Nice Log with all the details. Have been to Kankai Temple couple of years back and it was a great drive. I had bundled that Gir trip with Madhavpur Beach and stayed at Somnath.
I am interested to spend a day or two at tulsishyam since many years. Can you please share how you managed booking rooms there?
Day 2 (28-10-2019, New Year)
“HAPPY NEW YEAR “
Yes it was New Year, crackers and fireworks were busting whole night “लेकिन मैं तो आराम की नींद सोया”.
Now first thing in the morning for me was to decide by which way we should enter Kankai. The 1st route take us through Dhari-Dalkhania-Kankai-Return and the 2nd route was Dhari-Visavadar-Satadhar-Kankai-Return (There is a rule in Kankai forest range that tourist can only return from the way they opt to arrive at the destination). As the car was running low on fuel we have to refuel it first and the nearest CNG Station was in Bagasara. As the refueling was essential 2nd route was decided with an add-on pit stop of CNG Station.
Route Plan of the Day 2
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Gang was ready by 07:00 AM for adventure trip and had their breakfast by 07:45. By 08:00 AM we were on road towards Bagasara for refueling. 08:45 AM refueling complete, back to the road for Kankai. @ 09:15 AM we face a huge traffic congestion @ Satadhar (Satadhar is a religious site for locals and due to New year's holiday local follower were there for darshan and lunch (Prasad)).
Gate Of Satadhar Temple
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Photo Credit (Internet)
Late by 15 minutes we arrived on the gate of “The Great Sasan Gir Forest” @ 10:00 AM. Again Entry Permit at Meldi IE Check Post (Visavadar Range), formalities were completed in 10 minutes by the same person (My Father).
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Wild was calling me but the test begins now for me and my ride, from here road was fully off road nearly 25 KM haul to Kankai. Road was slushy as there was mild rain in the morning and I have to handle this terrain in a hatchback. With Family it was a bit scary for me , multiple horrible thought were roaming in my mind “What if car got stuck somewhere or what if car got puncture and got surrounded by wild animals”, “What IF” . As my mind was hovering with this horrible thoughts, my eyes caught a glimpse which gave me strength to move forward. A 2000 model Hyundai Santro was getting ignited for the same destination before me & I told myself “If that can do MY Wagon can definitely do it “.
Journey started towards Kankai by 10:15 AM, as we were leaving the gate 2 families came on their bike for the vehicle permit . It was tough unknown terrain, I have to maneuver vehicle carefully in slopes (Still it hit the bottom thrice during the journey ) but we were enjoying the view , we were feeling the forest.
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Forest was lush green everywhere we were excited to visit the King of the jungle in its habitat. It took us 2 hours to cover the 25 KM portion but we were moving slowly in hope of catching a glimpse of the King.
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the only straight road for few meter during the the entire journey
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Find the Sambar deer
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12:30 PM we were inside the temple campus and still it was overcast weather, usually the temple is isolated but due to holiday it was heavily crowded. We attended the mandir aarti, both siblings were enjoying their time fully chasing monkeys and vice-versa, there were lot of monkeys in the temple.
Temple Entrance Gate
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My Elder Daughter playing in temple campus
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My younger Daughter playing in temple
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Attending the Aarti
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River bed near to the temple where King usually gets spotted during dry summers.
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By 01:45 we were ready for the return journey and this time I knew my terrain a little bit better. During our return journey we were expecting a encounter with the king but instead we encountered multiple group of local guys in their bike honking and riding carelessly. We lost our hope of seeing the king in this nuisance. This time it took me just 75 minutes to cross the jungle section.
My father was angry on the authorities for allowing 2 wheeler to enter the forest zone and polluting the natural environment. On the entry gate in the instruction board it was clearly written that open four wheel vehicles were not allowed to enter, still 2 wheel vehicles were permitted. Now the journey was plain and simple “Return Home “. Started from gate, passed the crowed again at the Satadhar, refueled at Bagasara @ 3:45 PM.
By now we were all hungry as we just had few fruits and chips packet after the morning breakfast. Nearest district center was Amreli, and we were in no mood to have anything other than Gujarati cuisine (Sudh Gujarati Thali ). We entered the city bypass by 4:15 PM and to our surprised no restaurant were open due to “NEW YEAR’S HOLIDAY”. In no time we were exiting the city and leaving the bypass, there we found a fast food joint which offers a limited menu “Dabeli & Bhel“. Theirs is a saying in gujarati “ન મામા કરતા કાણો મામો સારો” (It’s good to have something than Nothing). We had our lunch there, few Dabeli’s and few bhel’s. it was our last stop. All were tired and kids were asleep by the time, journey from here was a straight road for me. No stop No Adventure Just straight Road.
We were at our father’s home @ Limbdi by 9:15 PM with bucket full of memories and memory card full of photos & Videos.
1: If you are planning with family (Specially Kids) take surplus amount of food and water.
2: If the vehicle is a hatchback or with lower ground clearance please do prefer the 1st route that is Dhari-Dalkhania-Kankai-Return/towards UNA.
3: Never plan a trip in a holiday at this destination, you will definitely repent your decision. During holiday's you will definitely encounter the local nuisance and decrease your chances to meet the king.