Guest Post || A short trip to Kailasagiri by Lakshmi

Where there is a hill, there is a temple! Very much true about the hills in India, right? So, this time let’s travel to a cave temple built on top of a hill, known as Kailasagiri. Not only temple but also there are other surprises on the go. Of course, a great place for photography! Come on guys… rock rock rock! I mean this place is full of rocks ahh ūüėČ

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As usual, this is also a ‘not so crowded’ weekend getaway from Bangalore. Apt for a short day trip. My brother and his wife came for a weekend and it was their 2nd wedding anniversary. So we thought of taking them to a place nearby where they can have a photo shoot as well. This time we did not have kids with us. It was a couple’s day out.

Let’s jump in to the route and other details.

Situated at : Chikkaballapura District, Karnataka

Distance : 70 km

Known for : Trekking, Cave temple, Reservoir

Best time to visit : Mostly during winters. Preferably in the mornings and evenings as it will be too sunny during the mid day. We went on Feb 2nd 2020.

Estimated travel time : 2 hrs. We started at 6.45 am and reached by 8.45 am.

 

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We had a stop by on the way to have our breakfast.

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Route : Varthur, Balagere Road(Our place) ‚Äď Whitefield ‚Äď Hoskote ‚Äď straight through Kadappa Bengaluru Highway ‚Äď take left where you will see the big board ‘Kailasagiri’ ‚Äď one more left from the next ‘Y’ intersection.

Expenses : Hoskote-Chinthamani toll plaza ‚Äď Rs 55(double side, no Fastag here), Hoskote Highway Toll -Rs 20 (one side), Parking at Kailasagiri ‚Äď Rs 10, Kaivara Reserve Forest(Kaivara Thapovana) ‚Äď Rs 10 and other expenses for food.

Commute : Apt for bikers. We anyways, went in our own car. The village roads are best for countryside cycling (Carry one if you are a cycling enthusiast. Would give you a wonderful experience)

Temple timings : 9.30 am to 8 pm, Pujas and rituals are performed here.

We reached the foothills around 9 am and the temple was not open. So, here comes the surprise as I said. There is a reservoir just nearby known as Ambaji Durga Reservoir. It’s such a beautiful place with the lake and rocks.


It was perfect place for a photo shoot. Anyone planning for one, note this place. We took a cam full of photos, enjoyed the view and tranquility of nature. There are few rocks where you can climb on it. Ended up as an adventurous photo session ūüôā Plus point is, not at all crowded so enjoyed our sweet time.

We had parked our car near the entrance of temple where the stone paved path begins. As expected, here as well we encountered the monkey army. The beautiful stone paved path will take you to the top where the cave temple is. Though I saw few old age people, I felt it would be difficult for aged people. This spot is best for youngsters and kids. I heard trekking is also an attraction here. We did not go for it anyways.

Once you reach the top it’s such an amazing view. The breeze makes you feel ease.


The twin rocks sits together like someone had glued them many moons ago! It is believed that the Pandavas lived here for sometime during their exile.

Just below these huge rocks there are blue metal gates(doors) which are the entrance of cave temple. This cave is a recent man made construction and still going on.

The deities are Sri Jagadambe, Sri Vallabha Ganapathy and Sri Chathurmukhalingeshwara (Shiv linga with faces carved on 4 sides).
I must say how cool it feels inside. It’s so refreshing. We took a walk inside and saw the main part of cave. A stage and hall where people can meditate peacefully. Photography is prohibited inside. Still managed to click few pics.
Post this, as usual we went to explore nearby places.

Found Kaiwara Thapovana which was a complete time waste. The place would have been a good spot if they had maintained well. Don’t know for what purpose are they collecting Rs.10 per person as entrance fee! We saw two young couples inside and few swans caged inside a small pond. Took few photos here as well. Nothing much to explore.

Though we did not go, I will hint you few nearby places here you can visit.

– Vaikunda Betta ( This temple is just opposite to Kaiwara Thapovana)
– Ambaji Durga Betta with a Fort (Not suitable for families, apt for trekking)
– Bhima Bakasura Betta / Chamundi Betta (climb is around 500 steps, Lakshman Thirtha is here)
– Bheemeshwara Temple
– Sri Amaranarayana Swamy Temple
– Sri Yogi Narayana Mutt (Dedicated to Kaiwara Tatayya)

Tips :

– There are few small shops nearby. Still advisory to carry water bottles.
– cap/hat, sunscreen (those who really worry about tanning ūüėČ )
– Wearing your sport shoes will do good.

