South India on Royal Enfield Himalayan

Discussion in 'Ride Reports - Epic Rides' started by GF-kam, Dec 28, 2018.

  1. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    Just got back from 2.5 week winter Fly and Ride trip to southern part of India. More specifically in the states of Karnataka and Goa. WOW!! Blew my mind. Amazingly rich culture, riding, people, sightseeing, beaches, affordable, and food.

    A country of contrasts. Relatively intact diverse culture.
    [​IMG]music cow Goa by Kam A, on Flickr



    The market near the Basilica of Bom Jesus in Bainguinim, Goa. One of the largest Christian communities.
    [​IMG]DSCN1973 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]DSCN1977 by Kam A, on Flickr

    The Basilica of Bom Jesus in Goa which was the capital of Portuguese India. The church is a UNESCO World Heritage site.
    [​IMG]DSCN1982 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Probably not a picture of India you expected to see.
    [​IMG]DSCN1985 by Kam A, on Flickr

    See more ruins in Hampi than in Rome.
    [​IMG]DSCN2092 by Kam A, on Flickr


    [​IMG]DSCN2190 by Kam A, on Flickr

    The famous stone chariot in Hampi.
    [​IMG]DSCN2184 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Our driver, Sagher, praying towards the Virupaksha Temple in Hampi. Very cool dude and TV soap opera actor.
    [​IMG]IMG_8386 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Live it up at a one of the Raj's palace for cost of staying at Motel 6. This retired palace is now called Lalitha Palace in Mysore, Karnataka.
    [​IMG]DSCN1777 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Dinning room at Lalitha Palace in Mysore, Karnataka.
    [​IMG]IMG_7931 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Typical morning breakfast. Nobody lost any weight on this trip. Anthony Bourdain would be proud. RIP.
    [​IMG]IMG_7879 by Kam A, on Flickr



    No this isn't a cartel lab. I'll show you how sugarcane juice is extracted to make pure sugarcane.
    [​IMG]IMG_8468 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Cows rule the roads in India. For that matter everywhere, anytime, anywhere, anyplace.
    [​IMG]IMG_8466 by Kam A, on Flickr



    Morning Puja ceremony being conducted early in the morning by young Hindi priest at Heritage Resort in Hampi. Most of the places we stayed at all had a small praying shrine and priest.
    [​IMG]IMG_8359 by Kam A, on Flickr

    No I didn't smack my forehead or nick myself. I was blessed by the Hindi priest with red dot. Never turn down a Puja ceremony. A little extra precaution for traffic.
    [​IMG]IMG_8360 by Kam A, on Flickr


    We caught a few beautiful sunsets on the beaches of Goa. Blistering hot during daytime even in December.
    [​IMG]IMG_8320 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Sunset on beach in Goa.
    [​IMG]IMG_8240 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Typical fishing boat at beach in Goa.
    [​IMG]IMG_8208 by Kam A, on Flickr


    The Royal Enfield Himalayan I rented. Amazing bike. More about later. Cow manure is everywhere and used for everything in smaller villages. My riding boots got a healthy coating of it by the end of the trip. Bring a couple of heavy duty construction bags to put your gear in at end of trip.
    [​IMG]IMG_7829 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Rolling out of our bike rental facility in Bangalore. The only rain we saw entire trip was that day. Sunny and 80s rest of trip. Great place for winter trip between late November and February.
    [​IMG]7sLBXGTfQjGZ4HXkENTGlQ by Kam A, on Flickr

    Our bikes waiting for us on rental shop. From ONN bike rental in Bangalore https://www.onnbikes.com We got delayed due to some last minute repairs. Unfortunately by the time we finished up our paperwork, we rolled out into Bangalore rush hour in the rain and in dusk.
    [​IMG]IMG_7763 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Joining rush hour traffic in Bangalore ( now called Bengaluru ). Nothing like jumping into the frying pan...giant city, rush hour, dusk, wet roads, on a new bike, and what else :)
    [​IMG]IMG_7761 by Kam A, on Flickr


