and the back rest) and sit straight , you should have no fatigue even after 1000 kms. On the highways, I drive it in power mode, makes overtaking other vehicles easier. It has more than enough power than you'll ever need.

There was absolutely no problem climbing steep hills with 4 people and lots of luggage. So if that is something bothering you, then there is no need to worry at all.
The resort that I stayed in Thori had the last kilometre with mud roads and very steep inclines. The inclines could be easily done in "D" mode.

While descending the slope, I switched to "S" mode and downshifted to 2nd or 1st gear, I just did not want to keep using brakes as that can cause skids - so used engine braking to an extent. But this was only for the very last steep decline. Other than that - always in "D" mode.

There are sections of the road ( near Malda (WB)) and Farakka, which have craters, really big wide pot holes. Well there I tried to avoid them, go slow and there is nothing you can do. But in general the ground clearance was sufficient, I did not hit the bottom anywhere. With my Thar, I would have driven faster but with the Innova you ought to be careful.

The car showed a mileage of 12.1 KM. That is average, I am not sure if it average from the car was bought or it is more recent mileage. But I think I got a little more that 12. I didn't really calculate it. Tried to fill fuel at Reliance fuel pumps as much as I could, no specific reason, but they accept cards and have toilets if you need to use them.

With respect to kids, well keeping them engaged is a challenge, we listened to Kahanibaaz by Ashish Vidhyarthi on Gaana - we finished the entire 3 seasons, interesting stories and well narrated , Few talks at google, Funny Prank calls videos (not explicit of course), Songs and then Sleeping. The kids slept quite a bit so it was not difficult.

Last edited by carrot_eater : 13th May 2019 at 20:23. Reason: Grammar
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Old 14th May 2019, 09:08   #17
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

Nice to see more and more people driving down to Bhutan. Great travelogue!

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Originally Posted by Akshay2010 View Post
I hope sedans can make it easily.

Absolutely you can, if you are sticking to the main highways' (Phuentsholing-Paro-Thimphu-Punakha-Haa-Chele La pass-Phobjika valley). I occasionally travel to Bhutan (from my nearby hometown Siliguri, WB) in a BMW 3 series or Maruti Ciaz. Hope that clears your doubt.

Quote:
Originally Posted by haisaikat View Post
You may want to highlight how easy or difficult this was with Innova Crysta and if you have any pictures of experience with bad or difficult roads like in hills that would be great too. I also wonder how to travel this far a distance with children on board, may be some guidance will always be helpful.
Hello, so like I said above, I have driven Automatic sedans up and down from Bhutan many a times. I don't know why you would think an AT gearbox (especially of modern day cars) needs special attention while driving on mountain roads. In fact it is so much better and less stressful to the driver. In Bhutan people drive Automatic cars like Nissan Leaf, Tesla Model X, Ford, Mercedes, BMWs etc. Basically anything

---------------------------------------------------

Just remember for Bhutan-
Heavy rain & frequent landslides July-Sept
Occasional Heavy Snow days anytime between Dec-Feb

The best part of the roads there (unlike the Himalayan roads in India) are:

1. Traffic is nearly 90% less

2. Aggressive driving & road rage is 99.9% less

3. Every Bhutanese driver follows road & lane rules to the T (exactly like Europe, etc). You can and will get fined if you honk in the towns there without absolute need, not stop when pedestrians are crossing, not park in designated zones, etc.

4. The major Himalayan highways in Bhutan all have lay-by areas at regular intervals (Paved area at the side of a highway designated for drivers to stop in). In India nobody builds roads with that in mind. It is a boon especially for narrow mountain roads when vehicles need to stop, or slow moving trucks need to let others pass.


So Akshay, surely drive from Delhi to Bhutan on your sedan, and Saikat bring your Innova without a doubt.

Last edited by haldar_siliguri : 14th May 2019 at 09:18. Reason: Addition of another paragraph and quote
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Old 14th May 2019, 11:45   #18
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

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Originally Posted by haldar_siliguri View Post
Nice to see more and more people driving down to Bhutan. Great travelogue!

Absolutely you can, if you are sticking to the main highways' (Phuentsholing-Paro-Thimphu-Punakha-Haa-Chele La pass-Phobjika valley). I occasionally travel to Bhutan (from my nearby hometown Siliguri, WB) in a BMW 3 series or Maruti Ciaz. Hope that clears your doubt.
Thanks - Also there are multiple travelogues on the forum, people have traveled in various cars to Bhutan and back. I also met a group of people who had come from Cochin in an Audi A4.

I saw in some magazines (Tashi Delek) that there is road that is being built to access the Eastern Bhutan and apparently that place is very scenic. I am not sure they open it up for tourists but if they do, I would love to go to Eastern Bhutan someday.
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Old 18th June 2019, 02:17   #19
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

Wow. That was a nice read. Thanks for the beautiful pics and narration. Brought back some nostalgic memories of my motorcycle ride to Bhutan in 2016. Beautiful country. Truly, the last Shangrila on earth.
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Old 18th June 2019, 10:21   #20
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

Hi Carrot Eater, that was an awesome TL there. Thanks for sharing the amazing pics and details. Drive to Bhutan is on my bucket list and this TL would help a lot in the planning.
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Old 18th June 2019, 21:56   #21
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

Lovely travelogue with great pictures! One cannot go wrong with Bhutan. Brought back a lot of nice memories for me, thanks for sharing!
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Old 19th June 2019, 17:20   #22
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

Wow ! Very nice narration and superb pics with captions, thanks for sharing !
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Old 25th June 2019, 08:03   #23
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

Informative review indeed. In a travelogue the pictures should convey more than the words. And this was accomplished quite well.
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Old 25th June 2019, 14:29   #24
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Default Re: Bangalore to Bhutan in an Innova Crysta

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Lovely travelogue with great pictures! One cannot go wrong with Bhutan. Brought back a lot of nice memories for me, thanks for sharing!
Thank you BlackPearl and also Thank you for offering to help on the route queries when I had reached out.
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