Approx Distance: 2450 Kms
Motor-Bike: Bajaj Pulsar 150cc
Friend in the trip: Shailesh Dhamale
Trip Route: Pune (Maharashtra) > Kolhapur > Chitradurg (Karnataka) > Shravanbelagola > Halebeedu > Sagar > Jog Falls > Gokarna Mahabaleshwar > Panjim (Goa) > Sawantwadi (Maharaashtra) > Amboli Waterfalls > Kolhapur > Pune[divider]
Last many days, I was reading a lot about sculptures, temples while gathering data for dream project – Jadunagari. I spent more time in googelling on Halebidu. Temptation was started and was sure that it will drag me to Halebidu itself 🙂
13th Oct 06: It’s being so many days,I haven’t took my bike out on highways. Just a thought stroked in the mind and in next an hour I was at Shailesh’s house. Shailesh Dhamale, my class mate at IMCC where I completed my D.T.L. certification. Shailesh never went out of Pune on bike and I was asking him about crossing the states..! He laughed and joined me. After gathering required things like first aid kit,engine oil, extra bulbs for bike, tool kits etc, we marched toward National Highway 4…I love this one for it’s speed, width and destinations it carries..!
Around 10 am, we left Pune and my love, my bike, was running like a horse on NH 4. Shailesh was pretty thrilled about his first experience of madness which we were about to do. After a fast and furious day of running and just running, we crossed Maharashtra border in evening and entered in Karnataka. We started observing Cultural variant. The way they dress, their villages and language.
The way Karnataka welcomed us, we just shocked. A Travel bus met with an accident in front of us. Luckily no one injured badly, but that slowed down us. Shailesh was tired and feeling a sleep.
We were taking more breaks as the night passes. NH 4 was under construction (?) and was at it’s worst. Speed was down at 40-50 kmph.. Bad and dusty road, heavy traffic, chilling cold compelled us to stop. Anna kutti – the chaiwala – became good friend of us and gave us a little space to sleep. I couldn’t but Shailesh was enjoying sweet dreams of mosquitoes 🙂
14 th Oct.06: Some how I managed woke up Shailu. Had a “Anna Kutti Special” tea (recipe: too much sugar and water, least milk and tea powder) and proceeded further. We found a nice Dhaba near Chitradurga city. We fools found kind of heaven and got ourselves refreshed. I couldn’t stop myself from having a quick nap after zakkas bath and punjabi food.
Chitradurga: We found that this tiny town posses various footprints of it’s glorious history. Chitradurga fort is well managed and grabs lots of visitors. Chennama’s bravery is world famous. The town is surrounded by hills with mighty rocks and numbers of wind-mills. I can say that this scene now became an identity of the town.
Karnataka is far different in culture as well as farming style than Maharashtra. While biking we were enjoying that beauty and new essence which I can not catch up in the words, village by village, we reached Chitrakut. We decided of not going to Bangalore, rather planned for Shravanabelgola. We left the NH 4 and took village roads. Amazing experience when drive on such tiny roads, farms and lakes on both the sides, new people, new dresses…every thing new! During our journey we kept meeting, talking people, trying to talk them and got really good friends too.
Best line learnt – “Tension togg bedi…Enjoy madi 🙂 ”
After running for hundreds of KMs, we finally reached our first milestone, Shravanabelagola in the evening! I decided to have good rest after 2 days and a night run.
15th Oct.06: Both of us were tired and could manage to open the eyes around 9.30am..ohh..late! Got to nearby restaurant quickly for breakfast..but it was mood off!! “South Indian” food tastes best in South India but not every day and all time. Last 2 days we were just having Idali-Dosa-Uttapam etc and really wanted Roti 🙂
Shravanabelagola – situated in Hassan district, is one of the most important Jain religious center. There are two hills,Chandragiri & Vindyagiri. The 57 feet monolithic statue of the Bhagavan Gomateshwara Bahubali is located on the Vindyagiri.It is considered to be the world’s largest monolithic stone statue and was erected by Chamundaraya, a general of King Gangaraya. “Shravanabelagola” is first in “Seven Wonders of India” (Survey by Times of India).
While going up, I saw a mother struggling to climb with her son in sunny and hot morning!Without asking her, I just picked up the boy on my shoulder and went up. Some how she came and gave an apple as a token of thanks 🙂
After a rest for while, we entered in main Darshana room and our eyes were unable to catch the scene in front of us. Mighty statue of Gomateshwara was shining under sun. We all were up to his thumb of legs in height. It was peaceful and joyful feeling which was calming the soul. We had darshana in traditional way and wondered entire place.
After a satisfaction of a bit and finishing our photo sessions (lol) we started to next journey.
After such amazing experience, we marched toward our next destinations. Karnataka is full of history and religious monuments. In my top 5 states, I gave 3rd rank to Karnataka after Uttaranchal and Rajasthan. I just love it…Hampi, Paddakkal,Badami, Shravanabelgola,Vijapur,Ahihole,Halebid,Bellari… such huge list of amazing places..many of them are recognized by UNESCO as World Heritage Sites. Our next target was Halebid (locally called as Halebidu).
During our breaks for lunch and tea, I was reading more and more about further destinations and was getting more and more excited to see the real world. I am stone art lover..Sculptures talk with me..tell me the stories of their birth and sustaining till date.