Travelogue: The Dandeli Chapter

It had been a while since I opted for a train for one of my trips. I was excited at the prospect of it and lucky enough to get tickets booked on time.

Destination: Dandeli.

Dandeli is a town in North Karnataka. It has the Second largest Wildlife Sanctuary in Karnataka which was designated as a tiger reserve in 2007. It is one of the few places for White River rafting in India.

Of course, there aren’t any direct trains running/crossing from Bangalore to Dandeli. Hence, I booked tickets till Londa Junction. (Yes, that’s how it is spelled). My friends, travelingDandeli-Travelogue_Pic-Bike-on-the-roads on their Motorcycles, were to join me there at the station, the very next morning. The prospect of a bike-trip was again exciting. I wasn’t driving and hence it was still exciting (and not scary) for my other friends.

After a breakfast of Puri-Sabji, with fluffy puris and mashed potato fried lightly, at one of the few roadside joints, dimly lit, we started off towards the town of Dandeli, on tarmac roads with greenery all around us. The fresh morning breeze racing past us as the town neared us. After roaming around, finding our own way towards the Kali River, we decided to take the resort package. It comprised of a night’s stay (Tent or a room), lunch and a breakfast. Along with it, the package included Zorbing, Boating, Swimming, Forest Treks, Cycling, Jacuzzi, Shooting and a Bon-fire to end the night.

The fresh morning breeze racing past us as the town neared us. After roaming around, finding our own way towards the Kali River, we decided to take the resort package. It comprised of a night’s stay (Tent or a room), lunch and a breakfast. Along with it, the package included Zorbing, Boating, Swimming, Forest Treks, Cycling, Jacuzzi, Shooting and a Bon-fire to end the night.

We were also given a map of the town and various sight-seeing places, which included:

  • Syntheri Rock
  • Ulavi Temple
  • Nagoda Backwater
  • Supa Dam

We headed towards Syntheri Rock and instead of off-roading the last 2 km stretch, walked along the route amidst trees and chirping of the birds.





The giant rock with a stream of water from the Kalindi River flowing past it is a sight. The pleasant evening weather proved just the right fit for us to lose our shoes and let our feet dangle in the flowing water. One can sit by the stream and do nothing. I’m assuming there will always be a crowd here but pretty sure without them one can enjoy the view and sound of water, undisturbed.

Syntheri Rocks is a giant monolithic Rock located in the dense Dandeli Wildlife Sanctuary.

As you head down towards the water, the view of this one rock fills up your eyesight.




As we headed back, the weather decided to literally spread water over our plans for further sight-seeing.

Instead, we headed to the town for a much-needed food break. A small restaurant called, Al- Kohinoor’s non-veg laden menu piqued our interests. Apart from having our lunch on the first day, we even followed it up for the second day. The food was good. Our orders included Beef Biriyanis (Plural, yes), Kebabs, Chaps, Liver and Fish Fry.

We had to drive down in the rain as it decided not to stop on our way to the Resort. The resort was pretty close by, but the route was blocked and hence we were forced to take a longer route.

It was already night by the time we reached and apart from dinner, dancing around the bon-fire and a late-night conversation under one of the many shacks, there wasn’t much to do. And I guess, that was the purpose of it all?



The night was about getting some much-needed rest by tucking ourselves in the tent. The tent part was my first experience and although this was in a resort, still it was fun to be in one.


Ideally, Dandeli is a place known for River Rafting. The reason for coming over to Dandeli was that! However, since it was raining and due to government restrictions, it was closed.

There was a trek through the woods for the large part of the crowd who were up at that time. The trek culminated into a scenic area with a stream of water at the end of it.


Post this, we took a boat ride along the stream along with a very animated guide for company, who shared a few spooky Crocodile tales from around the area while we were in the middle of the water. Timing.




While my friends zorbed in the river out there. I decided to carry on reading the book.

Post the activities, we decided to head off to Dushsagar Falls. There was a lot of discussions and after much deliberation, we headed towards the next destination. First stop was, ‘Castle Rock’ from where we either had to trek up to Dudhsagar or hop onto a goods train. Alas! A surprise awaited us.


