Saturday, December 14, 2013

Mysore

On arrival in Mysore we headed for our hotel, The Green Hotel, and were shown to our room.  It was odd, really odd.  I wrote the following review on Trip Advisor, which I think covers our experience there:

'The Green Hotel looks popular and it's not one we chose to stay in advance but was booked for us as part of our tour of this part of India, and principally as the start point of our train trip to Chennai. The hotel itself looks splendid. The room we were given, a 'suite', consisted of a reception room, with double doors with see-in gap, a small hallway to bathroom, with overlooking flats and a bedroom with frosted glass that didn't cover the window. Both the reception room and bedroom are adjoining the hallway and wooden stairwell. I asked to look at other rooms and, were we not in a rush, should have forced this point. Instead I asked they hang something over the window so we'd at least have some privacy in the bedroom. In the bathroom the only way to be truly private was to keep the lights off. The airy nature of the hotel (ill-fitting doors, no a/c, vents and open windows), meant mosquitoes (no nets), noise (hotel is adjacent to a main road) and smoke (other people's chain smoking permeated the air in our room). We had an awful night's sleep here, yet it looked a popular hotel, though the clientele were all very 'white'. The food was ok, the service ok too but I was shocked when heading downstairs a little ahead of breakfast to find staff sleeping on mats in the hotel lobby. At work they looked tired and I really wonder at that ethics of the people who own and run this hotel'

Anyway that afternoon we went to the Ranganthittu Bird Sanctuary and were taken on a row boat trip around the sanctuary, seeing a good number of birds.  Apparently in peak season (mid-December onwards) the number of birds soars and it's an amazing wildlife spectacle.

Anyway, there was one Eurasian Spoonbill:


A few Great Thick-knee:


Indian Cormorant:


River Tern:


The swallows were already hard at work nest-building:



A lovely bird was this Grey-bellied Cuckoo, really quite confiding in nature and a delight to see:





A Spot-breasted Fantail, fanning its tail:


Finally an Indian Grey Hornbill:


After said horrible night's sleep we decided to take it easy in the morning ahead of our 7.5 hour train trip from Mysore to Chennai.  The station itself felt safe though we did have a bottle of mineral water lifted, and we were hustled by a group of red-shirted chaps who basically grab your luggage, insist on putting it on and then charge a huge fee for doing so.  Being grumpy at this stage helped avoid both a fight and an over exorbitant payment.

I took a couple of snaps with my smallest camera at the station:



This was our train, before we were allowed to board.  The carriage was air-conditioned and apart from one appallingly loud American family (who thankfully got off at Bangalore) very quiet though full.  The service is excellent.  We were in the Executive car on the Shatabdi Express and had paid £16.67 each for the trip.  We had 2 litres of mineral water each, snack, two meals, a separate soup, two rounds of tea and coffee and another snack, it was great!


We had a hectic experience arriving in Chennai with a no show from our hotel driver, but the details of that too are on Trip Advisor.  We then spent the following day with a former work colleague exploring some of the sights of Chennai including a fabulous lunch together, before a brief sleep and the flight home, direct from Chennai to London.

We already have a really good idea of where we want to go next in India...

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1 Comments:

Anonymous Mysore Hotel said...

wow amazing photographs

4:21 pm  

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