Kodaikanal : the queen of hills
Kodaikanal is a city in the hills of the Dindigul district of Tamil Nadu. In the Tamil language, it means the queen of hills or the princess of the hill stations. Believe you me, none of the hill stations that I have been to are even close to being as beautiful and ravishing as Kodaikanal.
Away from the raucousness of the cities we live in, far from the caterwauling of the people you don't probably like and above all, distanced from the cacophony of the fast growing towns and places, Kodaikanal is the perfect escape. Not just natural beauty, the city has a different aura to offer. It is a really small place which found its first residents in tribal people of Palaiyar origin. The population has not risen much and the majority of population belong to Tamil origin and some practise Christianity.
The city has some exotic tourist attractions, abundant greenery and winsome waterfalls which are just like the cherry toppings of a chocolate cake. The city has Kodai lake in the center which to my surprise, is a man made lake. It is hundred and fifty years old and was made by an Irish man of the name Sir Henry Levinge. The lake is the confluence of three small streams which also give rise to a magnificent waterfall called The Silver Cascade. One look at the waterfall and you shall know what bliss on earth feels like. The lake is a great tourist attraction because it also offers boating facilities to the people. Boats are special since they are given shapes from the good old times. Sir Henry was fond of Tuticorin boats, hence the styling is similar to such boats.
Apart from the lake, what really caught my attention was this place called the Pillar Rocks and Guna caves which are a part of the said Valley tour. The pillar rocks are a set of three rocks, all covered by fog and mist, standing tall like three giant men protecting something. There is a garden adjoining the region and the view of these rocks shall give a run for money for any foreign place that we always keep hearing of. Guna caves are three mysterious caves that are no longer open to tourists. There are dangerous ravines in there, previously called the Devil's Kitchen. There are stories of people dying during the visit.
Other major tourist attractions include the Berijam lake and forests which have multiple views that take your breath away. Also, I came across a 535 year old tree near a church named La Saleth. The tree, though old, had not withered or wilted. It stood like an old,wise grandpa in the midst of the chilly weather. The Manavannur Lake is also a fantastic place to relax and rejuvenate.
In a gist, Kodaikanal is a must visit and shall take away all your summer blues. I completely enjoyed my stay and I shall always recommend everyone to take a stroll down the lanes of the hills of Kodaikanal. The kurunji flowers, which bloom once in every 12 years in Kodai might bloom once you set your feet in here.