Road Trip & Trek to Gudiyam Caves
DISCOVER TAMILNADU-EPISODE 9 1 (3) – GUDIYAM CAVES – NDTVHINDU
DISCOVER TAMILNADU-EPISODE 9 2 (3) – GUDIYAM CAVES – NDTVHINDU
DISCOVER TAMILNADU-EPISODE 9 3 (3) – GUDIYAM CAVES – NDTVHINDU
Gudiyam Caves are a popular tourist destination in Thiruvallur District in Chennai, Tamil Nadu. These caves are a rock shelter and known for pre-historic rock-shelters. Myriads of tourists throng these caves thus exploring their mystery. The sight is located just behind Poondi reservoir, in the core of Chennai city. It is 60 kilometers away from Chennai. The sight has grown as ideal picnic spot making it well connected with the near by regions.
History of Gudiyam Caves
Gudiyam Caves were discovered by geologist Robert Bruce Foote. According to Archeological evidence, these caves were used by Paleolithic Man. The Archeological Survey of India excavated the site in 1963-64. Paleolithic studies in this region show signs of extensive movement of early hominids across the landscape about 100,000 years ago. Sixteen such shelters are located in Allikulli Hill ranges near Poondi.
Significance of Gudiyam Caves
Since remnants of weapons and tools of pre historic times are found here, Gudiyam Caves naturally draw attention of numerous archeologists and historians. Gudiyam Caves are noted for their rugged terrain widely intercepted by lush forests and plantations. However, traces of plain lands are also been found nearby. Due to rugged terrains, adventurers and trackers go there on foot.
Attractions of Gudiyam Caves
Guditam caves are abode of wild animals and birds, which have found them ideal to take shelter. It is regarded as ‘hominid habitation’ of the pre- historic times. There are about sixteen rock shelters forming sheds of lush green trees. The wonderful birds that can be recognized along the way were the spotted doves, ring doves, rose-ringed parakeet, drongo, brain fever bird, bulbul, etc. In the fringes of Gudiyam caves, one can find remains of tools and utensils that were used by the primitive ancestors. These have major attraction for the tourists’. The statue of cave goddess, Banachiamman and few more stone idols and a framed picture were enshrined. Village God, Ayyanar is regarded as protective powers and highly revered by the localities. Some of the statues too can be seen in close nook of the caves.
Connectivity to Gudiyam Caves
The best option to reach this sight is said to be via car. One has to take the road to Poonamallee and head to Poondi reservoir to reach Gudiyam village. The trek to reach the caves from the Gudiyam village is about five kilometers.
Source : http://www.indianetzone.com
Trek to Gudiyam Caves
Have you ever wondered what the abode of a paleolithic man looked like ? Or if you could step into the very same ground where the humans from the prehistoric period walked and lived ? Then you should certainly head to Gudiyam Caves.
They are rock shelters of Southern India identified by British geologist Robert Bruce Foote, holding a great amount of archaeological significance even today. The ancient site is located just 65 kilometers away from Chennai and is definitely worth a trip.
Gudiyam Caves are said to be the location which helped mark the existence of Tamilians who lived on this planet right from the Stone age.
Reading about a short film on Gudiyam caves that made it to the prestigious Cannes Film festival in 2015, sparked a curiosity in me to want to make a visit. Having looked up some posts and sites on the internet, a couple of my friends and I took off to see the site and trek.
Being just around 10 kilometers from Thiruvallur, it’s ideal for a short day-trip from Chennai on any given weekend. With a gruesome summer already showing it’s horrible effects in February, we left at around 7 AM in the morning to escape the harsh afternoon sun, and I’d advise the same for anyone. Enabled with Google Maps (do not trust it completely and I will tell you why), we were easily able to get up to the road leading to the Gudiyam village within a couple of hours. Beyond this you require some assistance from the local community who will tell you which path is the best one at that time.
Tip : You could opt to take a bus till the main town nearby and hire a vehicle to reach the caves but this area is quite remote so it may become hard to hitch a ride back, so be wary!
The path leading to the small village where the trek starts is only a 3 km ride, but riding on tumultuous kaccha roads laden with rocks and sand made it feel like 13kms. By now you may have figured that these roads do not show up on maps, but keep in mind that even the main roads leading to them are not accurate on the App so I would recommend you keep enquiring with the local inhabitants on how you can reach the caves (in tamil obviously). Once that stretch is over you will find yourself amidst a few houses in the foreground and the mighty mountains in the background. From here your vehicles can’t progress and you can begin hiking to the top of the hills and the caves.
