KODAIKANAL – Land of Forests!!

About Kodaikanal: Kodaikanal is a city in the hills of the Dindigul district in the state of Tamil Nadu. The town of Kodaikanal sits Palani Hills at 2,133 metres (6,998 ft), between the Parappar and Gundar Valleys. These hills form the eastward spur of the Western Ghats on the Western side of South India. Kodaikanal is known for its rich flora. Of the big trees, cypress, eucalyptus and acacia are the dominant varieties. Pear trees are numerous and the fruits are of high quality. Kodaikanal has a monsoon-influenced climate. The temperatures are cool throughout the year due to the high elevation of the city.

Places of Interest: Numerous number of travel packages are available with Hotels there:
Tour 1 (Valley Tour)
– Coaker’s Walk
– Green valley View
– Golf Corse
– Pillar Rocks
– Devils Kitchen (Guna Caves)
– Pine Forest
– Moier Point
– Pambar Falls
– Upper Lake View
– Lake or City Drop
This package costs Rs: 120/- per head. Timing is 9:30 am to 2:00 pm.

Tour 2 (Park Tour)
– Kodai City View
– Kurinji Andavar Temple
– Palani View
– Chettiar Park
– Jain Temple
– Brayant Park
– Lake or City Drop
This package costs Rs: 85/- per head. Timing is 2:30 pm to 4:30 pm.

Tour 3 (Picnic Tour with Trekking)
– Bear Shola Falls
– La Saleth Church
– 500 years Old Tree
– Dolphin Nose
– Mountain Beauty
– Vattakanal Falls
– Fairy Falls
– Lake or City Drop
This package costs Rs: 175/- per head and booking a car will cost Rs: 950/- . Timing is 9:30 am to 4:30 pm.

Tour 4 (Picnic Tour with Wild Ways)
– Silent Vally (Echo Point)
– Fire Tower
– Caps Fly Valley
– Berijam Lake View
– Medicine Forest
– Berijam Lake
– Lake or City Drop
This package costs Rs: 200/- per head and booking a car will cost Rs: 1200/- . Timing is 9:30 am to 4:30 pm. For this particular package you need to have special permission from forest department of Kodaikanal.

Tour 5 (Picnic Tour with Village)
– Observatory Pine Forest (Shooting Point)
– Gundar Falls
– Mahalakhsmi Temple
– Poombarai Village View
– Mannavanur Lake View
– Mannavanur Lake
– Vattakanal Falls
– Lake or City Drop
This package costs Rs: 200/- per head and booking a car costs approximately Rs: 1200/- . Timing is 9:30 am to 4:30 pm.
All the packages are arranged by the hotel if need be.

Duration of Trip: It was 2N3D trip from Coimbatore. Started in afternoon from Coimbatore on Day 1 and returned back in night on Day 3 to Coimbatore. The cab was hired from Coimbatore and it cost a total of INR 10800/- shared by 5 persons.

Day 1: Started from Coimbatore in afternoon around 12pm and reached Kodaikanal by 5pm. On the way we went to Silver Cascade waterfalls. Munched sweet corn and home made chocolates here and headed for hotel.

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Silver Cascade Waterfall

Checked-in at Hotel RR Residency. Its a decent budget accomodation in city center, very close to Kodai lake and main market. The view is not good as such from hotel rooms but location is convenient. We reached the hotel, changed and headed to market for shopping and dinner. Kodai is famous for its spices, local herbs, locally made cosmetics, glass made goods, wooden goods and homemade chocolates. We bought a bit of everything ;). Then had dinner at Hotel Astoria Veg (Good pure veg food- mainly south indian cuisine).

Day2: Second day began with breakfast at hotel and then local trip. We covered following places on Day 2:

– Silent Vally (Echo Point)
– Fire Tower
– Caps Fly Valley
– Berijam Lake View
– Medicine Forest
– Berijam Lake
– Coaker’s Walk
– Brayant Park
– Kodai Lake

1. Kodai Lake: The town of Kodaikanal is centered around the sprawling Kodai Lake. If you’re here with family, opt for a relaxing shikaraor pedal boat ride, or go cycling around the lake in the afternoon!.

