This article was published on CLAY Club Mahindra Blog
There is something different about the ‘Monsoons of Ooty’. I visited the hill station with my family last year in July and it was the peak monsoon season there! When our bus was in close proximity of Ooty, we could see men and women plowing the fields, children returning from school and all sorts of daily tasks being carried out by locals. The moment we reached, soft drizzles of rainfall touched our faces, and it felt lovely!
It was rainy as well as chilly, which made the weather even more exciting. Seeing people wearing woollens in the month of July was something new to us. But the combination of sweaters and umbrellas was interesting!
There are 5 experiences in Ooty which make it a perfect monsoon holiday destination –
|Mist covering the landscape|
Enjoying the drizzles while strolling
It rains gently most of the time allowing you to enjoy the refreshing atmosphere and green vista around. Unlike other places where people usually prefer to stay home without much activity, locals in Ooty seem to remain unperturbed. There is simply no better way to witness the rain than walking on the road.
We would take our umbrellas and set out for a walking excursion. Looking around, embracing the wet ambiance, window shopping and just strolling without anything specific on mind – that’s the real way to soak in the monsoons in Ooty.
Sipping steaming hot tea
Being in Ooty naturally means sipping tea – especially when it’s raining. Ooty is a paradise of tea! Monsoon and tea make a perfect combination. You can get to any tea shop randomly, and every chaiwala here has a typical way of preparing tea, which is different from the ‘tea making’ style in any other place. The way they filter tea into the cup is unusual. Even the taste is very different, authentic and good. You really want to have it again and again, especially if you are a tea lover!
Although the tea processing is shut down during the monsoons, it is still good to visit the tea factory. They serve you freshly brewed tea right there. You can also buy tea from the factory shops. The factory is situated at a height, so it’s a bargain to have a panoramic view of the city and the hills from atop.
Binging on junk food on the road
One thing that I (personally) enjoyed the most was eating junk food on the road! It just seemed tastier! It could be so because of the rain or just because you are on the road and you want something or the other to binge on for fun.
I remember they had a peculiar way of serving Corns – they rubbed red chilli powder on it, which made it more pungent! Then there were fried peanuts, which was nice. So, monsoon was a good excuse to keep munching through the day!
Driving down to Wellington and Coonoor
No two ways about it that a long drive on a rainy day is the most enviable thing to long for! We drove down to Coonoor, which is only an hour drive from Ooty. We halted at Wellington for a short while – it was mesmeric to feel some showers in the midst of such lush green surroundings! It is a defence cantonment. There is also a golf course, which is well kept and inviting. One can spend some time to enjoy the burgeoning natural beauty around.
Coonoor is known for the Nilgiri tea plantations. Both Wellington and Coonoor are lovely places, but it was monsoon that had made the journey more rewarding. It was all misty and cloudy making the panorama more beautiful and greener.
Our chauffeur was a friendly guy, he allowed us to stop wherever we wanted on our way and take pictures.
|Toy Trains take you around for a short and sweet journey|
Taking a Toy Train ride
A toy train ride would serve like an icing on the cake on a rainy day! It is one of the simple, yet an exhilarating way to enjoy the hills and dales, and also the local charms like vendors, men and women, school going children and stuff.
The train operates from Metupalaiyam to Udagamandalam (Ooty), via Coonoor, in the Nilgiri mountains. So, spread your hands out from the window and welcome the rain showers! They are eager to embrace you.
To reach Ooty, take a flight to Coimbatore and then take a bus or a taxi for Ooty. It takes around 2 hours to travel from Coimbatore to Ooty.