    We stopped at one of the largest buddhist temples and communities near Bylakuppe, Karnataka in India. This temple was at Namdroling Monastery ( the Golden Temple ). I am the secret agent, Kam, facing camera.
    [​IMG]IMG_7959 by Kam A, on Flickr

    One of our best meals was in the Nepalese community in Bylakuppe. At the Potala Kitchen Family Restaurant. A must stop. Our crew less myself behind camera. From left is Roldan, Mahi, Archana, Vidur, and Barbara. Seems like I could never get a clean picture of the spread for that perfect porn shot. Everyone immediately jumped in. You can tell the food must have been good. Occasionally you can find my favorite ZERO Coke. They call it Diet Coke.
    [​IMG]IMG_7952 by Kam A, on Flickr

    A must lunch stop at the Potala Kitchen Family Restaurant in Bylakuppe.
    [​IMG]IMG_7947 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Besides just documenting and sharing my trip, I hope to give you a better sense of other regions within India besides the northern Himalayan region....Leh Ladakh...etc. Karnataka is very rich in history, culture, and food.

    I also hope to shed some light on few topics and break those old myths.

    More to come about:

    - How to plan a Fly and Ride trip to India.
    - Strategy on long flights.
    - Paperwork and vaccines.
    - How to travel with all your gear.
    - Talk about a perfect bike and where to rent one.
    - Gear to take.
    - Driving in India.
    - Safety protocols.
    - Fueling protocols at gas station.
    - Some guidelines about food.
    - Street food or not
    - Water
    - Lodging options.
    - Currency, costs, budget.
    - Karnataka state is perfect for winter trip.
    - Weather.

    ....and more.


    So are you in ??

    I'll try to chronologically brake down each day and add some video. Especially of what traffic actually looks like in India. Nobody got hurt or sick on trip, which is great. I'll get my host and team leader Mahi to keep me honest.

    Traveling to India is far more affordable than you think. At least by American and European standards. For $2 - $3 dollars a day per meal you can eat like a king. A liter of bottled water was $0.20. We stayed in very nice 4 star accommodations with breakfast included for less than $80 / day. You can pay far far less for lodging. My Emirates flight from Washington/DC to Bangalore via Dubai cost $1,000. At the time I booked my trip, $1 USD equalled 73 Indian Rupee. The Indian Rupee goes LONG LONG way. Ironically gas was the most expensive commodity. But, with the Royal Enfield Himalayan getting about 70 MPG, gas stops were infrequent. You can travel on a wide range of budget. But, all less expensive than traveling anywhere else in Americas or Europe. You need to factor a chase vehicle like a van and a driver. At least if you plan to travel with no soft luggage and have a big roller luggage. We were fortunate to have a dear colleague who has business operations in both U.S. and Bengaluru who arranged for a chase vehicle.

    GF-kam
    #1
  2. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    Count me in.
    #2
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  3. mbanzi

    mbanzi Adventurer

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    Great pictures! Have this trip on my bucket list as a buddy has also done it.
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  4. RedDogAlberta

    RedDogAlberta High Plains Drifter

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    My focus has always been northern India, I suppose because of the Himalayas and Nepal, etc. In reality, India in general intrigues me so I look forward to more here and an education on southern regions. Bring it!

    I checked the website of that beautiful palace/hotel and the converted prices are indeed less than Motel 6 for such opulence.
    #4
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  5. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    My dear host and friend Mahi will also be contributing to this ride report. I 'll post a few mug shots so can put a face with each rider.

