Thursday, July 05, 2007

Ride to Goa

Finally, I am writing this long pending trip log about my longest ride till date. Bangalore to Goa.

Vegator Beach, Goa

Anjuna, Goa

"Chalo Dil Chahta Hai wale fort chalte hain!" Sounds normal right? But it's 2 AM ! Life is so normal in Goa at wee hours also. It reminds me of those good old days of KGP.

As usual it all started with a plan to go somewhere else. We planned to go to Thekkady/Periyar wildlife sanctuary on the long weekend. Take the RH(restricted holiday) of Korean new year on monday and it was a four day weekend for Samsung employees. We were all set for riding to Thekkady on friday morning.

A week before, Court gave verdict for the Cauvery dispute which resulted in a tension between Karnataka and Tamilnadu. There were some rumours (or actual incidents?) of Karnataka registered vehicles being burned in Tamilnadu and vice versa. Since we all have KA registered bikes and almost 80% of our journey was in Tamilnadu, we took a wise decision of dropping Thekkady for this weekend and decided to visit Goa instead!

Finally five of us including me, Ashu, Chatterjee, Pandey and Saswata left for Goa on thursday night. Since, we were going towards west coast, we could not resist having fishes at Hotel Fishland, Manipal! So we added 150 more kilometres to detour to Manipal and then follow NH-17 from there to Goa.

Day 0 (15th Feb 2007): Bangalore - Neelmangla - Hassan -------------------------------------------------------------------

By the time we left office, it was 7:00 PM. We met at MG road after some time. We could leave city only by 9:00 PM. Hassan is around 200 km from Bangalore. We took small breaks every 50 km or so and maintained a decent speed. We reached Hassan around 2 AM and checked into a hotel.

Day 1 (16th Feb 2007): Hassan - Belur - Chikamaglur - Sringeri - Manipal - Marwanthe - Someshwar - Murudeshwar
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We started off from Hassan at 9:00 AM. Ride till Belur was awesome on the smooooth highway. We kept going and stopped at Chikamaglur for breakfast. Usual dosa, idli, chai etc. All five of us were riding headlight to taillight till Chikamaglur. From here to Sringeri is the twisty turny road on which I was dying to ride since my last trip in a cage(read car) on this road. Here, I overtook others and stopped after around 50 km to click some snaps.

Chikamaglur-Sringeri Road

Our next stop was Agumbe. We did not stop at Sringeri. After few snaps at Agumbe, we stopped directly at Hotel Fishland, Manipal at around 3:00 PM.

Descent After Agumbe

Hotel Owner Shetty was excited to see us yet again to devour his fishes. New entrant this time to our stomachs was sword fish!

Hotel Fishland, Manipal

We bid goodbye to Shetty at moved on to NH-17. After around 50 km was the beautiful Marwanthe beach.

Marvanthe Beach, NH-17

The road goes parallel to the beach for few km here. First we thought of seeing sunset at Marwanthe and stay there itself for night but that would mean around 250 km to Goa next day. So, we rode for few tens of km to reach Someshwar where we saw the sunset over the Arabian Sea. This was the perfect sunset over the sea for the first time. There was no haze on the horizon and we could see the sun diving into the water creating ripples with its rays.

Views Of Sunset, Someshwar Beach

We zoomed our bikes then to our night halt Murudeshwar. Murudeshwar is famous for its huge statue of Lord Shiva and we reached there on MahaShivratri night. There was nothing much to do in Murudeshwar apart from visiting the statue and the temple below it.
Statue of Lord Shiva, Murudeshwar

We hit our beds soon. Only 180 km from our destination. :)

Day 2 (17th Feb 2007): (Murudeshwar - Karwar - Madgaon - Panaji) -------------------------------------------------------------------------------

We got ready by 9 AM and started off for Panaji. Someone said that we should stay at Gokarna and enjoy that only, no point going till Goa for such a less time! Soon this plan was dropped and some time later we were having breakfast near Karwar.
Warship Museum, Karwar

Goa border is just 10 km from there. Saswata and Ashu left while rest of us were settling bills. We told them to wait for us at "Welcome to Goa" board. We will move together from there but there was no one there. Later the reason they gave for not stopping was that there was no such board at the border !! @#$%^&#.

We carried on and soon the Ghat roads started. I accelerated and Amit and Sumit were left behind. Uske baad kuch to chaos hua, sab log idhar udhar ho gaye and everyone entered Panaji on his own without knowing where the other person was!

About to reach Panaji

Something happened that day and none of our mobiles were showing roaming enabled! So finally I was roaming in the streets of Panaji to find a Reliance Web World! Tried calling others but no one was reachable. Everyone had the same problem! All mobile operators made zero roaming rental from that day, maybe that was the reason. Finally after 2 arduous hours, I got my phone working! After 10 mins, recieved a call from local number! It was Amit. Finally all of us were together and it was already 3 PM!

