Year, months, weeks and days – time is different things at different times. Sometimes happy, at times sad, sometimes cruel and at times kind there are many shades of time but the constant is that it is not.
With the year coming to an end and with somewhere to run to we sort of hurriedly planned rather started unplanned for our last road trip of the year. It was our last mega trip of the year with our itinerary looking something like this – Hyderabad to Bengaluru to Mysore and back.
Trip Date: December 2017
Road Trip: Hyderabad-Bengaluru-Mysore and back
Trip begins from Hyderabad
Of course when you are driving this humongous distance and the agenda is basically to enjoy the drive then you are in no hurry. Plus the roads on this route are a pleasure to drive and the terrain is so different from what we are used to in the north; it was a lovely time spent on the road. With wide and well divided roads and terrain so beautiful that you can see straight stretches in front of you till the zenith (well most of the times) and then there are trees that are like canopy on most of the stretches and windmills that stand tall and are seemingly happy to see you. That’s romancing the road for me and I simply love that as does the husband and the girls who have their separate play area in the back seat of the car with their card games, books, taking turns to sleep (as they are growing up the back seat is getting smaller for both of them to lie down and sleep yet they do that at times and I wonder how?) and lot of chatting up and observing – that’s learning by doing/seeing and that’s the best part we love about family travel.
After this lovely drive, we reached our friend’s – Gopal Bennuri’s place in Bangalore – that’s where we put up in Bengaluru. Gopal and his family were the perfect hosts and I am thankful that at least one of us (I mean between me and the husband) the husband is blessed with many good friends who are just like extended family.
We had a hearty dinner and slept.
Day1: Reached Bengaluru – DoddaGubbi Lake and Nandi Hills
Day 1 began with a lovely view of the lake and Gopal told us the name which frankly took a moment to register. The lake is called Doddagubbi and the plan was to go for a trek till the lake and get back home for breakfast so after the morning cuppa we went for a stroll to the lake and the lake was brimming with water and a few birds that we could spot in the distance. Kids were their chirpy best and after a few minutes, we headed back home through a different route where Cheryl saw a dead rat and shrieked and in turn, everyone shrieked. Then none could stop laughing.
The destination for the day was Nandi Hills in Bangalore. It is a lovely hill fortress situated on the outskirts of Bangalore. The place sure is famous for there was a huge rush and we could barely find a parking slot. We had a look at the city from the viewpoint and everything looked so minuscule. The weather here was definitely a plus point as was the fresh air. After visiting the Shiva temple Gopal told us about the Tipu’s drop point and the kids were then told what it means. That was some view.
As we headed back to the city the kids spotted go-karting and then it was go-karting time for all the kids and then there was Segway too, which I also tried. That was the first time the girls did go karting and frankly my heart was in my mouth as they revved the engine and pressed the accelerator. Segway was fun. On our way back home we had dinner and called it a day.
Day 2: Exploring Bengaluru – ISKCON Temple, Vidhan Soudha, Cubbon Park and Church Road
Day 2 was mostly about town and we were on a road trip inside the city of Bangalore. Some may say were we crazy driving through Bangalore roads but frankly, it was so much fun for there was literally no traffic on the roads. Reason? It was a long weekend and all Bangaloreans had fled out of the town.
One smart Travel Tip with family: Travel during offseason and you can enjoy the destination peacefully
This day we steered to the famous ISKCON temple in Bangalore. It definitely is one of the finest temples in Bangalore. Majestic structure in between the busy crossroads yet so calm and soothing to the soul once you enter the main sanctum that you feel like staying there forever. The frescoes on the ceiling are so beautiful that you can lose yourself if you don’t stop looking. Lord Krishna is one good looking God and can work His charms on you and who wouldn’t want that?
After the temple was a quick ride to the Vidhan Soudha – the parliament building, Cubbon Park and a walk on the Church Road which was decked up for the Christmas.
