The Land of the Thunder Dragon (BHUTAN) – Bhutan to Bhuwaneshwar

Day – 10

27.12.2010 (Monday) Thimpu – Bhutan to Siliguri (West Bengal) India = 340 kms

• Starting Place: Hotel Singye Thimpu (Bhutan)
• Starting Km Reading: 5947 km @ Hotel Singye
• Starting Time: 11.30 A.M. Morning
• Closing Km Reading: 6287 km @ Hotel Sharda
• Closing Time: 22.00 P.M. Night

Day – 10 was our last day in Bhutan & it was time for us to return back to India. I got up very early morning by 5 AM and started re-packing.

By early morning the temperature outside the hotel on the road was Minus 2 Deg C & Ice had formed on the rear windshield of our car.

When I started the car to heat up the engine I got a message from the car’s computer screen ICE on Road Danger of sliding Caution!!! WOW!!!

Car Rear Screen

Welcome to a new day

We packed up and loaded our car with all our luggage & finally sat down to have our last breakfast in Thimpu @ Hotel Singye.

Ghumakkar Family

Ready for the next run

Both my kids were having fun & Baby Shri Meenakshi was showing her dancing skills by shaking her leg & doing a nice dance.

Staff working at Hotel Singye. Devi in picture below got very attached to my kids. Devi & Sonam below at Hotel Singye. These 2 girls were close to tears as we were leaving the hotel after 3 nights of stay & they had really become very close & attached to us.

Devi, Tanka Prasad Sharma & Sonam below at Hotel Singye. Sincere thanks a lot for all 3 of you & other support staff for making our visit to Hotel Singye & stay a memorable experience.

Hotel Crew at Singye

Bye Bye Hotel Singye

We started from Hotel Singye Thimpu towards Pheutsholing by around 11 AM Morning. Our personal experience with local Bhutanses people in our 4 days of stay was very nice & wonderful. They are peace loving people & their country is so neat & clean & unpolluted. Tourism is one of their main source of income. They also have the famous DRUK Brand jams & Tomato Sauce, Pickels etc. We purchased them all. I recommend any one who wants to visit far away places to consider visiting Bhutan. It is not all that difficult to drive into Bhutan & return back.

Line Odometer

All geared up

Temple at Bhutan

Temple at Bhutan

Winding Roads

Beautiful winding roads

Our FIAT Linea just touched 6000 KMs on the odometer. We just completed 4000 KMs of our trip from home to Bhutan with the odometer reading 6026 KMs. We still have a long way to go home to Coimbatore & we need to cover a distance of some 3000 odd KMs.

Linea against the huge mountain green

Can you miss the gleaming Linea against such a beautiful background ?

Bhutanese People

Beautiful Bhutanese People

The road windes like a snake through the mountain & you can see how dangerous it can be at many places with a lot of road eroded and many a places showing lanslides & how some portion of road has slipped down the mountain. One mistake in driving & it will be a long way down & no chance of any recovery.

All kinds of roads

All in a day


And the drive goes on

More Rough Roads

And the drive must go on

You can just imagine how bad these roads can become during peak monsoon & when it rains a lot. We fueled the car with 24.77 liters of Diesel @ Rs.37.24 per ltr and paid Rs.886/- at Druk Petroleum Corporation Ltd, Pheutsholing. We reached Siliguri at night 10.00 P.M. and checked into Hotel Sharda.

Day – 11

28.12.2010 (Tuesday) Siliguri (West Bengal) to NTPC Bakkeshwar (West Bengal) = 453 kms

Starting Place: Hotel Sharda Siliguri (West Bengal)
Starting Km Reading: 6287 km @ Hotel Sharda
Starting Time: 09.00 A.M. Morning
Closing Km Reading: 6740 km @ Hotel Hindustan NTPC Bakkeshwar
Closing Time: 22.30 P.M. Night

We started our Day – 11 by 9.45 A.M. from Siliguri & we had to reach Bakkeshwar as per HVK’s plan.

Welcome to W Bengal

Welcome to W Bengal

We stopped at some tea estate garden as my kids & wife wanted to know how the tea leaf smells or feels. So here we are at the edge of some tea garden plucking some fresh tea leafs.

Tea Estate

The Ghumakkar family at tea estate

We are also in Bamboo country.

The Bamboo Country

The Bamboo Country

We are also in Jute Country. A lot of Jute is made in West Bengal in these parts.

And the jute country as well

And the jute country as well

Please move inside there is room for all. No wonder they call this JAM packed.

Passenger Packed Vehicle

Passenger Packed Vehicle

When we have such a huge playground can we resist our unofficial national sport the cricket.


Time for a game of cricket

We fueled the car with 26 liters of Diesel @ Rs.39.26 per ltr and paid Rs.1042/- at IOCL Pump Seth Brothers NH34 Adina Malda West Bengal.

Carrying on through all odds

Carrying on through all odds

We stopped at Hotel Greenview to have some food as we had not had lunch on the way as we did not find any decent place to stop. We were hungry and the hotel was all decked up for the Christmas & New Year.

