Home / Features / Honda Drive to Discover 10 – Holiday on Wheels

 

In the 10th edition of Honda’s Drive to Discover, we joined a convoy of Honda cars and drove through some of Karnataka’s most picturesque locations

Story & Photography: Joshua Varghese

honda drive to discover 10

Image: Honda

Picture this. A convoy of Hondas snaking through some of the most amazing driving roads in the south-western state of Karnataka, making overnight stops at serene locations and doing it all over again the next day. Sounds like a far-fetched dream, doesn’t it? I would agree, except that I did live this dream for three days in a row. Along with other journalists, I drove from Bengaluru to Goa, exploring whatever lay in between, taking some nice photographs, sampling the local food and, of course, trying out all the cars in Honda India’s current line-up.

honda drive to discover 10

We started from the Bengaluru airport and headed for the hills, Chikmagalur to be precise. My innings began at the wheel of a petrol-manual Amaze and the car’s plush ride quality and infotainment options kept me comfortable and entertained throughout the day. Following a brisk run on the highway, the rest of the drive was easy. After a quick stop-over at Hassan, the convoy took off to see the Yagachi Dam before calling it a day.

honda drive to discover 10

Chikmagalur is one of the best weekend retreats of Karnataka for those who are up for the drive. The quiet hill station has crisp, clean air and it commands a view of the Chandra Dhrona Hill Range of the Western Ghats. The following morning, a petrol-manual Jazz was what I chose for the drive up to Mullayanagiri Peak, the highest in Karnataka. A decision I did not regret because the Jazz proved a perfect hill-climb companion with its compact proportions and torquey, refined engine. Later, a diesel-manual Honda Amaze became my companion for the first part of the day’s drive and, within an hour, I was impressed by the engine’s generous spread of torque and how it was just as much fun on the twisties as its petrol sibling.

honda drive to discover 10

Post lunch, the Amaze was swapped for a petrol-manual City and I took off in search of some quiet coastal roads. The City’s roomy and plush interior was in stark contrast to the tropical setting and it made for an extremely pleasant drive along the seashore. Beaches like the one in Kaup are among the hidden gems of Karnataka because they are not frequented by tourists. They are still clean, beautiful, and pristine and the place left me rooted to the spot until sunset.

honda drive to discover 10

Quite impressed by the City, I opted for it the next day as well, this time a CVT. The day’s exploration began by checking out the Maravanthe and Kodi beaches. The former is too dangerous to explore because its unique shoreline creates eddies and undercurrents that are potentially lethal even for the most experienced swimmers. Instead, I made a beeline for Kodi Beach and was in for a pleasant surprise because it turned out to be a spectacular piece of coast maintained to perfection by an organization called the Clean Kundapura Project. As calm and serene as it was, I high-tailed as soon as soon as it began to get hot and set off in a northerly direction. On the way, I stopped at a few touristy spots, including Murudeshwar and Gokarna, before meeting the rest of the convoy at Karwar for lunch. Once again, the spread was a treat for the seafood fans and a splendid example of local culinary prowess. Now there’s a taste I won’t forget anytime soon.

honda drive to discover 10

The final leg of our road trip was the drive to Goa and, after crossing the last twisty section, I reflected on my overall experience and realized that it was nothing short of amazing. To be honest, it felt more like a driving holiday than an assignment. To travel in such times was a godsend and hats off to team Honda for organizing and executing something on this scale while adhering to all the safety norms. We had COVID-19 tests done before and after the event, the cars and venues were all sanitized, and the route was well-planned.

honda drive to discover 10

If you asked me to pick a favourite destination, I would be unable to do so because there were simply so many worthy places, but ask me to pick a car and I will happily take the key to the Honda City. While the other cars in the line-up were fun in their own way, the City’s all-round ability appealed to me more than anything else. As for travelling during the pandemic, it is entirely possible if you are driving and, perhaps, safer, too, so long as you punctiliously adhere to all the norms, of course.

honda drive to discover 10

 

About the author: Joshua Varghese

 

Would gape at fast cars. Still does but now has a chance to drive some of them. Hates driving in traffic but makes up for with a spot of off-roading or the occasional track outing. Insta: @motoknight

 

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