Udhagamandalam, which is the Head Quarters of the area, is the biggest and most vital slope station in south India. This rule station on the Nilgiris is at a height of 2286 meters and arranged at the focal point of the area. It is a broad valley encased on all sides however the west by a grandiose scope of slopes. The name of the ooty or Ootacamand was initially specified in around 1821 in the Madras Gazette which was then spelt as “Wotokymund” by a mysterious journalist who was one among the Europeans to set an eye on Ootacamand. It is additionally affectionately called the Queen of Hill Stations.
Government Botanical Garden
Botanical garden was laid out in 1897 by the Marquis of Tweedale and is spread over 55 acres. Lush green, well maintained lawns, rare trees species (like the cork tree which is probably the only such tree in India, the paper bark tree and the monkey puzzle tree-monkeys cannot climb this tree), a 20 million year old fossilized tree, an Italian-style garden bordering a clear pool, a vast variety of flowering bushes and plants in myriad hues (exotic and ornamental), fern house with a vast range of ferns and orchids, are some of the many highlights of this garden. A flower show along with an exhibition of rare plant species is held every year in month of May at this garden.
Best time of the year to visit: April, May & Sept.
Centenary Rose Park
Situated in the heart of Ooty town, this garden has been beautifully laid out in terraces with rose tunnels, pergolas and bowers with rose creepers. To commemorate the centenary Flower Show, the Rose Park was established at Vijayanagaram in Udhagamandalam covering an area of 4 hectares in five terraces. Today this garden has the largest collections of roses in the country like Hybrid Tea Roses, miniature rose, Floribunda, Ramblers, roses of unusual colours like black and green are some of the more than 3,000 varieties of roses that will captivate your senses. The Rose Garden is situated in slopes of the Elk Hill. The rose varieties planted in this park were assembled from different sources. The ‘Nila Maadam’ is located in a spot from where viewers can see the entire rose garden. This garden is maintained by Tamil Nadu Horticulture Department. It has also received the award of Excellence for the best rose garden in entire south Asia from the International Rose society in 2006
The Ooty Lake is the pride of the Blue Hills. It is the central and strategic attraction. Mr. John Sullivan formed this artificial lake in the year 1824, the then Collector of Coimbatore. The Ooty lake which extends to an area of 65 acres. Earlier the entire lake was used for fishing. The Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation on behalf of the Tourism Department took the possession of the lake for pleasure boating facilities in the year 1973. Another added attraction of the Ooty lake is the Mini Train and an amusement park.
At 2,623 mts above MSL, Doddabetta is the highest Peak in the Tamil Nadu and is about 10 kms. from Ooty bus stand. The name Doddabetta literally means ‘Big mountain’ in the Badugu Language, which is so in reality. It is at the junction of Western and Eastern Ghats and offer beautiful vistas of Nilgiri Hills range. It is surrounded by dense Sholas. One can have a magnificent panoramic view of landscape and the whole of the District and even beyond through the Telescope House run by T.T.D.C., which is an added attraction . The Sunset is spectacular from this view point.
Ooty club ranks one of the leading clubs in the state of Tamil Nadu and is hardly a KM from the Udhagamandalam railway station. It is admirably situated in the heart of the town at the base of the hill adjoining the St.Stephen’s Church and is located on the Udhagamandalam – Gudalur road, near Taj Savoy Hotel. The building occupied by the present Ootacamund club was constructed as a hotel by Sir, W. William Rumbold (Bart) in 1831-32 and inaugurated in 1833. It is said that snooker was invented at this club.
Government House (Raj Bhavan) is arranged on an edge of the Western Slopes of Doddabetta on the edges of the South Eastern Quarter of Udhagamandalam.
Before Udhagamandalam turned into the virtual summer capital of the state, it was gone to occasionally, by the Governors of Madras for a couple of months to – make a decent escape from the hot sultry climate of Madras.
Worked in 1877 by the Duke of Buckingham when he was the Governor of Madras, Government House, Raj Bhavan today, is utilized just once in a while amid the Governor of Tamil Nadu’s visit to ooty. Something else, the sprawling cream-hued house, ignoring the Botanical Gardens stands a noiseless indication of the ceremony and magnificence that it had found in the times of the Raj.
A fine assembly hall included by Sir Arthur Havelock in 1900 and in 1904 the whole building was jolted. The well-kept yard and the lovely patio nurseries is the living arrangement of the Governor for the greater part of the mid year months of April, May and June. Pictures of Governor and their women, of Queen Victoria, George V, George Marry, the Duke of Buckingham and Chandos and numerous others enliven the dividers of the house.