My last visit to Athirappilly waterfalls was more than 20 years ago and my memories of the famous waterfalls were faint. Off late the urge to visit them have been on the rise and to fulfill it we started our drive from Cochin to Athirappilly on a lovely bright morning. After taking the deviation at Chalakkudi, lovely winding roads took us through a lot of greenery to one of the hotspots of Kerala . Enroute we passed numerous plantations and small creeks before reaching the waterfalls. A long queue of kiosks, which sold various items awaited us at the parking area. The falls is located amidst the thick Sholayar forests near Tamil Nadu border.
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?..
Visited Kokkare Bellur again, 15 months after my first visit. There were not many birds this time. Painted Storks were around 20-25 in number.Pelicans were very less in number. I counted 7 or 8 pelicans. I tried to get a decent shot of these big birds, but in vain. That pelican was hiding behind the tree branches as if its being guilty of something:P Few of the sun-bathing Storks posed for the camera without hesitation. And so was this squatting one Bellur, became famous &got the prefix ‘Kokkare’ (Storks) because of these beautiful birds &is home for hundreds of storks &pelicans.
Western Ghats constitute the mountain range along the western side of India. It is also considered as the Biological hot spot as it provides housing for diverse species. Kodachadri is one of the popular trekking spot near to Shimoga, Karnataka . One can even reach there using public transport as there are buses from Shimoga often. It was suggested by many that not to trek Kodachadri during Monsoon.On the top or peak of kodachadri is the Shankara Peetam (also called as Sarvajna Peetam), a place where Mythology explains that Adi Shankaracharya did Tapas in order to get blessings from Devi.
Predictably my favorite beaches are located in my home state of Karnataka , though I like Goan beaches , they are too crowded for my comfort. I haven't been to Kerala 's beaches and the beaches in Tamil Nadu (at least the ones I have been to) were very dirty and full of dead fish. I have been to Mumbai's beaches but they were dirtier than the TN ones. In Andhra Pradesh and Orissa the beaches were so hot that I couldn't enjoy being there and to my bad luck I visited these states in the peak of summer so I don't have particularly fond memories of these locations. Anyway now cutting the chatter here are some of my most favorite beaches in Karnataka . The holy beach behind the main temple in Gokarna , crowded but it is so long that one can find some secluded place...