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Sunday, December 14, 2014

Cherai Beach To Ernakulam

I Continue from here...Thrissur And Cherai Beach

Next morning, I got up early and took a walk to the beach. The waves were very ferocious. Having born and brought up very close to the beach, I had never seen such ferocity of the waves. I walked back to the hotel where a brilliant, big cup of morning tea awaited me. I had an extra half cup. It was a wonderful view. We enquired about a boat ride in the backwaters, which to us seemed expensive - Rs 1000 for an hour. The backwaters was filled with activity that morning.






We had some delicious appam and vegetable stew along with some vanilla tea for breakfast. After which, we headed to the beach. Due to the violent nature of the waves, we did not go much further into the water but it was fun as always to be hit by the waves. 

After returning, we got ready to head back. The German tourist staying in the neighbouring house stopped by and we had a small chat. For some reason, I felt that he was hesitating to tell which country he was from. He spoke very good English with very less German ascent. 

I had read somewhere that we could take a ferry to Kochi but after enquiring with the hotel owner it turned out that we had to cross the backwater by boat, then take an auto to Cherai town and then a bus to Vypin island and then a ferry to Kochi. We found that to be exciting and I decided to film the entire stretch. 

We left the hotel at around 11 AM. It was a good stay and thanks to the generous owners who are not really money minded. For such a good accommodation, food and service someone else would have looted a tourist. 



Stretch 1 - Walk from the hotel to Boat stop. 

The boat stop is very close to the Ambady’s villa. We took a left at the gate and another left near a church. That road ends at the banks of the backwater. The boat had just left our side and we had to wait until he gets a ride back.

Stretch 2 - Crossing Cherai Backwaters.

After waiting for about 5 minutes we signalled the guy to bring the boat back. For our delight after some thinking he did make this solo ride back. We boarded the boat and crossed the backwaters. We requested him to take us close to one of the chinese fishing nets to have a closer look at it. At the other end, by then he had passengers waiting. We paid him Rs20 (Rs5 per person) and walked to the main road.


Stretch 3 - Auto Rickshaw ride from the banks to Cherai town.

As soon as we reached the main road, we got an auto. He charged us about Rs 80 to get to the town. We had meant to stop at the Cherai fort which we thought was in town but it turned out that we had just passed the place on our way (Pallipuram) and it was about 4 kms behind. So anyways, we got down at the town centre. At a small bakery, we had some snacks.


Stretch 4 - Bus ride from Cherai to Vypin.

While waiting for the bus, we met a retired Navy employee. He proudly introduced himself thus and even showed us his employee card. Well, when one thinks of army, navy or airforce, one only thinks of soldiers. But here was a man who is so proud of having served the navy and being part of it as a ground staff. He was amongst the people who carry grocery and stationaries to the ship as it docks at the harbour. I realised how less we think of their contribution when we think of army. He was very kind in directing us to the right bus. He spoke Hindi which is a rare sight in Kerala; thanks to his navy connection. The bus would have directly taken us to Ernakulam but we decided to stick to the plan. Vypin is around 15 kms from Cherai. The bus drive reminded me of the same in Mangalore - Private buses speeding on narrow roads.

Stretch 5 - Ferry from Vypin to Fort Kochi

Very next to the bus stand is the Ferry stop. A long queue of vehicles and people were waiting to board the ferry. We took tickets of Rs4 per head and ran to catch the ferry that was about to leave. It was a quicker and much exciting travel to get to fort Kochi. I met a Mangalorean Konkani but he did not speak Kannada. He suggested we go to the Venkataramana temple. The views were spectacular.


Stretch 6 - Fort Kochi to Ernakulam - another Ferry.

I had not realised that fort Kochi was actually on the same island as that of the muttenchery. So that meant we had to take a bus to Ernakulam where we were to board our bus to Bangalore. But we decided to walk around the place before deciding on that stretch. We took a walk to Princess street which has an European feel to it. 


We walked to St Francis church where lies the tomb of Vasco de Gama. 


Then stopped to watch the Chinese fishing nets. These were for commercial purpose to attract the tourists. Much different from those we had seen in Cherai whose purpose was to sustain a livelihood through hard work. on the other hand, here it was the tourists who were falling into the net. 

We found out that we had two options to get to Ernakulam  One, take a 1 hour to bus drive or take a Ferry for 15 minutes to cross the harbour. We decided on the later. So we walked to the ferry stand which looked slightly crowded. However, we got tickets and boarded the next available ferry. The ride was beautiful as we watched the navy ships and some tall buildings of Ernakulam.  As we approached the Ernakulam station the drizzle had turned into heavy rain. So our captain decided to park the ferry adjacent to the two other ferries near the dock While doing that he hit the other ferries that made a loud noise scaring the passengers. Then we had to hop through 3 ferries and run towards the shelter. That was an experience to remember.




So that was how we got to Ernakulam from Cherai beach. It was one heck of a ride to remember. Time was already 2:30 PM and we had to wait until the rain subsided. We took an auto for Rs 170 till Lulu mall. The auto driver took us through some really narrow interior roads. At the mall, we had our lunch. We met our colleagues Bhargav and Chetan. After window shopping for a while, we decided to take a bus back to KSRTC bus stand. It was again a good drive through the city. Ernakulam is fast developing and with proper infrastructure it could be one of the most beautiful cities in the country. 

Our Airavata arrived on time and we left the city at around 6:30 PM. It was a great trip and Amabdy's villa and the travel from Cherai beach to Elankulam was the star event of the entire trip. 

Photo Credits - Rohit Badhya, Charan Kumar, Subashchandra Rai & Ajeya Rao

1 comment:

  1. Hey Ajeya,

    An excellent read. This is Subhrajit from www.adventureclicknblog.com and we would love to have your blogs listed in our website. We have also launched a credit system for contributions by which contributors can reimburse the points for cool travel stuffs (adventureclicknblog.com/moreblognearn.php). The credit points are a way of saying thank you for your sincere effort and time for writing.

    Regards,
    Subhrajit,
    Subhrajit.ghadei@gmail.com
    0091 8378997510
    Education: B.Tech (IIT Bombay) & MBA (IIM Lucknow)

    ReplyDelete

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