Cycling from Goa to Calicut on the western coast of India along a medley of beach, backwater and country roads was thoroughly fascinating. The refreshing breeze all along the route was a constant reminder of the Arabian Sea close by.
This group of 11 intrepid cycling enthusiasts from Australia having ventured on this tour organised under the leadership of World Expedition and facilitated by Kalypso Adventures in India, were surely in for once in a life time experience.
The ride progressed through ‘Karwar’ to ‘Gokarna’ – across a moderate and undulating terrain and with a few local ferry transfers. The daily pedalling distance of approximately 60-90 kms was accomplished at a comfortable and relaxed pace so as to not miss even the minutest details, scenic views and experiences.
Enroute to ‘Honnavar’ was the village school visit, the highlight of which was playing and interacting with the school kids; and savouring the mouth-watering cumin-flavoured milk, a traditional drink of the region.
After witnessing the mighty Shiva Statue of Lord Murudheshwara Temple at Honnavar, the ride again passed through the charming back roads of ‘Maravanthe’ and ‘Mangalore’.
The Lord Krishna temple enroute to ‘Malpe’, the Lord Ayyappa temple at ‘Nileshwar’ and the simple village life around were such humbling experiences.
The visit to Fort Bekal and ‘Kumbla’ showcased the historic relevance of these areas during the princely era.
Finally, being able to sight the Olive Ridley Turtle in a protected zone on the coast near Nileshwaram and the cycling in Nileshwaram village were both experiences straight out of a fairy tale.