Friday, September 5, 2008

Chennai to Kanyakumari

Chennai to Kanyakumari.

While on travel between Chennai to Kanyakumari the scenaries will be too good especially in the early morning when the train crosses Thirunelveli. Both sides of the road or track will be covered by greenaries, lakes, wind mills etc. I will try to take some snaps during my next visit and post it here.

From Chennai to Kanyakumari there were several kinds of transportation available. People generally prefer train, but some hates it and will prefer buses. Few years back before 2003 train travel was very much annoying, because it takes more than 16 hours and sometimes more than that from Chennai to Nagercoil. Later this Kanyakumari express train was made superfast express, by which the travelling time reduced to 13 hours. One other train named Anantapuri Express is there which takes few hours more compared to Kanyakumari Express. There are few more trains including day train. The sleeper class non AC ticket costs around 300 rs (please check the railway website for latest rate). The ticket rate of private buses will cost between Rs 450 to 500 for non AC airbus. If its AC then it costs Rs 600 around and if it is volvo then it is around Rs 700.
The main problem with train travel to Nagercoil is there was no bustop closeby to Nagercoil Junction. You have to walk a few distance with luggage or else you need to take auto / taxi at railway station. But new mini bus facility is available. Once you get ouf train there may be one mini bus waiting to pick and drop at any of the two bus terminuses Meenakshi puram bus terminus or Vadasery bus terminus.
Considering government buses, there are two varieties. People still call them Nesamony and Thiruvalluvar which were the old names of those transport corporation. Now there name has been changed. Seems like Thiruvalluvar operates from Chennai depot and Nesamony operates from Nagercoil / Marthandam depot. Comparing this two Nesamony was good as it travels faster and has less stops in between. Travelling by Thiruvalluvar might be very much struggling. They take the bus to almost all bu terminus and stop there for few minutes by not considering that people has to travel 700 + kms. And if it is not peak season there will be less passengers, and they stop at almost all terminus to make the bus full. I have experience of travelling at this few times. Once I got into this at 2.30 pm from Koyambedu and reached Marthandam at 8.30 am the next day. Ohhh 18 hours.
Considering private buses, they take around 15 hrs travel, but if it breaks down, thats it gone. It will take few hours more. Once while I was travelling from Marthandem to Chennai by Rathi Meena. On the way between Madurai and Trichy bus breaks down. It was 1 am midnight. They asked all the people to take some other bus and go. They returned nearly 50 % of the fare. That place was like forest with no lights can be seen surrounding nor its a bustop. But somehow a bus going to Trichy from Madurai stopped there. It was an ordinary bus, we got into that. Then from Trichy we got a bus to Chennai, finally instead of reaching Chennai before 7 am, we reached here around 12 noon.
One other time I booked a ticket for Rathi Meena at a shop in Vandalur. He gave me a seat number 29. He said this was last seat and he promised me to get some seat in the front once somebody cancels. Later on the journey date I went to him, he said couldn't make it in the front and changed the seat number to 28. When I got into the bus, already one person was sitting there at seat 29. The driver and conductor has no answer, they said it got double entry. Then I realised the person cheated me by giving seat number 29 though there was only 28 seats in the bus. When I called the office from there they have no answer. I have to travel by sitting in the front near the conductor. And one other time when I booked ticket from Marthandam to Chennai in the bus which starts from Trivandrum, the departure time at Marthandam was 5.30 pm when I went there at 5 pm, they informed the bus was yet to start from Trivandrum, after starting from there it will take another 1.5 to 2 hours to reach Marthandam. They don't of any expected time when the bus will start. It was season time and I booked ticket earlier to avoid rush, but still I have to cancel the ticket there and look for some other option.
Kindly post your comments on the Comments section here. You may post anything like your experience on travel to these places etc.

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