Thursday, July 17, 2014

Ranipuram, Kasargod for trekking

Its been a while that I challenged my body to something adventurous and eons that I have been for trekking.Hence mission Ranipuram was planned.Little was known about the place that  made it even more interesting..This trip was just before the onset of monsoon .This was planned over better view as Ranipuram is a house for leeches and the trekking trail gets quite slippery during monsoon.We started our journey at 8:00 am .There were some 20 of us  who set out  with full energy..

Our vehicle dropped us at the entrance..We had made prior arrangement for breakfast at a hotel at the foothill..After an energizing breakfast we started our climb up , we had a guide to help us out with the path.Or you might end up lost, recently there were reports of school kids lost in the forest only to return after four days, there were a personnel involved in the rescue operation too ..There are two route one through the heart of the forest with no proper path, just trail, through them sometimes there are only vines  you get to hold for support.But this the fun part..On our way we got to see fresh elephant dung but otherwise we found the trekking trail non frightening..The challenge was quite rewarding at the end of it.As the group had many included from different age group the youngest being 12 years and oldest  58, it was a good mix of adrenaline.On our way we rested on fallen tree, rocks and at the worst even on ground to get over weariness.It took a good 40 minutes to get to the top.Climbing your way uphill you realize the importance of regular exercise..The guide told us that the trek gets adventurous during monsoon..

Though most of the path is through forest once you get to that point its all done..
When you get to this point you just want to get on top of it as early as possible and shed out all the exhaution away.
miles to go
That is the reward- an amazing view from top ..With a good altitude even with a bright sun the breeze was soothing and cool enough to cheer away the fatigue..There is a cave like formation  that could be explored by more adventurous but its bit difficult to venture in so people with less grip kindly stay away..After forty minutes when we were all set we started our descend.

We got to explore some natural spring on our way and finally hot biriyani was awaiting us as we got to the hotel at the foothill..All of us greedily savored in happily we stayed back till 4 pm chatting and discussing the days event , bid good bye with a cup of tea and Jam roll...

You can click here to find out what I wore for the day.

How to reach
By road Ranipuram is 64km from Kasargod or 46 km from Kanhangad.
Nearest railway station is Kanhangad or Kasargod is the major nearest railway station.
Carry min two water bottles for your trip also something to munch after you reach..There is nothing much on top to sit and relaxed so be prepared for that..Its just the magnificent view that is awaiting you on top..
Carry salt if you are planning your travel during monsoon to ward off from leeches.
There are cottages maintained by Kerala tourism development board but it needs advance booking.
There is a hotel on the foothill who serve tasty food if you are opting food..

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Lonavala @Monsoon sneak peak

Monsoon is the best to travel through the western ghat that gets the best ...
Being in Pune a trip to Lonavala was only natural.Expressways has good view point and the roads are quite good even for a monsoon ridden days..
The journey started early by 6:00 so that there would be ample time to enjoy..Beautiful landscape,
Trees and plants swaying to the spirit of monsoon fed breeze.Fogy roads it was just awesome..

The curves of the road made for an adventurous drive with rains touching us deeply

We stopped at Panvel for breakfast and soon after paav- bhaji and a cup of coffee set out on our way to Lonawala. My bestie is THE COMPANY for any trip with her anywhere becomes a time to remember.With some classic music the journey was quite comfortable chatting away.Since two of us didn't have much idea about the places so nothing was planned and our trip being time bound we couldn't explore much but started off with Kune falls Khandala valley.

Situated in the twin hills of Lonawala Kandhala valley I would its a must visit place.The monsoon had added a charm to the place .The place was calming and very soothing for a busy mind.This definitely brought in a holiday spirit in us.The Sahyadiri mountains stands tall graceful beholding all this beauty elegantly.There were many tourists from many part of the country enjoying with family and friends. I could people of all ages here.There were also couple enjoying their romantic getaway.Tourist have to walk their way from the Kune church .There were camping facilities but prior reservation is necessary.Our next stop was Tungarli lake which was about half an hour from Kune falls.Though we could have reached by 15 mins  we took it slow and steady enjoying the beauty around. The greenery all around. an extra shade of green along the slope and and small water falls just walk away from the road.If you love exploring you will every bit of your Eureka moments.