    Mahi somewhere at the Hampi ruins.
    [​IMG]DSCN2086 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Mahi ( on right ) and Vidur enjoying a walk along Candolim Beach in Goa.
    [​IMG]IMG_8312 by Kam A, on Flickr
    #5
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  6. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    I am telling you! :) You can travel to India and back for far less than shipping a bike and riding the Rockies.
    #6
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  7. Cal

    Cal Long timer

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    I'm in! Thanks for the report, all info on rentals and tour companies appreciated. Most companies seem to use the 500cc Bullets for their tours.
    #7
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  8. minisoda

    minisoda Been here awhile

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    Timely post! I will be in Bangalore in Feb and was hoping to take a couple days to ride. Subscribed
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  9. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    I posted the link to ONN. They rent all kinds of bikes including the Royal Enfield Himalayan. I paid a little over $100 USD for 2 weeks. You can rent the Himalayan for one month for only $200 USD. Very affordable considering what we pay in U.S.A. or Europe for one day rental.

    Kam
    #9
  10. Richarde1605

    Richarde1605 Long timer

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    Owning a himma, and having ridden some bullets, I would think most people would prefer the himma.
    #10
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  11. Eatmore Mudd

    Eatmore Mudd Mischief on wheels.

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    Way.

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  12. Eastbay Dirtbag

    Eastbay Dirtbag one track mind

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    Subscribed! :-)
    #12
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  13. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    Day 1: Washington / DC to Bengaluru, India.

    Our trip was spearhead by Mahi about a year ago. The plan was to start the trip just before Thanksgiving holiday. Mahi did all the planning in terms of when to go, stops, routes, places to visit, getting bikes, and other logistics. In exchange I promised Mahi I would have pick of next country and coordinating everything. So, I volunteered for planning the next trip through Iran. With a U.S. passport, I figured this could take some time . Ha ha ! Maybe someday.

    This map shows the state of Karnataka. The red region. We spent most of our time in the Karnataka and Goa which is a smaller state sandwiched between the Arabian Sea and Karnataka.
    [​IMG]Karnataka by Kam A, on Flickr

    A more detailed map of Karnataka.
    [​IMG]Karnataka-Tourist-Map.mediumthumb by Kam A, on Flickr

    General map showing our route. The stops ( cities ) are highlighted on map. One giant loop starting and ending in Bengaluru.
    [​IMG]Screen Shot south India trip 2018-12-28 at 9.40.33 AM by Kam A, on Flickr

    Major stops along trip:

    - Bengaluru
    - Mysore
    - Kabini
    - Madikeri
    - Hassan
    - Jog Falls
    - Goa
    - Hampi
    - Bengaluru

    The motley crew again so you know who everyone is. From left: Archana, Barb, Mahi, Kam, and Roldan.
    [​IMG]IMG_4407 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Getting ready to board my flight from Dulles Airport.



    Brand new Emirates Airbus A380-800 waiting at my gate. Smoothest ride at 38,000 ft. I could barely feel the plane in flight.
    [​IMG]IMG_7691 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Crap run!! Here come the TSA dogs ! Just kidding. Good to see TSA canine dogs come through our international gate area and sniff everyones luggage. Everyone.


    Don't miss me.



    Roldan and I flew out on same flight.
    [​IMG]IMG_7696 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Settling in for 14 hour flight to Dubai. Painful in economy. Next time I'll fly through Europe or do couple day layover somewhere. Another five hour layover and then another 5 hour flight for Dubai to Bengaluru.
    [​IMG]IMG_7698 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Ahh!! Finally off the plane at Dubai.
    [​IMG]IMG_7703 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_7705 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Prayer rooms at Dubai airport.
    [​IMG]IMG_7699 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Call to prayer at Dubai airport. How cool ! We had a five hour layover. So, we grabbed a $18 burger at Dubai airport Shake Shack. We figured it would be our last beef meal for a while. The guy at the very beginning of the video with a couple of laptops and shielding his profile with one hand sure looks a little suspect. My guess is he's trying to hijack some credit cards / account info over Wi-Fi. Call me paranoid. I just received a text message last night that my credit card number got breached for second time this year. Aaahhh!!



