It is a popular belief that Traveling is the best form of recreational activity but it is not always true. Let me explain, travelling to a popular destination during the tourist season can really take away a lot from the experience leaving more of rush and hustle behind and wasn’t these were the main things you try to escape from when you travel. So, this is how travel is not always the best recreational activity. Now, it might sound crazy but I hope atleast some of you would have pointed out that lack of precision in my claim as it was not totally correct. A more precise version of my statement would tat Travelling to some of the popular destinations is
not always the best way to escape from hustle and rush. So, the problem has been discussed but nothing about the solution have been discussed yet. Is there any
Solution to this problem? A simple and short answer is Yes. And somehow the answer is hidden inside the problem statement itself. The problem is that travelling to a
popular destination can be a hustle in season, So, why not travel to an offbeat place where you will find less tourist and more peace and calm. Moreover, the
experience is more or less similar or might be even better than a popular destination.
For those of you who are scratching their heads and thinking what actually are
offbeat places, then let me tell you an offbeat place is the one which receives very less tourists or a less popular travel destination. Well, luckily today we are
going to discuss about one such offbeat location which is extremely beautiful and goes by the name of Ooty. It is a beautiful hill station located in southern part of
India and although it is quite famous but you will not find as many tourist as you will find in places like Manali, Shimla or Goa. We will be going to discuss about ooty tour packages, ooty tourism, it’s cuisines and food culture with additional relevant information like the best time to visit ooty and the best places to visit in ooty. So without any further ado let us get started.
Know about Ooty
Situated in the state of Tamil Nadu, Ooty stands approximately 7300 feet above sea level. Being a part of Niligiris mountain range, the landscape of the place is
covered with thick vegetation, small rolling hills, plateaus, tea gardens and eucalyptus trees.
The climate of this town serves a major role in attracting tourists. With subtropical highland climate, ooty usually has mild conditions throughout the year. During Summers, the temperature remains in the range of 15oC-20oC which is the perfect temperature not too hot and not too cold. And I am quite sure that you will also experience similar weather during any part of summer because the highest temperature that has been recorded here is 25oC. Even during the winters, it gets only upto 5oC-12oC. The monsoons are cold, windy and humid. If you just want to chill in a perfect weather not doing anything but just admiring the beauty of nature, then you should definitely checkout more about ooty holiday packages.
How to Reach here?
Reaching Ooty is possible via all 3 modes of transport i.e. Train, Road and Plane. Detailed connectivity information is given below separately under each category:
Around 3.5 hours’ road drive away, Coimbatore Airport is the closest to Ooty. The list of flights that fly into Coimbatore airport is long and include places like Sharjah, Singapore, Colombo and several cities of India.
Another airport is the Mysore Airport which is 4 hours’ drive away from Ooty. But, in our opinion, you will get better connectivity with the former option.
By Road- Bus
Plenty of Bus services are available from Coimbatore that drives towards ooty and are a great alternate to Trains. Buses are a nice way to travel as you get best of both the train and the car. “new bus station” in Coimbatore has great bus service and route taken by most of the buses to Ooty is via Mettupalayam and reaches ooty in around 3.5 hours.
By Road- Car
The common road taken to reach Ooty is the Coimbatore-Mettupalayam-Coonoor-Ooty road because it is well maintained. There other road routes also available and no matter which route you choose, the journey will be equally equipped with the scenic views as you will go through vast and beautiful Tea and coffee plantations. All the roads are tolled with minimal toll prices. If you are from South India itself, then a road trip is one of the key ingredient of ooty holiday package.
The Nilgiri mountain Rail Network is laid out and is well connected to neighboring railway stations. For example, The Nilgiri express travels on the route between Chennai to Mettupakayam, The Nilgiri Mountain railway is a small steam engine train starts from Mettupalayam and has been running since late 1800s. The route of this steam engine is filled with picturesque views that are definite to leave you awestruck and the pace of travel will let you take all of the beauty of the views.
Connectivity and basic facilities
Out of three places in Niligiris where 3G internet connectivity is available, ooty is one of the name. BSNL, Airtel and Idea are the vendors that are providing the 3G connectivity in this place. Moreover, Ooty is the only place in Nilgiris where landline facility is available. In the 50km range, there is no other place with landline connectivity.
Network connectivity is one thing and another thing which is equally important is the availability of ATMs and you will not be disappointed here too. There a lot of cash withdrawal machines throughout the town. One quick tip, get your cash withdrawal done early in the day as many ATMs at prime location runs out of cash by the afternoon on weekend.
Other basic facilities like clean drinking water and electricity are not a cause of any problem for tourists.
How to get around the city?
After you have arrived at this beautiful destination, then getting around is not a problem as cabs, autos and taxis are available easily. Even some ooty tour packages include conducted sightseeing through private town bus operators. Even the local bus network is well maintained.
Beware of the traps that the auto and cab drivers will throw at you and will try to persuade you to visit a remotely located high priced restaurant. In order to get away with these traps, be ready to play your bargain game right and no matter what do not go for the recommendations these drivers will give you.
Best places to visit in Ooty
Ooty is full of great peaceful and calm places to visit and it would take more than a full article to write about each of them and therefore we’re only going to mention the names of some of those beautiful places that you definitely include in your ooty tour package.
● Avalanche Biosphere Reserve
● Doddabetta Tea Park
● Ooty Rose Garden
● Sims Park
● Ooty Lake
● Wax World
● The Tea Factory
● Dolphin’s Nose
● Pine Forest
● 9th mile shooting point
● Echo Rock
● Markets for buying Souvenirs
As we mentioned above, Nilgiris and Ooty are well equipped with large tea and coffee plantations and therefore the souvenirs that most people take away from here are related to this business in one way or the another. Other popular items include eucalyptus oil, spices, chocolates and gourmet cheese. Below we have mentioned the name of few shops where you can find some authentic products:
● Green Shop: Famous for bee wax, bee honey, handicrafts, gourmet cheeses like haloumi, cheddar, Monterey jack.
● Taj Bakers: For traditionally made biscuits from ooty.
● C-Store: Popular for homemade chocolates, herbal oils, tea and honey.
One safety tip, if you are on a budget trip with one of the cheapest ooty tour package, then you will definitely go for local markets and local stores for souvenirs. In this, beware of the product’s authenticity.
Majorly, the Ooty cuisine consists of south Indian dishes and therefore you will come across a lot of great south Indian restaurant during your trip. One can even found Chinese, western and North Indian cuisine. Below we have mentioned the name of some restaurants that you should checkout in order to add some great memories to your best tour package for ooty.
● Hotel Shri Velmurugan
● Modern Stores
● Side walk Café
On the drinks side of your meal, a variety of tea and coffees can be enjoyed at the below mentioned places:
● Modern Stores
● Hotel Darsahan
Where to Stay?
There is a plenty of options available for stay in ooty and probably your ooty tour package will include stay at a nice place. Below we have mentioned the names of some nice places to stay:
● Hotel Mayura Sudarshan
● Reflections Guest House
● Sunshine Inn
● Hotel Savoy
● Hotel Maneck
As we have mentioned before, Ooty is a perfect destination for you if all want to enjoy is the perfect weather and beautiful views. A 3-4-day trip equipped with great food and sightseeing will easily make up for the best tour package for ooty. No matter if you are a lonely backpacker or a family traveler, we are quite sure that either way your trip to Ooty will leave you with some great cherishable memories.