 

Story By

Sreelakshmi

About the Author
Sreelakshmi
Ten years of journey in HR/Quality field and 5 years in teaching came to an end few months back. Now as a homemaker I enjoy the quality time with my family. I also loved doing part-time jobs with All India Radio as a RJ and few other private radios in Kerala. Writing and travelling are my passions. Do visit my story blog as well.
Below is my travel blog. Please take a look.

YP Original || Matheran: A no-honking hill station by Abhimanyu

What can be a better escape on a rainy weekend from Mumbai or Pune than Matheran?

Matheran is the only hill station, where vehicles are banned and you can clearly listen the sound of breeze rustling leaves and the sound of the horse shoes. It is the one hill station that is so close by that one can visit it at the drop of a hat. One can commute and explore the hills either on foot or on  horseback. This is a perfect place for Digital detoxification as one can call it, to enjoy in the lap of mother nature.

As far as travel to the hill station is concerned, Matheran can be reached by road from Mumbai or Pune via Road or Train with ease.

We stayed at very calm place and fits in budget. It  is a heritage building and is about 100 years old. The rooms were very spacious, the washrooms were okay but the food was really good. Even though they do not serve any non vegetarian food or alcohol, still I would say that the quality of food and variety was good.The rent on a weekend for a single night was Rs 3000/- for a double occupancy room, inclusive of all meals.

As for tourist activities, Matheran has about 22 points which are listed below. These were all developed by Britishers.

Important points are Alexander Pt., Rambag Pt, Little Chowk Pt, Big Chowk Pt, One Tree Hill Pt, Belvedere Pt, Olympia Race Course, Lords Pt, Charlotte Lake,Celia Pt (a water fall mouth), Echo Pt., Porcupine Pt (Sun Set Pt), Panorama Point (Sun Rise Pt), Khandala Pt, Madhavji Garden & Point, Matheran Railway Station, Louisa Point, Mayra Point, Pisarnath Temple.

It takes about 3 days to cover all the points and since we had a¬†time constraint we decided to visit only the important places. We decided to visit all the scenic points but if you are an adrenaline junkie, you can¬†try Valley crossing from echo point. High on the hills, when you witness the fog snd feel the cold wind against your face nothing can taste better in that weather than¬†hot maggie and corn.¬†Its advisable to reach back your resort before it gets dark as the hill terrain is not equipped with street lights. So to reach in¬†time, we decided to hire horsebacks with funny names such as hawa hawai.¬†After sound night’s sleep and a¬†¬†delicious morning breakfast¬†we left for Mumbai. Took a Toy train (15 mins journey) from Matheran to Aman Lodge, then shared taxi to Neral and then Local train to Thane and finally back home after experiencing a much needed Digital Detoxification.

It is a calm hill station, with no vehicles at all which makes it peaceful. One only has nature to enjoy and be as adventurous as one wants to be.
Story by – Abhimanyu

Barnawapara ‚Äď A not so famous Wildlife Sanctuary

At yatripandit, we believe there should be no boundaries on travelling especially when it comes to jungle and wildlife. It is the only one, out of 543 wildlife sanctuaries in India where you can drive your own car inside the protected area. When we came about this unique fact about Barnawapara, we were already inside our Ford Ecosport heading towards the Jungle.IMG_20170203_155409672

My younger brother suggested us this trip and 3 of us along with him, left from the capital city of Chhattisgarh, Raipur at 2pm and within 2 hours we were at the entry gate of Barnawapara. The highways are maintained in tint condition and cruising on them gave us great adrenaline rush.

Where to stay: We chose to stay at CG Tourism’s, Hareli eco resort ditching the more famous ones like Muba Resort and celebration. We did not regret the stay and hospitality even one percent and saved some bucks as well. The resort is well maintained, wide spread, and located on a lake side. Its service is fabulous as well and can be booked from various online platforms.

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After getting our room keys and dumping our luggage, we boarded our car and headed straight to the protected area entry gate. A guide, who are usually local village boys can be hired from the entry gate at a nominal price of 300-500 INR. Getting a guide is a must otherwise you might get lost forever in the wilderness(just exaggerating a little more).  It was a good 1.5 hours ride on bumpy jungle roads. And we were lucky to spot a sloth bear lazing around by the road side, wild boar and a heard of deer.

Deers

Back to our machan like rooms in the Hareli resort, changed and got fresh to have a relaxed time sitting in balcony sharing some talks from our old jungle trips(read about Bandhavgarh and Bastar), laughs,  relishing some drinks with freshly cooked snacks and doodling over music. All we needed after that was a good dinner and some nice sleep. The dinner was cooked on demand and was more like a home cooked food. We truly enjoyed every bite of it.