    Smoking labels on both posters and packs of cigarette. To the point.
    [​IMG]IMG_7701 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Oh so happy to be off the plane finally after 24 hours since we left Washington. About 9 p.m. by the time we cleared customs and out of Bengaluru airport. Our customs / visa counter guy was real chatty about our ride. Another biker inmate. He confirmed we were going to have some great stops along way. Took us another hour to cut across town to our hotel.
    [​IMG]IMG_7708 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Finally at our first hotel. The Welcom Hotel ITC property on Richmond Rd. in Bengaluru.
    [​IMG]IMG_7709 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Looks great!


    All the hotels have strict security. Most of the properties around Bengaluru check cars and anyone entering hotel. Strict security check in most places. In fact on departing country, we found out you cannot even enter Bengaluru airport without a boarding pass or IRQ confirmation. Some airline document which shows your full name and match with passport. Moreover, you cannot checkin your luggage earlier than 4 hours. The airline checkin counters at BLR airport are shared. So you won't necessary see your airline posted permanently on a placard or sign. Sign of times.
    [​IMG]IMG_7710 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Naz room :) I couldn't wait to pass out. Some please shoot me with a tranquilizer. With 10.5 hour time zone difference between Washington and Bengaluru point to sleep wasn't an issue. The problem was getting up at 2 a.m. in the morning in India for next week or so. Took a while to get adjusted to time zone. Both ways.
    [​IMG]IMG_7712 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_7713 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Our plan was to do some sightseeing next day, rest, and head over to bike rental to pickup our Royal Enfield Himalayan bikes. Mahi planned a get together than evening with the Bangalore Motorcycle Club ( BMC ) at a brewery down the road from hotel.

    View from my Welcom Hotel room next morning. Overlooking Bangalore. The city is the IT and tech capital of India. Great morning buffet at hotel. Both Indian and continental.
    [​IMG]IMG_7716 by Kam A, on Flickr




    More to come.

    Attached Files:

    #13
  14. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    Day 2: Down day in Bengaluru.

    As I mentioned earlier, we tried to get some rest and sightseeing today. Our plan was to pickup the rental bikes midway and bring them back to the hotel for early morning departure next morning. Turns out the rental bike was on " island time " as they say.

    After breakfast at hotel, we head out with Mahi for some sightseeing around Bengaluru.

    I think this building is the government center.
    [​IMG]IMG_7719 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Roldan and Mahi.
    [​IMG]IMG_7721 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Me ( in Flaming Gorge Wyoming shirt ) and Roldan.
    [​IMG]IMG_7722 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Library and park in downtown Bengaluru.
    [​IMG]IMG_7745 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Forget the Thanksgiving meal. " Bring on the traditional Indian full meal on banana leaf. "
    [​IMG]IMG_7750 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Check out second bullet down. Sorry no personal body guards allowed inside restaurant.
    [​IMG]IMG_7751 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Contemporary Indian cooking.
    [​IMG]IMG_20181122_142018710_HDR by Kam A, on Flickr

    Roldan's desert. He's the foodie guy in group.
    [​IMG]IMG_20181122_145312556_HDR by Kam A, on Flickr


    Kids heading back in afternoon to study some more.
    [​IMG]IMG_7759 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Fist Triumph dealer we see in town. Most of the big cities seem to have a Triumph dealer.
    [​IMG]IMG_7757 by Kam A, on Flickr



    Finally around 3 or 4 p.m. we got a call from the rental shop that our bikes were ready.

    Inspecting the bikes. Vidur in green shirt.
    [​IMG]IMG_7768 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Turns out one of the 3 out of 4 of the Himalayan bikes were carbonated. Found out my rear brake tail light switch wasn't working and my horn was anemic. Oh well.
    [​IMG]IMG_7766 by Kam A, on Flickr

    I had to convince a few of my fellow riders, the Himalayan was meant for a bumps and dirt.



    This is what rush hour traffic at dusk looked like the fist night we picked our RE Himalayan bikes from ONN Bike Rental.