Apparently, they’ve closed the trek option due to multiple accidents in the area and the last train which crosses Dudhsagar which we hoped to get onto, left a few minutes back. The quaint little station even had messages warning about the same.


But we had our tent with us, and decided to park ourselves for the night. And this part, right here at Castle Rock, was a good decision. This area was like a mystery and I’d probably need a separate post to talk about that.


The town is out of a B-grade horror movie for the gloomy and foggy weather. Deserted as we walked in and made us wonder, do people even live here?

Answer : They do.



Anyways, long story short, we put up our tent in the verandah of one of the guest houses and even ate a decent meal. The joy of doing this is irreplaceable. One of us was of the opinion to put a tent right here on the grass itself. Picturesque? Yes. But thanks to our skepticism, the rain at night would have troubled us if we had done the same.



As we headed out early morning enjoying the amazing view, once again, and wondering how come everywhere you go in Karnataka, the roads are amazing. But as soon as you’re back in Bangalore, the scene just changes!

I had a few hours to kill before my train arrived and ended up penning down my musings at Londa Junction, here!

Musings at Londa Junction

To Summarise my Dandeli Travelogue, it was more of a road trip where we made multiple and elongated pit stops. There were many things to explore in Dandeli and of course, the River rafting, but the roads are amazing and I’d suggest to take a car or a bike when you plan to head over to the place.

Just letting it go.. on a road trip..

“Listen anvesha, for Gods’ sake listen to me…” I cried while the door to the adjacent room was banged closed by Anvesha while leaving. I just stood there for a second and then fell down on the bed, numb in thought of how bad things have become. Constant fights are now dominated my life, after Anvesha had decided to shift base to Bangalore from Jamshedpur to keep a “check” on me.

I had been in the advertising field since graduating from one of the top advertising colleges, two years back. A job in advertising is what I had my eyes set on. The creative bug had hit me from the school days, days from when being constantly involved in almost every co-curricular activity and winning all of them had just started. Tagged as one of the brightest and most famous few from the school, back in those days, life’s one of the best phases was being enjoyed.

This was the time when Anvesha was about to enter into my life. A new face gleamed into the folds of Crescent School. Smart, hot and chirpy, was what she could be described as. From the very first day that she had entered school, she was the topic that was being discussed everywhere.

Being the dude that I was. It didn’t take much to impress her with my smooth ways. What started off with the school canteen sandwiches, moved onto the movies at Payal cinema every weekend, and then with more “value addition” to the whole game, with each passing day.

Anvesha and Sameer had remained inseparable ever since.

Although, many didn’t liked her because of the attitude that she carried around, but being with the most popular guy in school has its own perks. No one says anything to you directly, but bitches behind your back at every opportunity.

Time passed. From school to college. We were now separated by distance, while I came to study in Bangalore, Anvesha started out with her Engineering in Jamshedpur.

Long distance Relationship or LSD as they call it was what we were now a part of. After the initial hiccups and problems associated with it, things started to settle down. But being in a field of advertising and in constant involvement with the opposite sex, it was a life made tough. No, not in terms of resisting that urge, but with the possessiveness of Anvesha not letting me breathe.

But with “years of togetherness” being the bonding thread that kept me going, I somehow adjusted.

 The car stopped!!

And I was made to come out of my reveries, only to realize what had happened. A road jam, was what awaited the three of us. An accident had taken place down the road. Coming out of the car, we came to know that it would take hours to get the accident site cleared. Nothing could happen unless police came and made things easy for us.

There was another passage that was available, but the road looked deserted. Anup was constantly pushing to not waste the time and explore this available option. He was too eager to explore Goa!!

Karan and I looked at each other and then the traffic that awaited us.

It was time to travel the road not taken.

The road not taken- Goa

It had already started getting dark and the journey to Goa had just started. With around 20 minutes into the dark wild, or the “road” that we took, we had already got scared. Not because of the dark but because of Anup. He was scared like anything and was cursing us for not waiting for the traffic to get cleared, and after we reminded him that it was his idea in the first place he blamed us for listening to him. Batao!!!

