Bangalore to Chikmagalur

IMG_5234So it all started with the planning for a 2nd marriage anniversary and we love traveling. So it wasn’t really a huge surprise that we decided to hit the road rather than have a party somewhere. After a lot of discussions and web searching, we decided to go to Chikmagalur and then added Mangalore as well.

Started on 20th Oct at 5 am from home but got stuck in traffic near Vivanta by Taj, Yeshwantpur. Road from Bangalore to Chikmagalur is brilliant and we cruised all the way. Don’t forget to eat at Kamat’s near Channarayapattana. This place is about 150 km from Bangalore, but I am telling you it is worth the wait.

Finally we reached Chikmagalur and I was unhappy as the place/city was really average but that is not what Chikmagalur is all about. Go to those hills that you will see and it is a different world. We checked in SK Regency (http://www.skregency.in/)  as we needed a place to crash. The room was average but service was prompt.

Then we went to Mullayanagiri Peak, Mullayanagiri (Kannada: ಮುಳ್ಳಯ್ಯನಗಿರಿ) (also spelt Mullayangiri or Mullainagiri), is the highest peak in Karnataka, India. Mullayanagiri is located at 13°23′26″N 75°43′18″E in the Baba Budan Giri Range of the Western Ghats of Chikmagalur Taluk. With a height of 1,930 metres (6,330 ft), it is the highest peak between the Himalayas and the Nilgiris. The place was beautiful and suddenly the weather was cold and windy. So take a jacket with you when you go there.

Next day, 21st Oct, we headed to Mangalore and we had no idea that roads are pathetic. Hair-Pin bends have huge pots and suddenly you end up in one as there is so less space to maneuver. We went straight to Penambur beach, supposedly the best beach in Mangalore, but it was an utter shame. The beach has dead fish all around and it turned me off and we did not venture into water. There is no place to stay near the beach and we decided to stay in the city and checked into Hotel Navratna Palace as all the hotels were booked due to Navratras. The room was beautiful but the service was pathetic here.

We went around the city and had nice tender coconut water and local tea. Finally in the evening we went to The Ocean Pearl (http://www.theoceanpearl.in/) as we wanted to have authentic Mangalorean food and oh boy! This place is awesome. We first went to The Jazz, the lounge bar and spend couple of hours there and moved to Coral, to have Mangalorean food. We order Kori Roti and it was very tasty. And the place is not at all expensive. We spent only INR 2000 that night on everything.

Later dinner we went for a city drive and loved the well-lit city due to festive season.

Next morning, 22nd Oct, we started out journey to Chikmagalur and I hated the fact that I have to drive on those pathetic roads again. But we had no choice. We reached Chikmagalur and we had already booked a homestay in The Spectrum (http://www.thespectrum.in/) . The place is tucked away in woods we had some nice relaxing time there. I guess it should not be called a homestay as it is a lot commercialized and looks more of a hotel-with-food. Our phones did not work as Airtel did not have signal there. I was told only BSNL will do. The food was spicy but tasty and the service is fine too. Shashi, the manager, has a pleasing personality but it is a pity that Jaya Pradha, the owner, never visited us. But as I said, this place is more of a hotel-with-food than a homestay. We had a nice bonfire in the evening and started our journey to Bangalore next morning.

Since we had some time, we took a detour to Halebidu and it was worth the effort. Halebidu is located in Hassan District, Karnataka, India. Halebidu (which was previously called Dorasamudra or Dwarasamudra) was the regal capital of the Hoysala Empire in the 12th century. It is home to one of the best examples of Hoysala architecture in the ornate Hoysaleswara and Kedareswara temples. Halebidu literally means ruined city. This name is given because this city was ruined two times by Bahmani Sultanate. We spend an hour there and then started our journey to Bangalore and reached here by 2 PM.

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