Ooty, A beautiful place in South India where many tourists visit! My family and I were only there for about a day or two. We wished we could stay there longer as planned but things were simply not aligned for us.
We arrived there from Mysore by car. The car ride was really interesting! We got to pass through the Mudumalai Forests which brings us back to the little zoo excursions we had when we were younger.
1. The Mudumalai Tiger Reserve, Ooty, Tamil Nadu
We got to see the wild animals like Elephants, Monkeys, and Deers! There were so many Deers! The elephants even tried to stick their noses into our car. I was really scared at the point of time and panicked a little.
Picture of the Elephant trying to put its nose into our Car:
If you have the time, you can definitely check out the sights in Mudumalai. There is an elephant camp right in the middle of the forest that you can go explore. Guided sightseeing tours from Ooty is also available!
There is a Border crossing checkpoint in the middle of the forests. When we were heading towards it, there was a long jam as the police was checking on some of the cars. However when we were returning back to Mysore/Bangalore, the road was smooth and there was no jam at all. It really depends on your luck on this! Do also note that if you are heading to Bangalore from Ooty, you need to head back to Mysore first then to Bangalore. There is only one way.
2. Planter’s Paradise Restaurant, Ooty!
When we arrived in Ooty around 3 plus, the driver brought us to this local restaurant called The Planter’s Paradise Restaurant for lunch. It was a good place to dine, extremely touristy and many people. One good thing about this restaurant being touristy would be that it is clean. Food was really good, we ordered some soup, rice and side dishes! There were so many people even though it was 3 pm in the afternoon. You should give it a try if you are in Ooty!
Pictures of the Restaurant:
Pictures of the Food:
3. Shopping at Charring Cross/ Main Bazaar
In the evening, we decided to take a stroll and walk along Charring Cross, near Adam’s Fountain. It was the main City in Ooty with many shops conveniently located alongside of the roads. It had lots of shops and interesting shops.
We actually found a shop in the basement and it was pretty cool! If you need to buy something, go to this Main Bazaar and you are sure to find anything: Hand Made Chocolates, Winter Wear, Food, Tours for Sightseeing, Local Fruits and many more!
Picture of the underground shop and shops along Charring Cross
To note: If you are not used to dust, please bring a mask and protect yourself. I fell Sick instantly in the night with a high fever and a cold because I had sucked in too much dust. Protect yourself and you will enjoy your holidays!
On the very next day, I booked a sightseeing car to bring us around to the different places. I did consider going on our own. However, I felt it was a little difficult and too troublesome. There were many things to do in Ooty and taking a Tuk Tuk around can be very troublesome. Dodabetta Peak, another top sight in Ooty, was about 7km up and going with a Tuk Tuk can be a little difficult.
2 Tour Companies I considered
I was researching online and came across 2 tour companies for sightseeing tours. One was Travel2Ooty and another is DNS Holidays.
I preferred the Otty Tours Company. It was more efficient in confirming our booking and all we did was to pay the driver directly. Tour packages are more expensive but it was less hassle. Travel2Ooty needed a downpayment before confirming the entire tour package. It was not possible for us as we could not do a transfer as we did not have a bank card in India.
Travel2Ooty http://www.travel2ooty.com/ooty-tour-packages.aspx and Ooty Tours http://www.ootytours.in/1-day-ooty-town-tour
The Itinerary: (9am – 5pm) / Tourist Places in Ooty.
- Dodabetta Peak
- Tea & Chocolate Factory
- Government Botanical Gardens & The Tibetan Market
- Ooty Boat House
- Rose Garden
4. Dodabetta Peak, Ooty!
The highest Peak in South India. The experience was amazing. We spent about 45 minutes here snapping pictures, walking around, enjoying the scenery. It had 2 different scenic views: Mountainous and Town-like houses.
Picture of the 2 Different scenic views:
It was interesting to see 2 different sights in 1 place. People were also queueing up for the telescope to see more into the township. The place was fully packed. We didn’t queue for it since it was so crowded.
Picture of people queuing up:
There were so many people. I would advise you to head up earlier than the rest. We were picked up from the hotel at about 0930am. (Driver was late) but going up to Dodabetta Peak was not an issue for us.
However, as we were heading down at about 11 am, there was a long line of cars waiting to go up. It was so crowded and that was definitely a rush period you want to avoid.
Here are some the pictures that we have taken at Dodabetta Peak! It was definitely an amazing time with the family. 🙂 There are a few spots where photographers are readily available for you to get the perfect shot! However, it was definitely not necessary for us. I liked the pictures we take!
5. The Tea and Chocolate Factory
As we head down the hill from Dodabetta’s Peak, there was the famous Tea Factory & the Tea Museum. It was not too far a distance. There were so many people in this vicinity. The entrance tickets include both the Tea & Chocolate Factory! Cameras are charged at an extra cost. Upon entering the Factory, it is an easy tour where you see how tea powder is formed from its origin. The smell of Tea Powder filled the entire factory. If you are a Tea lover, you would definitely love coming to this place!
We had a Free Tea, that was one thing I could remember from our tour!! The tea tasted fine. I preferred the Sweet Milk Tea in Karnataka state actually. This is just me!
Back to the Factory! We saw the entire process of making teas from its beginning stage to its end.
Just after the Tea Factory, there is a guided path to the Chocolate Factory! It was another interesting tour. Chocolates in Ooty were extremely popular!
