A Travelogue on Vellore and Kancheepuram in Tamil Nadu

#1 Feb 6th, 2013, 17:36
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  • lazyppl is offline
#1
Hi

I am planning to visit Vellore and Kancheepuram on weekends.
Vellore places : Vellore fort, Sripuram golden temple, Jalagandeswar temple

Vainu bappu observatory ( if visitors are still allowed )

Kancheepuram : Kailasanthar temple, Ekambareswara temple, Varadarajar perumal temple and amakshi amman temple.

I am solo traveller so mostly I will be taking bus to travel every where.
Can anyone help me out if is there any thing else to see apart from places I have listed, or fun things to do while I am there.

Am flexible in changing my plan to add or remove places if other places suggestion look better.
#2 Feb 6th, 2013, 17:55
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#2
Quote:
Originally Posted by lazyppl View Post Kancheepuram : Kailasanthar temple, Ekambareswara temple, Varadarajar perumal temple and amakshi amman temple.

I am solo traveller so mostly I will be taking bus to travel every where.
Can anyone help me out if is there any thing else to see apart from places I have listed, or fun things to do while I am there.
I can only suggest regarding Kanchi of the two you've mentioned. It's a great place and often overlooked by tourists. You've selected the right temples - actually we covered it in the first half itself (it got quite hot by late noon so we just started back) but it would be better if you split it in two parts - first and second half to allow more leisurely viewing though it's a long wait between the closing and re-opening hours with nothing much to do except shop and have lunch.

Kailasnathar is the only one under ASI, the other three are living temples (as is kailasnathar but it doesnt see the kind of pilgrim flow that the others do), it's also a bit outside from what I recall. You may want to do this in the second half. OR just divide them by area to be covered and two large ones in the morning (ekambareswar and varadraja perumal) and then the other two later.

So, I have only three concrete suggestions:
  • Dont wait for the AC bus which reaches a bit late from Chennai. Go as early as possible. The floors would heat up so badly by 12 noon that you'd find it impossible to take pictures etc.
  • Right on the doorstep of Varadraja Perumal gopuram (on the right side) is the venkateshwara handloom weavers coop society shop. It's an amazing place for silks, prices are half of Nallis.
  • Engage a guide to view the thousand pillared mandapam at Varadraja Perumal. It's worth the money - even if the guy asks for 100, it's OK as he can show you certain features you'd miss otherwise.
#3 Feb 6th, 2013, 19:04
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#3
thanks I will do same as you have suggested...So when I am in Kanchi, I have to stick to this places only ..

@Vaibhav how many places have you visited re!! Seems like you have covered each and every point in India!!
#4 Feb 6th, 2013, 19:06
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I wish!
#5 Feb 6th, 2013, 19:06
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If you have time you can also visit Polur.
Kedar Janani Devasthan, Mt Abu - Udaipur, Bharatpur, Agra, Gwalior, Orchha, Jhansi,
Satara

Of course I speak to myself. I need expert advice sometimes.
#6 Feb 6th, 2013, 19:20
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hmm... I dint found Polur mentioned earlier anywhere.
45 km from Velllore
Few 1000 year old caves and a hill .
Time permits will go there. Thanks for giving a new place.
#7 Feb 6th, 2013, 19:22
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sorry forgot to answer lazyppl (was laughing hard). In Kanchi, another place is the kamakoti peetham - the original ashram of adi shankaracharya. It was closed when we went but if you're spending the entire day, maybe check it out? I cant find info on how to get in though
#8 Feb 6th, 2013, 19:31
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Ok, point noted. kamakoti peetham
#9 Feb 9th, 2013, 23:18
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#9
I am reaching Kanchi on 17/03/13 at 4am by train from Madurai. I wish to cover Kailasanthar temple, Ekambareswara temple, Varadarajar perumal temple, Kamakshi Amman temple & Kamkoti Mutt. I shall visit these five places by noon.

I will have to proceed for Tirupati by noon as I have booked eSudarshan tickets for 17/3/13.

Is bus service from Kanchi good enough to take me to Tirupati by evening of 17th? And, where can I get north Indian food in Kanchi?


Please advise.
#10 Feb 10th, 2013, 13:52
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#10
Hi Vishal

I have not gone to Kanchi yet... I will be travelling there same week as you are. I do not know about the north indian food there, but regarding the bus services I can tell you that Tamil Nadu bus services are good ( past exp ) and you will be able to find frequent buses to Tirupati.
#11 Feb 11th, 2013, 12:06
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lazyppl View Post Hi Vishal

I have not gone to Kanchi yet... I will be travelling there same week as you are. I do not know about the north indian food there, but regarding the bus services I can tell you that Tamil Nadu bus services are good ( past exp ) and you will be able to find frequent buses to Tirupati.
Thank you........I hope to see you there on 17/03/2013.
#12 Feb 18th, 2013, 12:15
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#12
my trip was a success.
Thiruvanamalai, Observatory, Vellore and Kanchi.
Soon will present a report.
#13 Feb 18th, 2013, 12:25
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Look forward to it ...
#14 Feb 19th, 2013, 00:34
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It all started out with a panic.
My plan was to go to Thiruvanamalai first and head to Vellore but there were no buses to Thiruvanamalai from Majestic.

