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  • Day123

    Beach hopping up the west coast

    March 5, 2017, Laccadive Sea ⋅ ⛅ 9 °C

    After our two became a three, we decided to take in the beach life and make our way up the west coast of India. Tammy and I hadn't been on a beach since Cambodia at Christmas and it was time. With the intense heat of India constantly on my skin, I yearned for air to lift away the pollution, grime and sweat of the days before.

    Varkala cliffs was our first stop on the beach mission, a cluster of eateries, shops and yoga retreats perched above the blustery Arabian sea crashing into the rocks below.

    We celebrated young Flick's birthday here and endured the hangover. Me and Tam thought we would try out a traditional Indian massage... One word. PAINFUL. But hilarious looking over at Tam, with her polite impassive smile as the masseuse dragged her hands through her 'fro.

    We left Varkala after five days, and embarked on a 28 hour journey to Gorkana, a temple town surrounded by hidden coves. We had a slight hiccup when my elbow was sliced open at the beginning of our epic journey. Looking back now... It was hilarious. You would never had known we were three health care professionals!!! I was screaming, claret everywhere, skin flapping and the other two handed me paper stitches and a antiseptic wipe. Hahaha! And old t shirt came in handy to stop the bleeding. The mortified rickshaw (more like RIPshaw!) driver took me to the nearest hospital, and I was stitched up within the hour. It was painful and a little scary but overall the service was amazing.

    With my three stitches in place we headed for our afternoon/night bus that would take us to a train that connected us Gorkana. It is true that travelling is a mixture of ups and downs, this night bus was definitely a down! The driving was SO atrocious that Tam evacuated from both ends and I re-opened my freshly stitched wound. Not fun. However, the next leg of journey completely made for it when we met a wonderful Indian family. We chatted about the U.K., the daughter's job prospects, Indian weddings, and all the things we could fit in, over steaming chai and spicy samosas. It was a highlight of our week. Tam gave the daughter a shiny one pound coin, and Flick magically made a necklace out of it using her macramé kit. A small crowd gathered around to watch as she plaited and knotted away, clapping and cheering as the finished item was produced. We hugged and kissed all the family before waving farewell and embarking on the final leg.

    Om beach greeted us with a sweltering heat but beautiful sunset. We found a lovely cottage for three just off the beach in a tropical garden. We spent our days hiking over cliffs to the neighbouring Kudle and Half Moon beaches, exploring coves, and breaking bread with some newly found friends.

    For the second birthday of the month, we headed to Palolem to celebrate Tam's 35th. A beautifully expansive beach with refreshing waves and a hint of luxury. The birthday morning was lovely; we took a boat out at sunrise hoping to spot dolphins. We were not disappointed! There were so many, gracefully breaking through the waves and frolicking in the morning light. Truly magical.
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