A famous hill station in Tamil Nadu, Ooty is also called Udhagai. Located in the Nilgiris area, this misty place offers many delights to a tourist. The picturesque settings are a favored for many film production scenes. Take pleasure in the many eucalyptus trees, verdant landscapes, vibrant gardens, pristine lakes, cascading waterfall and a lot more.
We list the finest places to visit in Ooty :
The largest of its type in the country, the Rose Garden is a sprawling one located at an altitude exceeding 2000 metres. Situated in the gradients of the Elk Hill, it is spread over 4 hectares. Managed by the Tamil Nadu Horticultural Department, this garden is the evidence of Ooty's unique climatic disposition.
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For, the destination provides the perfect weather in which these types of flowering plants thrive. The climate allows this region to have an extended flowering season that is the longest in the country. The low temperature variation and optimum amount of rainfall are the other contributing factors.
What appears as a slice of heaven on Earth, this is one of the most romantic destinations in the country. This place is visited by thousands of people every year. There are more than 20,000 varieties of roses in here. You can watch these beautiful flowers from the observation deck here called the Nila Maadam. The Rose Garden has received accolades from horticultural departments from around the world. It is the recipient of the prestigious Garden of Excellence Award.
Botanical Garden or the Government Botanical Gardens is a highly frequented amongst places to visit in Ooty. It is segregated into different sections. Spread over an area of 22 hectares, the garden is located on the sloping gradients of the Doddabetta Peak. The landscape of this region is a type of terraced layout that is enchanting to view. The garden increases in height to an altitude in excess of 2000 metres. Given that the climatic conditions here are temperate, this region is host to hundreds of visitors every day.
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In here you can find over 1000 species of plants, herbs and trees. Some are exotic and some are indigenous varieties. A fossilized tree trunk is placed at the centre of the Botanical Garden. It is believed that the age of this tree trunk exceeds 20 million years. There are several lawns here with flowering plants, ponds and such naturalistic delights. The garden is beset with the Kikiyu grass variety that is known for its sprightly posture and lends aesthetic value to the already picturesque surroundings.
You can visit the conservatory and nursery sections to view exotic fauna. For all you know, the botanical garden will leave you inspired to set up one of your own in your backyard.
Kamaraj Sagar Dam
Located in the Nilgiris district of Tamil Nadu, this dam provides fishing and educational activities for tourists out of all Ooty places to visit. Alternatively called the Sandynallah Reservoir, the Kamaraj Sagar Dam is an idyllic location to enjoy a salubrious picnic. It is also a famous spot for filming activities and visited regularly by study groups.
Close to this water reservoir is the Kamaraj Sagar Lake. This lake has been formed out of the waters in the dam. The whole region reverberates with the essence of unspoiled beauty. A lot of fishing activities happen here.
Located near Kandal, this region has towering trees that are several centuries old. On a visit here you can see not only visitors, but environmentalists as well. Plenty of environment based educationists and students visit periodically to study the changing dynamics of flora and fauna. As part of their study, the students understand the impact of environment change on plants and animals. You can go fishing in the Sandynallah Reservoir. This whole region reverberates with the quintessence of naturalistic beauty.
Located in the Emerald Village, this lake is a scenic paradise amongst places to visit in Ooty. Situated in the Nilgiris district and in a region known as the Silent Valley, the Emerald Lake is 25 km from Ooty. Given the salubrious backdrop, it is a favoured picnic spot with local and international visitors. There are different varieties of fish in these serene waters. If you are into angling, you can catch some varieties. Especially splendid here is the sunrise and sunset. Sitting beside the lake and viewing these naturalistic splendours is a lifetime opportunity.
[Among many marvels we see in our lives, a beautiful sunrise or sunset is the most exotic, Experience it with one morning in sunrise valley]
There is enough bird population to keep you interested. This region and the regions surrounding the lake are natural habitats of numerous birds belonging to various species. You can also see migratory birds in this region. If you can take an ornithologist with you, you are better explained on the ways of these beautiful birds.
There are resorts in and around this lake. The Red Hill Nature Resort is the most popular one given that it has been here for a long time. Been here since the 1800s, the resort is located in picturesque settings such as tea plantations.
