A special road trip: Bangalore to Goa!




We had been planning a road trip to Goa from Bangalore since the past 4 years. Each time the husband brought it up, a cynical me would somewhat dismiss it saying “Not possible. That too in our little car.”

And then one fine day I unexpectedly won a contest which offered me the choice of several offbeat travel getaways all across the country, right from the Kumaon Hills in the north to Wayanad in the south, the itinerary prepared by India Untravelled. We had visited most of the southern locations and the northern ones seemed difficult, given our tight office schedule. 

Finally, we zeroed in on Goa. 

“Possible?” I asked the husband warily.

“Possible!” The husband confirmed emphatically.

So, Goa it was. A distance of almost 650 km door-to-door, from our home in Bangalore to the resort in Goa that we had booked for the night. The rest of the stay would be in the homestay arranged by India Untravelled.

We decided to follow the Bangalore-Tumkur-Hubli-Belgaum-Chorla Ghats-Goa route and this was further endorsed by Roberto Amaral, our Goa homestay host. 

Thus, on 22nd October, we braced ourselves for a journey that we knew to be very long, and started off at 6.00 am. And what a beautiful road trip it was! The hours and kilometers flew by in a blur, thanks to the good roads, and we were in Goa even before the sun could say bye. We could hardly believe ourselves when we saw that we had clocked just 9.5 hours (including two food halts) to cover those 650 kms that had seemed so long and tiresome before the journey. 

While 3/4th of the journey presented to us beautiful vistas of giant windmills atop hills and golden fields, ready for harvest, the best part of it was to come in the last leg. The Chorla Ghats. Here, have a look:









It was a hot day on 22nd and the mercury levels dipped significantly the moment we started off on the ghat roads. Cool air hit our faces as we drove in the shade of the thick canopy overhead. The world could not have been more tranquil. 

On our return journey, the same ghats offered us a peek to another side of it. The even cooler side.

It had been raining since the previous day and the ghats came alive with the cheerful sound of chirping birds and bubbling brooks at every turn. We were greeted with sights of splashing waterfalls and thick mist hovering above the mountain tops. The air was cooler than the previous time and we took our time driving through. You can see why:


















Now, for another important part of the journey – the food! I was a fool not to have browsed through my copy of ‘Highway on my Plate II’ to look for eating options along the way. On our onward journey, we stopped at a place called Rasoi in Belgaum, which was a tad expensive, considering the appetite of four adults and the non-appetite of a 3 year old. While returning, we decided to have our lunch at a tiny eatery just before entering Belgaum called Parth. 




It offered rice meals, paired with mutton, chicken or fish, at fairly low rates. It appeared to be a family run establishment with the kitchen being run by a few ladies cooking fresh hot meals, on order. We tried the mutton rice meal and the thali came with two soft chapatis, one plate of rice and a bowl each of curry, mutton fry and soup. 






The mutton was absolutely tender and scrumptious. But the real star of the meal was the soup. It was packed with the flavor of stewed chicken and mutton and served without any spices spoiling its taste. Our bowls were refilled continuously without any extra charge. That made the meal more homely and delicious.

The rains on our return trip provided an experience of having visited Goa twice - the beginning of winter as well as the receding monsoon. Besides the joy, this trip has filled us with immense confidence. Mostly about our little car whose capability till now we had grossly underestimated, despite using it as our 4WD so many times in the past. 

With this beautiful road trip in our kitty, I have already started dreaming of our next trips. But then, you know what they say, the first one is always the special one. Take care!




PS: Will try to write about what I did in Goa soon. Won’t say ‘Stay tuned’ this time.




Comments

  1. Your pictures are awesome! I didn't expect Bangalore-Goa route to be so beautiful. We are also headed to Goa next month via Hyderabad. Let's see how it goes...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh how nice! I am sure Hyd-Goa would be quite interesting, too. Would wait for your post :)

      Delete
  2. Hi Sangeeta,

    A nice read. A bunch of my friends are getting ready to drive up to Goa next month. Mind telling how the Dharwad to Gharli stretch was ? I am seriously skeptical about State Highway.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Srivathsan, we actually took the Belgaum (now Belagavi) route from Hubli and not via Gharli. The roads are pretty good in the Hubli - Belagavi - Chorla Ghats - Goa route.

      Delete
  3. Hi Sangeeta, When we searched for Bangalore to Goa road trip, you blog pops-up and we are excited with your pictures. We were planning the trip on first week on May. It would be great if you provide more insight on this trip.

    Thanks,
    Gopi

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sure, Gopi. Do mail me regarding what exactly you would like to know and I'll be glad to help out in any way I can :)

      Delete
  4. We are going with two families with Kids, we wanted to know about the accommodation details and expenses details in Goa.

    Thanks,
    Gopi

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well, Goa is choc-a-bloc with hotels to meet every budget and location, Gopi. It totally depends upon your preference. Since May is off-season, you might get good deals on hotels. While you can take a look at Tripadvisor, on this trip to Goa we had stayed at a homestay run by Roberto and Raquel Amaral. You can read about the stay here http://www.myworldfoodandtravel.com/2014/11/staying-with-amarals-at-cancios-house.html. The location is away from the beach, though.

      Delete
  5. Thank you so much Sangeeta, Will explore those details ...

