Thinking & Feeling

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” Horace Walpole

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Incredible India - Day 4 - Onwards through the Spice route to Thekkady

We left off on Day 3 at Anaerangal and the Tea Plantations.

Next came (obviously!) day 4.

After our second night at Camp Anaerangal we woke up and had another quite decadent elaborate and tasty breakfast. This time we got puttu to accompany the curry dishes. We know puttu in Africa as a stiff mealie pap porridge. In India it is a tubular roll of compacted rice, slightly sweetened and flavoured with coconut. I quite liked it.

After breakfast we got packed up and bid camp Anaerangal and it's lovely staff adieu and headed off in the direction of Periyar.

Griffin reading in the car...

It was a long and winding route through mountains, spice plantations, beautiful tea plantations and villages. There was much hooting and over-taking en-route as always, and once again a few stops to allow the boys to get out and walk and breathe when they felt ill in the back.

We stopped at one of the many many many Spice Garden Tours available on the roadside in Idukki, and had an informative and enjoyable visit there where we got to see all sorts of fruits and spices growing. Some of which we had seen before. But seeing the cocoa pods and cocoa butter was new for me and very interesting as was the Ayurvedic tour and seeing many of the herbs and spices and their various Ayurvedic uses.We also got to taste most of the fresh growing spices and it was really cool tasting the stuff right off the plant. Thing like Cardamom (of curse), Anise, Cloves, Coffee Beans, Vanilla, Cinnamon, Ginger etc etc.

Salim - who was born and raised in a small town near Munnar knew our tour guide and says he was at school with her. That was quite a coincidence, and they had a good catch-up while we were there.

  Our Spice Tour
 In the tree house at our Spice Tour

After the tour we popped into the shop and bought some spices, and then carried on our way finally arriving in Thekkady later in the afternoon. We took a walk around and checked out he cute monkeys along the wall lining the town and playing in the bamboo thicket. We also noticed some frankly HUGE bats lurking up at the top of the tall bamboo. I am talking bodies the size of cat type of huge. I mean I like bats, but even I was thinking 'holy crap!'. I would not want to have one of those buggers land on my head!!

Buying Spices

After booking our bamboo rafting tour in the Periyar Reserve for early the next morning we went to check into our hotel. We were staying at the Sterling Woods n Spice Resort. It was at the top of a small and very steep hill. We got checked in. In was an odd yet characterful place. One of those places which is so full of quirk and character that you can't really decide if it is charming or just really odd. Sadly the front desk service was not what it should be and the manager was incredibly difficult and helpful, not just to us, but seemingly with everyone he interacted with. It's a pity because I think it could and should be a really lovely place, but his reluctance and even refusal to help anyone or be in any way helpful or compromising is frustrating and annoying.

It was really hot so we didn't waste much time getting into the pool for a nice refreshing swim. And then we lounged about and rested a bit.

In the evening we took a walk up and down the town and looked at the markets and restaurants and eventually decided to eat at a 'Jain' restaurant, where we had a Thali for dinner. It was delicious and really cheap too.

Since we had and early start the next morning we got an early night - for a change. Next up day 5 and our adventures in the Periyar Tiger Reserve.

No comments:

Post a Comment