Photo Credit : Sandip Bhattacharya
The Doddabetta Tea Factory is located in Ooty and covers a region of more than an acre. It is located at an elevation of more than 1800 metres. Lying amidst Nilgiri’s verdant blue hills region, the tea factory is a nature lover’s favourite abode. The annual production capacity of this factory is in excess of 360 tons.
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Once at the tea factory, you can visit the tea museum. On display are various artifacts and expositions of interest to the tea loving public amongst Ooty places to visit. Right from the inception to the current operations of this factory, numerous pictorial chronological references have been made. Over here you understand the different stages of tea production. You can also read about how tea became a popular beverage not only in this country but outside of it as well. Be informed how this drink influenced the social and cultural nuances of everyday living in the lives of millions of people across the world.
A simple beverage such as tea can have such a profound impact on your living. Read and experience more about tea at the Tea Museum located in the vicinity of the Tea Factory.
Mudumalai National Park
This national park is located in the vicinity of three states of India namely Tamil Nadu, Kerala, and Karnataka. Located in the serene greenery of the Nilgiris, Mudumalai National Park is part of the Western Ghats and is one of the top Ooty places to visit. It was a game reserve for the rulers of this region before being converted into a wildlife sanctuary. This national park is considered to be a well-rounded forest with exotic flora and fauna.
Given that this forest is a continuation of the Bandipur Reserve, you can see many wild animals changing territories periodically.
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The terrain here is multi-faceted. There are hills, ravines, swamps, waterfalls and thick foliage. This is the place where you can see the tiger, leopard, langur, macaque, wild boar and muntjac. The forest also has a rich and thriving bird life. It is here that you get to spot the colourful Malabar Trogan. Expert ornithologists take you to the natural habitats of birds and let you view them.
Explore the intriguing forest with a jeep or elephant safaris when on places to visit in Ooty. You are accompanied by trained safari experts and all safety precautions are taken for the trip into the jungle.
Upper Bhavani Lake
Located 10 km from the Korakundah town, Upper Bhavani Lake is one of the picturesque lakes in Ooty. The visit here is quite a riveting one. The route to the pristine water body is full of shola trees and the entire area is abuzz with wildlife activity. It is common to see tourists going on trekking expeditions from Bangithapal all the way to the Silent Valley. Along the way they pass through Sispara.
You need to get permission from the forest department to explore this region by foot. As this is a wildlife region, one should be careful as well by staying in groups. The dam of this lake is a huge and sprawling structure and is the main water source for the surrounding regions. You can also trek up to the Mukurthi forest from here. Located 60 km from Ooty, the lake is surrounded by thick forest. In these forests you can spot plenty of sambhar, leopards and jungle cats. You could be lucky to spot a tiger occasionally. The Upper Bhavani Lake is for the serious adventure lovers.
Pykara Lake and Pykara Falls
The Pykara Lake is located on the highway connecting Mysore and Ooty. It is a picturesque lake and the region surrounding it is home to exotic bird species. There are numerous trekking trails around this region as well. These regions are popular getaway places for people looking for an ideal vacation or picnic spot.
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You can enjoy generous rounds of boating on this lake. Boating is a blissful activity here and you will never tire of it. It is an excellent natural spot untouched by the rapid urbanization of a world that lies beyond it. There are lush green valleys that surround this lake. Free from pollution and interferences, enjoy a beautiful time here.
The Pykara Falls is created by the Pykara River. The river flows through a series of waterfalls, so essentially this waterfall is a multi-tiered one. The final descent of the river into two separate splashes with heights of 55 and 61 metres respectively form the waterfalls. The Pykara Falls is known as one of the best movie locations. Umpteen Tamil movies have been shot here. So it would not be a surprise if you see a movie being shot at this location when you visit this place.
Photo Credit : Keshav Mukund Kandhadai
Located in the Nilgiris region, this mountain is the highest in Tamil Nadu and is surrounded by a verdant jungle. This region comes under reserved forest areas hosting many wild animals that have made this forest their home. Located 9 km from Ooty, the Doddabetta Peak is a popular tourist attraction. It is also a trekker and mountain climber’s favourite haunt. Atop the peak you get a commanding view of the Chamundi Hills in addition to a panoramic view of the entire region.
