1st May 2009 – Woke up early and headed towards Thekkady after breakfast.Reached Thekkady at 12.30 PM.Checked in at the resort (Periyar Meadows), left little disappointed at the location of the resort , it was right in the city so no view from balcony , though it was good from inside.
After lunch at a not so good restaurant(Krishna) near by , we reached the Periyar tiger reserve , only to discover that there was a big queue for tickets. To add to it , it started drizzlin as well.Suddenly it clicked to me and we called our travel agent. He had promised that he would arrange the tickets and we would pay and he had forgotten about it convieniently and so did we. So when we called , he arranged tickets in 30 minutes. It was only 2.30 and the next boat ride was due at 4 PM. So we loafed around , had some tea / ice creams , clicked some snaps and waited.
Aryan who was scared as well as thrilled from the speed boat ride previous day , was double minded about going in a boat. He was saying “boat no” at times but was excited at the sight of boats as well. Since we were planning to go in a steamer ,bigger and higher than a speed boat , I told him that we will go in a small ship and not boat. And he was happy and pacified.
There was lot of pushing and rushing to enter into the boat. But once seated we enjoyed the lake ,the weather and the birds resting on the naked tree trunks in the lake. In the name of animals , we saw wild dogs , wild pigs , wild buffaloes and deers , all from too far to really differntiate , had the guide not told who was who. We also spotted some seals , who were playing quite near by.
Over all , we cannot say that we enjoyed the ride to a Tiger reserve since we hardly spotted any animals but we definitely enjoyed the ride.
Free from tiger reserve at 5.30 we went to the local market , again exlored and bought some spices. Bought a sovieneir for home , explored local handicrafts. Came to the resort by 7 PM , rested and slept early.
2nd May 2009 – Again we woke up early. Aryan enjoyed sitting in the balcony. Started from thekkady at 8.30 Am to Alleppy.On the way we saw lot of cardomom , pine apple and rubber plantation ,spotted a little bit of coffee plantation as well. As soon as we entered Alleppy we were thrilled looking at water all around. It was an amazing sight , a road between the water , cocout trees standing tall with water all around , pieces of land and people happily leaving around water, small bridges for pedestrians to cross water canals. Venice of India , I would call it !
Can you spot cardomom flower !
You know what this is !
We boarded the house boat at 12.30 PM. A house boat in true sense. Tiled bathrooms ,proper kitchen , two double bedrooms(My in laws accompanied us) , a dining table , a TV , an AC and a sofa , what more do you want in house.
Boat started moving in no time and our journey to explore Venice started. Boat halted for lunch after an hour and a we had a good spread of simple homely , yet yummiest lunch of the trip. After lunch we started the journey again. We were amazed to see houses ,banks , offices , cars , bikes and what not in small pieces of lands surrounded by water. We noticed that people use small boats called dingris to travel from one end to another. There were bigger boats to tranfer cars to the roads. There was police station and police patrolling in a steamer. The drinking water was tranfered in sintex tanks , laid on the dingris and pilled by the steamers. How life goes on , anywhere and everywhere !
Boat halted again at 5.30. We captured sunset in back waters. Had yummy dinner and slept sound in our big cradle.
3rd May 2009 – Woke up early for sunrise! Boat started at 8 AM. We checked out by 9 AM and started our journey to cochin. Cochin was near by and we reached there by 11 AM. It was too hot and humid. But we could not leave the charm of visiting a beach. Spent 1 hour at Cherai beach & collected some sea shells 🙂
We had pizza for lunch since all decent restaurants were closed. It was funny , how the city was closed it being a sunday !. Reached railway station at 3 PM though the train was at 5.00 PM. Our tickets were not confirmed and so we wanted to reach early. Got 2 confirmed and 2 RAC. Boarded the train only to realize that there was no pantry in the train and so we ordered food. Aryan started asking for food from 6.30 PM. Had a tough time with him , making him eat whatever food items we were carrying and pacifying him. Got the other tickets confirmed by 9 PM. But Aryan wanted to sleep on top berth and we had 2 top ones but on the side. So had a slightly tough night sleeping on the side birth with Aryan.
4th May 2009 – Reached home at 5 in the morning.
Hey All , Back from a 4 days trip to kerala and I have so much to tell that one post would be too short for it.
Let me see how far I can get.
Disclaimer : Some details won’t make sense to you but I want to write them for a record 🙂
28th Apr 2009 – We planned to take a train at 9 PM after office and booked a cab for 6.45 PM (as adviced by everyone) but cab did not turn up till 7.15 PM inspite of blasing them every 5 minutes. We managed to get 2 autos(some how in triple rate) and loaded our luggage and see what , the cab appeared suddenly ! Finally we hurried to the station got in the train 10-15 minutes before time. Phew !
Train ride was pretty smooth except that Aryan refused to share the berth with me and that left me sitting for 2-3 hours.
29th Apr 2009 – Reached Cochin at 8 in the morning and had some yummy breakfast at Udupi and I liked Kerala sytle sambhar :-)Drive to Munnar was beautiful. Enroute we saw 3 water falls , not much water though due to summer. Had some fresh carrots , strawberries , Red bananas , coconut water and pine apple.
Some Green Spices on the way, preserved in vinegar
A Water fall – less water due to summers
I had never seen so much of tea plantaion. The resort(T & U) in Munnar was beautiful with lots of flowers all over. After our bath we headed out for lunch (Mahaveer Restaurant) and went for sight seeing soon after. But in the town of Munnar everything except the market closes at 4.30 PM since its usually cold after that.
So we ended up th the town market.It was a so typically hill station kind of market with a difference. There were no shops of local handicrafts. All the shops were selling tea and spices , loads and loads of them. So after some window shopping we came back and enjoyed the garden in the resort.Had candle light dinner in resort and slept nicely.
The famous Kerala Parantha being made !
30th Apr 2009 – Day 2 in Munnar ,I so much wanted to see the first rays of sunand hence I had put an alarm in one of our mobiles for 6 AM. The alarm rang but I realized it was dark.So we ordered tea and after tea also it was dark.Then something buzzed in Anupam’s mind and he saw the watch. It was only 5 AM. The alarm rang in the other mobile 😛 and looks like Aryan had put the alarm while playing with my phone.So Anupam went back to sleep while I justed passed time and went down around 5.45 AM , only to realize that sun rises right in the opposite direction and there is no chance I can see sun rise. Anyways I enjoyed the mist , birds and flowers and loafed around in the park for 30 minutes.
The day was full of sight seeing and fun. Headed to Top Station soon after breakfast , followed by Kundalay dam , echo point and then Mattupatty dam. Did some speed boating there and throughly enjoyed that. Aryan enjoyed as well but got scared towards the end as the boat took a sharp turn.
Had lunch (Munnar Inn) and then headed to KDHP Tea Museum. Saw an documentary (Old Mountains ,New Roads) about the histry of tea in Munnar, learnt some amazing facts about tea and saw a tea processing unit in function. It was an experience of its own, though photography was prohibitted.
Eravikulam national park was the next destination in the hope to see the endangered Nilgiri Tahr. We were not lucky to spot any though. But we enjoyed waling between the clouds , so much so you could not see 5 feet above you.
Some Orchids at a flower show
Came back , played in the resort and slept sound to wake up early for Thekkady.
Stay Tuned for Thekkady and Alleppey !