    Later in the evening Mahi and his wife invited the Bangalore Motorcycle Club ( BMC ) to join us for drinks and snacks at a brewery up a few blocks from our WelcomHotel. I think it was called Arbor Brewing Company.
    [​IMG]fullsizeoutput_94b by Kam A, on Flickr


    We met with about a dozen great adventure riders. The rest of the gang was actually out on a riding trip up in northern part. We chatted all about our trips, bikes, gear, and places we like to travel. As India starts to produce smaller adventure bikes like the BMW G310GS, KTM 390, and Himalayan, more riders are getting into off-road adventure riding. We're all eagerly waiting for the KTM 390 Adventure R. Fantastic evening !
    [​IMG]IMG_0098 by Kam A, on Flickr

    The BMC group was so nice and generous to us. Great energy, vibe, and universal camaraderie. They even shipped us some great BMC T shirts, hats, and decals. We all promised to reciprocate.
    [​IMG]IMG_8586 by Kam A, on Flickr



    Talking to the BMC riders, we found out that most of them ride bikes that are made in India because the tax/duty on anything imported is 2X to 3X. Same with riding gear and cars. So, you don't see a lot of fancy big displacement bikes like KTM 1290 Adventure or BMW R1200GSA. But, some interesting things are happening now that Bajaj of India owns 50% of KTM.

    Thank you Mahi for getting our two groups together and hosting a wonderful party.
    [​IMG]IMG_0095 by Kam A, on Flickr




    More mingling with BMC group. Love you guys ! See you again soon.
    [​IMG]IMG_7806 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Working on a short video to show you what traffic was at dusk heading back to hotel with bikes.


    Traveling With Gear:
    I know some riders have different approaches and requirements for getting their gear and luggage to their destination. If you have to carry all your civilian and riding gear on the bike, there is merit for flying onboard with all your gear on. Also a small duffle or soft luggage to put on bike. In my case, our team leader managed to secure a driver and chase vehicle primarily for all the luggage.

    Some discussion about my packing strategy and some things to bring along. I decided to take my giant KLIM Kodiak roller and my new Firstgear Torrent waterproof 20 Liter backpack. Since, our trip was self organized, I ended up bringing a fair amount of tools, Aerostich electric pump, and all the tire repair items.

    You can fit a small person in the KLIM Kodiak. The KLIM roller is designed to carry all your riding gear with individual compartments for helmet and boots. I decided to carry my helmet and jacket onto the plane with me. In addition to the Firstgear Torrent backpack. I kept most of my electronics and key items like passport, visa, glasses, and some meds with me onboard. Obviously I had to check the big KLIM roller.

    Flying with Emirates I found out they allow you generous amount of luggage guidelines for checkin luggage. They allow 2 KLIM Kodiak size rollers / suitcases up to 23 Kg. ( 50 lbs. ) each. My KLIM was packed right at 48 lbs. on way out. I also packed a small 20 liter duffle in my KLIM in case they flagged my luggage at checkin for being overweight. This happened on the way back to Washington. At Bengaluru airport my big KLIM was flagged for being overweight and counter guy wanted me to pay the overage. I quickly unzipped my KLIM roller and pulled out my smaller 20 liter duffle full of my tools. Make sure you tag every piece of luggage clearly both on the inside and outside. You may also want to leave a sheet of paper or cardboard with your local destination contact just in case the luggage gets delayed on connecting flight. I am fairly certain each piece of luggage got scanned several times. Don't bother locking them. Carrying the helmet, small backpack, and my riding jacket was a little inconvenient in Dubai. But, we managed. I never lost any of the luggage at either end.