We lucked out and found a localite right there to come with us as a guide. You could also request one of them as they are very familiar with the place and can navigate through wilderness more skillfully than you or me. Try to pay them a nominal amount for their service to keep them happy!
The hike begins on rustic red sand out in the front and wild shrubs all around the vicinity, but as you progress the greenery in the landscape increases and all of a sudden you find yourself completely surrounded by trees and only a narrow stone pathway leading ahead. The trail in this part can be a little hard to figure and this is when taking our guide along came in handy. But interestingly, two additional locals also joined us throughout the entire trip. Two of the dogs from Gudiyam village tagged along and hiked all the way and back, we grew pretty fond of them giving them nick names and and spent our time amidst rural life, slowly trying to surrender into the bygone era of nature and chaos free lifestyle.
The trek to reach the caves, is around 5 kilometres uphill, and is quite exciting when you start climbing boulders along the side of the mountain while being enveloped by tree branches, shrubs and leaves all around, until you reach the cave itself. It took us around an hour to get to the first cave, where we saw the ancient sites that I believe contained tools used by stone age man that have been preserved by the archeological department. After a brief halt here, we even managed to climbed onto the very top of the mountain to catch the brilliant panoramic view of the entire area.
Climbing back down from this was a little daunting as there was a steep decline and I kept praying no rocks I stepped on accidentally brittled away. But with a little care and some company to help maintain balance under the canopy, this stretch now remains my best takeaway from the trek.
Hiking to the next mountain took another hour and we arrived at the bigger cave which also houses a small shrine and we were told that the temple has some routine worshippers from the village. Here the cave walls on one side were completely laden with honey combs, tall creepers and a vast multitude of greenery. We decided to just take a few minutes to take it all in and relax before heading back down.
The route up and back down is pretty much identical, but with no humans in the vicinity there are chances of getting lost without knowing which way to go. There’s supposed to be a board and a guard on duty at the beginning, who you can inform about your trek before you embark on it as the route could be unsafe at times, but we didn’t find either of them. To be on the safer side, we did however call the archaeological department a few days in advance and they said there is infact even a museum setup in the area to learn more on the site, but sadly we were not able to spot it. (Perhaps if anyone else does, you can let me know!)
Tip: Take plenty of water as you do not have access to any shops or facilities near the caves or even in the Gudiyam village. Some light snacks will help you along the way.
Make sure you wear comfortable footwear that is trek conducive. I would recommend rugged shoes (not flat running shoes) or sandals.
Some of the pictures in this post were taken by my super enthusiastic talented friend, you can follow more of her work on the Instagram page – @tejalsatish
Gudiyam caves near Chennai transports you literally to a bygone era… Looking for a day’s trip out of Chennai and a journey into wilderness? Well then, Gudiyam Caves (about 60 km from the city) located in Thiruvallur District is a great bet.
Gudium Caves ( As mentioned by Archaeological Department of Tamilnadu) This name is not familiar to Chennai people. So, I though I should make this familiar at least among my network. I found a day with awesome weather in Chennai. So, my mind started to think about a long travel in bike to enjoy the weather.
Gudiyam Caves Part 2
Gudiyam Caves Part 4
After some point of time, everyone get hungry when we see the hotel on the way. So we decided to have a breakfast at MOTEL and buy some snacks, water bottles etc. We quickly had the breakfast and start our journey further, Suddenly our driver realized that the stepney is not ready.
This name is familiar to archaeological department of Tamilnadu. This place is in thiruvallur district. Is from Chennai approximately 70 km. Is in poondi panchayat union, Timmaboopalapuram panchayat. Gudiyam Caves is known for its 1 lakh year old rock-shelters, statues etc. Preferred for trekkers and who loves to travel.
Old straw roof Hut at Goonipalayam Village – The starting point of our trek Trekking on the pebbles path Conglomerate of pebbles rock Conglomerate of pebbles rock People throws the plastic wastes – too bad . We are approaching the 2nd Cave There are about 16 caves in this Allikulli Hill range and we are able to cover only two.
Climbed yet to reach the top of the hill. Total surrounding was viewed at that point. It was awesome to spend time there with coo…
The Gudiyam caves….I have been planning with my friends for the past 3 or 4 months to go to this place. 2 times the plan was cancelled due to some reason or the other. The third time, we decided to go ahead whatever happens.
Chennai is a concrete jungle! People here have monotonously robotic lives. Deadline has become the lifestyle. Citizens from different corners ensure keeping themselves busy. Everyone enjoys working against the clock! Stress levels are on the rise at an alarming rate! Thinking of future, everyone forgets nature.
