Spread over three states of Karnataka, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the resplendent Nilgiris forms the major tourist attraction. The contrasting ecosystems and profuseness of biodiversity and blue haze that envelops the region are the flagship features of this region. The region comprises area of pristine vegetation ranging from dry scrub to evergreen forests and swamps thus contributing to highest biodiversity. Comprising a chain of national parks and sanctuaries, the region has been designated as the biosphere reserve by UNESCO. Forming a ring around Nilgiri Plateau, sprawling forests and lush green meadows present a spectacular sight. The mesmerizing landscape dotted by hills and unique wildlife attracts hordes of tourists. The area is a home to several hill stations of which Ooty is widely known. Known as the ‘Queen of Hill Stations,’ Ooty is famous for Government Botanical Garden which is a reservoir of unique species. The area is also a home to Doddabetta, one of the highest peaks of the region. Set amidst sholas and located at the junction of Eastern and Western Ghats, the peak offers panoramic views of Nature. Another major tourist attraction is Pykara which boasts of pristine vegetation, grassy meadows, undisturbed Toda settlements and profuseness of wildlife. And how can one forget a ride in Ooty Mountain Train! The route from Coonoor to Mettupalayam is sure to be traversed for myriad landscape it offers. The verdant greenery makes you oblivious of the maddening crowd and you will cherish the journey to the fullest. Away from the humdrum of city life, the Niligiris Region promises you tranquility and a state of bliss. The charming wildlife of the region is sure to fascinate you. The deep-voiced Nilgiri langur with its shiny black body and yellow-brown crown thrives in this region. These langurs of the Nilgiris are often found in the sholas, which are amongst their favourite haunts. It is in the sholas that you can also see the lion-tailed macaque. The shy, elusive and hard-to-spot Nilgiri tahr also has its home in these Nilgiris. This animal has pride of place in being the only wild goat to inhabit any region south of the Himalayas. It has a short coat, dark yellow brown in color, and prefers to inhabit craggy regions above forest level. The Nilgiris are home to a great variety of carnivorous animals like tigers, panthers, jackals and hyenas. Elephants, wildcats, civet cats, giant squirrels and mongoose are also part of Nilgiri fauna. The Nilgiri marten, nightjar, hill mynah, and golden oriole are some of the region’s avian species. In short, the fascinating landscape and diverse wildlife at Ooty and Niligiris promise you a surreal experience for a lifetime.
When to go
The best season to visit Nilgiris is the winter season. At around 20°C, the temperature is suitable for sightseeing and the place looks heavenly. This is the time when the tourists flock the place in large numbers.