This beautiful hill station situated in the Western ghats in Tamil Nadu is one of the main tourist spots frequented by “OOTY”, the region was given several other names such as Wotokymund and Ootacamund, which was later shortened to as Ooty. Ooty is a beautiful place surrounded by mountains situated in the Nilgiri Hills, which means the Blue Mountains are named after the flower Kurinji, those blossoms once every twelve years.
How To Reach Ooty?
The Coimbatore International Airport is the nearest airport to Ooty, which is 88Km away. The nearest Railway Station to Ooty is the Mettupalayam Railway Station, which is 40Km away from Ooty. There are Tamil Nadu Road transports as well as the private buses available for bus routes to Ooty. Otherwise, the car is a major option to reach out to the place.
From Bangalore to Ooty
The distance between Ooty and Bangalore is 270Km. There are direct buses between Bangalore and Ooty, which would take around 7 hours to reach. There are no direct trains available between Bangalore and Ooty. There is a train available from Bangalore to Mysore and one can take a bus from Mysore to Ooty. It would also make a scenic trip if you plan a bike ride to Ooty from Bangalore.
From Mumbai to Ooty
The distance between Mumbai and Ooty is 1195Km which would take a journey of almost 21 hours to reach Ooty.
Flights are available from Mumbai to Coimbatore Airport, and from there one can take a taxi or a bus. It is always advisable to take a flight or train to Bangalore from Mumbai and then take a bus from Bangalore.
From Hyderabad to Ooty
The distance between Hyderabad to Ooty is 850Km, which would take almost 15 hours to reach Ooty via road.
There are direct flights from Hyderabad to Coimbatore.
Things to do in Ooty
Any individual who visits this place must make sure that they do not miss the opportunity to visit the large tea and coffee plantations. The limitless slopes are covered with tea plants.
The Nilgiri Library
The Nilgiri Library was built in the year 1867 and is over 148 years old. It houses more than 40,000 books, even some rare journals dating back to the 1600s. The library operates in a majestic colonial-style building shaded by trees and hence adds to the beauty of the place. Even though it is not a frequently visited place by tourists it’s certainly on the list of things to do in Ooty for book lovers. The unique treasures in the library include manuscripts, first editions, rare collections of colonial journals, etc not just in English but in French and Roman as well. The library also has a16th century Greek Bible, early volumes of the c Punch magazine, and an exclusive recording of the World Wars. The institution has withstood the test of time and still stands as a cherished spot for book lovers.
The Vegetable Farms
The place is well known for its orchards and vegetable farms. It is one of the main horticulture hubs of South India. The cultivation in the region includes various fruits like apple, mangosteen, orange, passion fruit, pear, rambutan, peach, strawberry, etc., and vegetables like cabbages, potatoes carrots, Brussels sprouts, French beans, lettuces, and other greens. Taking home farm-fresh vegetables from the hills is what most tourists from nearby places do during their visit. Many producers also sell their products online to customers. The Ooty vegetable market is one of the busiest spots in the town and is renowned for its fresh vegetables and fruits. Apart from regular farms, there are quite a several organic farms in the region that sell farm-fresh organic products.
What are the best places to visit in Ooty?
Ooty Botanical Garden
Spread across an area of 22 hectares the garden is located in the lower Doddabetta peak in Udhagamandalam. It ascends the peak from a height of 2250 to 2500 meters above sea level. Officially known as the Government Botanical Garden, it has a terraced layout and is maintained by the Tamil Nadu Horticulture Department. It was laid out in 1848 and almost took 10 years to build.
The garden has many attractions including a 20 million+ years old fossil tree trunk bought from the National Fossil Park, in Tamil Nadu by the Geological Survey of India. The place houses over a thousand species of plants including medicinal plants, ferns, water plants, flowering plants like Polyanthus, hybrid tea roses, floribunda, etc., and trees and is divided into six sections.
Ooty Rose Garden
Officially known as the Government Rose Garden, the place is situated on the slopes of Elk Hill in Vijayanagaram. At an altitude of 2200 meters, a spot is a perfect place for the cultivation of roses. It is one of the largest rose gardens in the country with five terrace spaces growing lots of varieties of roses. The garden is at its best during the period from March to June as the flowers will be in full bloom and it is the best time to visit the place. Also, the Horticulture Department of Tamil Nadu, which maintains the garden holds the Ooty flower show every year in the place during May. The best time to visit the beautiful garden is between March and June as the flowers are in full bloom during this time. The Ooty Flower Show is usually held in May.
With an altitude of 2,637 meters, Doddabetta is the highest Peak in the Nilgiri Range. Located at a distance of 10 km from Ooty, it is the fourth highest peak in South India. The peak is a heaven of hikers with its 3km long rugged, grassy trekking trail. At the top of the hill, there is a telescopic house that helps the visitors have a good view of the Sky as well as the Bandipur National park. The nearest railway station to the peak is the Ketty Railway station.
Mudumalai National Park is a wildlife sanctuary and tiger reserve in the Nilgiri District, at a distance of 150 kilometers from Coimbatore. It was established in 1940. Covering a total area of 321 km2, it is the second oldest national park in India. The forest safari can be availed in the morning crossing the roads with the dangerous animals around the sides into the deeper sides of the forest.
Part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, the park has five peaks – Masinagudi, Thepakadu, Mudumalai, Kargudi, and Nellakotta and is home to several endangered species like Indian elephant, Bengal tiger, gaur, and Indian leopard.
A trip to Ooty will be as fulfilling as the hill station is surrounded by and has everything a tourist needs. A calm boat ride on the Lake, trekking on Doddabetta Peak, taking a scenic ride on the Nilgiri Mountain Railway, and beholding the beauty of the Government Botanical Garden, the things to do in Ooty are endless. Apart from these, there are many other places to visit in Ooty, including Droog, Kamraj Sagar Dam, Mariamman Temple, Tribal Museum St. Stephen’s Church, Stone House, and Fort Pykara Falls.