    Photo of my giant KLIM gear roller and duffle.
    [​IMG]IMG_8583 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Firstgear Torrent 20L backpack: https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle...Gw_4rSvB3d61lVNwTJeYulYwOJ5pcJ5gaAiI0EALw_wcB

    KLIM Kodiak roller. I caution you this roller is huge. You just need to make sure none of the airports you plan to go through have steps or don't have luggage carts. https://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/klim-kodiak-gear-bag-2012

    Power:
    I cannot remember exactly. But India uses a type C and D ( ? ) plug adapter. I decided to bring both the common and old style just in case. I found most new hotels like the WelcomHotel in Bengaluru has a universal wall plate plug adapter built in. So, all you had to do is plug you Apple iPhone cube into it.
    [​IMG]IMG_8130 by Kam A, on Flickr

    My C adapter.
    [​IMG]IMG_8131 by Kam A, on Flickr

    The universal side of my three prong C adapter plug.
    [​IMG]IMG_8132 by Kam A, on Flickr

    In addition I took a five port USB charging station for all my electronics. Each night I would plug in my iPhone, Sena 20S intercom, Sena Prism Tube cam, and my Nikon Coolpix. Worked great. Built in 220 V. / 110 V.
    [​IMG]IMG_8133 by Kam A, on Flickr


    PHONE:
    I elected to bring my Apple iPhone 6S phone which is unlocked and will accept a SIM card. Much cheaper trying to get a local SIM card vs. using your U.S. international plan.

    I had Vidur who is local, get me a SIM card. For less $10 USD you can get unlimited voice ,data, and about 5GB data. Local number and local calling. I used it more for emergency service. You will need your passport when buying a SIM. You need your passport also for money exchange. At least at travel agencies and airport currency kiosk.

    Do not bring a two way satellite phone into country. Security reasons. You can bring your Garmin InReach two way satellite text device. But, not a phone.

    USD to INR Currency Exchange:
    After some debate, our team leader elected that we not use our ATM debit card in country. We just brought some USD dollars and exchanged them to India Rupee ( INR ) as we needed. You can exchange currency in the airpot. Typically somewhere near arrival and baggage claim. You can also exchange currency at most hotels and travel agencies.

    I spent about one third of the USD I brought with me. The INR goes a LONG LONG way. You also want to make sure you have all INR denominations. You'll need small bills for tipping gas attendant ( maybe 10 to 20 INR ). Don't just walk around with 500 INR bills.
    #14
  15. Chat Lunatique

    Chat Lunatique aka El Gato Loco

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    I used my debit card in ATMs for a 9 month ride around India in 2016. Absolutely no problems. What possible reason would make you use cash instead?
    #15
  16. chudzikb

    chudzikb Been here awhile Supporter

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    So, you are in India, and you are in a microbrewery, did you at least have an India Pale Ale? Just to say you did that? That would be sweet!
    #16
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  17. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    Our risk analysis favored our approach for short period of time. Security breach concern. Just last night my fraud alert went off on my credit card. Third card in one year. Just a personal risk profile.

    Thanks.

    Kam
    #17
  18. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    :rofl
    I started with beer flights and things got a little foggy after than :drink
    #18
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  19. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

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    Day 3: Bengaluru ride to Mysore (officially called Mysuru)

    Mysore. Otherwise know as city of palaces. We leave Bengaluru before sunrise to save time some time avoiding morning traffic.

    We ride for about an hour and wait to meet up with our chase vehicle. At this point we don't encounter any cows. But, then my eye catches a cow across the road.
    [​IMG]IMG_7811 by Kam A, on Flickr

    First sign we are beginning to leave the heart of Bengaluru.
    [​IMG]IMG_7815 by Kam A, on Flickr

    We stop in the heart of framing country and talk to some villagers. Looks like the way of life has changed very little. However, the people look happy and proud.
    [​IMG]IMG_7820 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Mahi tries to speak to the farmers. I didn't realize India has over 70 languages across 29 states.
    [​IMG]IMG_7822 by Kam A, on Flickr

    On average people speak maybe two of the 70 languages.
    [​IMG]IMG_7823 by Kam A, on Flickr


    First glimpse of how Indians are just as curious about fair skinned foreigners as we are about them.
    [​IMG]IMG_7825 by Kam A, on Flickr

    This slim farmer has a better posture than I do.
    [​IMG]IMG_7828 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Seems like everyone enjoyed the encounter.
    [​IMG]IMG_0105 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Finally on some backcountry roads.
    [​IMG]IMG_7831 by Kam A, on Flickr

