Ooty aka Udagaai aka Udakamandalam aka Ootachamund is a very well known place in South India. It is a very famous hill station which is always covered in clouds. Coonoor is another famous location very near to ooty. Also famous for mindblowing viewpoints. Our journey started from Bangalore in June at 3 am in the morning. 4 of us started to travel in 2 bikes. One pulsar 200 and one pulsar 220. We had to travel in the Mysore road towards Mysore. By 4.30 in the morning, we had reached a Barista lavazza cafe near Channapatna which is around 60 kms from Bangalore. We were so hungry and ate and drank very well there itself and left at around 5.15 to Mysore. We rode continuously till Mysore and reached there by 6.50. There is a small hotel called Hotel Mylari in nazarbad in Mysore.
This Independence Day came on a Sunday and I was at Karur. Obviously we planned for an outing. After thinking about a couple of genres we decided on mountains. A couple of options and we finalized on Kollimalai. 2 bikes, 4 friends, 1 destination. I was excited coz this was one trip with a decently bigger number of people. But then, next day morning, with one person with a bad hangover, we ended up with just 2 of us... Kollimalai is a precious herbal spot. Even the wind seemed the carry a medicated herbal essence. The hill range has been spoken of in several Tamil Literatures. I remember once in school days, I read a poem ‘ Kollimalai enakkilaya Chellimalai Amme…’. Well. I forgot who wrote it and in which literary work was it!!! Does it ring a bell to any of you guys?..
(a lesser known cousin of Hampi !) Strolling around in a mall / window shopping is not that enjoyable if & when you need to lug around an adorable 1.5 yr old toddler. As such, weekends and other free time tends to get incredibly boring! Eating out is passé, hitting the popular spots in the city even more so and staying at home is not even an option, considering you would have been closeted at home thru the working week albeit with your lovable kid. So here’s what happens, you find yourself analysing all the leisure activities and weekend getaways from your place very very minutely.
Savandurga is near about 60 Km from Bangalore is the largest monolith in the world. Famous for trekking , Narasimmah swami temple and the hill itself. What I noticed were the trees. As this is a very big monolith, trees have adapted to grow on rocks like one in the above picture, there were many like this. This is the natural Bonsai tree, growing on the limited soil and water supply. We climbed on to the hill in the sun, it was very hot but I enjoyed clickinig these trees.
Running short of options for a weekend getaway is not so unusual and the situation was quite similar when we planned for one. A lot of googling led us to Sakleshpur , a small town in southern Karnataka , famous for coffee and pepper plantations. 20 kms away from this place lies a small home stay by the name Coffee Valley. A train journey from Bengaluru landed us at the deserted Sakleshpur railway station at 4 am. That was indeed a spooky stay of almost half an hour before our pick up car came. With absolutely no trace of human beings around we found it to be quite adventurous.