Kodai Lake
Kodai Lake
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Cycling around Kodai Lake

2. Brayant Park: It is a fantastically maintained botanical garden spread across 20.5 acres (8.3 ha). The Bryant Park is a rainbow of dazzling flowers during the peak season having 325 species of trees, shrubs and cactuses. The major section of Bryant Park is dedicated to nearly 740 varieties of roses. There is a Eucalyptus tree since 1857 and a Bodhi tree which adds a spiritual importance to the Bryant Park.

3. Coaker’s Walk: A kilometre long pathway along the edge of a steep slope, Coaker’s Walk offers breathtaking views of the valley. It opens 7 am onwards, so try and get there early to catch the sunrise or the sunset if late! On a clear day one can view as far as Dolphin’s Nose in the south, the valley of the Pambar River in the southeast, Periyakulam town and even the city of Madurai. There is a telescope house in this place. Ticket for the telescope house is Rs. 20/- per person.
Entry fees for this place is Rs. 10/- per person, normal camera Rs. 50/- and movie camera Rs. 100/-

View from Coaker's Walk!

4. Berijam Forest: We parked our car outside the forest department and toured the forest in the forest department bus. The ticket was INR 100/- per person. The bus took a total of 1.5 to 2 hrs for the tour inside. It stopped at various points inside such as Silent Valley, Berijam Lake etc. The weather was beautiful, full of clouds and mist.

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Berijam Forest
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Berijam Lake

5. Silent Valley: This was the first point inside the berijam forest. It was beautiful with clouds all around! We were amidst the clouds and mist 🙂

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Cloudy Silent Valley

After finishing the day’s trip, we had dinner again at Hotel Astoria Veg, strolled by the lake and went back to hotel for night.

Day 3: Had breakfast at hotel and packed the luggage, checked out from hotel to visit remaining of the places and then left for Coimbatore. Following tour was conducted after checking out from hotel:

– Solar Observatory
– Green valley View
– Golf Corse
– Pillar Rocks
– Devils Kitchen (Guna Caves)
– Pine Forest
– Upper Lake View

1. Solar Observatory: No camera and cell phone was allowed inside. Its a huge beautiful and green area and you have to walk another 1 KM to enter the museum. In the museum there were lots of pictures about sun and other planets. They had a setup through which we could see sun spots in the white board and also visualize the earth speed revolving the sun and the sunlight spectrum. The setup is something like this. There is a huge mirror outside the museum. Which they focus inside a small lens inside the building. Then that light passes through few other powerful lens and falls in the white board in football size and we see the sun spots as dark patches in bright light. Also we get to see the light moving, which is the revolution speed of earth. On the opposite side, a small needle like beam is passed through a prism and you get to see that 7 different beautiful color. Then we went to other rooms and there were lots of magnificent pictures.

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Solar Observatory

2. Green Valley View/Golf Course: Green Valley View, also known as Suicide Point, is near the golf course, has an excellent panoramic view of the plains and a sheer drop of 1,500 meters overlooking the Vaigai Dam to the south. The stairway leading up to it is highly commercialized and lined with rows of shops to tempt tourists.

Green Valley View
Green Valley View
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Golf Course/ Green Valley View

3. Pillar Rock: These are huge masses of stone of 500 feet high – Between and Below them, there are several caves.

Pillar Rock
Pillar Rock

4. Guna Caves: We went to the Guna cave and got us 3 ticket for Rs. 6 and we went in. The gate was about to be closed at 5 PM. This is the place where kamal Hassan has made his movie Guna.

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Guna Cave

5. Pine Forest: The pine plantations in Kodaikanal Pine forest are one among the preserved treasures of Kodaikanal which would mesmerize the tourists by its ambience.

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Pine Forest

6. Upper Lake View: a view point from where you can get the top view of Kodai Lake and a panoramic view of the city. They have a telescope house in that place as well. Ticket for the telescope house is Rs. 20/- per person.

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Upper Lake View

This is all in Kodaikanal that we could cover in the time we had. Nice Hill station and perfect weekend getaway in south! Do buy the local stuff there and enjoy!!

For Customized Holiday packages(domestic or international) please contact goaroundtours@gmail.com 🙂

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