|Called the "Queen of
the Hill Stations", picturesque, green Udhagamandalam better known as Ooty is the
most popular hill station in the south in the Niligiris. Akin to the nector of the Gods is
the Camellia Sinensis a bush that gives fragrant amber ambrosia - a refresher and
stimulizer. In other words, Tea. Commercial Plantations came into existence in the
Niligiris around 1853, though tea plants were thriving in Tamilnadu earlier to this.
South Indian Tea has gained recognition far and
wide. India is
the fifth largest tea producing belt in the world after China. In 1991, South India
exported 50 million kg to over 30 countries. Tea and Tourism Festival is celebrated in the
Nilgiris Jointly by the Department of Tourism, Government of Tamil Nadu and Ministry of
Tourism, Government of Tamil Nadu and Ministry of Tourism, Government of India in every
January/February. Cultural programmes, visits to Tea Estates and factories, fun and frolic
etc., mark this celebrations. Come to Nilgiris, during this festival, when tea lovers from
all over the world converge. An occasion not to be missed.
AREA: 36 Sq. Km
ALTITUDE: 2,240 meters
above sea level. CLIMATE: Summer Max. 25.0 C and Min. 10.0 C. Winter 21.0
C and Min. 0 C.
BEST SEASON: April
to June and September to November. STD CODE: 0423
By Air: The nearest
airport is Coimbatore(100 Km/62 mile) which is connected to Chennai, Mumbai and Bangalore.
By Road: Ooty is
connected by good motorable road to Chennai and Coimbatore. There are regular bus services
connecting Ooty to Coimbatore, Trichy, Bangalore, Madurai, Kanniya Kumari, Mysore,
Palghat, Calicut and Tirupati.
By Rail: Ooty on
the narrow gauge railway is connected to Mettupalayam which is directly connected to
Coimbatore and Chennai.
Botanical Garden: A
variety of exotic and ornamental plants adorn this garden which is the venue for the
Flower Show held in May every year. There is a fossil tree trunk 20 million years old in
the midst of the garden.
Lake: This artificial
lake was constructed in 1824 by mr. John Sullivan, the then Collector of Coimbatore.
Boating is possible from 08.00 hrs to 18.00 hrs on all days. The lake garden and toy
trains rides are other attractions.
Government Museum: The
Government Museum, Mysore road, has items of tribal objects, district's ecological details
and representative scuptural arts and crafts of Tamilnadu.
The Mukurthi Peak &
Mukurthi National Park: Mukurthi Peak is about 40 Km/24 mile from Ooty. The
Mukurthi National Park is located on the South Eastern corner of the Nilgiris Plateau. The
area contains a viable population of Nilgiri Thar (Hamitragus hilocrius).The silent Valley
is located on the Western side of these ranges. Fascinating feature of the Mukurthi
Santuary is its endemism and relationship with Himalayan Flora and Fauna.
Ketty Valley View: Located
on the road to Coonoor, this idyllic spot is a cluster of tiny Villages that extend to the
plains of Coimbatore and Mysore plateau.
Pykara: Situated about
21 Kms/13 Mile on the Ooty-Mysore Road, boasts of well protected fenced Sholas, Toda
settlement, undisturbed grassy meadows and also a good wildlife habitat. The Pykara Dam
and the reservoir attracts many tourists.
Glenmorgan (17 Km/10 Mile): This
is an Electricty Board. (E.B.) winch carries staff from Glenmorgan view point to power
house at Singara. All the four Kms of the winch track passes through undisturbed sholas
and wildlife habitat. Prior permission of E.B. authorities should be obtained to enter the
view point zone. There are about ten Toda (tribal) settlement.
Upper Bhavani: 10 Km/6
Mile from Korakundah and about 20 Kms/12 Mile from Avalanchi. Some of the best sholas like
the Thar Shola lies enroute. The area is a rich and undisturbed wildlife habitat. From
Bangithappal via Sispara one can trek to Silent Valley.
Avalanchi: Located at
a distance fo 28 Km/17 mile from Ooty, a beautiful lake surrounded by a thick shola where
even sunlight cannot penetrate and abundant with a wide variety of avifauna is a Nature
Western Catchment: It
is about 20 Kms/12 Mile from Parsons Valley. It consists of Rolling Grassy downs
interspersed with temperature sholas occupying depression and valleys.
Madumalai Wildlife Sanctuary: Lying
in the Nilgiris District abutting Kerala & Karnataka State, this is
situated at an elevation of 1000 meters and extends over an area of 321 sq. kms. The
wildlife includes Elephant, Gaur, Tiger, Panther, Sambar, Spotted Deer, Barking Deer,
Mouse, Wild Boar, Parcupine etc.
Doddabetta: It is the
highest peak (2623 meters) in the Nilgiri's and is 10 kms/6.2 Mile from Ooty. It
lies at the junction of Western & Eastern Ghats and offer beautiful vistas of the
Nilgiri Hills ranges. There is a telescope house run by TTDC.
Kalhatty Water Falls: It
is located on the Kalhally slopes and about 13 Kms/ 8 Mile from Ooty.
Wenlock Downs: A
vast expanse of understanding landscape offering Gymkhana Club, the Government Sheep Farm
and Hindustan Photo Films Company besides pleasure of long stroll on quiet road.
Elk Hills: A wide
range and uninterrupted view of Ooty and the Lovedale Valley can be had from here.
Snowden Peak: Situated
at the Kothagiri Road, it offers a picturesque view of Mysore.
Treeking Routes: A
number of Trek routes have been identified. Trekking is also organised in breath taking
Hang - Gliding: Hang
- Gliding courses are also organised during March to May every year, with the assistance
of Deptt. of Tourism.
Angling: Good trout, Carp and
mixed water fishing is possible in various streams and lakes in teh Nilgiris. Fishing
licence for a fee is issued by the Assistant Director of Fisheries, Fish Dale,
Udhagamandalam near bus stand.
Handicrafts (Govt of Tamil Nadu), Kairali Handicrafts (Govt of Kerala).
Leading Nationalised Banks have Branches. Exchange facilities are available with all banks
transacting foreign exchange and in Hotel Tamil Nadu.