As mentioned in my previous post, I was very busy in the last couple of months with traveling. In October I took a short vacation to Dandeli and Goa with my family. In November I was on a 3-week business trip to USA.
Firstly about my vacation in Dandeli and Goa. Dandeli is in North Karnataka, about 130 KM from Goa. Our plan was to travel to Dandeli by train (it’s just a little more than overnight journey from Hyderabad), spend a couple of days there and then travel to Goa by road, and finally return to Hyderabad by flight.
We started from Kacheguda station for Dandeli. This was first long distance train journey I took with my wife and kid after a long time, so I enjoyed it thoroughly. We alighted at Londa Jn, from where “Hornbill resort” people received us for a 40 KM drive. On the first day we stayed in a picturesque and exotic tree-top cottage and the next day we moved to a rockhouse cottage, as we originally planned. I was glad that I made that arrangement. Though the idea of a tree-top cottage overlooking the river Kali was very romantic, I could not sleep peacefully thru the night because the windows do not have shutters (they just have curtains) and you can feel and hear small creatures/insects crawling under the cabin floor. Spent the next morning looking at the Mist-laden river Kali in full flow. Dandeli’s USP is river rafting. The rapids in river Kali are not very dangerous and that makes Dandeli ideal location for clubbing river rafting with a 2-day stay with mother nature. I saw a lot of young tourists preferring to stay in tent houses in the resort. Except for river rafting we tried every thing else on offer – trekking in the forest, paddle boating, natural Jacuzzi (i.e. squatting in the way of rapids amongst the rocks) and fishing. The food served in buffet style in the resort was good. The down side of the resort was that there is no TV and no group activities were organized by the resort people. It can get boring after you are done with your trekking, fishing, lazing in the sun, etc. The Ilayaraja songs loaded into my mobile phone helped me kill some time though. Overall, I would strongly recommend a trip to Dandeli if you love nature.
The resort people arranged a cab to drive us to Goa from Dandeli, for a fee of Rs. 2500, phew.. We booked in to a 2* property near Baga beach. The hotel has a small swimming pool that I and my 5-year old son used every morning and evening J
This was my first trip to Goa, and I was not exactly impressed. In spite of reading a lot of reviews – I felt – I could have prepared better in choosing the right location among numerous beaches in Goa, and in choosing the company J And, I should have planned for a longer stay than 2 days.
Baga beach is one of the dirtier beaches I have ever seen. Sadly I assumed that Calangute beach next door would be equally bad, and hence did not visit that. We killed time in the hotel or in restaurants for most of those 2 days. I liked the easy-going crowd and the restaurants – Baga beach thankfully has a lot of good restaurants. I had also planned to experience the famous discos in the neighborhood, but the action always starts after 10.30 PM and my son fell asleep before 10 PM on both days. We did, however, enjoy the scooter rides thru paddy fields to the nearby markets.
Goa, I shall be back soon with my friends and for at least 3-day vacation.