Tucked away in Dindigul district of Tamil Nadu, Kodaikanal, or simply Kodai is “Princess of the Hill Stations” located 7000 ft above sea level is a famous and finest hill station in Tamil Nadu. Kodaikanal means “Gift of Forest” or “Place to see in Summers”, and located in Palani hills of the Western Ghats makes it a real gift of natural beauty which will rejuvenate your soul. Every year thousands of visitors across the India throng to this place, which offers dense forests, huge rocks, lake, waterfalls, and hillsides carpeted with trees, making it one of the best honeymoon destinations. Kodaikanal tourism agencies also cater to needs of families wonderfully.
This hill station was developed by British missionaries in the 19th century who used Kodaikanal as their summer retreat. Many tourists started flocking to the place and Kodaikanal emerged as one of the most famous tourist destinations not only in the southern parts of the country but across India. Kodaikanal scores on many people’s travel bucket list. The lush green hillocks, beautiful valleys, the misty blue skies stretching over you, placid lakes, and cascading waterfalls will enchant nature lovers.
Wondering what is the best time to visit Kodaikanal? The climate of Kodaikanal is very pleasant and cool all around the year. From pleasant summers to chilly winters and drizzling monsoons, Kodaikanal is a blissful place to enjoy your holidays along with awesome activities. For the visitors who want to know about Kodaikanal climate; here are the details for you.
Winters (October to March)
Winter is the honeymoon season when it comes to Kodaikanal tourism, best time to visit no doubt. Cool days, chilly nights can be the comfortable and refreshing break you are looking for in the mountains of Kodaikanal. Winter in Kodaikanal is also an adventurer’s paradise. Temperature ranges between 20ºC to 8ºC during this time. Evenings can be really cold, especially in December and January, so carry heavy woollen clothing, caps and jackets.
The water bodies will be rich with water allowing boating facilities at many spots but you won’t spot any vegetation in bloom during this season, The pleasant chilly winds in days is welcoming and if you are a trekker, you can enjoy trekking in and around the region. As evening sets in, it becomes too misty, making it harder to enjoy any activity. Then is the perfect time to relax indoors, visit a cafe and sip a hot cup of coffee or tea.
If you want to enjoy a scenic hike and catch glimpse of clouds playing hide and seek, a trip to the Poombarai Village Viewpoint is a must. Silent Valley View Point is an amazing place to view natural surroundings and scenic mountains around. If you love heights then you should probably visit Green Valley view, interestingly called the Suicide Point, because of its 5,000 ft deep valley. Explore Coakers Walk where you can literally walk through the clouds. It’s best suited for a leisurely stroll or cycling while you enjoy the mesmeric views of the hills.
Guna Caves named based on the Tamil movie Guna starring Kamal Hassan, is a must visit place for the nature lover and adventure seekers and hikers. One of the best sightseeing places covered by Kodaikanal tourism, the Pillar Rocks derived its name from three rocks that stand almost vertically, looming high and almost piercing the sky at a height of 400 feet.
Kodaikanal tourism is also famous for many festivals. You must catch a glimpse of the many festivals that are celebrated in the month of January to March to experience the tradition and culture. Visit this place during Pongal festival in January to mark the beginning of the year. Tea and Tourism Festival is a 3-day festival celebrated during the last week of January and is organized by the Tourism Department, widely popular in every part of India as well as in foreign countries. Multiple varieties of tea are demonstrated and sold. Panguni Uthiram which takes place in March is an important festival of Kodaikanal and the entire Tamil Nadu. Panguni Uthiram is a special day when divine marriages of gods like Shiva and Parvati, Murugan and Devayani, Andal and Ranganatha, and Rama and Sita took place along with incarnation of Lord Ayyappa and Goddess Mahalakshmi and that’s the reason it holds a great significance.
Summer (April to June)
Summer is also the best time to visit Kodaikanal as the temperature ranges between 30ºC to 20ºC. The pleasant, refreshing breeze blowing on your face makes it perfect for sightseeing, trekking, cycling, boating, and other outdoor activities. Colourful flowers in full bloom fulfil the desires of nature buffs. It’s the perfect place for a summer sojourn which is why hotels in Kodaikanal are always brimming with tourists in summer.
While in neighbouring towns, the temperature rises to 40 °C during the summer, Kodaikanal stays cool at 20 °C. It is the best time to escape the summer heat and enjoy warm days and cool nights with a sip of hot coffee or chocolate.
If you like star gazing then this place is one of the best places in India for stargazing. Summers are best as you get various options to check out without any hindrances.
Kodai Lake, a star-shaped artificial lake and Berijam Lake’s calm blue waters are soothing to the eyes.
A 160-year old eucalyptus tree is a major attraction of the Bryant Park boasting over 325 species of trees, shrubs, and cactuses. Chettiar Park is a stunning green garden where rare species of flowers bloom to attract tourists.
Moir point named after a European engineer Sir Thomas Moir offers panoramic views of the peaks and is one of the major tourist spots in Kodaikanal
Located 65 km away from Kodaikanal, Subrahmanya Temple situated at a height of 135 meters is dedicated to Lord Kartikeya where one needs climb more than 600 steps in order to get a view of the Lord Almighty.
123-year old Shembaganur Museum is one of the best tourist attractions in Kodaikanal for people who love to spend some time in the lap of history along with serenity.
The Grand Annual Summer Festival is a 10 days festival and a major attraction which takes place in May. Some of the major attractions of the fest are fruit exhibitions, boat races, classical dance performances, melodious musicals, vibrant-coloured flower artwork, cultural programmes like rangoli, kabaddi and fishing contests and food stalls.
Monsoon (July to September)
The monsoon can be the best time to visit Kodaikanal too, as it looks very pleasing and fresh in the rain. The beauty of rains and the fragrance of soil in the air are best felt during the monsoon season in Kodaikanal. The rain transforms the hills into lush green slopes which is an extremely picturesque experience. Fresh bright green hues and the air filled with the aroma of wet soil make for a mesmerizing holiday here.
But frequent showers can hamper sightseeing and other activities, slippery slopes make outdoor activities a little risky. Many activities are banned due to landslides and slippery routes. Even boating and coracle ride are stopped during heavy rain.
You can enjoy best of both worlds in Kodaikanal during September month as it doesn’t rain much in this month and you can enjoy your regular sightseeing and outdoor activities along with lush green nature’s bounty.
Visit this place during monsoon if you are a photo-enthusiast, as you will get some lovely shots for your travel diaries or portfolio.
The best part of monsoon is waterfalls. The Vattakanal Falls, hidden within the dense forests surrounded by hills, trees, and vast green expanses, make for an absolute delight to the eyes. Bear Shola Falls is a sight to behold too. Cascading down in a gushing manner from a great height, the falls are nestled inside a forest reserve -unhindered by human encroachments and will rejuvenate your senses completely. Fairy Falls offer a beautiful view of water gushing out from the top of a mountain at a high speed. If you know swimming, then this place is definitely for you. If you don’t know swimming, you can still enjoy the relaxing time spent here.
One of the popular festivals of Kodaikanal is Mother Salette Festival. It is a 9-day festival which takes place in the middle of August every year. Kodaikanal is popular for its Christian churches, and among them is Mother Salette Church, which is 133 years old. Special services are held in the church on all nine days and on the last day, a grand procession is carried out with great zeal.
All in all, the best time to visit Kodaikanal happens to be summer when the weather is at its best. However, Kodaikanal remains to be a favourite destination around the year. So if you haven’t been to the place already, you should seriously consider it for your next vacation. From natural beauty and adventure activities to quaint architectures and cosy cafes, Kodaikanal has something for everyone.