Ooty, also known as Udagamandalam or ‘Queen of the Hills’, is a town in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Situated 7,347 feet above sea level in the Nilgiri mountain range, Ooty is a popular tourist destination thanks to its tranquil setting and stunning scenery. The area’s climate is perfect for producing aromatic teas and because of this the town is famous for the many tea estates that can be found spread out across the lush green Nilgiri hills.
Ooty boasts a beautiful year-round climate, so it’s a great travel destination at any time of the year, but the best time to visit Ooty does depend to an extent on what you’re planning on doing when you’re there. Here are my suggestions for things to do in Ooty during different seasons.
March to June – Summer
Owing to its high altitude, summer temperatures in Ooty don’t hit the scorching heights of those in lower parts of the country, making it a particularly good time to visit if you’re looking to do some sightseeing. Summer temperatures range from 20°C to 30°C, while nights are cool and pleasant. Ooty Botanical Gardens, with its thousands of different plant species to see, makes for a lovely day out during the summer, as does Ooty Lake, where you can enjoy a pedal boat across the scenic water.
July to September – Monsoon
During the monsoon Ooty receives heavy rainfall which can affect your ability to see and enjoy some sightseeing attractions in the area. Escape a downpour by visiting Stone House for the afternoon – built by John Sullivan in 1822 to be the residence of the Principle of Ooty’s Government Arts College – or St. Stephen’s Church. One of the oldest churches in the Nilgiris region, it dates back to the 19th century and was in fact built to coincide with the birthday of King George IV.
October to February – Winter
Winters in Ooty are cold and dry, while strong, chilly winds are common. For this reason you should pack warm clothes when visiting. In the height of winter night-time temperatures can get down to 5°C. During the day temperatures are decent enough to allow you to do some sightseeing. Because of the mild weather, it’s a good time of year to visit Mudumalai Wildlife Sanctuary, lying on the northwestern side of the Nilgiri Hills, or hop on the Ooty toy train and take in the beautiful scenery.
Feature image by https://www.flickr.com/photos/sankaracs/