Bangalore to Wayanad road trip story- We just came back after an amazing road trip from Bangalore to Wayanad and our summer holidays in a beautiful resort called Abad Brookside at Wayanad.
Read my travel blog to know more about out driving experience from Bangalore to Wayanad through the Bandipur Tiger Reserve (Karnataka side) and Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary (Kerala side).
WHY WANAYAD TRIP
Wayanad, one of the best-recommended tourist destinations in India, is a hill station located in Kerala and is close to the border of Karnataka. Located in the southern tip of the Deccan plateau.
Wayanad is a perfect holiday destination in Kerala. Surrounded by hills, mountains, valleys, dense forests, and plantations, there is no better place in a short driving distance from Bangalore for a relaxing holiday. With a 5-6 hours drive from Bangalore, one gets to enjoy the best of both states.
While most of the drive through the Bangalore – Mysore road was pretty much through the well-built highways, as soon as we approach the Kerala border, the scene changes completely with the lush green blessing of nature.
ROAD TRIP FROM BANGALORE TO WAYANAD
We love road trips. That’s the best time we get to enjoy with kids since they are locked up in the car and have limited access to other spoiler toys like laptops. We have been planning a few road trips lately but didn’t work out primarily because of the schooling of our children.
Finally, the perfect time came up. Schools were closed for summer holidays and my son had just completed his 10th. He scored amazingly good in his 10th exams and we wanted to spend a few days together to celebrate. After a few discussions and debates, we chose a trip to Bangalore and Wayanad.
I will write a few separate travel stories about our experience in Bangalore and Wayanad but this one is all about our amazing driving experience in the Bangalore – Wayanad route.
CHECKING BANGALORE-WAYAND ROUTE
Usually, we don’t plan for road trips. The decisions are usually made at the last minute and we pack up and get started the very next day. It wasn’t very different this time as well. The decision was made just the day before the trip.
I quickly verified the insurance documents, filled fuel, made sure the spare tire has proper air pressure and renewed the emission certificate. Also did some quick shopping to ensure kids have enough stuff to eat while driving even though stopping by the restaurant is one of the attractions for the kids on the road trips.
Kids were excited when we talked about Bangalore since the Snow city in Bangalore was one of the places they wanted to visit for quite a long time. Also, we looked for the best resorts in Wayanad and shortlisted Abad Brookside located at Vythiri after considering the ambiance, amenities, etc.
One of the main demands from the kids was, the resort should have a swimming pool and indoor/outdoor sports facilities. We parents wanted a very calm and relaxing atmosphere. Brookside met our requirements perfectly well and we were glad that we picked it for our holidays in Wayanad.
BANGALORE TO WAYAND ROUTES
There are 3 routes from Bangalore to Wayanad and all three of them goes via Mysore and have about the same distance.
- Route 1: Bangalore – Mysore – Hunsur- Nagarhole – Kutta – Kartikulam – Mananthavady
- Route 2: Bangalore – Mysore – HD Kote – Bavali – Kartikulam – Mananthavady
- Route 3: Bangalore – Mysore – Gundlupet – Muthanga (Bandipur forest) – Sulthan Bathery
Since our goal was to enjoy the drive, we chose the most scenic route – Route #3 via Bandipur forest.
Our original plan was to start from Bangalore early in the morning at about 4 am so that we can reach Bandipur forest entrance by 6 am when the gate opens for vehicles. The advantage of entering the forest in the early morning is, we have a much higher chance of spotting animals which are still roaming around until the roads get busy with vehicles.
& WE GOT LATE
However, we got a bit late and so decided to push our travel to the evening so that we can spot some animals which come close to the roads at sunset.
We started from Bangalore in the afternoon. It was probably the wrong decision to travel in the afternoon since the roads in Bangalore were crowded. It took a while to exit the crowded city limits. Even after entering the Bangalore-Mysore Express Highway, the roads were full of slow-moving vehicles all over.
Our first stop was at Taj Biryani Paradise for a late lunch. The name made us think that they will have a lot of choices of Biryani but had just one type, even though they had a variety of other food. However, it was very good food, and everyone enjoyed the lunch.
Taj Biryani Paradise at Ramanagara in the Bangalore – Mysore Express Highway – a good place for Biryani lovers.
We reached Mysore area by around 4 pm. To skip the city traffic, we took the ring road that goes around Mysore city and that turned out to be a good decision. We stopped by a coffee shop at the ring road to grab some food before we entered the forest area.
NOTE: Bandipur forest road is closed between 9 pm to 6 am and no vehicles can drive through the forest during this time for the safety of animals as well as travellers.
NIGHT DRIVING THROUGH THE BANDIPUR FOREST
This was the most interesting part of our Bangalore to Wayanad road trip. We reached Bandipur Forest area by evening. Even though there was a toll booth just before the forest checkpoint, we could not find anyone collecting the toll. I think the toll booth was not operational yet.
