Kailasa temple Ellora (One of the best cave temples within ellora)
Day 1: We started off from bangalore at 3.30 AM. Since it was early in the morning decided to avoid NICE road. Driving through the city was a breeze. We crossed Chitradurga by around 7 AM. Had breakfast which we had carried along with us. There are few diversions along the Chitradurga - Hubli stretch due to the 6 lane conversion. Worst thing I experienced in the stretch was the absence of speed breaker markings. Top layer has peeled off in some stretches. Hubli-Dharwad bypass is in good condition though it is only a single lane road. Dharwad to Kolhapur is a driver's pleasure with one of the best roads and sparse traffic. We had an early lunch stop at Hotel White house around Tawandi Ghat around 12 PM. Traffic increased significantly as we crossed into Maharashtra. Kolhapur-Satara is a very nice 4 lane highway with trees lined on both sides. Satara-Pune has a few diversions due to the 6 laning work especially closer to Pune. Traffic congestion on the diversions ate away a lot of time and finally we reached our abode in Pune at 5.15 PM. Route map and a few snaps enroute.
Sunrise (Some where after Chitradurga during breakfast break)
Day2: Plan was to go to bhimashankar and come back to Pune. Started off from Pune at around 7.30. Traffic was relatively less since it was a sunday morning. After a quick fuel break stopped at Vithal Kamat VITS sagar plaza rajgurunagar toll booth. It was crowded with no proper facilities other than a parking. Took detour immediately to SH54. After traveling for a while the quality of the road started deteriorating. It became better only in the last stretch of ghats just before it meets SH112. Reached bhimashankar and got a parking spot relatively quick. Enjoyed the views before proceeding to the temple. Had a darshan relatively fast. By the time we were back at the parking lot the crowd had increased exponentially and it had become a mess. Took almost 20 min to take the car out since buses had parked hap hazardly on the road as well as in the lots. We took a lunch break at Ratwa resort. We decided to explore the longer route via Manchar on the way back. Road condition was relatively better but not great. Had a few photo stop on the way like at Dhimbe dam view point etc. Reached back in pune by around 5 PM and decided to call it a day.
Route map of the day
To be continued