Kodaikanal (also known as kodai) is a city and a Taluk division of Dindigul district. Kodaikanal is sometimes referred to as the “Princess of Hill stations” and is a popular tourist destination. Much of the local economy is Hospitality industry based on national and international tourism. Kodaikanal was established by American missionaries around 1845, as a refuge from the high temperatures and tropical diseases of the plains. Hill stations located at an altitude of 2133 mts. (7000 feet) frequented by tourists in large numbers throughout the year.
It is about 60 km from dindigul and 120 km from Madurai. Of all the three major hill stations of Tamil Nadu Ooty, Kodaikanal and Yercaud it is definitely the most beautiful and unlike Ooty does not warrant heavy woolen clothes during winter. It is located on the western crest of the Palani hills amidst thickly wooded slopes, precipitous rocky outcrops, waterfalls, fragrant and colorful flowers with astonishing viewpoints that is incomparable to any place in India. Unlike Ooty where you have to travel long distances to see the places of tourist interest, here you can visit all the places within walking distance. This is nice place not only to escape the heat of the tropical summer and a perennial place of relaxation. Kodaikanal mean cool resting place in summer (kodai).
The collector of Madurai Vere Leving constructed several roads and dug the lake. The climate is quite ideal for blossoms to bloom and the Pambar stream provides excellent water. One of the world’s oldest solar observatories (1899) is also located here.
The best times for traveling there are from April to June and from September to October.
Kodaikanal is a romantic hill station for the newly-weds to go for a 45 ha. (60 Acres) lake built in 1863, is located close to the centre of town. The Golf club is about 5 km from the lake. The Golf club has the finest courses in Kodaikanal. Cycles for children, boys and girls are available on hire to go around the lake. Roller Skating – Y.M.H Skating hall, Post Office Road. Pony ride is available on hire.
Fairy Falls, Silver Cascade, Glen Falls and Bear Shola Falls are the main falls that serve as good picnic spots. Bear Shola Falls is about 1.5 km from the lake and can be reached by a picturesque ragged path. Silver cascade is on the ghat road to Madurai 8 km from Kodaikanal. The other falls are also within walking distance from the lake. They are beautiful and charming as their names indicate.
It is about a km from the lake. The hill-edged pathway was identified by Er. Coaker in 1872. It runs along a steep slope on the southern side of the hill. It is a semi-circular beautiful path overlooking the plains. The view from here is simply captivating. The distant plains appear to be a dream land.
Situated on the road to the Pillar Rocks, the Kodai Golf Club boasts of a well-laid 18-hole course fit for competitions at national level. Often the golfers teeing in the early morning accost herds of wild animals. The Club is exclusively for its members. Non-members and holidays golfers, who want to play, have to pay a special subscription. The tourists on the road have a glimpse of the whole range.
Three boulders stand here, shoulder to shoulder, vertically measuring 122 metres, providing a majestic sight. Pillar Rocks is 7.4 km from the lake.
The Solar Observatory
This is one of the oldest observatories in the world that came into being in 1899. The solar observatory is being used to observe sunspots and their behavior. Solar Physics, Astronomy and Meteorology are the main concerns. It is about 850 ft higher than the lake.
Located about 5.5 from Kodaikanal is this museum devoted to the flora and fauna of the hills. The museum is being run by the Sacred Heart College, a seminary founded in 1895. Some of the archaeological remains are also exhibited here. It is a must for ever visitor as it enlightens on subjects very interesting to hilly habitat.
Kurinji Andavar Temple
Kurunji is the name of a flower of the hills. That is why in Tamil, the mountainous region is called Kurinji. It is a small bush and blooms one in 12 years. The flowers are a delicate mauve and during the flowering season the hill sides look completely mauve and look like a mauve-tinted fairy land. Near the Prospect Point is the Kurinji Andavar temple. The presiding deity is Lord Muruga just like Lord Dandayuthapani of Palani. The site for the temple was picked by a Ceylonese named Sri Ponnambalam Ramanathan sijply because of the Visibility of Palani 60 km away and 6000fr below. One can also get a glimpse of the Vaigai dam which is 3.2 km from here.
By Air : The nearest airport for Kodaikanal is at Madurai (121km).
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