Then it was time for a meal with the family and we zeroed in on Easy Tiger on Church Street which was a lovely place with lovelier food and it quenched the husband’s thirst for beer too. We actually sat there for hours just the four of us and ate lots of yummy food which kids really liked. There was the favorite Hot Dog, Pasta Salad, Lasagne, Oreo Shakes and lots more.
It was a relaxing day in the city. Irony? Enjoying in the city? But yes it happens when everyone else is heading out of town, you feel like you own it.
Day 3: Bengaluru to Mysore – Brindavan Gardens
It was a day for a long drive once again and we hit the highway to Mysore. We stopped at Kamat Lokaruchi on the highway from Bengaluru to Mysore. This is undoubtedly the best place to eat on this highway which is dotted with a number of eateries.
The place serves authentic south Indian food and specialties like Mudde Idli which is idli batter steamed in leaves which imparts a subtle aroma of the leaf to the idlis. Food is simply tasty and appetizing here plus the ambiance of the place add to the dining experience. All the servers are impeccably dressed in same uniforms and wear a head cap as well. Little things add up to the hygiene quotient and make a big difference. Another thing I noticed in Mysore and here as well that sugarcane juice is very popular and there are machines in the restaurants and road side kiosks that serve freshly squeezed sugar cane juice. And we thought Uttar Pradesh is the Sugar Bowl of the Country! Well, that may be but drinking sugarcane juice in this part of the country is more popular than UP that’s for sure.
Before reaching Mysore we headed towards Brindavan Gardens and what a beauty this place is. Although it was too sunny to be happy outside yet as the sun went west the weather improved.
Brindavan Gardens are a picture-perfect place and look straight out of a fairy tale. The well-manicured lawns and beautiful old trees that are a standing testimony to the times that have gone by, provide shelter and home to many creatures. The fountains here and the stream that flows right in the middle of the garden just add to the beauty of this place. Actually, one can sit here for hours and be one with Mother Nature.
There is the beautiful Royal Orchid property that overlooks the garden, a stay here would be blissful considering its location.
Day 4: Mysore Zoo
We had booked an OYO at Mysore which was pretty decent and the location was a plus for us for we got a parking right outside the hotel. Everything was neat and clean in this pretty little town and we had found ourselves a decent eatery – Sri Durga Hotel, not far from the place where we were staying hence that was our den for almost all our meals.
We had Mangalore Bun (a little sweet version of poori) with some vegetable, Chow Chow Bhath and almost everything on the menu because everything was fresh and tasty. I would highly recommend this place if you want to grab a quick bite. Kids gave a thumbs up too.
After having our breakfast here we headed to Mysore zoo which was bustling with school kids and there was a lot of rush. We could gauge the popularity of the place hence one thought was returning and maybe look for some other option for the day (when you are on your own and have your conveyance at your disposal then you can afford to do last minute changes).
There was a huge line for buying the entry ticket to the zoo which put me off. Just then I saw a special entry gate for visitors who have bought tickets online for the zoo and that instant while standing outside the zoo and while the husband was away parking our car I got our entry tickets online and voila we were in the zoo.
The Mysore Zoo is a plastic free zone which means even if you carry a packet of chips they will empty the contents in a paper bag and give it to you.
The zoo is huge so be prepared for long walks but rewarding views for the zoo has animals like giraffes, zebras, white tigers, royal Bengal tigers, types of crocodiles, birds, and variety of reptiles. The best thing here is that the animals have names and their names and date of birth are displayed on the boards outside their enclosures.
Isn’t it all about respecting life around us?
Day 5: Mysore Palace
And of course, no visit to Mysore is complete without a trip to the Mysore Palace so here we were to have a look at one of the most beautiful palaces in India.
The palace is majestic and a must visit when in Mysore. It was only ten days before our visit that photography was allowed inside the palace so I would like to share more pictures and let them do the talking.
After enjoying a long break in Bengaluru and Mysore we headed back to Hyderabad stopping overnight at Bengaluru.