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Ravi

Drive to a peaceful abode.Hyderabad to Hampi and Gokarna, Karnataka

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Planning:

We were just 4 of us and it was pretty much a quick plan having a long weekend ahead of us. Yes, we really needed to breathe in some fresh air like no machine can create and get a break from our everyday corporate work life. Undoubtedly, those magnificent 'Western Ghats' can be the best therapy one can get as you weave in through them on the twisty curves and hairpins.

 

For quite some time now, I have been reading about 'Gokarna' which is nestled between the Karnataka and Goa border, and our mind was all set with a plan of hitting the place by road. Having mapped the route, we had also planned to cover a bit of Hampi on the way and stay there for a night.

And finally like we had dreamt, our drive for the weekend was dotted with ancient architectural wonders, thick green coffee plantations and golden sands.

 

When: October 2 (04:00 a.m.) - October 5 (08:00 p.m.) 2015

Drive: Hyundai i20

Fuel: Petrol

Distance covered: Approx. 1400 kms (including local tour)

Travel time: 12 hours (One way)

Mileage: Avg. 16 Kmpl

 

Route taken:

Hyderabad --> Raichur --> Hampi (2nd October night stay) --> Hubali (Dharwad) --> Gokarna (3rd and 4th October)

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DAY-1

 

Hyderabad to Hampi -- 380 kms

Our drive was all set and we started off from Hyderabad (Miyapur) around 4:00 AM towards Hampi. We reached Hampi at around 12:00 PM. A leisurely drive of approximately 8 hrs, which included a breakfast stop in Raichur. On arrival at Hampi, we checked into the 'Lakshmi Heritage Tourist home' near the Virupaksha temple which charged us 1400 INR per room for a night stay. Amenities at the guest house included free Wi-Fi and breakfast which seemed decent enough considering the guest house was located at the center of Hampi.

 

We had our lunch and rested down for a while and left for the Hampi local tour at around 4:00 PM. With the limited time on our hands, we knew that it was impossible for us to cover all the attractions in Hampi, so, we tried to cover as much as possible for the evening until the sky turned dark.

 

High and above at 'Virupaksha Temple'

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Sasivekalu Ganesh Temple

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These ruins and their weird arrangement are the main attraction in the landscape

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Beautiful view of a coconut farm from the 'Sunset point'

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DAY-2

 

Hampi to Gokarna (via Hubali) -- 320 kms

The next morning, we started our drive at around 6:00 AM towards Gokarna, one such beach that is less popular hence more inviting. We drove past the spiritual town of Gokarna and followed the narrow road that leads to the ‘Om’ beach to reach the ‘Namaste Cafe' around 12:00 PM, where we had booked our rooms for 1000 INR/night. The best part about the cafe was the location where it was situated, which was complimented by a great ambiance and reasonable food prices.

 

As we started to hit the track heading towards Gokarna

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Our drive was set to pose on our way

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The cozy beds and lovely weather made us really lazy. So, we decided to have a hearty lunch and get some much needed sleep. Done with our afternoon siesta at 5:00 PM, we got out of our beds and on to the OM beach to take a dip in the Arabian sea. The beach had many visitors considering it was a long weekend and the place has many shacks and guesthouses to accommodate the tourists.

 

One snapshot as we stepped on to the beach

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As the light slowly faded away, we watched the sunset at the beach which is one of the experiences that will stay etched in my memories. As the sun slowly moved into the sea, we lied down and let a million stars shine down on us. Later on, we moved back to the 'Namaste Cafe' to chill out for the evening enjoying the view of the beautiful OM beach.

 

We had a lovely time sitting by the railing, listening to the sea waves which seemed in tune to the people playing some delightful musical instruments. It was a very relaxing experience staying away from the glittering lights and the busy roads.

 

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DAY-3

 

Gokarna local tour

Places to visit:

1) Mahabaleshwar Temple

2) Gokarna Beach

3) Om Beach

4) Kudle Beach

5) Half moon beach

6) Paradise beach

 

After having our breakfast the next morning, we started off our day with a visit to the famous Mahabaleshwara temple in Gokarna which is historically known as one of the seven important Hindu pilgrimage centers. Resting towards the north is the Gokarna main beach where you find people surfing.

 

As the clouds started to hover and the temperatures dropped, we took advantage of the weather and trekked down 2 Kms to pass by the OM beach and reach the Kudle beach & the paradise beach which cannot be reached by car.

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I have tried capturing the arc lining on the coast which itself is explanatory why it is named 'OM' beach

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I've experienced an entirely different side of life which is outrightly off beat from our daily stereotypical metro life and I thoroughly enjoyed being a part of those scenes happening around me.

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Life on the beach is different, you need to entertain yourself. I saw people playing beach volley ball, hula-hoop, frisbee, practice yoga and also kayaking.

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I soon became the part of that routine for those 2 days. We traversed around various dramatic landscapes and delicious cuisines for the day and headed back to our stay to get recharged for our return journey back home early next morning.

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As I conclude my post, I am delighted to report that it was an not just an amazing drive through nature, but also a journey through languages, people and history as they unfolded and changed across the geography down our travel.

 

We had moved across from a modern Indian metropolis, to rustic countryside villages, to plush coffee estates, to the easy-going golden beaches for this heck of an experience. Overall, it was ecstatic and hope this would guide you when you schedule your travel to these places.

 

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Nice post Ravi.Beach looks very similar to Goa.

Do they have shacks on the beach side similar to Goa?

 

varunchetluri said:
 Never been to that part of the western ghats and your post makes me want to plan this trip soon, good pictures too :)

 

Varun if you are planning to visit any time soon.Please let me know.

We can drive together.:P

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