So, I went in Vellore express bus ( which saved time ) ( via Chitoor not Krishnagiri ).
Reached at 3:30 in morning and what I see there were lot of buses and people even during that time!!

There was a bus to Thiruvanamalai right next platform and got that bus, reaching around 5: 30 am.

It was dawn already and I could see that hill which just looks like nandi hills ( covered with clouds all around ).



It was typical south indian temple which happens to have 2nd highest gopuram in India.

( Its a north gopuram not the east one. )

Two passages were there, special and general. I just followed the crowd which helped because it did not matter as people started coming in from everywhere.
I am not a big believer in god so I soon started thinking that is it really worth to wait this long. Anyway it got finished and there was an entrance to another shrine.
By that time, sun had risen and rays where really looking good when they fall on the temple rocks like they were saying to me GOOOOODD MORNINGGGGG.



Photographs were not allowed but seeing that no cared about that sign, I also started taking a few.



Going back to Vellore skipping Polur Jain caves.
As I got in the bus, I realised that there were less number of people travelling now than compared to people travelling at 3 am.

Got in some lodge near to Vellore's new bus station. Confirmed a cab . ( Vellore city cabs ).

After refreshing for an hour or so headed towards Vellore fort.

This fort areawise is huge not that much height wise though. That fort after seeing warfares for long was seeing love birds at every corner, I say well played fort. Fort was surrounded by water which during that time had crocodiles but there is only grass. It was an hour when I realised that I had completed a full circle of the fort.









It was soon going to be 1 pm ( closing time of Jalakandeswarar Temple ).



Left side to main temple is dedicated to Vishnu. Statue horses were looking great and were much more better than Madurai or Rameshwaram. I thought that Vijaynagar empire were a little dull compared to their previous empires judging on Hampi and Leepakshi but this changed by mind. They were so good.








There were some group of artist which were making sketches of the sculptures there.
Had spend only few minutes and guard came to tell that its closing time. I was just getting started !!!! Apart from those horse sculptures I did not found any other statues which normally are carved to present some story. Story telling was missing here or I guess my eyes were blind.

Anyway headed to Golden temple. Lot of security there from people like having very good intention to get some gold off the pilllars . :P . You have to wait in some sort of room. Felt like I was in jail.
Anyway I had asked my cab to catch at that temple and so it came giving me an exuse to leave from the jail. I really don't like to visit temples like jail.
Later now I came to know that Tirupathi temple is also like this Jail types and thanks to it I will never go there.

Reached at 4 pm to observatory. Was sleeping most of the time on the way to miss out on good scenery outside. Reached observatory and what i see is four school buses standing. I hated it.



Yes, it good that schools are taking initiative but it had to be this day alone!!
However, I just followed where students followed and there was some session regarding how telescopes works. It was in tamil so after every student left I asked the guy to explain in English or Hindi which he was not that much fluent. I understood but not everything.




Also came to know that, observatory which is in Ladakh is handled from bangalore itself. Anyway skywatch supposed to start at 6 : 30 pm.

It was 5 pm and waiting till 6:30. So, seeing my condition local monkeys pitying me started to put on some show of fighting which really worked.
Monkeys here are decent ones as they don't dare to snatch any snacks from you.

Clouds were forming up and so were the students also lining up. So, it started. Heres the snap, this reminded me of that govt. ad "eeeeeschool chale hum " :P.



To all this time I was thinking that, we will be seeing from those huge sized telescope but NOPE, it was like a small one.

Little disappointed but anyway, I waited for students to finish up but it was taking forever also there were clouds.

Eventually, I just cut in the line ( feeling sad for the student whose turn I just took, no not really ).
But all this waiting paid off when I saw glimpses of moon that close. Maybe for some it might not be that good but I have never seen it that close. aaaaaaaaaaaaaa
I had hardly seen that 5- 10 secs. I did not have good time to chat with guy who was handling telescope and neither he had time with long line of students.

At 7: 30 pm started towards Vellore. Reached at 9. Too tierd to change and go to restaurant and eat. Bought some snacks and had them in my room.
Watched TV, had snacks, created 10 alarms and slept among huge number of mosquitos and some bed bug looking insects.

Day Ends

Kanchi is still left in this report . Will update soon.
Last edited by vaibhav_arora; Feb 19th, 2013 at 08:22..
#15 Feb 19th, 2013, 09:41
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#15
Thank you for your feedback on the observatory...I hope this will help future visitors.
Last edited by adam00121; Feb 19th, 2013 at 09:41.. Reason: spelling error

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