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If there is place on Earth that I can call Heaven – It Is Here…Right Here….in Chikmagalur!!

September 18, 2008

I have travelled quite a bit, so much so that I like to call myself a Travel Buff. And i have seen beautiful, raw places across India. But I was still awed by the pure ‘Natural n Raw’ surroundings of Chikmagalur. Friday morning – thought to self “…..i need to get outta here…” Friday day, i dont think i worked much but ended up making plans to leave for Chikmagalur the next morning. We were ready with a place to stay, a car to drive and most importantly – Good Company. So it was sort of a family trip – Soubhagya, my SIL(R), her BF(S) and yours truely. Since R works night shifts, we packed up and left home in our very own Alto at 5 AM and picked her up straight from work — off to the beautiful world of mountains and nature. We had it all planned, complete with print-outs of the route, place to stay, places to see etc etc., in folders (courtesy S). I was mighty impressed. We were outta Bangalore in an hour and on our way to Chikmagalur. The route, very roughly is Tumkur Road-NH-48-Hassan-Chikmagalur.(http://www.indiacar.com/infobank/drivingdest/drv_july04/page2.htm… for a detailed route break-up) The highway ride was quite scenic due to the rains and made our drive pleasurable. We reached chikmagalur by 12 noon, eagerly wanting to reach our homestay and eat home-made yummmm food. The place we booked was APTLY named – NATURE NIRVANA. It is about 1.5 hours away from Chikmagalur town. Now, the issue was, we did not preempt the ‘extremely non-drivable rocky red road’ that lay ahead of us. The first 1 and 1/2 hours were pretty ok, with the tar road broken in several places, making it quite bumpy for the passengers at the back. Then started a stretch of the last 7 kms – which, hold your breaths – took 2 hours to cover!!! It actually increased our appetite, due to immense ‘movin n shakin’. I recall Soubhagya cribbing all the way about how “his Baby” was getting hurt. Sigh! this was a reference to the Car!!

But when we reached Nature Nirvana, it was a sight…a place…a destination beyond imagination. Opens up suddenly through mountains and trees, this small valley with a house, a stream, a waterfall, a lake and miles of coffee plantations. We had booked a 12-bedded dorm for the 4 of us, and realized it was sooo much better than the tiny cottages which were more like rooms in a house. Quickly dumping luggage in the room, we almost jogged to the lunch area and devoured the delicious mutton curry, chicken, sambhar, rasam, rice and curd rice. It was a hearty meal and having stuffed ourselves, we felt guilty enough to start playing ALL the outdoor games available — basketball, cricket, badminton, volleyball and cycling. The guilt of the calories, riding high earlier, slowly slowed down and nearly died. 🙂

Having overcome the afternoon laziness by playing our hearts out, we packed a backpack and put on our sport shoes and left to explore the property on our own. what we encountered was not only ‘Heavenly‘, but also ‘Fantastically Serene’ and away from the world’s prying eyes. There was a gushing, almost gurgling mountain stream which suddenly burst out into a Cascading Waterfall. It was so picturesque that one wanted to just sit and listen to the sound of water and wilderness! After several unsuccessful attempts by the ‘brave’ men to cross the gushing stream using slippery stepping stones, we moved to the waterfalls and the coffee plantations. Since we were on our own, we made up our own explanations for everything and continued. 🙂

By the time we returned, we were tired, yet decided to play some more basketball. R turned out to be the ‘Basketball Queen’ and kicked almost everyone’s ass!

It was night time, and it started drizzling due to the passing clouds. It was perfect timing for ‘bhajia’ and chai..which we sort of finished in 10 mins. After the rain kinda stopped, we asked the caretaker to put a bonfire and barbeque for us. (we really didnt care what the other guest wanted… hehe) we had the cottage to ourselves. The caretaker (who was amazingly courteous)..got us Tandoori Chicken, Barbequed Chicken, More Bhajia..and of course….BEER!!!! :D.. we started playing Uno and Cards and spent our time by the fire with the barbequed meat and beer…it was ALMOST PERFECT!
(to be contd., with Day 2 events….of the Getaway)

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3 Comments
  1. Shitika permalink
    September 18, 2008 3:09 PM

    woww.. tht was the most picture perfect representation of any place!!! makes me wanna pack my bags n leave for the ‘chip…’ place! loll… who would have thought tht a place with such a funny name can be soo heavenly n gorgeous! 🙂 🙂 keep us updated with all the trips….p.s. tht butter chicken made my mouth water… real bad! 😉 loll

  2. Bubbasamuel permalink
    September 19, 2008 11:03 AM

    now that makes me very jealous…with a capital J. 😛

  3. Tanu Anand permalink
    September 20, 2008 4:41 AM

    hahahaha!!! well prabhu….u know u can take ur Enfield..and just roide down to the gorgeous place..rite?and thanks shiti… 😀

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