Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Trip report - Chennai to Kalayarkoil

Surprise of surprise my office gave 4 days leave for  puja holidays from 22-10-15 to 25-10-15.

Immediately thought of a trip to a new place, as usual no place came to my mind. After considering many places chose Uthirgosamangai and Thirupullani.

Plan was to start on 22-10-15 day after Ayudha pooja, but packing and planning was not properly done for 22nd start. So left on 23-10-15 Friday.

Started from home on 23-10-15 morning 6:45 am, as usual first halt at Eraniamman temple, reached chengalpet, Garuda staff bus was the irritant factor, he stopped in the middle of the road for alighting his staff, no road sense at all and blocked for a full 5 minutes. Does these white staff bus drivers get licence from Indian chandru, don’t they know for boarding and alighting they should stop the buses at the edge of the road, ensuring the road is not blocked, when will they learn road sense?.

Traffic was thin and maintained a sedate run reached Villupuram bypass ariyas hotel and got the famous kamarcut, proceeded crossed Vikravandi, Ulundurpet toll plazas without much queue but these toll plazas demand 5 rupees change, in Thirumandurai toll plaza gave 50 rs for 45 rupees toll, that fellow returned only 4 rupees. From Ulundurpet to Padalaur direction complete two lanes are relaid but no road marking is done. It makes really difficult at night to use this stretch without road marking, complained at the toll plaza.

Stopped at Chakra milk parlour by 10:40am and had tea, samosa, paneer spring roll, icecream, rosemilk and milk halwa. Icecream and rose milk were good others just avoid. It had neat washroom facility, after a 20 minutes halt and photo session continued towards pudukottai

On the move booked lodge room at pudukottai AKGN lodge opposite to bus stand, tried other three at pudukottai they told they were full.

At the ponmalai G ground, Nishanth had a driving session for 5 km.

Entered the pudukottai road and reached hotel at 12:45 pm, the lodge is just opposite to the bus stand at pudukottai, but no car parking facility, on the phone the hotel person told space for car parking is there, but parked the vehicle in front of lodge on the road at night.

Had a short nap and finished lunch at Abirami hotel, the food was not at all good. By 2:30 pm started towards Uthragosamangai, crossed Karaikudi and took Kallal, Kalaiyarkoil route, suddenly felt the acceleration was missing and car was losing power. It could not accelerate, didn’t know the reason, reached kalaiyarkoil by 3:30 pm and found temple will be open by 4 pm only. Tried to locate a car mechanic whether he can help us, there were no car mechanic shop around.

As the car was having trouble decided not to proceed till Uthragosamangai as it would be risky. So curtailed the trip at Kalayarkoil itself

Entered the temple and found it a massive one, it had 3 individual temples inside, and all three temples have separate Shiva and Parvathi shrine. The temple tower is recently consecrated so it was colourful and shining, it is a huge 155 feet tall with 9 tiers

The priests were not there, took our own time to finish darshan as we were the only one inside the temple complex.

Started from Kalayarkoil by 5:30 pm and the tried to reach Hyundai helpline to find any service centre is there in Pudukottai, but found out to reach Pudukottai it will be around 7:00 pm the workshop would have closed for the day so checked with other alternate source and found one Sugirth service centre at Karaikudi, located and entered the workshop pat 5:30 pm, explained the problem and they were quick to attend. 

But the workshop is newly opened it seems the ramps are not ready, they took 2 hours to work on it, but after taking the vehicle found the same issue persisting, again returned to the workshop and complained. This time the service assistant took us a ride and found the problem repeating, but they told there are no other technician or ECU OBD tool available to rectify at that time. Dejected took the vehicle and left for pudukottai, at pudukottai there was some political meeting they made us to go round the town and missed many roads to find our lodge, finally reached lodge by 9:30 pm.

Parked the vehicle in front of the lodge after removing all bikes and went for dinner, not able to locate any good hotels, found one Poosachar mess and had dinner, ordered the famous Pudukottai muttaimass, it was not our liking, otherwise food was ok.

On 24-10-15 Saturday, vacated the room by 7 am and started towards home, first halt was at Brahadhambal temple, it is temple carved from cave, another excellent workmanship, since it was morning as usual no priest was there they were cleaning the temple, had a good darshan from terrace, ground floors and started after spending 20 minutes inside the temple.

Car was behaving the same manner the pickup and speed was lacking. Crossed Trichy, samayapuram reached by 8:15, we had planned to visit Thiruppainjeeli near Manachanallur but couldn’t locate the proper diversion road, halted near perambalaur bypass at hotel Sangeetha for breakfast, service was poor, taste was not so good. Finished breakfast and continued our run next halt was at Ulundurpet for tender coconut, came to Vikravandi KFC by 11:30 am, spend 20 minutes in the restaurant started and reached home by 1:30 pm.

The best part is while going to Pudukottai, started at 6:45 am  with one break we reached by 12:45 pm complete 6 hours journey , while returning started at 7 am with 4 breaks and with reduced pickup we reached home by 1:30 pm, 6.50 hours journey with break itself taking more than 90 minutes. 
Trichy Pudukottai Karaikudi road is well marked with light reflecting road studs, which makes night driving a safe experience.
Other photos of the trip

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