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Published: November 11th 2015
My daughter Thakshima was enjoying her summer vacation of the month May. One fine morning she ran towards me with the Hindu. She pointed out a picture and asked to read the content. The news was about the flower show in Ooty. She requested me deeply to take her to the flower show and her mother also was supporting her. So, our Ooty trip was decided.
We already had tripping experiences with Aaditya travels of Cochin. So, I rang up to the manager and fixed the date. Our plan was to stay for 3 days. During our discussion he mentioned about their new branch in Coimbatore. So, this time our plan was to reach Coimbatore from Mumbai (our hometown).
As usual this time also the agency people were perfect and they were on time at the Coimbatore Airport. Picked us and took us to the office. Manager received us and our friendly talk went on some time. Then he gave some directions to the driver and guide and gave a perfect start to our trip.
Guide Premkumar detailed us about the route. We understood that from Coimbatore there are different routes to reach Ooty.And he was following the route: Coimbatore – Mettupalayam – Coonoor – Kotagiri – Ooty. We travelled through 84kms within 2.45hrs and reached at 1pm.
Ooty the land of scenic beauty welcomed us with it’s cool hands and colonial charm. Thakshima was very anxious to see the flower show. So, quickly finished our lunch and rushed to the flower show. Beautiful flower decoration was made with wonderful collection of rose flowers, imported shrubs and rare flowering plants. Flower show amazed us and no words to explain.
Next reached the Botanical Garden. Premkumar was flawless with the information. Thakshima noted many points and said that she will be using this in her future Botony Project. Botanical garden spreads over 55 acres. Along the beautifully trimmed green lawns people were resting and enjoying the cool breeze. Garden becomes precious and priceless with the rare tree species like : the cork tree , paper bark tree and the monkey puzzle tree (monkeys cannot climb this tree) , a 20 million year old fossilized tree stunned everybody.
An Italian style garden was bordering a small pool. Thakshima touched the water and sprinkled on us. Garden is maintained by the Horticulture Department of the government looks pretty with : orchids – flowering bushes – plants in myriad hues and vast range of ferns.
At the exit shops were very busy in selling the tea varieties. We were also stopped by a seller and he repeated the words “fine quality with reasonable rate” inorder to catch our attention. Bought one packet and said bye. Altogether the flower palace stuck in the memory of one who had visited.
Outside shops were crowded with the people drinking hot tea with snacks. We also joined them and refreshed. Time was 7.00pm. After a shopping through the crowded streets and in busy shops our dinner time reached. Hotel “Lakeview Ooty” fulfilled our dinner and night halt.
We woke up with the tasty tea cups of “Lakeview” and enjoyed the breakfast. Premkumar detailed us the day’s plan and prepared us accordingly. That day our first target was Ooty Lake – boat house. Premkumar made the arrangements for boating and Thakshima wanted to go for a pony ride. She was excited a lot ‘coz that was her first ride on a pony.
Next reached Doddabetta Peak at 12.30pm. Doddabetta is the highest mountain at 2,637m in the Nilgiri hills. The thick forest area around provides an extraordinary look to Doddabetta. Premkumar took us to the Telescope House. I raised Thakshima and asked about the view. She was unusually talkative and said “the whole land looks great with greenish coated tiny slopes and hills”. The entire view provided amazing scenery to our eyes. Turned back to Ooty town and had our lunch.
On the way to the Wax world museum our camera had received attractive pictures. The wax statues entertained Thakshima and clicked some statues.Our visit ended quickly ‘coz we planned three more spots on that day.
Next was rose garden. “
GOVERNMENT ROSE GARDEN” an arch welcomed us. The name suits the collection throughout. Along with rose
other rare flowers and their arrangement made the place a small heaven. Our camera enjoyed more pictures.
Evening time we wanted to spend at a nearby lake. So, reached Avalanche lake. The pretty lake was flowing calmly and that evening had spoken many things about the trees and plants surrounded the lake. As well as about the birds and water lives therein. A colourful evening went on and we reached hotel Lakeview at 8.45pm.One more night was shared with hotel Lakeview. Next day after breakfast we were ready for our journey.
STONE HOUSE – the name shows that there are many hidden aspects inside. This thought pulled us towards the stone house. SONE HOUSE or the KAL BANGALA was the oldest first bungalow constructed in Ooty.It was built by John Sullivan and tree in the front is known as Sullivan’s Oak. Thakshima hugged Sullivan’s Oak and kissed with her tender lips. In Tamil the word “kal” refers stone. Stone house reflected the tribal influence here and there. Today it is celebrated as the residence of the Principal of the Government Arts College – Ooty.
The fantastic stone works created a new atmosphere we ever faced. Thakshima had many points to note down as she wished to save this in her
“TRIP MEMORIES”. Till afternoon we were in the Stone house. Then after lunch went to the Thread Garden and Pykara lake. Said good bye to Ooty and the driver dropped us at Airport .Time was 8pm.
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