1/ Bollywood to Kollywood, is one way of describing what this trip entails; Full of drama, Coast to Coast. Measure out: one part Hollywood; six parts traffic; a bunch of rich power-moguls; stir in half a dozen colonial relics (use big ones); pour in six heaped cups of poverty; add a smattering of swish bars and restaurants (don’t skimp on quality here for best results); equal parts of mayhem and order; as many ancient bazaars as you have lying around; a handful of Hinduism; a dash of Islam; fold in your mixture with equal parts India; throw it all in a blender on high (adding generous helpings of pollution to taste) and presto: “Mumbai”. Ancient yet modern, fabulously rich yet achingly poor, Mumbai is India in microcosm. It is a commercial hub of an old civilization seeking to find its place in the New World Order. Here we will celebrate the end of a fabulous journey at a world class hotel. We will enjoy magnificent final party in the buzzing heart of India.
2/ On our first leg, we enter Alibag, an idyllic town where you can rest your weary feet. It’s a small town with a beautiful beach and the green hills on the other side, free of pollution and noise. The rains, greenery, tourist attractions, peace and even a reliable signal for your cell phone makes Alibagh a very attractive monsoon getaway.
3/ As we edge closer to the climax, we move into what was once the Capital of “The Maratha Empire”, Pune, the eighth largest city in India. With a name that descends from the Sanskrit word ‘Punya’, meaning ‘Virtue’, the city leads as the ‘veritable heartland’ of cultural Maharashtra. Pune also has made its mark the educational epicenter of the country, winning itself the sobriquet, ‘The Oxford of the East’.
4/ Lets shift gears. We are going up a high hill to experience nature at its best. Mahabaleshwar, picturesque hill station, is popular not only as a honeymoon spot and a great weekend getaway, but also for its historical and religious significance.
5/ Party time continues, as we pick up steam and roll..Sandwiched between the Arabian Sea in the West and the Sayhadri or the Western Ghats range to the East, Ratnagiri has great importance as a district head quarters and is famous for its delicious Alphonso mangoes. This place is blessed with some of the finest fruit trees in the world, and on every street corner and café you will be able to buy a variety of local preparations. Ratnagiri is an ideal hangout for both the history and leisure lovers.
6/ Toast by the Coast. The ‘Paradise of India’, Panaji, Goa has beautiful beaches and always a good reason to party. We will have a day’s rest to revel in the stunning picturesque setting of the coast. Golden beaches, fairy tale mansions and churches, wonderful food and of course, friendly people – this is a destination that has it all. With beautiful and scenic locations, Panaji receives visitors from all over the world to explore and spread its charm.
7/ As we continue on our cruise control mode enjoying the nature along the coast, we get into Bhatkal. A prosperous town with old quaint houses sharing space along with modern designer mansions and elegant shopping complexes, Bhatkal, is steeped in history. Abounded by monuments reflecting the glory of a bygone era, the thriving town is a canvas of peace, affluence and piety.
8/ Trundling further, we approach Mangalore, a city of vivid contrasts. On one hand you see narrow winding streets with cozy, red-roofed houses and on the other there are lofty coconut trees lining the beautiful beaches. The breathtaking natural scenes with which Mangalore welcomes the people, makes it a lovely place to be in.
9/ From the fast paced, contemporary, hi-tech world, we take a massive “U” turn to go back in time. A city that has recorded history dating back a thousand years and a mythical history which explains the origin of its name, Mysore, retains a quaint charm that never fails to enchant. This charming city of palaces, hills and rivers also boasts a history of fine urban planning.
10/ If Mumbai is India’s New York, this City is India’s Chi-town. The tranquil and picturesque “Garden City of India” with its many gardens and boulevards, Bangalore prides on being the most hip and happening city in India. It’s the capital of the Indian IT industry and is known as the “Silicon Valley of India” as well. Fancy pub hopping? Well, You are in the right place. With over 200 Pubs all over the city, the lovely “Bengaluru” has earned another nick name “The Pub City”. With so much credentials, it is no wonder that, Bangalore remains a popular venue in India for Western Rock Concerts.
11/ We head straight into the Fort City of Tamil Nadu, Vellore. Vellore has the blend of rich heritage and culture representing the ancient Dravidian civilization and is renowned for the famous Christian Medical College and Hospital that attracts patients and research scholars from all over the world. The city is also the hub for the leather and tannery industry and is the top exporter of finished leather goods in the country.
12 /Chennai, the automobile capital of India – aptly so – is where we end our challenge, an unrelenting journey through the West Coast of India. Chennai, in short, is a journey into timeless India, a kaleidoscope of moods. Rich in the treasures of history, from temples and shrines to forts and palaces, the landscape of the past lives easily with the present.
Rickshaw Challenge, Mumbai Xpress on a larger map
|Day #||Date||Start Loc||End Loc||Distance (km)|
|Day1||27-Jul-13||Events in Mumbai|
|Day2||28-Jul-13||Practice in Mumbai|
|Day8||3-Aug-13||Stay in Panaji|
|Team of two||€1750||€2975||€3350|
|Team of three||€2710||€4610||€5190|