What to do: Jungle safaris are all about waking up before dawn and in Hareli resort the chirping birds played our alarms clocks. Within minutes we were driving in our Ecosport again and reached the entry gate driving through the fog and mist in no time. Hired a new guide and there we were inside this beautiful jungle which is spread over an area of about 245 sq km in the Mahasamund district of Chhattisgarh. Bird watching in Barnawapara is one of the most enjoyed activities. The major fauna of the Barnawapara Sanctuary include Tigers, Sloth Bear, Flying Squirrels, Jackals, Striped Hyena, Wild Dogs, Chital, Sambar, Nilgai, Gaur, Muntjac, Wild Boar, Cobra, Python, Antelopes, Leopards, Chinkara, Black Buck, Jungle Cat, Barking Deer, Porcupine, Monkey, Bison, to name a few. The sanctuary also has a large population of birds that include Parrots, Bulbul, White-rumped Vultures, Green Avadavat, Lesser Kestrels, Peafowl, Wood Peckers and the list can go on and on. We could spot many of these but tiger. ūüė¶

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Africa look alike lake

Do not miss climbing to the highest watch tower and observe the forest silently breathing pure and light. That greenery; spread till the horizon is the best treat you can offer to your eyes, tired of laptop and cell phone screens.

 

When to go: The protected area is closed for tourist during Monsoons(June to Sept) every year. The most suitable time of the year is winters i.e. November to March.

Not to worry if you donot have your own can to offroad, Gypsy’s and jungle safari’s can be hired at the entry gate or Hareli resort can arrange the same for you.

Bidding adieus to this self motorable jungle; we were back again to smaller concrete Jungle(Raipur) in 2 hours and next day to a bigger one(Pune). We captured many memories and pictures. We surely are returning back to this jungle very soon.

Stay tuned for our upcoming story on rules of the Jungle (Which are NOT location specific).

Story by: Abhimanyu

Please click on the ads which appear on the website. This blog is still very young and growing. If you like the story, do not shy away from reciprocating your love in form of likes comments and sharing on social media

Guhagar ‚Äď with Sandy, White Sand and Serenity

We know you liked our last story, kuch khaas hai kaas on Kaas Plateau published in September 2017 and as promised here we are sharing the 2nd phase of that amazing Road trip with Sandy. If you missed reading the preceding story, click here and then read the current one.

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Here you go, After dumping the idea of quitting jobs and realizing that its getting dark, we hit the road again to reach our final destination- Guhagar. It was about 180 kms drive from Satara via karad and Chiplun. The roads were not in a good condition throughout the journey and there were some steep ghats, then we reached to the pre booked Nilambari Resort.

Where to STAY: It was a 3 bed non AC room with attached toilet and television. The resort owner is very friendly and we could bargain and get the fare down to Rs 1000/- from Rs.1500/-. After having typical Konkani poha and tea served at the Resort, we headed to the beach which is about a five minute walk from the resort.

What to EAT: While in Guhagar, one must try Konkani vegetarian food like ukdi chamodak, sol kadi, Bhaves, kokam sharbat and Thali-pith of Suruchi hotel is a must eat. Konkani sea food is globally recognized for its taste and while in this part of the sub-continent, one cannot afford to miss:  kalva, mhakala, vaghal, bonbil, kolim, kombadi vade, mori mutton, Ghol, Rawas etc.

We were awestruck after feeling the smooth white sand on this virgin Guhagar beach. The water was clear and so was the beach. It felt as 3 of us were the only tourists.  After having a dip in the Arabian sea, we headed towards the famous Gopalgarh fort which has great historic significance. It is believed to be built at the start of 16th Century by the Siddis. It was captured by Shivaji Maharah in 1660.

Being one of the most important lighthouses of India, Anjanvel Light house is a must visit. The lighthouse operator explained us the technicalities involved in signaling and controlling the ships. We halted at an unknown and unnamed venue on the hill and facing the mighty Arabian Sea for some time and did not realize when we ended up halting there for hours. The air was the freshest that we ever had inhaled and the breathtaking view was the best ever experience we could have captured in ours lens, eyes and hearts. The thought of quitting job was dwindling all over again. We enjoyed some late night drinks on the beach in the moonlight and under the sky full of twinkling stars.

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Vyadeshwar and Velaneshwar temple:  Both are temples of Lord Shiva and are the Kuladaivat of a lot of Kokanastha Brahmins.

