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Trip from Bangalore to Ooty

Trip from Bangalore to Ooty (21st Sep 07- 24th Sep 07).

Since it was a trip planned at the spur of the moment, my husband and I settled for this place. This is because we had already done our ground work for the same. Sep 21st 07 at 10:40 am we left Bangalore enroute to this most looked after journey. We had hired a cab for the same.

The trip within city was not as interesting reason being traffic, thereafter once left the city; we could see patches of greenery quite often. We halted for lunch at Mysore Ramanshree at around 2:45 pm. A famous place though, but not worth the price for the food paid. We moved further towards Ooty after a halt of 45 minutes for lunch, thanks to the sluggish hotel service. We were lucky to enjoy beautiful evening climate while passing across the Bandipur and Mudumalai wildlife sanctuary. However, could catch site of only elephants & deer & monkeys on this way. We reached ooty by 6:30 pm

We had researched a few hotels for accommodation, to name a few, hotel Darshan with lake view at Rs 900 per day. Rates are off peak-season (April-May) and exclude luxury tax. Hotel Khems, Ettines road at 650 per day, Vinayaga Inn etc. However, on checking a few hotels personally we opted for Hotel Khems.
This is a neat older colonial building, which has clean comfortable rooms (around 32) with TV. Impressively they have a good ambience accompanied with good food at reasonable rates. With the kind of hospitality offered, I feel it’s a good bet for your money.

Day 1(22nd Sep 07)
The next morning, we left to Doddabetta Peak, around 13 kms away from Ooty. At a height of 2623 meters above sea level, this is the highest peak of Nilgiris hills and it is the junction of the Western and Eastern Ghats. It was a pleasant drive & once there it was indeed a magnificent view over the valleys. Took some snaps & headed downwards to pykara falls, situated at about 19 kms from ooty.
The roads to this area are horrendous but the scenery along the way, especially the 7th mile & some specific green patches were excellent & worth some time to spend.

You can catch some interesting snaps at http://www.pbase.com/artlessbeauty/image/61471837

We moved from there to Ooty lake. Details- http://www.go2india.in/tamilnadu/ooty-boat.php.
There is a Boat House at the far end of the lake. Right from 8'o clock in the morning to 6'o clock in the evening boats are available for hire at this boat house. We went for boating here & enjoyed the pleasant weather alongwith the still waters.

We spent around an hour there & headed back to botanical garden. This is a beautiful green lawn and there are trees collected from different parts of the world, spread over an area of 22 acre. Finally at about 6:30 pm that’s when the park closes we headed towards the hotel room.

Day 2(23rd Sep 07)

We actually headed to see Dolphin’s nose, but some how missed the road & ended up enroute to kothagiri. Finally we decided to go to Kodanadu's View Point located at a distance of about 18 km from Kotagiri. The journey is so pleasant with good neat roads, accompanied with a mesmerizing view of the surrounding picturesque landscape. The sight is so beautiful that it is sure to remain embedded in some corner of your mind once you have witnessed it. The tea estates cover the slopes of the hills. This was truly a sight that I would personally suggest that one must go to. The long drive & the peace from the routine tourist crowd, imparts an everlasting impression.

On our way back to ooty we visited Sim’s Park.
Situated in Upper Coonoor, Sim's park is spread across 12 hectares on the slopes of a ravine and is a major tourist attraction. Lovely flowers with diverse colors are a treat to the eye and it is rarely that one gets a chance to see so many at the same time. Also here you can catch a sight of all rare trees, a place, well maintained & serene.

On the way back one can also opt for Coonor to ooty Toy train incase you want to take a scenic route via tea estates & valleys back.

This little lazy train provides sceneries along the way) which are a sight to behold indeed. (approximately 1 hour journey starts at 4:30 & reaches ooty at 5:30 pm). Catch some pictures in this travelogue- http://prabhukrish.net/2007/05/28/mettupalayam-to-ooty-toy-train-travelogue/

Alternatively, you can opt for an online booking here to avoid the hassle-
http://www.indiainvites.com/Trains_files/Ooty.htm.

Make sure that you confirm which platform the trains depart from, as this keeps changing.
Unfortunately we missed the train due to this misinformation from the railway staff, despite the booking.

Finally we boarded a bus back from Coonor to Ooty & headed back to our hotel in the late evening. Also not to miss, one can do some tea, home made chocolate & bakery items shopping at charring cross in Ooty which offers good variety. Charring Cross is the focal point on the busy commercial street of Ooty. Here you can take in the smells and sounds of Ooty- the main shopping street and vegetable market are here.

Ooty is definitely for the people who love the mountains, the valleys, the cascades and its pleasant/chilly climate as well. Those green manicured hills are a treat to the eyes.