    ReplyDelete
  6. Hi I am planning to take zoom car and drive all d way from bangalore o goa..is it a good decision ? As it is a long journey

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Arnav, ours was a small car - Alto K10, and we managed to drive all the way with a single driver. So, I am sure you will be able to do it, too :)

      Delete
  7. Hi Sangeeta, Any suggestions on routes from Goa to Bangalore - we are travelling with a 3 year old so something with smooth roads and good hotels on the way. Pl suggest some options and one which has the most scenic view.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Nithya, even we had a 3 year old with us on our trip. The route that I have mentioned here (Bangalore-Tumkur-Hubli-Belgaum-Chorla Ghats-Goa) is quite smooth and there are good hotels in Belgaum and Tumkur. We absolutely loved the route, very scenic. Just take care to start really soon from Goa, or the evening traffic Tumkur onwards might be an obstruction.

      Delete
  8. Hello Sangeeta - We don't know if you are following this thread anymore but will go ahead and post anyways. First of all, you are an awesome writer! And, we are planning road trip from Bangalore to Goa via Hampi (overnight stay at Hospete) starting in 10 days. Couple of concerns you might be able to address:

    * Does it rain a lot in Goa around mid october as you also might have traveled about this time of the year?
    * How does the parking work near the beaches? How close can you park to the beach? We have elderly parent with us with walking difficulties hence the question.

    Thanks & Keep Writing,
    Kalpana & Raja

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi guys, thanks for the kind words. Let me try helping you out :)

      *From our experience - it does rain sporadically in Oct. It's actually a good thing since it helps to bring down the temperature and humidity. In any case, do carry your umbrellas.

      *In our second visit last year, at Christmas time, we had stayed at Patnem beach. We had stayed at a beach cottage (those temporary seasonal affairs), perhaps 300 meters from the beach, and could park our car right in front of the cottage.

      Even if you are not staying on the beach, the parking areas are quite close by for most places (eg. Baga beach). Walking would be required while sightseeing, though.

      There, that's all I could do to help you. Enjoy your trip! We are just back from Hampi and it's a delight!

      Delete
  9. Hi

    I am planning in May Last week. Is the weather is good? My friend told that it would be too hot in Summer time.

    Also I want to visit on the way tourist spots. please let me know

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, I am sure it would be pretty hot during May, although I have never made a trip to Goa from Bangalore in the summers. Also, I did not stop by any tourist spots on the way. Gokarna and Karwar are well known tourist spots, though.

      Delete
  10. Hi Sangeeta, Enjoyed your detailed description of the trip and the photos...we are planning a trip by car in mid-April and hope the journey will be as exciting as yours. Wanted to know if there was any problem with topping up fuel on the way and if the roads are good as you mentioned. We might start a couple of hours earlier to get out of Bangalore fast. We are going as far as Margao. Will let you know how it went. Thanks for your super blog

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Ravi, thanks a ton for your kind words. I don't remember facing any issues regarding topping up of fuel. Besides, we always start off with a full tank. Hopefully the roads are still in good condition since the time we made the journey. I am sure you will have an absolutely delightful trip. Do share your experiences. Bon voyage!

      Delete
  11. hi, me and my friends are planning to goa from banglore on 1st july, i am listening some issues about the roads are not good .. is it correct !,... i need good route to goa from banglore ..please suggest for pleasant trip...this is my mail id dinnyk4u@gmail.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, sorry for the late reply, but unfortunately I have no information about the latest status on the road conditions. Perhaps you could take a look at forums such as team BHP. Wish you a safe trip :)

      Delete
  12. hii , we would like to travel from bengluru to goa by car .. can u please suggest me the best way which covers few traveling spots on the way to goa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Abdul, the route that we took (Bangalore-Tumkur-Hubli-Belgaum-Chorla Ghats-Goa) was quite a scenic one and but if you want more travelling spots, maybe you can go via Gokarna and Karwar. However, the route will be longer. Also, since we had not taken that route, I am not much aware of the exact route points. Do consult Google maps and someone with more knowledge on the routes. Sorry for not being of help :(

      Delete
  13. So passionately written. Enjoyed reading & feeling inspired for our upcoming Goa Trip in Dec! Thank you Sangeeta

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am sure you will have a fantastic trip - all the best!!

      Delete
  14. Hey Sangeeta was in double minds but after reading ur post had decided to start this saturday. We have a polo tdi lets see how it pans out

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All the best, Sayantan! Have a safe trip :)

      Delete
  15. Hi Sangeeta, thanks so much for this post, it encourages me on the feasibility of my plan to go Banglaore to Hampi, sightseeing and overight stay in Hampi, then pushing on to Goa along the route you have described. Any suggestions on where to stay and where to eat in Hampi and along the way? Thanks! -Harsh

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh great, Hampi to Goa sounds like an amazing road trip! Regarding Hampi stay, I know of very few places - 1) The Sloth Bear resort, which is a part of Jungle Lodges Resorts 2) Hyatt Place, located in Hospet 3) Mayura Bhuvaneshwari, Kamalapur, a KSTDC resort 4) Kamalapur Forest Guest House. The first two resorts are on the higher tariff side. For food options in Hampi, you can try the Mango Tree restaurant near Virupaksha temple and Tamarind Tree Food Point on the way to Vitthala temple. Hospet has some amazing restaurants, too. I remember a place called Just Punjabi, if I recall correctly. So, go ahead and have fun! And do share your experiences :)

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Eat & Shop @ Madikeri (Coorg Part 2)

Sri Lankan Devilled Chicken

Eating out in Ooty