After a shaky train ride from Chennai to Mysore and a beautiful & scenic 3 hour bus ride from Mysore to Virajpeth – Coorg, we were finally happy to unload ourselves in a small yet fully functioning cottage stay called Yedamakky Cottages.
After settling down and putting some fuel in our stomachs, we started our way towards the 2nd largest Tibetan settlement in India – the Golden Temple – Nyingmapa Monastery!
Let me just say that the travel from Virajpeth to Khushalnagar ( the name of the area where the Monastery is located) was simply horrendous – we had to travel for about 48 kms in a cramped up slow- moving bus with people stinking of sweat and cheap booz, stepping and falling on each other every other minute that took 2 hours in total to reach destination.
But the minute we saw the majestic Monastery and felt the sparkling aura of the same, all the rest was forgotten. . .
Highlights – there was no ban on photography, it started to rain midday, we were lucky to hear a prayer and feast on the best momo’s we have had in a long time.
By the time we were done, it was almost 7 and the last bus had left an hour before
So, we took an auto. . . The longest and darkest auto ride we have ever had. . . We went through dark and lonely jungle roads, small villages, the ghat, hair-pin bends and what not. To top it all, it was a foggy cold creepy moonless night. Right out of a haunted movie scene! Plus it started to thunder and rain . . The night will not be forgotten. . (0_0)
Day 2 – we always tend to travel on a super tight budget, but, after yesterday’s bus horror, we decided to loosen our pockets a little and hired a car that took us to a few view points.
The car ride itself was a beautiful one as it was a little cloudy, the weather was breezy and soothing and the roads were clear. Not to mention, the greenery around was fantastic.
First stop, Raja’s Seat.
I guess we went here in the wrong season. The view was nice but I’m sure we would have enjoyed it much more had it been raining or during the winters. Views like these always remind us that we are such small creatures – don’t they?
To thrill our childish side, we took a toy train ride that didn’t even last for 3 straight minutes.
View from the Raja’s Seat.
Next, we went to Abbey falls, where again, I guess we went in the wrong season. But, since it had rained quite heavily the earlier night, we were able to enjoy the sparkling waters.
Driving on, we stopped at the Madekeri fort and the exhibition of stone artifacts that was next to it. Post that, we were lucky to find a handicraft exhibition on our way and took a quick sneak peek of it.
After a heavy traditional Coorg lunch, we got back to our cottage just before it started to rain joined by a quick passing hailstorm. Since the cottage is located amidst forest area, we had quite a nice view surrounding us.
When it cleared out a bit and while we still had light for some time, we headed out for a lazy stroll on the off beaten jungle paths. To our surprise, the view was even better than what we had imagined. The birds were singing, the insects were making some crazy noises and we were ready to run the minute we thought the dark clouds would head our way.
Back to pavilion, we made ourselves comfortable with cane chairs facing the far off view, fruit wine joined by scrumptious cottage made dinner.