The Chhattisgarh ChroniclesSunday, October 18, 2009
Finally after 6 months I could finish my Chhattisgarh Travelogue. Here is a consolidated post with links to previous posts and some general information. Click on the images to go the corresponding posts.
How was the experience?
- Wonderful and very helpful. And don’t be surprised if you find lot of people from the Telugu speaking fraternity! Many entrepreneurs from Andhra have settled there.
- Well now I cannot go out on a limb and proclaim anything. But I did feel very safe during my 4 day stay at Bastar. When we asked the people there about the naxal problem all they had to say was even we see/hear about them only in news like you people do. It mostly happens in remote villages or deep forests. Not here.
What to see/do?
- Chitrakot Falls – India’s biggest
- Haat – the colorful local village fairs that happen every Friday.
- Tirathgarh Falls – the 300ft cascading falls.
- Kailash and Kutumsar Caves – still dark and scary – pure unadulterated adventure!
- Kanger Ghati National Park
- And if you are very interested in going to tribal colonies, you can ask for guides who will take you to the interiors.
- Kondagaon – The craft village. Check out the bell-metal, terracotta and wrought-iron crafts.
- A lot of old temples whose names i do not know. But yes, i know there are lots. Ask your tour operator or the hotel manager.
- Chitradhara Falls, Thamada Ghumar Falls – a straight 96ft drop, Mandwa Falls and many more. Remember, the land is still being explored. A comprehensive list here
- If you manage to visit during October, you could also witness the grand Dussera Celebrations spanning 75 days.
- The central base point for travel here can be Jagdalpur which is the district headquarters for Bastar. And the nearest big cities from this place are Raipur at 300 kms and Vishakhapatnam (Vizag) at 323 kms. A train runs to and fro from Vizag everyday.
The train numbers will be 1VK and 2VK. Besides, Jagdalpur is well connected by road to many major places. We went from Vizag to Jagdalpur by train and returned to Vizag by bus which was very comfortable.
- There is govt. run Chitrakote Resort right in front of the falls which is great and offered at a very reasonable price of 1500 rupees per night. And if you happen to have a choice, opt for the first room which has an awesome view of the falls from inside the room through glass windows.
- At Jagdalpur, we stayed at Hotel Rainbow which was strictly just about ok. If a shelter for night is all you are looking for, this hotel gives enough for 500rs per night. But anything more than that, you will be better off staying at one of those resorts in Jagdalpur.
- Oh! If you are staying at any of the resorts, don’t forget to request for the traditional Madiya tribe dance with the bull headdress
What is the best time to visit?
- Anytime after the monsoon and before summer is good. As most of the waterfalls are seasonal, timing is essential. July - October should be good.
- It can get very hot in summers and the waterfalls may be dried fully.
- Although this place hasn’t reached the peaks of popularity with whole of India yet, it is very popular with the locals around. Kolkata, Raipur, Visakhapatnam are some cities apart from the many towns from where people flock. You will see a lot of foreigners too. The campaign run by the CTB seems to have worked like a charm.