Let's say you want to chart a route for a small tour from Bangalore. You want to avoid the larger roads (read:highways) and explore the countryside. Which map would you use ? The Eicher Road map or the Lonely Planet map lack the needed detail. Using survey maps are a possibility, but has a number of drawbacks - it is difficult to chart a route, and it is expensive. Using the very popular Google maps/Google Earth is not a good alternative as well. You probably don't agree with that last statement, but that's precisely the reason why I am posting this.
The better alternative is - Yahoo maps. To convince yourself that this is true, compare the maps around a place called Thalli which lies between Anekal (40 kms from Bangalore) and Anchetty (in Tamil Nadu, on the way to Hogenakal falls) : comparison is between Yahoo Map and Google Map. Yahoo maps show a lot of minor roads, labels notable villages too ! Big help for touring the countryside, and my preferred choice for route planning now. ( Thanks to KP for sticking to Yahoo in the face of Google's popularity )
So what did I do during the December holidays ? Me & KP did a short 7 day tour and used some information in the Yahoo map to good effect! We camped on the banks of the Kaveri river at a relatively unknown place called Dabguli which falls on the road from Hunsnahalli to Dantalli. Don't waste time finding these places on the Google map : you will fail 🙂 We had an excellent time riding in traffic free roads, pushing our cycles at places, staying in temples, a school (Details coming soon). Meanwhile, wish you a Happy New Year 2009 !