Yercaud- The Jewel of the South

3rd Apr 2015

A pleasant vacation to Yercaud, in the Shevaroy range of hills was enough to wash away all the fatigue of the past couple of months. This beautiful hill station in the Eastern ghats is covered in lush greens. The serenity and tranquility surrounding the place is a rare sight in most hill stations in our country. A pleasant and a refreshing trip in the company of good friends, what more could one ask for?

My Yercaud trip will indeed be a priceless bead entwined in the necklace of my life's jolly experiences. We wanted a fruitful utilization of our long (good friday) weekend and thus decided to plan a weekend trip. We set out at dawn on 3rd april for Yercaud. The drive to Yercaud, a mere 5 hour drive was enjoyable. We stopped on the way for breakfast at A2B (Adyar Ananda Bhavan). We briefly halted for a sumptous breakfast of idli , sambar and a cup of steaming hot tea. Music kept us bouyant during the course of the journey. The drive was uneventful other than a bout of nausea during the climb uphill. Before long we reached our destination-The Rain Tree Resort. True to its name the resort was surrounded by a jungle. The first thing that I liked about the place was the 'silence'. The busy city life that we lead at at times makes us long for some 'silence'. A winding road in front of the resort led to the town. We immediately felt a kinship with the place. A large plate full of peppers testified to the fact that Yercaud is well known for its pepper plantation. The resort had its very own restaurant- The Pepper Restaurant.

The afternoon meal was a sumptuous one, a traditional South Indian thali. Soon after we reached, a group of tourists arrived in the resort in a tempo traveler. The tempo traveler got stuck at the gate and was struggling to make the climb uphill, the passengers had to alight from the tempo traveler to enable it to enter the resort. The group included a couple of families.

We requested the resort manager cum chef to organize a barbeque in the evening to which he readily agreed. He promised us that he would arrange for the chicken, charcoal and the barbeque oven. We planned to while away the evening in the garden, enjoying the smoked chicken and cold drinks and lots of 'adda' that we bongs simply love. In the meanwhile we decided to explore the town and thus set out for our first destination, the Yercaud lake. Paddle boating in the lake left the guys exhausted before long. The life jackets we were made to wear made us look rather funny and restricted our mobility to a great extent. Soon after our boat ride we had 'kulfis' which all of us swore was the worst kulfi we had ever tasted in our lifetime. We also tasted some red chilly laced raw mangoes, the tangy tasty made us somewhat feel better after our disastrous 'kulfi' experience. Our next destination was the Lady's Seat, a telescopic view point, offering a enchanting view of the valley. Folklore says that the place was named 'Lady's Seat' after an English women who would visit the viewpoint every evening to enjoy the panoromic view of the hills. This was followed by Pagoda point. The gobi pakoda's we had at pagoda point were as awesome as the view from Pagoda point. We also visited the Gents Seat and Children Seat. After a brief rest on the roadside and silly chitchatting we returned to our resort at dusk.

The evening was fun packed, we had mouth watering smoked chicken prepared by our chef masquerading as the resort manager as well. The guy was pleasant faced and friendly. We attempted to create a conversation and got to know that he had just completed his bachelors in hotel management. He was planning to take up a cruise job. He planned to take his mother alongwith him to the sea. The eventful day ended soon for us since all of us were dead tired after the day's travelling.

Sleep was peaceful although the room we were given did not have a ceiling fan and we had to manage with a stand fan. The room overlooked a balcony and the gate of the resort. We had a view of the dense jungle from our balcony. The next day we went for hiking to kiliyur falls. Kiliyur falls was a disappointment because there was absolutely no water in the falls. We visited the deer park, anna park and the botanical garden. The day was funfilled. We spent the evening in the balcony in front of our rooms, the chef had prepared yummy gobi manchurian and peanut masala for us. Our discussion gradually diverted from silly topics to spine chilling ghost stories. All of us had some scary , some silly, some funny stories to relate. We sat in the balcony for sometime after dinner as well, it was a little chilly, not very cold. Soon my eyes were droopy, we were fatigued after the day's exertion.

The next day we bid goodbye to Yercaud and the Rain Tree Resort- our abode of two days. We started the return drive to Bangalore with a few sweet memories in our heart and a hope that maybe we would visit the place again sometime in future.