- Your medicines is you are taking any daily and other emergency and general medicines.
- We will have a basic first aid kit in the car.
- Power banks, phone charger, multiple pin charging adapter, Indian pin adapter, spike buster, if possible a non-smart-phone with a BSNL sim card apart from your regular smart phone.
- We will be using google maps and also due to roaming mobile phones tend to lose their charge in about 5 to 6 hrs max. So its a good idea to carry good capacity power banks which can charge atleast 4 times as we will be required to share with others also. The charging pins in the car all do not work. Also we can charge through laptops if we are carrying them.
- Its important to charge all the phones, power banks and laptops, cameras, ipods etc in the few hours that we spend sleeping in the room. So its a good idea to carry a good, working and with mimimum 6 points Spike buster as the hotel rooms do not have many electrical points. We might have to share one or two points with all our devices.
- We create a WhatsApp group with all of us and our family members so that we can share our whereabouts with them round the clock so that they do not worry about our well being and also to make them jealous about all the fun that we are having :) ;)
- Its a good idea to carry a couple of umbrellas, rain coats or jackets, sweaters etc.
- Do not carry one large suitcase with all your clothes. Especially do not carry large suitcases with wheels. Instead, make 3 or 4 small bags with clothes for 2 or 3 days, with each bag carrying all your emergency and daily medicines, toiletries, cosmetics and necessities divided into small quantities into all the bags. This is becuase it is very late by the time we reach hotels to sleep, usually beyond mid night, so we do not want to waste too much time lugging our luggage and need to grab a bag quickly and get to the room to catch the few winks of sleep that we get. Also, in the morning we leave early, usually at dawn, so we need to get back to the car and on the road quickly.
- We do not remove all the luggage from the car exept that day's small bag and our electronic devices like laptops, phones and power banks for charging. We keep the car locked and safe in the hotel parking as it is for a very short duration of maybe 4 to 3 hrs.
- Keep another bag with small quantity of emergency medicines, cosmetics, phone, power banks etc. Keep the spike buster handy to grab and carry into the hotel room when we disembark frm the car in the night.
- Bring along lots of spirit of adventure, being ready to face any situation and challenges etc. Bring along a memory stick full of lovely and latest bollywood, kollywood and english music so that we will be spending roughly 100 to 120 hrs in the car which needs that many hours of music. Otherwise we will have to listen to Ashok's Pakistani music and we will be tearing our hair out!!! :(
- Carry cash and credit / debit cards. We usually do not do much shopping. Also, this time there will be no visits to weavers. So no stoppages for that.
- Our sight seeing is usually done at very fast pace and usually point to point. No lingering and no wastage of time. So we have to be quick on our feet when we are off the car with minimum time taken to do the things we intend to do.
- Lots of conversations, fun and camaraderie happens within the car during the drives.
- Ashok does most of the driving. But when he requires sleep and rest others take over for a few hours. Especially the first three days of travel. Night driving is also required. We also take turns in navigating through google maps.
- We usually have a fixed time to reach our destination. It would be typically 2.5 days. So the first day involves 1200 kms of travel which means we will be travelling for 15 hrs. The second day would involve 1400 to 1500 kms of travel which would mean 20 to 22 hrs of driving. The third day would be about 300 to 400 kms of travel. Which would be 5 hrs of driving.
- We usually carry a lot of theplas, chapathis and sandwiches with us for these two days and usually do not stop for breakfast, lunch or dinner to save on the time and to cover maximun distance.
- There will be typically 3 to 4 stops per day for filling up diesel once every 400 kms. This time is also utilised to visit the toilet, have some tea or coffee if there is a shop in the petrol bunk, buy biscuits, cold drinks etc, if there is a shop in the petrol bunk. The toilets might or might not be clean. But since we will be travelling in western and north India which are more developed for tourism, we might be lucky to find good toilets. It is adviced to utilise the facility at each and every stop as we never know when we might find the next one.
- Once we reach Mata Vaishnodevi, we have to do treck 14kms to the temple. So carry appropriate clothing for the trek and also a trekking bag to carry the necessities.
- Obviouslly you should not have motion sickness. Since we will be driving continuously for 12 days and typically 18 hrs a day, if you are a person who cannot drive without throwing up then this is not the kind of adventure for you.
- The travel invloves a lot of physical fitness. You should be able to endure sitting continuously for 18 hrs a day and be able to manage with minimum sleep. You should be able to handle greulling and hectic schedules.
- Women will develop swollen feet due to sitting for 18 hrs a day for 10 to 12 days. Your feet will begin to hurt by the 8th or 10th day.
Morning darshan at Shirdi
Afternoon darshan at Shanishingapur
Morning darshan at Pandharpur
Afternoon darshan at Kolhapur