We straightaway headed for Calingute beach. After a bit research, found a decent accommodation. And then run to the sea !!! We hanged around on the beach and the sea and had a fabulous dinner in one of those shacks on the beach.

Calingute Beach, Goa

Carnival, Goa

It was carnival time in Goa. There were stages with huge speakers and all for entertainment. At late night we went back to our hotels and had relaxed shower. Then Sumit( Uff I am fed up of calling him sumit, I will call him Hathee from now on. Phew! much better now :D) said we should go to Panaji city. Receptionist at the hotel told us that no point going there after midnight. Everything will be closed. Then this great idea of going to the DCH fort! came from somewhere :D. The ride was awesome till Fort Aguada. (Yeah! I know I know DCH fort is not the fort Aguada. But we came to know about this the next day :D). We tried riding with our headlights off in the pitchdark but it was impossible ! It was so dark that we could not wven make out the shape of the fort and soon returned back. Time to hit the bed !


Day 3 (18th Feb 2007): (Goa - Goa - Goa - Karwar - Honnavar :D) -----------------------------------------------------------------------------

Next day we explored Goa. Obviously not completely but the best we could do in one day. And yes we visited Chapora, the DCH fort also :D. We spent the day visiting various beaches like Anjuna, Vegator, etc. I am not even remembering the names now :D. We visited Fort Aguada as well as Fort Chapora. We spent some time lazying doing nothing at one of the shacks :).

Shades of Goa

We left Panaji in the evening. Actually some of us wanted to stay one more day but Hathee and Pandey were insistent that we should leave so that we reach Bangalore on Monday and report to office on Tuesday.

Very well, we thought of taking night halt at Honnavar. We had a light dinner on the way and I went ahead to reach Honnavar and book the rooms while others were still eating and settling bills. The solo ride from Karwar to Honnavar was amazing! I kept following a volvo which was doing 60-70 kmph. But it was difficult to follw the bus so I tailed behind a car which was constatly doing 90 kmph. It was much easier that way to ride during night. By 9 PM, I guess I reached Honnavar and got really good rooms. We slept off soon for an early day ride!

Day 4 (19th Feb 2007): (Honnavar - Jog Falls - Sagar - Shimoga - Tumkur - Bangalore)
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We woke up at 6 AM and soon get going after having a quick breakfast. The idea was to reach Bangalore as soon as possible and rest. Our first stop was Jog Falls. Few pics and we left. We stopped for small chai session at Sagar. After that lunch at Shimoga. From Shimoga, Bangalore is about 300 km. We stopped for chai after about 120 km. Ashu did not stop there. We rode till Tumkur after that and called Ashu. He was entering Bangalore! We also continued riding and reached home by 6.

Near Jog Falls, Karnataka

This was by far the best trip I had! 1500 km in 4 days! But I have to go to Goa again and this time for a longer duration...


Summary:
-------------

Date:
15th Feb 2007 to 19th Feb 2007

Riders:
1. Ashish - Bajaj Avenger
2. Ashutosh - RE Thunderbird
3. Saswata - Honda Unicorn
4. Sumit - Bajaj Avenger
5. Amit - Bajaj Pulsar 150

Route:

Forward
Bangalore - Neelmangla - Hassan - Belur - Chikamagalur - Sringeri - Manipal - Marwanthe - Someshwar - Murudeshwar - Karwar - Madgaon - Panaji

Return
Panaji - Honnavar - Jog Falls - Sagar - Shimoga - Tumkur - Bangalore

Total Distance Bangalore to Bangalore: 1500 KM

Night Stay:
1st Night: Hassan. Good Double bedroom for Rs 275/-
2nd Night: Murudeshwar. OK Double bedroom at lodge for Rs 200/-
3rd Night: Calingute Beach. Good Double bedroom for Rs 350/-
4th Night: Honnavar. Very nice Double bedroom for Rs 350/-


More pics can be seen here


9 comments:

Ashu said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
JJ said...

Hey Ashish,

Cool account. You make it sound like such great fun that I wish I were there too.

Juhi

Ashish said...

@ashu: yaar goa ek baar aur jaana hoga :)

@jj: Thanks! It doesn't only sound, it really is fun! :)

Ashu said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
amitp said...

great Mann !!!
what a work :)
tujhe itna sabkuch yad kaise rah gaya , anyways its good to get a flavour of that trip.
aaj bhi wo trip morale booster ki tarah work karti hai .... (;-))
aur mote ko hurt to karega hi ..bahut emotional aadmi hai ..

chalo ,,thanks again :)

Ashish said...

@ashu: sure :)

@pandey: haan yaar bahut hi mast trip thi .. morale booster ko use kar aur chal next trip mein :)

Ashu said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
hai baji said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
anjali gupta said...

Great blog post and worth reading. Thanks for sharing information about Hotel Fishland in Manipal. I have been planning to visit this town soon. Check out some other options available in hotels in Manipal to choose from.