February 26, 2006

Vellore - A Sneek Peek

I was visiting Vellore for training in CMC and was not very excited since I have always heard that is always extremely hot. But luckily, amidst the training sessions, I got good chances to explore a little about this very interesting city.

Traveling to Vellore was an amazing experience. The roads are very good and it was a pleasure to be crossing Kolar and little towns of greenery like Palamner, Krishnagiri and others.

Out of so much I have heard about Vellore, the facts that have interested me is that Vellore had the privilege of being the seat of the Pallava, Chola, Nayak, Maratha, Arcot Nawabs and Bijapur Sultan Kindoms. It was described as the best and the strongest fortress in the Carnatic War in the 17th Century. It was witnessed the massacre of European soldier during the mutiny of 1806. The history of the District assumes a great significance and relevance, as we unfold the glorious past. The Monuments found in the district give a vivid picture of the town through the ages. In the 18th Century Vellore District was the scene of some of the decisive battles fought in Ambur 1749 A.D., Arcot 1751 A.D. and Vandavasi 1768 A.D. as a result of the long – drawn struggle between the English and the French for Supremacy. Hmm a lot of history there :)

The two days I spent exploring Vellore using the very little time I had will always remain memorable. It is beauty to watch the Blue Mountains surrounding the whole city of Vellore.

The world famous Christian Medical College is the darling of the localities. I could see a good number of initiatives in health by CMC and that was admirable. One should surely not miss the beautiful CMC campus. It’s a must see for its scenic beauty!

Vellore has many historical monuments and important places to be visited by a tourist but due to lack of time I could only visit the Arcot fort and the beautiful Jalakandeswarar temple inside the fort.
Archeologist, based on the stone inscriptions suggests that the Fort in all probability might have been built during the rule of Chinna Bommi Nayak (1526 to 1595 A.D.). The Fort is one of the most perfect specimens of Military architecture in South India.
The Jalakandeswarar Temple inside the Fort is a very fine example of Vijayanagar architecture. The Kalyanamantap on the left of the entrance, with intricate carvings and delicacy of execution bears testimony to the engineering marvel and advanced state of sculpture of the times.

I also got to visit the Ascension of Mary Church a little outside the heart of the City. The time I spent in the church is something I cannot put I words… It was just soulful.

With the day’s sunset, I just spent some cool time in the park next to the fort reminding myself of all good I came across in the city with my friend Samyukta.

February 12, 2006

Wild Karnataka - Chunchi Falls!

I hadn’t been anywhere out of Bangalore ever since I started studying and working simultaneously. After very long this thought of going out with colleagues just flashed my mind and within no time we just planned a weekend trip to Chunchi Falls with Charles, Nandini, Jeni, Ralph, Reshma and the little Lumina.

I hadn’t heard much about this falls and so was a bit nervous about how it may go :) Since Chunchi falls was not very far, we decided to leave a bit late against the usual protocols of leaving early morning, only to know that we’d get stuck in Bangalore’s most amazing traffic jams!! So the lesson learnt was whether close by or far, leave early :)

Chunchi falls situated in Kanakapura taluk is about 90 kms from Bangalore. About 16kms before Sangama, a left to Yeleguri village will leave to the falls ruled by river Arkavathi.

To experience the falls, one needs to go down the rocks and its quite an exhaustive job. Just a little care and we were down there. Probably it was not the right time to visit Chunchi Falls (First trip. ‘m learning :). There was no much water as I expected it be. But still it was not bad at all. The experience of looking out for streams to play in and bouncing over the ball shaped rocks was just fun!! To play at the foot of the falls is quite a dangerous affair, but still, I could see some brave ones down there. I know ‘m modest :) So accepting I couldn’t dare go down, I was happy playing the smaller streams of water joining falls on duty.

Legs in the cool water and watching the sun go down, was an experience!

After all the fun time (and yes, my legs were already aching so badly) climbing up hill to reach the cab looked like something that was next to impossible. Well all I could do is just carry all the lovely memories of having experienced this place called Chunchi falls and reach home for a sound sleep after all the day’s hard work :)

Queen Matilda’s Gyan

Distance: 90 kms from Bangalore

Best time to visit: Early winter, early summer

Commuting: It is best to visit the place with one’s own vehicle. There are good numbers of buses available till Kanakapura but limited buses go further.

Food: There is absolutely no food available in the spot except tender coconuts.