An amazing trip which exposed me to the local people, culture, flora, fauna, towns and countryside. To experience all these things in 2 weeks was fantastic!
- What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?
To echo my friends review. It had to be the ascent and decent of Ooty. The cycle ride up the 36 hairpins was the most challenging thing I've ever done. I was very emotional when I got to the summit. You can also see why the British decided to live up Ooty. It has very much a European climate and in places you would be hard pushed not to think you were cycling through UK countryside, with only eucalyptus trees giving the game away. There are also traces of European architecture which was interesting to see in exotic surroundings. If I thought the ascent was challenging and emotional, the descent from Ooty was truely amazing! Vishnu wasn't wrong when he said we would be cycling through different climate zones. I tended to think of it as starting in a UK climate, then Southern European and through the tropics. I struggled to decide whether to keep stopping and taking pictures or enjoy the ride down. After a few pictures I decided to concentrate on the ride - it seemed to go on forever! Fantastic!
I must also mention to cultural differences and the general friendliness of the people and if you've ever wondered what it's like to be famous, you're certain to get a glimpse of it in India. On occasion, mutual fascination developed into posing in pictures taken by ourselves and the local people alike.
I also enjoyed the boat trip through the backwaters and the Safaris. As well as the previous evening bus Safari, I went on the early morning Safari. I would reccommend this for the sunrise, the would through the bush and the fact that we saw ant hills up close and a lone elephant in the distance. More importantly, we saw a stick insect, which looked out of this world!
- What did you think of your group leader?
Vishnu, Joseph and Abbie where brilliant!
The trip ran like clockwork. It was very well organsied and I felt completly at ease with everything and total confidence in our guides.
We couldn't have asked for a better group leader in Vishnu, lead cyclist in Joseph and support vehicle driver in Abbie. You could rely on them all.
- Do you have any advice for potential travellers?
Just be careful regarding eating food and never drink the local water. Firsty I'd like to say the food was brilliant, but I was aware that the pre-trip advice was not to eat un-cooked food or drink the local water. For the first week, I stuck to this advice. For the second week, I relaxed my rule after watching the other trip members eating salad and fruit and not getting ill. Its possible that this caused me to fall ill with a bad tummy! I should have known better as I am susceptible to this sort of thing, whether it be in India or Southern Europe. I was the only one though!
Always make sure you apply DEET or other insect repellant to exposed areas of skin!
- Is there anything else you would like to add?
There are several days when it's not possible to get money due to the locations of the places visited and stopping at. Make sure you have enough money for beers and souvenirs etc...!