Next morning we were all set to hit road and decided to take the road less traveled, where we had to cross Dabhol creek on a ferry along with our car, which was a superb experience to reach Ratnagiri. Visited an ancient Chandika Devi Temple to reach Pune via not so easy to drive Tamhini Ghat. The ghat is full of waterfalls and scenic beauty during the monsoon. We drove back to Mumbai with a lifetime experience, much improved bond of friendship and promises for the many more upcoming roadtrips.

Must carry stuff on a roadtrip: Aux cable, cigarette point charger, knife, water, jacket, extra pair of shoes, sunglasses, sunscreen, old newspapers, mat, bedsheet, nail cutter, mug, DSLR, football, snacks,  beachwear (if the place you heading to has a beach)and hell lot of great music.

Do not miss to listen to the music what we love on roadtrip by clicking HERE

Story by: Abhimanyu

Pictures by: Utkarsh & Sandy

Please click on the ads which appear on the website and help us earn some money to travel. This blog is still very young and growing. If you like the story, do not shy away from reciprocating your love in form of likes comments and sharing on social media

Secret Campsite at Kasol – Photolog

Our love of Camping is well known, recently we have been to a Secret Camping Site in Northen Part of India Kasol, Himanchal.

 

Here are some Images from our wonderful trip !!

 

Yatripandit Kasol
Parvati River
Yatripandit
View from Tent
Yatripandit Kasol
Road Less Traveled, Way to Campsite
Yatripandit Kasol
Campsite at Nowhere
Mountains
Evening View
River View
Sun and Mountain
Sunset

 

Geo Location 

 

Pictures by: Satyavrat

Please click on the ads which appear on the website and help us earn some money to travel. This blog is still very young and growing. If you like the story, do not shy away from reciprocating your love in form of likes comments and sharing on social media

Matheran: A no-honking hill station

What can be a better escape on a rainy weekend from Mumbai or Pune than Matheran. Matheran is the only hill station in India, where vehicles are banned and you can clearly listen the sound of breeze rustling leaves and that of the horseshoes.

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It is the one hill station that is so close by that one can visit it at the drop of a hat. One can commute and explore the hills either on foot or on horseback. This is a perfect place for Digital detoxification as one can call it, to enjoy in the lap of mother nature.

matheran_banner-2

As far as travel to the hill station is concerned, Matheran can be reached by road from Mumbai or Pune via Road or Train with ease.

We stayed at Hotel Cecil which is a very calm place and fits in the budget. It is a heritage building and is about 100 years old. The rooms were very spacious, the washrooms were okay but the food was really good. Even though they do not serve any nonvegetarian food or alcohol, still I would say that the quality of food and variety was good.The rent on a weekend for a single night was Rs 3000/- for a double occupancy room, inclusive of all meals.

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As for tourist activities, Matheran has about 22 points which are listed below. These were all developed by Britishers.

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Important points are Alexander Pt., Rambag Pt, Little Chowk Pt, Big Chowk Pt, One Tree Hill Pt, Belvedere Pt, Olympia Race Course, Lords Pt, Charlotte Lake,Celia Pt (a waterfall mouth), Echo Pt., Porcupine Pt (Sun Set Pt), Panorama Point (Sun Rise Pt), Khandala Pt, Madhavji Garden & Point, Matheran Railway Station, Louisa Point, Mayra Point, Pisarnath Temple.

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It takes about 3 days to cover all the points and since we had a¬†time constraint we decided to visit only the important places. We decided to visit all the scenic points but if you are an adrenaline junkie, you can¬†try Valley crossing from echo point. High on the hills, when you witness the fog and feel the cold wind against your face nothing can taste better in that weather than¬†hot maggie and corn.¬†It’s advisable to reach back your resort before it gets dark as the hill terrain is not equipped with street lights. So to reach in¬†time, we decided to hire horsebacks with funny names such as hawa hawai.¬†After sound night’s sleep and a¬†¬†delicious morning breakfast, we left for Mumbai. Took a Toy train (15 mins journey) from Matheran to Aman Lodge, then shared taxi to Neral and then Local train to Thane and finally back home after experiencing a much needed Digital Detoxification.

Matheran says,”Horn NOT OK Please.”

Photo Courtesy: MTDC website and Abhimanyu

www.maharashtratourism.gov.in

PS: Please click on the ads which appear on the website and help us earn some money to travel. This blog is still very young and growing. If you like the story, do not shy away from reciprocating your love in form of likes comments and sharing on social media. 

Story By

Abhimanyu

Edited By

Utkarsh