I am a marketing professional holding a postgraduate degree in management. I live in Chennai and have traveled extensively in Tamil Nadu.
Yelagiri is so close to Chennai that it can be reached in four hours in moderate traffic. It is a perfect weekend getaway for the residents of Chennai and Bengaluru. Its name means the Cardamom Hills in the Tamil language.
At an altitude of over 1100 meters, Yelagiri is less chill than some other hill stations and stays pleasant throughout the year. It can get a little hot during the summer months from March to May, but still, it is a relief compared to the sweltering plains. Yelagiri is best visited from June to February, which are considered the off-season months.
9 Beautiful Places in Yelagiri
- Punganoor lake
- Fundera Park
- Adventure camps
- Swamimalai Hills Trek
- Velavan Temple
- Jalagamparai Waterfalls
- Nature Park
- Nature walk
- Panchayat Fruits Garden
Continue scrolling for more information about each of these places.
1. Punganoor Lake
This is an artificial lake in the middle of the town with picturesque hills as the backdrop. There is a boathouse offering services during the day. A park next to the lake also offers rides such as Merry-Go-Round and the Giant Wheel.
The road leading to the lake is dotted with vendors selling fruits such as star fruit, lichi, jack fruit, Indian Blackberry (Naga Pazham in Tamil) and Mangosteen (Mangustan in Tamil). Sampling these local delicacies should be part of one's plans when in the area.
2. Fundera Park
The major attraction inside Fundera Park is an aviary where one can feed the birds, such as large parrots, sparrows and love birds. There is also a petting zone where one can feed the rabbits, goats, and guinea pigs.
In addition, the park has a 7D theater stimulating the experience of a roller coaster ride. Other attractions inside the park include the fish spa, the pony ride and the Bamboo Cafe. The park offers spectacular views of the nearby hills.
3. Adventure Camps
Yelagiri is the de facto adventure capital of Tamil Nadu. Mountain View Adventure Park, Extreme Adventures and Thrill Valley are some of the well-known adventure parks in Yelagiri. They offer a wide range of activities such as wall climbing, tower climbing to swimming in the well.
4. Swamimalai Hills Trek
Mangalam village, at a distance of 5 km from Yelagiri, is the starting point for this trek. Friendly villagers will help visitors with directions in case they don't know where to begin. It is a mild trek with stone stairs and a mud path suitable for anyone who enjoys taking a walk.
It takes two hours to reach the top of Swamimalai hills, the summit of this trek, and another two hours to return. One can trek for a shorter distance and return based on their physical endurance.
5. Velavan Temple
This is a temple near Hotel Landmark and Sterling resort. A stairway leads one to Velavan temple, which is at an elevated level compared to its surroundings and offers mesmerizing views of the surrounding hills. This temple is dedicated to Lord Muruga, who has many hilltop abodes.
6. Jalagamparai Falls
Attaru is a seasonal river in Yelagiri hills that feeds the Jalagamparai Waterfalls. The waterfall should be visited from October to January during the Northeast Monsoon season. The trek from the hills takes 3 to 4 hours to reach the waterfalls and is arguably the finest trekking route in the whole of Tamil Nadu.
The easiest route to reach the waterfall is by road. If you or your travelling companions are not be fit enough to undertake the trek, then the road trip would be a good idea.
7. Nature Park
Nature Park spans over 10 acres on the other side of the road opposite the lake. This should not be confused with the small park attached to the lake. Nature Park is an expansive garden worth spending half a day.
A musical fountain show is conducted in the evening on weekends. One needs luck with the show, as it gets cancelled during rains. Flash showers arrive with brief notice at Yelagiri. There is a play area for children and a canteen inside.
8. Nature Walk
There is a road connecting Hotel Kumararaja Palace to Mangalam village through the telephone exchange tower. This stretch is devoid of any buildings after crossing the telephone exchange. We can walk on this road with just the greenery and chirping birds for company. There are many such remote locations in Yelagiri since it is sparsely populated.
9. Panchayat Fruits Garden
This is a small farm managed by local authorities on the road towards Mangalam village. The gardeners maintaining the place speak only Tamil, so it is ideal to have one person in the group who knows Tamil. One can pick up fresh fruits and tree saplings here. Guava and jackfruit trees are the principal attractions in this garden.
Travel, Stay, and Food
Jolarpet is the nearest railway station to reach Yelagiri. One can take a train to Jolarpet from Chennai or Bengaluru. From Jolarpet, one can take a bus or taxi to reach the hill station. Yelagiri is only a short drive from Chennai or Bengaluru.
Stay and Food
The stay options worth considering are Hotel Kumararaja Palace with its majestic facade, Sterling Resorts with its contemporary look and the Landmark Hotel with its expansive space. Landmark Hotel edges the other two because of its food and proximity to the lake. For non-vegetarian food, one can try the Hotel Nigress that serves North Indian and South Indian dishes.
© 2021 Mohan Babu
Mohan Babu (author) from Chennai, India on April 01, 2021:
You are right about the weather. It never gets as cold as the other hill stations. Still, it is a great relief compared to rest of Tamil Nadu. I am glad this article kindled fond memories for you.
MG Singh emge from Singapore on April 01, 2021:
You brought memories back of my visits to Yelagiri. It is about 150 km from Bangalore and I used to drive there with my girlfriend for a quick holiday when I was posted at the headquarters training command.It's a nice place but if you compare it with the Himalayan stations it's a bit of a letdown because even in summer as its height is only about 1400 m the temperature is not low. All the same, it's a beautiful place and I have fond memories of it.