It was the last weekend day in the month of March. After successful bus travel to Belagavi, Mangaluru, and Hubballi; it was yet another weekend holiday trip to enjoy onboard KSRTC’s Airawata Club Class Multi-Axled bus service. I had also planned to travel to Hyderabad and Chennai by KSRTC’s Airawata Club Class Multi-Axled bus service but had to drop the plan due to a busy work schedule in the office.
Shivamogga lies in the interior part of Central Karnataka and takes up to 6 hours to travel by bus. The city also has connectivity through the Indian Railway network i.e. two superfast express trains that operate twice from Bengaluru. I opted to travel by bus as I wanted to experience the road travel and enjoy the scenic beauty en route Shivamogga.
I logged into KSRTC’s AWATAR web booking portal and booked my e-tickets much in advance. The seats were available and as usual, I chose the front seat number 1 to get a good view of the outside world through the large windshield. The bus expected departure time was at 7.30 am from Bengaluru’s Kempegowda Bus Station platform 2A and is located opposite to BMTC’s Kempegowda International Airport’s bus terminal. The journey to Shivamogga was approximately six to seven hours including a rest-stop en route for breakfast.
Journey to Shivamogga via Chitradurga
As the D-day arrived, I woke up early in the morning and got ready to leave my home at 5.30 am. It was just a fifteen-minute ride on my TVS Jupitor to Bengaluru’s Kempegowda Bus Station. I parked my vehicle at the designated parking lot at around 6 am and headed to Bengaluru’s Kempegowda Bus Station Platform 2A. The bus to Shivamogga was parked at the last bay near the entrance of Terminal 2. Amongst other buses, one could spot KSRTC’s Karnataka Sarige buses to Shivamogga, Sagara, Kumta, etc. My Airawata Club Class Multi-Axled bus to Shivamogga was the only Volvo bus parked in the bus terminal. The crew had already arrived at the bus terminal but were not letting any passengers inside the bus as it was too early at 6.30 am. I preoccupied myself in the meanwhile with a hot cup of filter coffee along with an English newspaper to read. Soon at 7 am, the crew started to let all the bus passengers get inside the bus. As usual, I was the first one to board as my seat number was 1 in the front row. The bus soon filled up and there were some vacant seats in the bus. We still had time for departure at 7.30 am and I got off the bus to get some fresh air. Soon the crew started the bus at 7.25 am and as soon as I settled down in my seat, I got an SMS confirmation with journey and crew details. The crew then verified my e-ticket and identity card as mentioned in the trip sheet.
We left Bengaluru’s Kempegowda Bus Stand from platform 2A at sharp 7.30 am and as per the estimated departure time. We braced through mild traffic at Railway station traffic signal and moved to Okalipuram, Rajajinagar, Navarnag Circle, Orion Mall, Soap Factory junction, and Yeswanthpur to join the National Highway-4 leading to Poona. The crew picked up one bus passenger at Navarang park pick-up point and another passenger at Gorgunteplaya metro station. The traffic increased as we reached the Gorgunteplaya traffic junction and the rush was expected as it was a weekend holiday. We braced through moderate to heavy traffic from Gorguntepalya junction to reach Nelamangala Toll. Upon crossing the Nelamangala toll, our bus made its way to Tumakuru, the first en route city on the way to Shivamogga.
The bus sped through its way through the usual morning traffic rush on the National Highway-4. Soon it was time for a short rest-stop before Tumakuru. The crew made an announcement for a brief fifteen-minute halt for breakfast. All the passengers alighted at the rest stop. As I was hungry, I headed to a restaurant nearby. I ordered freshly made idly and vada for breakfast along with a cup of hot filter coffee. It was a very refreshing breakfast and soon I made to it the bus as it was getting late for departure. The crew made the final announcement to board the bus after the designated fifteen-minute halt and we were back on the National Highway leading to Shivamogga via Tumakuru, Sira, Chitradurga, Holalkere, Channagiri, and Bhadrawati towns. The bus sped through the traffic and the road journey was smooth till the highway ended at Chitradurga. The bus then had to take a deviation towards the West to travel to Shivamogga. We arrived at Chitradurga at around 11 am. The bus parked at the designated parking bay at Chitradurga KSRTC bus stand. The road to the bus stand was dusty and was under construction owing to road repair works. Some passengers alighted at the Chitradurga KSRTC bus stand and we left the bus stand with a break of about ten minutes.