    We see small little temples throughout the countryside. Usually there is a priest who maintains the temple. People come anytime and pray for short period.
    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_105442915 by Kam A, on Flickr

    We stop for drinks before entering one of our first temples.
    [​IMG]IMG_7836 by Kam A, on Flickr

    I learn you have to take your shoes off before entering any temple.
    [​IMG]IMG_7838 by Kam A, on Flickr

    I think it was at our first temple when we realize Mahi really knows his history and culture. I also learn you always step across any temple door threshold with your right foot. I hope I got that right.
    [​IMG]IMG_7839 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_7841 by Kam A, on Flickr


    I cannot remember the significance of the elephant riding the horse.

    [​IMG]IMG_7842 by Kam A, on Flickr
    [​IMG]IMG_7845 by Kam A, on Flickr

    This monkey at the temple got a hold of Vidur's drink. He actually pitched it before the monkey could grab it out of his hands. Took the monkey two seconds to pop the cap and commence drinking.

    [​IMG]IMG_7852 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Hey I love those cables on your bike ....munch much

    [​IMG]IMG_7856 by Kam A, on Flickr

    In India dogs like cows roam around everywhere.

    [​IMG]IMG_7858 by Kam A, on Flickr


    These guys are on the lookout to snatch anything out of your hand. Like an iPhone or camera. I am sure these guys are smart enough to trade it in for some real coconut juice :)

    [​IMG]IMG_7863 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Finally at out hotel at Mysore. Called the Lalitha Mahal Palace. A converted Governor's house built by a Raj.

    [​IMG]IMG_7874 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Different time of day.

    [​IMG]IMG_0189 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Front entrance to our hotel in Mysore.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_153634908 by Kam A, on Flickr

    View out from lobby.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_164624010_HDR by Kam A, on Flickr



    I am sure this is one of Roldan's artistic shots.

    [​IMG]IMG_0150 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Lalitha Mahal Palace hotel all adorned with lights at night.

    [​IMG]IMG_0180 by Kam A, on Flickr


    We couldn't resist getting the bikes in with palace in background.

    [​IMG]IMG_0198 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Elephant in front lobby of hotel.

    [​IMG]IMG_0187 by Kam A, on Flickr
    [​IMG]IMG_0184 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Blue dinning room.

    [​IMG]IMG_0186 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Full Indian breakfast.
    [​IMG]IMG_7930 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Typical breakfast.
    [​IMG]IMG_7878 by Kam A, on Flickr

    I think someone was preparing for wedding or maybe just a photo shoot.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_164447488 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Courtesy of Roldan.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181124_102715311 by Kam A, on Flickr


    " Who's your Daddy." We discover the hotel has Zero Coke. At least Roldan does.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181126_143004056 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Later in evening we head into downtown Mysore to do some sightseeing with a guide.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_174533728_HDR by Kam A, on Flickr
    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_174119828_HDR by Kam A, on Flickr

    The market is Mysore is worth a stop.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_183409092 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Dosa anyone? Our tour included stoping at some food stalls. By the end of the night nobody was hungry for a sit down dinner.

    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_194848287 by Kam A, on Flickr

    D
    usk at Mysore square. Notice cow in background. The people who run the market food stalls leave the leftovers for the cows. In turn they clean everything up. Nothing goes to waste.
    [​IMG]IMG_20181123_181459047 by Kam A, on Flickr



    We spent a couple days in Mysore. On our down days, we used the chase van to get around. Too hot to walk around in full gear.
    [​IMG]pHvB7RhXQDmemNHJ3pR8Yg by Kam A, on Flickr


    F
    uture retirement job perhaps.
    [​IMG]IMG_4496 by Kam A, on Flickr


    To be continued
    #19
  20. GF-kam

    GF-kam Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2013
    Oddometer:
    756
    Location:
    Great Falls, Virginia
    Day 4: Mysore palace and temple hoping.