In Kannada, Doddabetta means large mountain. The summit of this peak is remarkable and is shaped as a flattened curve. The surrounding area is known for its exotic flora and fauna. The slopes of this mountain are covered with Shola trees. Atop the mountain is located an observatory where many telescopes are placed. Available to the public, you can view the entire region through this telescope. Get a panoramic and close-up view of different parts of your surroundings.
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Your visit to this peak will be an engaging one amongst places to see in Ooty. The mountain is beautiful and there are plenty of places to visit around this mountain. You can go on trekking trails here or camp atop the mountain for some time.
Photo Credit : Mikko Koponen
Also called the Tribal Research Centre, this museum houses artifacts pertaining to the history of tribal habitation which is one of the places to see in Ooty. Located in M Paladin, it stands amidst 25 acres of exclusive land. This centre is only 10 km from Ooty town.
The museum is a separate section of the tribal research centre. The expositions here depict the various tribal movements that happened over centuries in the state of Tamil Nadu. You can see how tribals have evolved over centuries. This information is exhibited in the form of cultural changes that happened over this period of time.
In here are some rare photographs of tribals in the state and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Apart from the museum, the tribal research centre also has various facilities to provide you an engaging and informative experience. The main objectives of this research centre are the promotion of tribals in order to help them survive the rapid strides of urbanization. The research centre also seeks to educate tribals of modern ways of living that are sustainable for their race. It tries to empowering them with education whilst helping them not to lose their cultural traits and charms. This research centre is indeed a noble initiative for these lost people.
Mukurthi National Park
This forest is located in the Nilgiris district of Tamil Nadu. Visitors come to this place mainly to see the Nilgiri Tahr that is found in abundance here. A fascinating attribute of the Mukurthi National Park is its resemblance to the flora and fauna found in the Himalayan regions. The vegetation here is typical of high altitude areas. There are grassy plains and rocky surfaces interspersed with each other.
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Valleys abound with exquisite shoals dotting the landscape. Zealously protected, this national park is a protected area and a national treasure out of the numerous places to see in Ooty.
Located on the edge of Ooty, this deer park is home to different species of deer. Given the high altitude of this park, it is considered to be one of the highest zoos in the country. The park is a beautiful naturalistic place and you can see various study groups spending weeks here observing these beautiful animals. Started in the year 1986, the park is spread across an area of 22 acres. Only 6 acres are available to the public for sightseeing purposes. It is managed by the Tamil Nadu Forest Department.
The Deer Park is a unique place. There are not many places in the world where a place is reserved exclusively for deer. This is one such unique place that lets you experience one of the gracious and magnificent animals on Earth. Apart from deer, this park is also home to various species of fauna. Along with Sambhars and Chithals you can also see rabbits and hares living in harmony amongst deer. Well-maintained and clean, the place will leave you with pleasant memories. It is open throughout the year.
Nilgiri Mountain Railway
This railway line was built by the British during the early part of the 19th century. Originally used by Madras Railway, it is often called the Queen of Railway Stations. Located at an elevation of more than 2000 feet, this railway line is considered by many people as a marvellous feat of engineering. The train is a charming locomotive with wooden coaches draped in exotic unconventional colours.
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Given that it plies at a high altitude it is a slow moving one. The average speed of this train is only 10 km per hour. This speed makes this train the slowest in the country.
But the scenes that you see outside of the train window are truly stunning amongst places to visit in Ooty. The railway line takes you through different terrains.
Ooty Golf course
The Ooty golf course on the Wenlock Downs is like and unlike any other golf course. It is situated on the slope of a mountain and located 7000 feet above sea level. This is an eighteen-hole golf course with many changes in elevation. It is recommended that you play only nine holes as the rest could prove to be an arduous task. This place is well-equipped with all international class amenities. There are plenty of resorts around to provide you a comfortable stay.
The verdant surroundings and mountain slope make for a unique experience. This golf course can easily classify as amongst the beautiful and picturesque ones around the world. Whether you play for pleasure or for competition, it is a surreal experience.
Honey & Bee Museum
Photo Credit : Serge Melki
The Honey & Bee Museum provides you information on these busy creatures. The focus of this centre is education and entertainment. When you visit this place you are informed on how indigenous bees are reared by the tribals. This museum is the only one amongst places to visit in Ooty which lays impetus on traditional ways to harvest bees. There are demonstration units lined here that allow you to watch bees from a close but safe distance.