Thursday, 22 March 2018

Golden Quadrilateral Ride with Benu - the Itinerary

Golden Quadrilateral Ride with Benu - the Itinerary
Thousands of travel enthusiasts bitten by the notorious highway bug have successfully explored the Golden Quadrilateral circuit without any major glitch. Yes, presently the GQ road network is pretty awesome as per Indian standard in majority of its length. If you're anticipating an uninterrupted six-lane to pamper you under the brand hospitality of Golden Quadrilateral then your expectation will be hurt real bad. In the entire 6,261 kilometres I rode, there were several patches which had either too many undulations, potholes, diversions, cattle grazing, two-way traffic, or shitty combinations of some of them. There were multiple occasions in those 13 days when I had literally cursed myself for presuming a butter-smooth highway cruise. But, as soon as my #GQRideWithBenu got concluded and I reflected over the journey as a whole, all I could remember were wide inviting roads, persistently changing landscapes and few beautiful human interactions. 

Okay, here I'll share my actual ride itinerary with you. If you compare this itinerary with the one I had published in the announcement post before commencing the trip, you'll find 10-15% alterations. In case you haven't checked out my older post- Golden Quadrilateral itinerary on two wheels, please spend a minute on that. Sticking to the old plan was equally possible, only if I was a little more strict with my morning rituals. At first have a quick glance at my ride flowchart. Let me remind you, in the drafting phase I was pretty focused on fencing stress and night ride out of my GQ itinerary. Although we had a crash on the final day, no buffer day was needed to make up for the loss. I guess the minimal yet thoughtful trip planning had worked out in my favour just fine.

Golden Quadrilateral Ride with Benu - the Itinerary
Golden Quadrilateral Map, prepared by Information Technology and Planning Division of NHAI.
#GQRideWithBenu Itinerary:

Day 01: Bardhaman (Hometown) to Gopalpur on Sea ~ 707 kilometres {9.5 Hrs}

Day 02: Gopalpur on Sea to Eluru ~ 625 kilometres {10 Hrs}

Day 03: Eluru to Chennai ~ 526 kilometres {9 Hrs}

Day 04: Chennai to Bengaluru ~ 378 kilometres {6 Hrs}

Day 05: Bengaluru to Hubli ~ 436 kilometres {5 Hrs}

Day 06: Hubli to Mumbai ~ 598 kilometres {8 Hrs}

Day 07: Rest day in Mumbai. First 'No Ride' day.

Day 08: Mumbai to Udaipur ~ 790 kilometres {12 Hrs}

Day 09: Rest day at Udaipur. Second 'No Ride' day.

Day 10: Udaipur to Delhi ~ 682 kilometres {11 Hrs}

Day 11: Delhi to Agra ~ 247 kilometres {3.5 Hrs}

Day 12: Agra to Varanasi ~ 665 kilometres {9 Hrs}

Day 13: Varanasi to Bardhaman (Home sweet home!) ~ 596 kilometres {10 Hrs}
   
Golden Quadrilateral Ride with Benu - the Itinerary
Madras felt so distant even after heading few hundred kilometres south post Kolkata!
You should design your motorcycling itinerary according to own your riding preferences and touring priorities. There's no point in blindly following another motorcyclist's algorithm. If you're new to this neighbourhood you can always reach out to seasoned road travellers (preferably riders) for wise counsel. Apply their inputs in sketching your personalised ride plan instead of copying them. Remember, at the end of the day nothing beats your own research applying Google-maps, Wikis, Trip Advisor reviews and discussions in various online travel forums. I've seen many travellers are confused whether to plan their Golden Quadrilateral road trip clockwise or anticlockwise. I did it clockwise, i.e. Kolkata- Chennai- Mumbai- Delhi- Kolkata. I was quite aware of the unreliable state of NH-19 (more popularly known by its old name NH-2, or Delhi-Kolkata Road). So, I wanted to include this unpleasant segment of GQ in the final quarter of my ride plan. For me this was a smart move because my hometown lies at the southern extremity of NH-2. But, if you start your drive from the southern or western segment of GQ circuit, then you may simply toss a coin to break the dilemma. 

If you need any assistance in planning your Golden Quadrilateral ride itinerary you're most welcome to bother me. We're done for today. Next, I'll be briefing you the synopsis, experience, Bombay day, Udaipur day, may be a dedicated post on Taj Mahal, and of course the crash day. I'll see you soon.

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