Time didn’t just ticked its’ way out, but moving at a snails’ pace on the bumpy road.

Up and down we went.

It was that time during our college “study tour”, where we went to Ooty. Loads of fun was on the cards, or so I thought, problems greeted me along with it.

It was December and the weather over there was terribly cold. Due to some lapse from the management’s side, many of us had to share rooms. Somehow I and Karan were made to stay in the girls’ room. One of them happened to be Sakshi, karans’ girlfriend. As the night went on, they just went more and more “romantic”. I on the other hand just slept my way through, only to be woken up by a call from Anvesha. When I somehow described the situation, she actually cut the call after a while blaming me for intentionally being part of this “arrangement”.

This was not the first time that this had happened, but numerous occasions where I was blamed for being “involved” with other girls.


The car had hit something. Karan, looked shit scared!!

Anup, was not willing to go out and check. Even I was scared but looking at these two scared faces, opened the door and went to check it out. Only to find that we had almost crushed a dog’s leg. It was just a small puppy, with the kind of scream that would melt away even stones. We couldn’t hear the sound of the puppy due to the music being played inside; I called up Karan who looked relieved to see that it was not any human soul. But still, looking at the puppy that it was, completely drenched in the mud and screaming for help, we decided to take it up and get to some Vet if we found any. Karan, on the other hand, whose car it was just couldn’t believe that we were actually willing to do that, while Anup had already wrapped him in his towel and taken him inside. The puppy smelled like anything, of the mud that he had covered his body with, Anup cleaned his wound up and applied whatever first aid which was there in the car.

Strange as it may sound, but after entering the car, we just couldn’t smell anything bad. When we were thinking as to what was the reason, Karan pointed out the Ambi Pur on the dashboard. I had no knowledge of what it was, and later when I checked it out accidently on their facebook page https://www.facebook.com/AmbiPurIndia, that I came to know about this.

With Anups’ comic gems being rolled out, and the night passed effortlessly, we drove towards the highway, on our way to Goa, we searched addresses of some veterinary docs on the way and after having located one ended up treating Shaggy. Yes, the puppy now had a name. Thanks to Anup. But after having been with the dog and developing a strange affection, we just didn’t leave him there, but took him to our Road trip.

I was constantly getting calls from Anvesha and after some 2-3 “missed” calls from her, decided to pick it up. I told her of how a trip to Goa was planned and now I was on way to one. Having listened to it, she sounded as if I had done some sort of a crime. Of having gone ahead with the trip after fighting with her, and instead of consoling her, was on my way to enjoy in Goa!! The call was again cut.

After having known me for years, throughout my school and college life, Anup and Karan understood as to why it was all taking a toll on me. This was actually one of the reasons that this trip was planned for me to wind out all of these issues and get back to the Sameer that I was.

They didn’t start out with any sort of sentimental dialogues, just simply asked me about the matter and after having described the whole situation as it stood now. They asked, “Are you happy?”

I had no answer. I didn’t want to answer in the negative to that. The years of effort put in the relationship would have no meaning then.

They didn’t wait for an answer either, as they knew what it would be. They told me to cut out the thing that has kept me restless and just let it all go.

I don’t know what actually happened. But it was all making sense now, as if I needed someone to tell me that the present me, who would be coochy-cooing to his girlfriend without wanting to, of listening to the over-possessive avatar of her, which never made sense before. I was lost in the midst of all of it.

It was Dawn.

the dawn

We had stopped the car to take a leak and experience the rising sun. The three of us leaking it out, down the hill. And the sun rising. Just imagine.

The two of them had already gone inside the car, but I was just staring at the rising sun. Thinking, will this dawn result in a new morning?

There was determination and when I looked at the two idiots shouting at me to hurry up; I just had a smile on my face. A smile that wasn’t stuck on some “years” of bondage.

I sat there looking out of the window, letting the wind rush through my face, flashing a sense of comfort along with it.

It was already Goa!!

We didn’t went to any hotel, parked our car just outside the beach. I ran myself down and just went in deep Arabian sea, and as they said, Let it all go.


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