The Gudiyam caves….I have been planning with my friends for the past 3 or 4 months to go to this place. 2 times the plan was cancelled due to some reason or the other. The third time, we decided to go ahead whatever happens. Also, as some of friends were leaving Chennai, we had to…
CHENNAI: Though India is rich in heritage sites with several being reknowned as tourist destinations, there are still many that aren’t as popular. Do you know that some of these sites can be dated back to 200,000 years? And that they are right here in the south?
Trek to Gudiyam Caves – Back to Stone Age including Gudiyam Caves, Goonipalayam, Tamil Nadu, India, Poondi Dam, Tiruvallur, Tamil Nadu, India
Rock shelters of South India and known for pre-historic stone tools and culture. Trek with Rootwalkers. This ancient site situated in Thiruvallur district near Poondi reservoir. It is 60 kilometers away from Chennai, Tamil Nadu. Gudiyam Caves Chennai transports you literally to a bygone era…
Gudiyam Caves–Cavern to prehistoric Times Locality:GudiyamLandmark:Poondi reservoirType:Adventurous TripGoogle map location: A 90-kilometer drive from Chennai to Gudiyam village past Poondi a road less traveled brings you to an inaccessible forest of evergreen and deciduous trees .This is where Robert Bruce Foote in 1863, a British geologist, discovered a stone tool – a hand axe, made, used and discarded by the Stone Age man – from a gravel pit in suburban in this place .
கடந்த மாதம் ஒரு சனிக்கிழமை மாலை 6 மணி அளவில் ஒரு அழைப்பு, காலை குடியம் போறோம், வந்துவிடு என்று ரீச் பவுண்டேசனின் தலைவர் சத்தியமூர்த்தி அய்யா கூறினார். குடியம் குகையா எங்கேயோ கேள்வி பட்ட பெயராக இருக்கிறதே என ரீச் பவுண்டேசன் சந்திரா அய்யாக்கு அழைத்தேன், ஆம் போகிறோம் காலையில் 5.30க்கு வந்துவிடு என்றார்.
Parasuraman, Sivaram Kannan and Gomathy have expressed already a lot about the trip and the site. Their excellent write ups are given in the link. (Just Click on the tile of this article!) So, let me write less on the trip and more on the facts and figures of this site.
Basic Approach Developed as a comprehensive introductory work for scholars and students of ancient and early medieval Indian history, this books provides the most exhaustive overview of the subject. Dividing the vast historical expanse from the stone age to the 12th century into broad chronological units, it constructs profiles of various geographical regions of the subcontinent, weaving together and analysing an unparalleled range of literary and archaeological evidence.
Few know of Gudiyam’s prehistoric caves and not many visiting it treat the site with the respect it deserves. Tourists often leave behind a trail of garbage and broken liquor bottles, not to mention graffiti on the walls of the cave.
Gudiyam Caves – A Trek into Prehistory It was a nerve-tingling expedition back to the days of the Neanderthal caveman, with evidence of his presence so overwhelmingly real we were transported back to the days when he roamed this place… The Wildertrailers woke to torrential rain on September 14th, but after a delayed start the weather held up beautifully.
(A journey to the centre of the evolution.) It all began with the moment when ‘matter’ combined with ‘spirit’ to give birth to the most complex species in the world both anatomically & psychologically… the humans. Then started the ever going process of evolution, the other name for the phrase ‘Survival of the toughest ‘.
Highlights of Kudiyam Caves Travel..7 கி.மீ வனப்பகுதிக்குள் மரம் செடி கொடிகளுக்கு இடையே கற்கள் மீது நடன நடையில் குடியம் குகைகளுக்கு சென்றது, பசுமை போர்த்திய குகைகள் பற்றிய முக்கிய பயணக்காட்சிகள்- அறிவுச்சுடர் நடுவம்(25/06/2016).
14 Likes, 1 Comments – சுடலைமுத்து மாரி பரமசிவன் (@smmari_paramasivan) on Instagram: “#Click😉 #GudiyamVillage #GudiyamCaves #SoloTrip”
5 Likes, 1 Comments – சுடலைமுத்து மாரி பரமசிவன் (@smmari_paramasivan) on Instagram: “#Click😉 #GudiyamVillage #gudiyamcaves #topview”
4 Likes, 2 Comments – Prasanth Kotaru (@pras_kot) on Instagram: “#bikeride #gudiyamcaves #offroad #nature”
8 Likes, 1 Comments – Prasanth Kotaru (@pras_kot) on Instagram: “#nature #path #gudiyamcaves #nearchennai”
2 Likes, 1 Comments – Gowtham Raj (@rajgowtham24) on Instagram: “Caves used in Paleolithic Age #GudiyamCaves #Cycling”