We expected some checking and security at the forest checkpoint, but it was just a small station with a single forest officer casually standing in the road and watching the vehicles passing by. We didn’t have to stop the car since he didn’t seem to pay attention.
We entered the forest limits by 5:30 pm. The ambiance completely changed once we entered the silent, calm and dark forest area. The roads were extremely good, and we tempted to drive too fast but there were animal crossing warning signs everywhere and we too didn’t want an encounter with animals.
We decided to drive slowly looking for animals on both sides of the roads. Kids were very excited when they saw the first flock of deer near the roads. They counted about 50 before we passed the area but there were much more than that.
WHAT WE SAW DURING OUR DRIVE THROUGH BANDIPUR
It was like a zoo where we find a lot of animals trapped in small areas. But nature didn’t disappoint us. We saw a lot of deers, sambar deers, and wild elephants during our 2-hour long drive through the Bandipur forest and Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary.
In addition, lot of monkeys were spotted at various places, especially close to the villages in the Kerala side. If you are a bird watcher, you will see a lot of rare birds but stopping the car in the forest is not allowed; so, you may miss the photographs. We clicked a lot of photos of the animals from the car though.
FINALLY REACHING WAYANAD
We exited the forest area and entered the Sultan Bathery town by around 7 pm. It took us about 7 hours from Bangalore to reach Wayanad. We spent quite a lot of time searching for pit stops for coffee, snacks, lunch and just relaxing. If you drive without any major stops, you can cover the Bangalore – Wayanad route in about 5 hours or even less.
Wayanad is a very green destination and the entire district of Wayanad is very scenic with a lot of trees and hills all over. In fact, even after exiting the reserve forests, we didn’t feel much difference on the Kerala side since the places were very green and lush after the summer rains Kerala received this year.
The most exciting part of our Bangalore to Wayanad road trip was our scenic drive through the Bandipur forests. But once we entered the Wayanad region, almost every place was scenic with lush green forests.
REACHING OUR WAYAND STAY
We reached Lakkidi by late evening and we were tired even though we all enjoyed the entire drive to its best. It was drizzling when we reached the resort. While we were driving from Bangalore, we received a call from the resort mentioning that some road repair work is going on in the road to the resort.
They suggested us to park our car in a safe private property near the highway, and they arranged a jeep for us to travel to the resort from the parking area. The driver helped us to unload our baggage from the car and moved them all to the jeep. Because of the road work, kids got a free off-road jeep drive!
ABAD BROOKSIDE WAYANAD
When we reached the resort, we got a fantastic treat for the eyes. When the drizzling stopped, the entire area was covered with mist, which suddenly came from nowhere. There wasn’t any sign of mist until a few minutes ago.
We stayed in the reception for some time watching the mist passing through the woods. Lakkidi is one of the most scenic areas in Wayanad which gets covered with magical mists unexpectedly and throughout the season.
In a few minutes, we completed the check-in and moved to our private cottage along the brook (now we know the reason why the property is named ‘Brookside’). Our entire stay in Brookside resort was very relaxing and enjoyable. Kids enjoyed the swimming pool, badminton, table tennis, caroms, and other indoor/outdoor games.
Enjoyed our stay at Abad Brookside at Lakkidi, Wayanad
BANGALORE To WAYAND ROAD TRIP TIPS
Here are a few important tips to keep in mind when driving from Bangalore on a weekend trip or for holidays:
- Plan your trip so that you will exit the Bandipur forest road before the closing time. You cannot drive through the forests after 9 pm. Once the roads are closed, the gates will be opened only at 6 am.
- If you prefer to go by bus, you can reach Wayanad and rent a self-drive rental car. Self-drive rental cars are becoming popular and there are many options available. Check out this list of rental car agencies in Kerala. Some of them have offices in Wayanad and will deliver the car to you at the bus stop.
- Best time to spot animals is early morning. If you can reach the forest entrance just before 6 am and if you are one of the first few vehicles to enter the forest, you will have much higher chances of spotting animals.
- You won’t find any shops or restaurants in the forest limits. Carry snacks and food especially if you have kids with you.
- Do not exit your vehicle in the forest area. Animals may approach you unexpectedly and avoid taking such risks since help may not reach you immediately in case something goes wrong.
- Follow big trucks if you notice wild elephants close to the road. Even though the elephants found here are not very aggressive, it is always better to be on the safer side.
ABOUT OUR GUEST AUTHOR: Tony John is one of the first bloggers from India, with nearly 20 years of passionate blogging in his portfolio.
He has been sharing his travel experience in many popular travel platforms like TravelEscape, TripAdvisor, India travel blog and more. You can connect with Tony through his Facebook profile.
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