    We spend the day visiting the famous Mysore palace and a couple of nearby temples.

    Our travel blogger couple, Vidur and Archana, enjoying the cool morning before we head out. You can find more about them by visiting https://travelmynation.in
    [​IMG]IMG_0197 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Some giant birds on the grounds of our hotel.
    [​IMG]DSCN1772 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Entrance to Mysore Palace.
    [​IMG]IMG_0124 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Lots of rooms. Huge covered review stand in the middle.
    [​IMG]DSCN1793 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]DSCN1791 by Kam A, on Flickr




    Few more photo ops before we head inside.
    [​IMG]IMG_0138 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Starting to explore inside palace.
    [​IMG]IMG_0128 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]DSCN1803 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Impressive.
    [​IMG]DSCN1802 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Courtyard.
    [​IMG]DSCN1798 by Kam A, on Flickr



    Clock in Mysore square.
    [​IMG]DSCN1808 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Making some dosa.
    [​IMG]DSCN1805 by Kam A, on Flickr


    Mahi wasn't feeling too good first few days. He had a bad chest cough. Likely caused by some allergies. So, we went out looking for some meds.
    [​IMG]DSCN1819 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_7914 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Once we entered the Mysore Palace, we noticed everyone staring at us and asking for selfies.
    [​IMG]IMG_7890 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Beautiful artwork on palace ceiling.
    [​IMG]IMG_7897 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_7898 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Detail wood carving on door entrances.
    [​IMG]IMG_7899 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Inlays of ivory I assume.
    [​IMG]IMG_7900 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Huge halls.
    [​IMG]IMG_7901 by Kam A, on Flickr

    [​IMG]IMG_7904 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Colored glass ceilings.
    [​IMG]IMG_7906 by Kam A, on Flickr


    During celebrations the elephants get to wear all this gold bling.
    [​IMG]IMG_7907 by Kam A, on Flickr

    Lunch at the famous " full meal banana leaf" place. We got in just before the lunch crowd.
    [​IMG]IMG_7912 by Kam A, on Flickr

    A landmark lunch place in Mysore.
    [​IMG]IMG_7913 by Kam A, on Flickr




    First experience with Indian Paan. A sweet aromatic after meal kind of treat. Kind of a mouth cleansing thing. Acquired taste. Tasted like explosion of lavender soap in my mouth. "Chili" ( a/k/a ....Archana ) has no issues with Paan.


    I call Archana " Chili " because she eats a bowl of fresh chili peppers most meals.


    Later in the evening we drive out to Brindavan Gardens at the Krishnarajasagara Dam to see the 60 acre gardens. Designed to look like typical Persian Garden.


    Carnival like atmosphere during the evening just outside the Brindavan Gardens. The place was an absolute ZOO. But, everyone was clearly enjoying themselves. None of the food stalls looked permanent or had any refrigeration. So, on good advice we opted to eat at the Royal Hotel restaurant up the road and with the Persian gardens. Roldan really wanted to try everything.
    [​IMG]IMG_7922 by Kam A, on Flickr

    We found out that you couldn't actually get into the Brindavan Gardens without a car after dark. So, we waited around until our chase vehicle came back. We eventually made it past the entrance guards.

    This is what the Brindavan Gardens look like in daytime. You can see the adjacent dam. At night they have a light show, which we also missed. Next time.
    [​IMG]b0f59aef91535d245437bde0d22c61a9 by Kam A, on Flickr

    There is a light show at night. You need to check the times. The place is huge. The white house looking building at the far end is the Royal Hotel. If I am not mistaken, there are two hotel properties in the Garden.
    [​IMG]mysore-brindavan-gardens-149598204428-orijgp by Kam A, on Flickr

    Some video footage I took during our walk through the carnival like atmosphere near entrance of Brindavan Gardens. I wish I could add smell-o-vision to the video :)



    This is the hotel in the Brindavan Garden.
    [​IMG]IMG_0183-2 by Kam A, on Flickr
    #20