8 Hour Journey to Varkala – First Train Ride! 

The 4 1/2 hour bus ride from Munnar to Ernakulam wasn’t quite as exciting as the ride up. Getting up at 6am to get our first public run bus (KSRTC) in India allowed us to get on an emptier, cooler bus (as the public buses don’t have any Windows) which made the twists and turns back down through the hills to take us back from where we first set off: Cochi. 

After our bus managing to make it in good time, and us having stripped off our layers one by one as the chilly Munnar morning turning into blazing Ernakulam midday heat, we then had to navigate our way towards to train station. It seems the bus stand is never as close to the train station as you’d like it to be! 

One we arrived, sweating profusely and collapsing in the shade on the station we then bought ourselves 2 train tickets and tested out Sleeper Class, making our way back down south to Varkala; a beach side resort we’d had recommended to us which kept us in Kerala a bit longer. 

Delayed an hour and a half (!) we were luckily in that we managed to catch the train quite quickly, whereas other travellers had been waiting almost 1 1/2 hours for the same train. 

Our Sleeper carriage tickets were only for 4 1/2 hours so we didn’t need beds. We set up in a 2 birth seating area and settled in for the journey (trying to ignore the smell of urine that seems to permeate the carriage whenever we weren’t moving). 


Urine smells aside, the train journey was exhilarating, with the open windows and open doors meaning you can easily watch Indian life as you trundle along. All in all, not a bad first journey on the Indian railway. 

Bus Ticket: £1 each

Train Ticket: £1.60 each 

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