Travelogue: Wayfaring in Wayanad – Chembra, Meenmutty, Kuruva, Kozikode etc. etc.

Posted: May 18, 2015 in Travelogue
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What started as a plan consisting of 4 people involving Arun, Babu, Thananjayan and me, first got shortened to 3 people with Arun dropping out a couple of weeks back. Babu on the other hand dropped just the day before. I thought with the rate it was going, even Thananjayan would drop but thanks to him I wasn’t alone for the one trek which I wanted to start this year off with, Chembra!

10

Day 0 – Journey

It was a really hectic week in office but thanks to this plan I at least had something to look forward too. The last trip I had gone was 4 months back. And that too not adventurous.

John had used the extra ticket, we boarded the train to central. Thananjayan joined us from Perungulathur. It was nice catching up with him. The day’s journey went off well with ogling, sighting, talking and little bit of reading. First time in life there were few chicks in the coupe, guess it was due to the mallu vibration of John. But we were so busy with ourselves that we were not able to talk to them. It’s good to have a huge book in hand when there are girls around.

Add to it there was special night show of the regular going-in-AC-only kind of couple with snack boxes bigger than our whole luggage combined together.

Day 1 – Chembra and falls

We reached the destination well in advance at about 4’o clock. Kerala, to be more specific, Kozikode seems to be the best Auto place in India. We got an auto for 28 rupees in the pre-paid counter and 1 rupee for inquiry. We had to pay 50 rupees but, because it was early hours. We immediately got bus to Kalpetta from there. Journey was decent and we reached the place at 7’o clock. Got a decent accommodation for 250 rupees.

After quickly freshening up we had nool puttu (idiyappam) and appam with kadala curry. Went to the base point of Chembra and had to take an auto to the ticket counter. We had to wait another fifteen minutes for a group to join in. Because the entry fee is, 750 per group (maximum 10 persons). We paid 300 for two of us.

The trek was an easy one.  Totally took 3 hours two and fro. Nothing much to see, quite sunny, the lake too wasn’t worth it. But now when I look the picture it looks lovely. The best place was the view point where even though it was sunny, the winds made up for it. The only regret was spending 400 for auto. So total was 700 for the simplest trek yet. That too only till the lake and not to the top. Totally unworthy.

The next part was to choose between Soochipara and Meenmutty falls. Thananjayan had a good idea. We went to the junction where we had to take buses. He suggested to take the first bus, no matter which falls it takes us to.

In that process we got to the Meenmutty falls. The falls was at a distance of 3 km from bus stop. We didn’t get an auto so had to walk to the falls. I found that walk to be better than the trek. Thananjayan got lift during the last part of the falls. The falls as such wasn’t great but it wasn’t much crowded so we were able to enjoy better.

By the time we came to the junction where we had to catch bus to Soochipara it was 4.30. All the places there close by 5’o clock. Also we inquired whether there is water in the falls, locals said ‘no’ so decided to go to the room instead, after having kattan Chaya. Love it absolutely.

Next up, wanted to try out kallu and got to the toddy shop. It was funny to not know anything and buy kallu for the first time. But thanks to a good Samaritan I was able to get a glass for 20 rupees without any problem. Followed it by Parotta, ginger beef, the beef I had had till now and aapam. In all it was a fulfilling first day.

Day 2 – Thirunelli and Kuruvadeep

We were in a dilemma as to what to do on the remaining days. Not that we were short of places but we were not knowing which one to go and which to leave. So we started off to Thirunelli fist. Had to wait for couple of hours for the bus. The temple was in awesome location. Add to it free lunch. So it was worthy.

We followed it by an auto to Kuruvadeep which is an island, a so called one. Nothing great but the dull day came alive in the evening when we took bus from Kalpetta. The conditions were overcast and the driver was like taking off. The next one hour was a fabulous drive, with chilly winds and speedy bus. It was fabulous.

Add to it, the time was 7.30 when we came to Kalpetta, had to hurry to toddy shop before it gets closed. This time went with full preparation and got what I wanted. So the day was fulfilling. We wanted to do more places but with public transport we couldn’t. It’s okay, public transport is the real charm.

Day 3 – Banusagar dam, Pookote lake, Kozhikode beach and amazing biryani

We had one whole day before taking the train at night so we decided to go to places which we missed the previous day. Started with Banusagar dam, biggest earthen dam. Had a tea and a couple of weird sweet snack like a cake and Speed boating would have been nice but we both were not in a mood, there were also swings from high up in the air which was good. Would have been good Saturday evening outing place with family.

We followed it by Pookote lake which was just a better version of Kodaikanal lake, before going in there we had a sarbat after being advertised so much about the naturally cooled water. Pookote again isn’t really a tourist spot but a good weekend relaxation spot.

We got private bus from there to Kozhikode. And headed straight to beach by paying 30 in auto. Feels so good to go in auto in Kerala. Doesn’t go beyond 50 rupees no matter where you go. We asked all the details about the biryani shops in the few minutes we got with the driver. Within minutes we reached Kozikode beach. It was sunny, crowded and not nice. But it was nice to walk on the rocks and sit at the beach’s end. With the sun setting it, it was nice.

We followed it up by biryani in paradise hotel along with karimeen, parotta, beef curry and Chaya. All were awesome. And finally auto to station. Again 30 rupees. Even better was when someone asked for auto he informed him to go to pre-paid counter. If only Chennai auto wala’s had been this good. Got into the train and slept like hell. In all a fulfilling journey where everything went as per plan.

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