Road trip down the ECR is a delight any day, any time.
For those who don’t know what i am referring to yet, ECR stands for the East Coast Road. It is the most loved scenic beach way of Tamil Nadu, India. It runs from Chennai to Pondicherry and extends further south till Kanyakumari. ECR is the default route to travel between Chennai and Pondicherry. People who love roadtrips prefer the ECR always compared to the alternate route, which is a proper 4 lane highway.
Glimpse of my usual experience with the ECR.
Since I live in Chennai and my family in Pondicherry, I get to travel a lot between these two places. It is seven years now since I moved to chennai. Without a doubt, ECR is my choice of route be it by bus, car or by motorcycle. Out of all of the mode of transport, bike ride is my favourite. I ride KTM DUKE 200 and that makes the ride just amazing. I have been through this road during day n night, rain n sun-shine! Yet, today was a little special and thats what this blog is gonna be about. ( I really didn’t want to write such a big intro, but my excitement just didn’t let me cut short any detail 😀 )
Tourist appeal of ECR.
I would confidently say that ECR was planned with an eye to delight the touring travellers. Starting from chennai, the road just runs along side the coast. I could easily think of the following 5 things of interests along the way.
1. Mayajaal – A multiplex. The first spot of weekend get away for Chennaities.
2. Kovalam – Boat house. Ideally for couples i suppose 😛
3. Mahabalipuram & Kadapakkam – If you like history, then I’m quite sure you like these places for the archaeological sites they have which include ancient beach-side forts and temples.
4. Crocodile park – I you are a fan of crocs and snakes, this is a place for you!
5. Off-road sports, Catamaran ride, View points, and lots n lots of beach resorts n hotels all along the way.
What changed then.
Earlier, ECR was a two lane road completely. This aspect made the road unsafe as vehicles travel very fast head on head. Recently, in order to make the road safer, road widening works have started. But this made the travel much chaotic. The trips weren’t as enjoyable as before anymore. The frequency of my travel also significantly reduced. The heavy rains of the season made it all the more worse. ECR was closed for a while and opened later cause of flooding of too much water. With all this happening, i decided to ride down to Pondy. Any guess what could have made it so special?
I started my travel around 4pm. It was like any other day until when i reached outskirts of Kalpakkam (Yes! i haven’t mentioned about this place anywhere before). The road ahead was closed cause of a weak bridge. I had no choice but to travel through the town to continue my travel. I was annoyed as it was definitely gonna take a toll on my travel time. But as i started travelling, the excitement of travelling through a place for the first time got into me. As i entered the town, i was thrilled to find such a beautiful scenery (which was totally unexpected). I came across a point where the backwaters joined the sea. Such an amazing sight with the evening sun making the water glitter. I ended up spending at least 30 minutes there.
Out of the 100 times i passed by the ECR not once have i actually entered this town. Nor have i heard anyone talk anything nice about this place. All i knew about Kalpakkam was that it had an atomic power plant 😛. But what did i find out were more than that.
– Scenic beauty of the town
– Clean Roads
– Beautiful roadside gardens
– Serenity in the air
They say that “Good things happen to you in life when you least expect them”. I felt it totally justified.
It made me so happy that i wanted to share this experience with you all. To all the Bikers of Chennai as well as Pondicherry, do check this place out!
Did you have a similar experience exploring a new place? Share & Leave your thoughts below!