Nestled within the evergreen jungles of the Nilgiris in Tamil Nadu and close to the border with Kerala lies Ooty, one of the most popular holiday destinations in southern India. Often called the ‘Queen of Hill Stations’, Ooty attracts tourists throughout the year. The wonderful weather and the many scenic spots make it the perfect holiday destination for families.
Well connected by road and accessible by rail and air, Ooty is far from the concrete jungle and yet – thanks to its excellent connectivity – close enough to be a weekend getaway for you and your family. This is especially true if you reside in Bengaluru or are visiting the city. The distance is barely anything thanks to the excellent connectivity.
You could choose to drive from Bengaluru to Ooty, or opt for other modes of transport. These are the options:
By road: There are many routes from Bengaluru to Ooty. The time each takes is almost the same – under seven hours. A popular route though is NH212, or Mysuru-Ooty Road. It is the most scenic route as well, lined with eucalyptus trees, and makes an ideal family road trip.
By rail: There are regular trains from Bengaluru. The broad gauge line operates up to Coimbatore and onward to Mettupalayam. From Mettupalayam you can hop on the Nilgiri Mountain Railway’s ‘toy train’ to cover the remaining 40 km. This scenic train ride is one of the highlights of the trip.
By air: The nearest airport to Ooty is in Coimbatore, 88 km away. There are daily flights from Bengaluru to Coimbatore that cover the 300 km distance in under an hour. From Coimbatore, one can either take a bus, taxi, or even enjoy a short but beautiful train journey to reach Ooty.
There are regular bus services from Bengaluru to Ooty operated by private contractors as well as by KSRTC. If you have a car, you can easily drive down, and if you are holidaying with a large family or group, you can hire an SUV. There is always the added advantage of having the car ferry you around the hill station and its exciting vantage points.