I remember passing by a shop in Charring Cross and it was filled with people buying Chocolates! Originally, I had no idea what people were buying. I thought they were buying gold. It was stupid of me indeed till I saw the different Chocolate Bars the shopkeeper were handling and packing.
You should buy and try some from the Chocolate Factory if you love Chocolates!
6. The Eagle’s Dare Adventure
Just outside of the Tea and Chocolate Factory is the Eagle’s Dare! It had several fun games such as the zip line, zip swing, wall climbing, sky bridge and many more! There are many different packages that you can choose from when you are there.
We had no idea that this adventure was there if not we would have allocated more time.
If you have the time, I am sure the children would love to play here! Click here to find out more!
7. Government Botanical Gardens
The Botanical garden, a wonderful place for family and friends to just hang out and relax in Ooty. There are many different gardens and Nurseries to explore in here.
What we enjoyed doing most was to just sit in the middle of the field, enjoy the breeze, fresh air and the happy people around us! We spent a lot of time snapping pictures as well. We didn’t walk much as I was really tired and sick on this day but the wind and the sun was good for me!
8. The Tibetan Market
Outside the Botanical Garden is the Tibetan Market! It is selling a whole range of winter clothing, Scarfs, Bags, Toys and much more stuff. We didn’t spend a long time here since most of the shops sell the exact same thing. Some Shops sell woven baskets and some specialties here.
9. Ooty Boat House
We paid an Entry fee into Lake Ooty. It wasn’t that expensive of about Rs 15/- Adult, Rs 10/- for Kids. If you have a camera, you would have to pay a fee of Rs 50/- for Still Camera and Rs 145/- for Video Camera.
After you have entered into Lake Ooty’s Boathouse, you will see a whole lot of people queueing at the front at one small booth. They are actually buying tickets to experience the different boat rides.
This was a fun place to be in! It was like a mini fun fair with Nature Views! There were so many things that you can do right here:
- Pedal Boats
- Motor Boats
- Row Boat
- Mini Train for Kids
- 7D cinema
- Dashing Car, Break Dance, and Columbus
- Massage Chair
•Pedal boat 2 seater Fees Rs 170/- Deposit Rs 170/-, Total = Rs 240/-
• Pedal boat 4 seater Fees Rs 260/- Deposit Rs 260/-, Total = Rs 520/-
• Motorboats8 seater Fees Rs 520/- Driver Charge Rs 40/-, Total = Rs 560/-
• Motorboats 10 seater Fees Rs 640/- Driver Charge Rs 40/-, Total = Rs 680/-
• Motorboats 15 seater Fees Rs 950/- Driver Charge Rs 40/-, Total = Rs 990/-
• Rowboat 3+1 seater boat Fees Rs 205/- Driver Charge Rs 45/- Deposit Rs 250/-, Total = Rs 500/-
• Rowboat 5+1 seater boat Fees Rs 245/- Driver Charge Rs 45/- Deposit Rs 290/-, Total = Rs 580/-
Our family went to the Motor Boat instead of the self-driven ones. Well, we would have sat the others but we had 5 people. The self-driven boats were either 2 or 4 people at maximum.
Therefore we bought the 8 seater boat. However, the Queue for the 8 seater boat was so long & waiting time was 30 minutes. Besides that, we had to sit with other people and had no leisure of space..etc. We decided to go for the 10 seater boat instead.
It was the best decision ever. We had the entire 10 seater boat to ourselves. We had the opportunity to take photos, more funny videos at different angles. It was only an extra 100 rupees or so for all of us.
Besides riding on the different boats, there were other games like Dashing Car which my siblings played in! They had a really fun time bumping each other and disturbing other kids as well.
Picture of the Dashing Car
There is a massage chair located beside the Dashing car games for you to enjoy, relax and rejuvenate if you are tired. It is about Rs 50/- per person! I saw many people going for the massage chair as well, it looked really relaxing!
There are other fun games where you can win prizes as well like in a fun fair!
Food and drinks are definitely available in Ooty Boathouse. It is a more simple kind of food like Nachos, Cotton Candy, Chocolate Fondues and many more that you can choose from!
Don’t worry about being cheated in here. Prices are fixed and you would have to pay at the counter first before ordering it directly from your food booth. We loved it here because the Huge Pinkish Cotton Candy only cost Rs 20/- for one! That’s why we bought all 3 of them for each kid!
Picture of the Cotton Candy
The Big Sweet Corn can also be found on the other side of the Boathouse, near the Toilet Area. This is if you are looking for something more filling!
10. Rose Garden
A very popular destination for tourists worldwide! Many people come all the way to the Rose Garden to experience and see the beautiful flowers and scenic views. This is the largest rose Garden in India and holds the largest collection of roses in India.
Prices of entry:
Rs 30 per Person (Adults)
Rs 15 (Children from 5-10 yrs)
Still camera Rs 50/-
Video Rs 100/-
Pictures of The Rose Garden:
There are lots of things to do and see in Ooty or even outside of Ooty! We only spend a day and a half there and that was it. We wanted to visit the nearby places like Pykara but our Hotel was not extendable since it was a holiday on that day.
Hence, we had to leave Ooty. Anyways, it was a little too dusty for us. We thought if we left Ooty, it would be better!
You can always check out the rest of the tour packages here: Travel2Ooty http://www.travel2ooty.com/ooty-tour-packages.aspx and Ooty Tours http://www.ootytours.in/1-day-ooty-town-tour
Good luck and Have Fun in Ooty!
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