To live in Bangalore, one of the most bustling and happening cities of India, is truly a boon. Working all week and unwinding during the weekend by taking a stroll in the gardens galore, shopping at malls, pub-hopping or attending a music concert are some of the most common things done by the working class.
But sometimes craving for an escape into the beauty of nature is only natural while living in a big city like Bangalore. This craving got to my nerves so my friends and I decided to head to Vattakanal, a mystical town that is located about 7 km from Kodaikanal in Tamil Nadu. Since Kodaikanal is a popular tourist destination, we decided to explore its neighbouring, and supposedly offbeat, town of Vattakanal.
PC: Shravan KU
We planned the trip on a long weekend during monsoon, which is usually the peak time for tourists to visit places such as Kodaikanal. In order to reach Vattakanal, one must pass right through Kodaikanal, there isn't any other way to reach the town. So we packed our bags and left on a Friday night.
The drive of 465 km took us almost 10 hours, so we reached Kodaikanal at around 9 am. The route from Kodaikanal to Vattakanal is quite narrow and tends to face a major traffic jam even if a single vehicle breaks down. And this was precisely the only misfortune we faced during the trip, since it took us nearly 3 hours to complete the last leg of our travel!
After the strenuous journey, we reached our cottage which was perched on a magnificent altitude that allowed us to get the most breathtaking view of the Western Ghats; a view that immediately refreshed us from the tiring journey.
At first, we could only see mist covering everything that surrounded our cottage, almost as if we were living in the clouds! But after an hour or so, the thick mist cleared off to give us a mesmerising view of the Western Ghats, covered in lush greenery at certain parts. Since the journey tired us down quite a bit, we decided to just revel in the panoramic view and reconnect on the first day.
After a good night's sleep, we woke up to an even more enchanting view of the sun rising from the mountains, while the sky changed its colour from a dull grey, to a vibrant pink, orange and then finally lit all of the town.
To start off the day with a hearty breakfast, we headed to the much-famed Altaf's Cafe that was located just 5 minutes from our cottage. Surprisingly crowded with what looked like all of Vattakanal's tourists, the cafe lived up to the fame since it had delicious food of all sorts of cuisine.
From here, we walked towards the beautiful Vattakanal Falls that was also situated at a walkable distance from our cottage. The falls came down flowing in a steps manner, so, it was easy to enjoy the falls with groups of visitors occupying different steps.
Another place of interest in Vattakanal is the Dolphin's Nose, which is a peak perched at a glorious altitude of 6600 feet, a popular trekking destination. It offers a beautiful view of the entire landscape of mountains and more.
The trek can take about 3-4 hours to be completed, both ways, and since we were short on time and pretty content with the view from our cottage, we decided against going on the trek.
We returned to our cottage, spent more time talking with each other and on our way back we stopped at the stunning Kodai Lake, where boating, kayaking and other such fun water sports are available. We stopped for some time, cherished its beauty and then finally headed back to Bangalore on the night of day 2. For a relaxed getaway, hit the road and visit Vattakanal!