We opted for the lake for a crowd free zone..Do not go for the place if you don't like a time just for yourself with abundant beauty  bestowed by the nature around you.Our next point was Bhushi Dam that was very crowded.Our last destination was Tiger point that is 4km from Bushi dam and I just wanted to stay there forever.It is a place where one can enjoy THE BEAUTIFUL view of the hill.There were flowers meadow topped valley clouds moving gliding lethargically and fog topping the road.We just drank the beauty heartily and I could see everyone smiling around irrespective of their ages and that's the difference a place can have upon you.

Monsoon had brought in puddles of water all around with the greenery and the curves all made the whole place so romantic.No wonder the place is the best for a romantic getaway.

Overall this was one of the best monsoon drive I have ever set onto.This is a must visit place for anyone looking for a getaway from the huzzle buzzle. Try to reach the Tiger point bit early to avoid crowd..

Be prepared for heavy rain if you are planning for a monsoon trip.Get yourself comfortable footwear that you can walk on a slippery surface.Carry a good protection for mobile and camera from the rain.Be careful of what you are eating from small shops. Bhuttas(corn) are a must try in the monsoon, you are not going to enjoy anywhere than here.The climate can be cold to wet so be prepared for them.The drive might be adventurous with the  curves and slope hence drive carefully.There is nothing much to do on the hill after 6pm unless you are camping hence adjust your time.If possible try to include Karla caves as they are a must visit place , so don't miss like I did.Carry snack and water as you are bound to go hungry very fast..Try not to throw plastic bags and spoil the beauty of the place, try your best to preserve the existing beauty the way you can..

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Danish fort-Tranquebar/Tharangambadi ,Nagapattinam

Fort Dansborg is a Danish fort at Tharangambadi.Bay of Bengal is at a walkable distance and one can enjoy a walk on the relatively cleaner beach.The fort was built by Tanjavur King in association with Danish administration in early 17th century.Presently there is a museum at the center of the building which is the main attraction with loads of artifacts, coins,Danish manuscripts, canon balls and whale skeleton.
This whole complex consists of two floors upper for governor and priest and lower being for soldiers and animals , there were warehouse, kitchen, church, and jail all in the same wall.. History and archaeology enthusiasts would love the place as not much damage has occurred to the complex.

front view


The complex looks like a small town self sufficient supporting itself.With the sea just meters away one and here the crashing waves.

visitors can climb upon the complex and have a look around

To look down to the lower floor



Horse stable

The man behind TELC

Old entrance to the Danish area

There is a renovated Sr Masilamaneeswar temple on the beaches that has become quite colourful after renovation.I would have preferred it with the old charm.there is a danish cemetary nearby but as I was running short of time I couldn't visit.

How to reach
Do carry water
It is around 115 km from Pondicherry by road
The nearest railway station is Mayiladuthurai which is 40km.
The museum is open on all days except Friday and State government holiday
Timing-10:00 am to 5:30 pm

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Narthamalai -Jain cave

My final destination for the day was Narthamalai. Narthamalai hills like Sittanavasal use to be home for jain hermits.These natural rock shelter at Alurutimalai has loads of similarities just like eladipattam interms of rock rocks.More of these are found in Kudagumalai s away that might be hidden but just walk towards left follow the foot way and you'll find them ask the locals for direction just to save time.

Narthamalai cave unlike Sittanavasal is not yet open to public all you can see this cave that is well locked and protected. Narthamalai was under Pallava empire

The Vijayalaya Chozhisvaram temple stand all alone in all its wonder.The restoration work was on It is a shiva temple with a nandi  facing the temple.


And all this brought an end to a beautiful day.
I wouldn't recommend anyone to go single do take your friends as the place itself is quiet lonely.And who doesn't like a company to sit in the shade and enjoy the view.There is a goddess temple which is quiet famous.

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