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Ooty also known as Udhagai, situated in The Nilgiri Hills is the capital of the Nilgiri District. Ooty
is known as the ‘Queen of Hill Stations. It is a very popular hill station in the state of Tamil
Nadu. Ooty is visited by people all over the world, as it is known for its green beauty. It has
gardens and parks and lakes and forest and more. The region has a subtropical Highland climate
with an average temp of 14°C. Ooty can be visited throughout the year. The place has pleasant
weather for an around the year visit.
The initial inhabitants of Ooty were the Toda people. Later Kota tribe, Irula tribe and others
inhabited the place. Various Dynasties including the Cheras, Cholas, Sathvahanas, Rastratukas,
Hoysala’s and more have rule in the region. In the 18 th c, Tipu Sultan conquered Ooty which
later fell into the hand of Bruisers when they defeated Tipu Sultan. Ooty then became the
summer capital of the Madras presidency which after Independence turned into one of the
most popular Hill stations of India.
Location: Tamil Nadu, India
Nearest Railhead: Udhagamandalam railway station
Nearest Airport: Coimbatore
How to reach: 86 km north of Coimbatore
Famous for: Tea Plantations
Months open: All year
Best time to visit: October to June
What's Here: Boat House, Government Botanical Garden, Rose Garden, Tea Factory
Ooty being in the state of Tamil Nadu follows the cultural traditions of the state. The people
here speak dominantly Tamil and also know Hindi and English. The main festivals include
Pongal, Adi Perukku, Vaikunta Ekadasi, Eid, Diwali, Holi, Christmas etc. Jallikattu is a popular
sport and is played on the last day of celebration of Pongal. Music and dance form an integral
part of the culture of Tamil Nadu
Where to go
Ooty Lake, spread over an area of 65 acres is about 2 kms away from the main town. The lake in
an artificial Lake surrounded by numerous Eucalyptus Trees. There are also numerous water
birds that can be spotted here. It is one of the prime attractions of if the place. Boating, horse
riding, etc are activities that you can engage in at the lake.
Ooty Botanical Garden is spread over an area of 22 hectares. The garden was built in 1848 to
have a terrace like design. The garden is open to the visitors and has been mesmerizing every
person visiting it for past 160 yrs. At altitude of 2500m it experiences a temperate climate
which makes it ideal for several kinds of shrubs. The garden also has the one of kind Cork trees
within the premises. There is an old fossilized tree in the garden premises which is said to be
around 20 million years old.
Dolphin’s nose is a Tourists site. It is called so because the protruding corners of the rock
resembles a Dolphins Nose. From the site one can see an awe inspiring view of the valley below
and the Catherine falls in the valley below. From here congruence of Coonoor and Kotogiri
streams is also visible.
Kalhatti Falls is mesmerizing place to visit. The place has a cold and quite environment. The
sound of falling water and birds amidst this silence does not disturb the mood but in fact
enhances it. The place is surrounded by lush green hills and is a spot of which elephants are
Emerald Lake is situated around 20 kms away from the city of Ooty. The lake is situated in the
vicinity of the Silent Valley National Park. It is among few south Indian places which are still
untouched by human chaos.
Doddabetta Peak is at an altitude of 2623m, is the highest point of the Nilgiri Hills. The name
also means Big Hill. The view from here is breath taking. You can see lush green mountains in all
around you and hear birds chirping. A scene usually imagined in movies comes to life here. The
place is in between the Two Ghats – Eastern and Western, lining the coasts of India.
Rose Garden, Thread Garden, Tiger Hill, Kamraj Sagar Lake, Annamalai Fort etc are among the
other places to visit in and around Ooty.
What to do
Trekking is one of the popular activities in Ooty. Ooty provides good terrain and trails for
Camping in these virgin areas is another popular activity.
How to reach
Coimbatore is the nearest airport to Ooty. It is around 100 kms away from Ooty. There are
regular flights to Coimbatore via Bangalore, Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai etc. from Coimbatore
you can take a taxi or a bus to Ooty.
The nearest railway station to Ooty is Coimbatore and Tirrupur. There re regular trains her from
major cities of India. From here Ooty can be reached by Toy train. The Nilgiri Mountain Express
connects the places on the Nilgiri Range. There are regular nightly trains to Ooty from
Coimbatore, Coonoor etc.
Bus and taxi services from cities and towns around are available to Ooty. The scenic beauty of
the journey is breathtaking. It takes usual than expected because it’s a hilly region but that
extra time is worth the scenery.