Nilgiri is famous for its fascinating beauty and natural charming setting. Nilgiri offers one of the most breathtaking beauty with its location at the junction of two ghat ranges of the Shayadri Hills. The beautiful scenery comprises of steep hills, sound of numerous rivers and rivulets flowing in all directions and a few waterfalls.
Location of Nilgiri Hills
Nilgiri or ‘Blue Mountains’ form the present district of Nilgiri in Tamil Nadu. The height of the hills varies from 2,280m to 2,290 m. The highest peak is Doddabetta at a height of 2,623 metres. It is surrounded by Kerala on west, Mysore on the north and Coimbatore on the east and south.
What to see in Nilgiri Hills?
Nilgiris is a trekker’s paradise. There are three highly popular hill stations in Nilgiri – Ooty, Kotagiri and Coonoor. They offer the perfect base for trekking perfect base for trekking into the mountains where you can come across shoal forests, orange groves, tea estates, coffee plantations and bubbling brooks. Interesting treks include Ooty-Mukurthi Lake Trek, Porthimund-Mukurthi Lake and Coonoor-Law’s Falls-The Droog Trek.You can also opt for day hiles around Kotagiri like the Kotagori-Kodanand trek which takes about 6-8 hours at a distance of 20km. Another important hike which is at the easy level is Kotagiri-St Catherine Falls which covers a distance of 8kms and takes about 2-3 hours to complete it.
Some of the major attractions of Nilgiri Hills are:
Botanical Gardens: Spread over 55 acres, the Botanical Garden was laid out in 1847 by the Marquis of Tweedale. The well maintained lush green lawns hosts a 20 million year old fossilized tree, an Italian-style garden bordering a clear pool, flowering bushes and plants in myriad hues in exotic colours, orchids and ferns. It also has the rare species- the cork tree, the paper bark tree and the monkey puzzle tree. A Summer Festival is held every year in May with a grand flower show.
Ooty Lake: Ooty lake is another major attraction in Ooty. The artificial lake of 21/2-km long was constructed by John Sullivan, the first Collector and virtual founder of Ooty
Doddabetta Peak: The Doddabetta Peak, the highest point in the district is at a height of 2,623 meters. It is a great vantage point from where you can get a grand view of Ooty and click wonderful pictures of the valley below. You can go for boating or for fishing with prior permission from the authorities. Accomodation options in Nilgiri Hills.
You can get hotels and guest houses in Ooty and Coonoor that will suit your budget. You can get both luxury as well as economy class hotels. It is best to book in advance if you are visiting Nilgiri Hills in the summer months.
Best season to visit Nilgiri Hills
The best time fo visit Nilgiri Hills is during Summers (May-June)
How to reach Nilgiri Hills
By Air: The nearest airport is Coimbatore, 105km from Ooty.
By Rail: The nearest narrow gauge station is Ooty which is connected with Mettupalayam and Coonoor in a toy train.
By Road: Ooty in Nilgiri Hills is connected with national highways with major towns and cities. Buses ply regularly to and from Coimbatore, Trichy, Bangalore, Madurai, Kanyakumari, Mysore, Palghat, Calicut, Tirupati and other important destinations in South India.