The Nilgiri Hills, also known as the Blue Mountains, shelter within their high peaks and soaring cliffs a cluster of hill stations, the most famous of which is Ooty (the proper name is Udagamandalam, so it’s easy to see why a shorter version is popular!) with Coonoor and Kotagirinearby. These stations are situated at the point where the eastern and western ghats merge.
Ooty City Guide
This was the quintessential hill station escape for the British imperialists- the heat on the plains of Tamil Nadu is intense for many months a year, and in the decades before air-conditioning (and even electricity), heading for the hills definitely made sense.
The Nilgiri Mountain Railway, which is part of a series of similar lines which traverse areas of extremely high gradients to reach several hill stations around the country, has UNESCO World Heritage listing. A journey on the railway, whether the popular top section from Coonoor up to Ooty or the whole line from Mettupalayam in the plains (which takes 6 hours) is quite unforgettable.
Whether you drive into or out of Ooty, the roads around this area are pretty spectacular with a series of dramatic hairpin bends and some stunning views. The hills are densely forested, adding to the beauty of the scene.
Ooty and the surrounding areas are well known for their expansive tea estates, and there are several opportunities to stay in a restored bungalow or other historic building on one or another estate.Aside from the botanical gardens, ornamental lake and a number of scenic view-points, there is a picturesque golf course at Wellington, and lots of great hiking spots in the area.
With a surprising cold climate during December to February, if you are coming at this time we will definitely ensure you stay somewhere with adequate heating! During the rest of the year, the climate in Ooty and its neighbouring hill stations is generally pleasant. The nearest airport is Coimbatore which is at a distance of 100kms. Come and enjoy the beauty of mother nature in the Queen of Hills.
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