We reached Hotel Hinustan at NTPC Bakkeshwar at very late night 22.30 P.M. and it was bit difficult to get a room & finally we managed to get a room as we told them we only need a room for a night’s stay and we will be definately vacating early morning by 7 A.M. The tariff was Rs.600/-

Day – 12

29.12.2010 (Wednesday) NTPC Bakkeshwar (West Bengal) to Bhuwaneshwar = 655 kms

Starting Place: Hotel Hindustan NTPC Bakkeshwar (West Bengal)
Starting Km Reading: 6740 km @ Hotel Hindustan
Starting Time: 06.00 A.M. Morning
Closing Km Reading: 7395 km @ Hotel Richi Bhuwaneshwar
Closing Time: 22.00 P.M. Night

We started very early morning on Day – 12 as HVK had asked me to target to touch Bhuwaneshwar which meant I had to drive & cover a distance of close to 700 KMs.

Motel Hindustan

Motel Hindustan

The road here Burdwan Kolkatta highway NH2 is just awasome & you can really drive the wheels off your car. The road was so good I touched the speed of 160 kmph.

The Kolkata Konnection

The Kolkata Konnection

On the outskirts of Kolkatta city at a signal a truck came very close to our car & rubbed against our car. It felt very bad and there was no point in arguing & trying to get anything. It also damaged my rear tail light at the very bottom a small piece of glass broke.

We drove on with some heavy heart. We spoke with HVK when he called up & he consoled us & comforted us by telling luckily the damage wasn’t too severe. We crossed Kolkatta By-pass by 12.30 P.M. and were headed towards Orissa.

Chale Chalo

Chale Chalo

We fueled the car with 25.13 liters of Diesel @ Rs.39.79 per ltr and paid Rs.1000/- at IOCL Pump Ratulia Filling Station, Ratullia, NH-6, Purba Medinipur, West Bengal.

The Linea touched 7000 KMs mark on its odometer. We just completed 5000 KMs of our trip from home with the odometer reading 7026.

7K Mark

Completing 7000 Kilometers

Bhuwaneshwar is 318 KMs from here and the time was 3.10 PM afternoon.

Time to take a break, only to start again

Time to take a break, only to start again

We fueled the car with 27.58 liters of Diesel @ Rs.40.26 per ltr and paid Rs.1110/- at IOCL Pump MAA Biswasweri Filling Station, P.O.Pahal, NH-5, Khurda, Orissa.

We finally reached Bhuwaneshwar at night 10 P.M. and checked into Hotel Richi neat Bhuwaneshwar Railway Station. The tariff was Rs.950/- per day.

S.No Date Toll Plaza Name State Time Fees
1 29.12.2010 PALASIT WEST BENGAL 11.20 morning 35
2 29.12.2010 DANKUNI WEST BENGAL 12.13 afternoon 35
3 29.12.2010 DHULAGHAR WEST BENGAL 12.34 afternoon 30
4 29.12.2010 BALASORE DANTAM ORISSA 16.00 afternoon 40
5 29.12.2010 BURAMULA ORISSA 14.21 afternoon 35
6 29.12.2010 RAMPURA ORISSA 15.12 afternoon 30
7 29.12.2010 PANIKOILI ORISSA 45
8 29.12.2010 MANGULI ORISSA 40
Total Toll Fees 29.12.2010 = 290


  • Nandan says:

    And the great drive goes on. It simply amazing to find that how can you continue to drive long distances day after day. I still think that a couple of two-nights on the way up and down might have been a good break, but probably you didn’t have enough days.

    Well done MN. I am now camping at Bhuvneshwar and eagerly waiting for next morning. :-)

  • Vibha says:

    So you’ve now reached Bhubhneshwar. Great!

    Sorry to hear about brush off with the truck. I can understand how much the first scratch or damage hurts. It doesn’t seem possible to keep a car safe for too long…

  • MN says:

    Hi Nanada & Vibha,

    Thanks for the comments.

    @Vibha – The mistake of the lorry rubbing the car was also partly to be blamed on me too. I should have had some patience that time, could have avoided that. Anyway a lesson learnt the hardway Haste makes Waste!!!. It wont happen ever again in my next drives.

    @ Nandan – Driving up towards a destination happens with a whole lot of enthusiasm and driving down back is sometimes tedious as you need the same energy levels that you had while driving up.

    In my case I was the only driver, my wife doesnt know to drive and so I had no option but to drive by encouraging myself. My wife was also encouraging me quite a lot. It helped. We did not look at the number of kms we had to clock. We took it step by step.

    The only proper rest I got was for just few hours at night after we reached the hotel only to start very early morning on the next day.

    As per my log books I started from Thimpu Bhutan on 27.12.2010 6 AM and reached Coimbatore on 2nd Jan 2011 morning 10 AM covering 3458 kms in 6 days.

    Day-10 Thimpu-Siliguri=340kms, Day-11 Siliguri-NTPC Bakkeshwar=453kms, Day-12 Bakkeshwar-Bhuwaneshwar=655kms,Day-13 Bhuwaneshwar-Satpada Chilika Lake=227kms,Day-14 Chilika Lake-Vishakhapatnam=365kms, Day15 Vishakhapatnam-Chennai-Coimbatore non stop=1418 kms

    I am sure you will enjoy the next blog on the visit in Bhuwaneshwar to Lord Jagannath Mandir, Konark Sun Temple and next day to Chilika Lake to see the beautiful Irrawadi Dolphins.

    Chilika Lake is the largest brackish water lake in Asia covering an area of over 1,100 sq. km is a great attraction for the tourists for fishing, bird watching and boating. In winter Chilika lake is filled with thousands of indigenous and migratory birds of many varieties from far and near – even from the distant Siberia.

  • Onil Gandhi says:

    if there be a “like” buttom here i would have liked liked liked and liked!!!!

  • Nandan says:

    Well there is one, right under the title, after the share options. I know it is not very conspicuous.

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