Arrival At Shivamogga
Our next stop was at Holalkere and Channagiri towns which are small towns en route to Shivamogga. Only a few passengers alighted at these two places and the bus proceeded to Shivamogga without any hassle. The road to Bhadrawati town from Channagiri was deserted with less traffic but had scenic views of the agricultural farm and fields. I was lucky to occupy the front seat in the bus that gave me a wide and spectacular view of the outside world through the huge clear windshield.
We soon reached Bhadrawati and from here our journey to Shivamogga lasted for about an hour. The road from Chitradurga to Shivamogga is a two-lane highway and at some locations the road is narrow. The crew had to take deviations at some places due to minor road repair works and wade through the narrow roads safely. Our final destination at Shivamogga soon arrived at around 1.45 pm. I was exhausted by the time I reached Shivamogga but enjoyed the maiden journey to Shivamogga, especially by road through KSRTC’s Airawata multi-axled air-conditioned bus.
Return To Bengaluru
After alighting from KSRTC’s Airawata multi-axled air-conditioned bus in the afternoon at Shivamogga I had to travel back on the same day to Bengaluru. I had already made an online booking through KSRTC’s AWATAR online e-ticket booking portal for my return journey from Shivamogga. My return journey bus was also KSRTC’s Airawata multi-axled air-conditioned bus with the scheduled departure time at 2.30 pm from the Shivamogga KSRTC bus stand. I had to get some fresh air after a tiring six-hour journey from Bengaluru to Shivamogga. I took a stroll within the premises of the Shivamogga KSRTC bus stand and made some interesting observations. I spotted some of the KSRTC Karnataka Sarige buses headed to Sirsi, Sagara, Mysuru, Bengaluru Mumbai, Hubballi, and Chennai. The KSRTC express bus service to Chennai was a new bus route and operated via Bengaluru.
As also Shivamogga KSRTC bus stand has an exclusive bus bay for all the KSRTC’s Airawata multi-axled air-conditioned buses. My bus to Bengaluru was already parked on the platform with crew waiting for passengers. The crew turned away some of the passengers owing to the fully reserved status of the bus. Upon inquiry with the crew, it was learned that all the seats were reserved from Shivamogga, Holalkere, and Chitradurga. The rush was owing to the weekend holiday and as expected the bus turned out to be fully reserved. As usual, I got an SMS confirmation at 2.15 pm related to my journey and crew details of the bus. The crew then started to let the passengers inside the bus at 2.15 pm. Since I had booked front row seat number 1, my tickets were verified by the crew and I was let in to occupy my reserved seat.
The bus was filled up with all the passengers and soon it was time to leave Shivamogga at the scheduled departure time of 2.30 pm. Our next stop was at Channagiri and the crew made a couple of telephone calls to confirm the arrival at the designated pick-up point. The bus stopped en route at Channagiri at around 3.25 pm and around six passengers headed to Bengaluru boarded the bus. The bus then headed to Chitradurga KSRTC bus stand which was the final pick-up point en route to Bengaluru. The bus arrived at Chitradurga KSRTC bus stand at around 5 pm and the bus was fully reserved from Chitradurga. The crew had to turn away a couple of walk-in passengers to Bengaluru owing to the fully reserved status of the seats.
Arrival at Bengaluru
We then joined National Highway-4 leading to Bengaluru. The road to the highway was smooth and the bus began to wade through the traffic as usual. Soon we arrived at Hiriyur, which was a designated rest-stop on the National Highway. The crew informed all the passengers regarding the designated fifteen-minute rest-stop and all the passengers got down over here for a small break. I too got down and grabbed a cup of hot filter coffee which was a refreshing drink. Soon it was time to leave Hiriyur at 6 pm. The bus then joined the usual busy National Highway 4 en route to Bengaluru. The bus reached Tumakuru and the journey till Nelamangala tollway was uneventful. The crew did not intend to provide yet another halt for dinner as the crew had to return from Bengaluru to Shivamogga duly departing from Bengaluru on the same night at 11 pm.
There was a huge rush otherwise at Nelamangala tollway owing to weekend holidays coming to an end and one could witness many cars heading to Bengaluru after hectic weekend holidays. As usual, the route to Bengaluru upon entry into the city was via Gorgunteplaya Metro Station, Yeswantpur Railway Station, Orion Mall, Navarang Park, Rajajinagar, and Okalipuram. The crew assisted the passengers who intended to get down at these drop-off points. We reached Bengaluru’s Kempegowda Bus stand at around 10.45 pm. Finally, a hectic day came to an end. I enjoyed this one-day solo trip onboard KSRTC’s Airawata Multi-Axled club class service in both directions.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.