An abode above the clouds – Vattakanal

Tripoto
30th Oct 2015

On the way to Kodaikanal

Photo of Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

On the way to Kodai

Photo of Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas
Photo of Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Waiting for my ride @Kodai bus stop

Photo of Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

St. Mary's Church

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

St. Mary's Church on the way to Vatta

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Just a regular view!!!!

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Tiggu, the tiger...err, the German Shepherd

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

My li'l heaven, the cottage

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Inside the single bedroom cottage

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Tracing the trail through the mirror of time

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The abode above the cloud

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The abode above the cloud

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The abode above the cloud

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The trail

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The trail

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Warmth of tea, warmth of life

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas
Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The Kodai Heaven restaurant

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Fares @Altaf's Cafe

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

A view from Altaf's Cafe

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

While walking back to Kodai bus stop

Photo of Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

"Oh! lift me as a wave, a leaf, a cloud!I fall upon the thorns of life! I bleed!"

Photo of An abode above the clouds – Vattakanal by Rini Biswas

I saw a dream. Chasing the clouds over a valley and telling a colleague of mine, "I'll be back after some time!" A colleague! Yes, the heavy weight of the boredom of work-life, the routine life, was such that it chased me even in my dream! But Vatta did lift me from the drudgery. It placed me for a day in an abode amid the clouds. The much coveted breather that I was frantically searching for. And yes, it was my birthday gift to myself, as well! Vattakanal didn't disappoint me.

I often go through a number of articles on quick weekend vacations from Bangalore that I can chart as a solo traveler. In one such article, I came across the name, Vattakanal. And though there was a list of 10 different places, I knew Vatta has to be my number one destination among these. The Palani Hills range was calling me :)

So, I did what I do best - planning my itinerary. Though I love to leave some parts of my solo travel completely unplanned, commuting and staying are not among them. There are a number of options for bus operators to choose from to reach Kodaikanal from Bangalore. I chose KPN travels. I was surprised, however, at the bus prices! Total commuting cost me 3.5 grand! But then the staying options balanced this out. For two days, I paid INR 1400. And what a pleasant stay it was!

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Now, some info that you can use: Vattakanal is approximately 7 kilometers away from Kodaikanal bus stop. You can actually walk, crossing St. Mary's Church or take a cab that will charge you anywhere between INR 300-500. I was lucky. Mr. Jennova himself gave me a ride to the cottage I was supposed to stay in. You can also choose among these staying options (if you get a booking, that is):

Mr Jennova: 09865153573

Altaf (of the famous Altaf's cafe): 09487120846

RC Guesthouse: 09976849870

Edwin's Guesthouse: 09942467612

The Kodai Heaven: 09629278674

Once you sort out your staying options, food will not be a problem. Mentioned even in the Lonely Planet blogs, Altaf should undoubtedly be on your list of cafe to visit in this magical little hamlet. But there are small street side shops also where you can have good food. I loved at the Altaf's, but my personal favorite was a small tea-food stall, Selva's Restaurant, accompanied by a mini mall, which saved me with some warm clothing options (I underestimated the temperature drop in Vattakanal!)

Photo of An abode above the clouds – Vattakanal by Rini Biswas

So, commuting, stay and food are sorted, right? About the attractions in Vattakanal - why not find it out by yourself? I can just give some hints - trails to follow, rocks to sit on, wandering in the sudden fall of darkness in the evening, chatting with the locals around bonfire...

"BUT", and a big one at that - this is just a prologue - the start of the devastating 'Chennai rain' started on 31st Oct '15, which not only created a hell of a ruckus in hundreds of lives in Tamil Nadu, it did manage to wash away my plans in the vacation too. Well, for better may be. I need to visit this abode amid the clouds again. :)

Decent food, good service and reasonable price. A place where you can sit all by yourself and spend hours after hours. Plus point, they can arrange accommodation for you, too.

Photo of Altaf's Cafe, Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Mr. Jenova has some very pleasant cottages for rent out. I got one from where the divine view of the clouds above the valley could be seen. Magical, I say.

Photo of Jenova's Cottage, Vattakanal by Rini Biswas
Photo of Jenova's Cottage, Vattakanal by Rini Biswas
Photo of Jenova's Cottage, Vattakanal by Rini Biswas

A quick coffee, sandwich, hot chocolate - in fact anything you want (nothing extravagant though)

Photo of Selva's Restaurant, Vattakanal by Rini Biswas

On the way to Kodaikanal

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

While waiting for my ride to Vattakanal

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The souvenir shop near St Mary's church

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

St Mary's Church

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Heaven of clouds

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

View from my cottage

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Cottage

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

My room

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Tiger, the German Shepherd

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

A li'l shopping mall in Vatta :D

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Can you spot the clouds?

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

My trail...while exploring the area

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

A tea joint and warmth of life

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

The falls, before and after rain

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

View from Altaf's cafe

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas

Finally... me 

Photo of Vattakanal, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, India by Rini Biswas
5 Comment(s)
Sort by:
Incredible! truly above the clouds
Mon 10 29 18, 19:38 · Reply · Report
Would you recommend Mr.Jenova's place for a group of 6 people ?
Sat 12 16 17, 09:21 · Reply · Report
Do you have any idea about the conveyance from kodaikanal rd to vattakanal at night time(approx. 9.00 pm)
Mon 08 21 17, 06:18 · Reply (1) · Report
If not booked ahead, nothing goes there around that time. Furthermore, after 7-8pm no shops/cafes are open in Vatta, except for Altaf's cafe.
Mon 08 21 17, 18:52 · Report
Wonderful ! No words to describe this place.
Sun 08 28 16, 23:23 · Reply (1) · Report
Yes...I didn't even like Mussoorie in my recent visit and kept thinking how awesome Vatta is :)
Tue 08 30 16, 08:42 · Report
Brought back memories of my vattakanal trip and of course Jenova's cottage too. :)
Wed 04 27 16, 05:33 · Reply (3) · Report
It was...seriously... plus point, I made some friends also in this trip... :-)
Thu 04 28 16, 08:58 · Report
Shud hav been a grt escape frm this scorching heat.
Wed 04 27 16, 21:46 · Report
I made a second trip there last weekend...love keep going there... :)
Wed 04 27 16, 09:05 · Report