Picture perfect memories are made in picture perfect scenery and this perfection is found in Kodaikanal. A place as diverse as the meaning of its name, this hill station is known as the Princess of Hill Stations, not for nothing!
Set in the lush hills of Tamil Nadu’s Dindigul district, the city of Kodaikanal is a popular tourist destination yet there is something mysterious and untouched about the place that keeps pulling you back to its loving embrace. The city came to existence because the Kodaikanal Weather was the best retreat from the sultry summer for the British who needed cooler weather. With the Western Ghats’ Palani Hills forming the ideal cloud capped peaks and the rolling green valley being a salve for sore eyes, no wonder Kodaikanal is often considered a gift from the gods.
Plan the trip
Beauty like Palani Hills and the Kodaikanal Weather is something that one must experience for the place is not just a summer retreat but offers so much more in terms of culture, natural sights, and architecture and has something for everyone to connect with and enjoy – be it boating, hiking, trekking, camping or just enjoying the fresh air that cleanses and heals your heart. No matter how you land in Tamil Nadu – if you are travelling from another state or country – the ultimate journey into the city is completed by road. So if you are coming from Madurai airport (120 kms from Kodaikanal) or have hopped down the Kodai road railway station (100 kms away from the city) you need to board a TNSTC bus or you can hire a car and zoom through the road enjoying the wind in your hair and the green sight to lift your blues and let the Kodaikanal Weather make you forget about everything else.
If you want to escape not only the heat but also want to reconnect with yourself then a trip to Kodaikanal should be ideal for you. No matter what season you decide to visit, one thing is for sure that the Kodaikanal Weather will appease you no matter what.
Each season has its own charm
A hill station in the south is bound to have a pleasant weather yet the Kodaikanal Weather does have some highs and lows in terms of temperature and that does affect the activities on offer. A lot also depends upon the people who are planning the trip. For the lovers of chilly seasons, late monsoons and the winter is the best time to visit to enjoy the chill in the air and to stroll around or enjoy a hot cup of coffee at Pot Luck or Pastry Corner. Summers are perfect for the souls who prefer milder weather so they can trek without worrying about having to keep switching between feeling cold or too warm. However, each season has its own charm to say the least.
Kodaikanal in 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.
If colorful is what you seek then summer at Kodaikanal is perfect for you. The months of summer starts from March and lasts till June and the Kodaikanal Weather is mild at this time with the temperatures staying between 20 degrees to 30 degrees Celsius and the light breeze makes walking around a pleasant experience. The rivers and lakes are the highlights of this town then. Once you reach Kodai Lake you will recheck your GPS to make sure that you are still in India and haven’t accidentally discovered a teleporter site and landed at Scotland. This manmade lake is ideal for boating.
A hike or cycling trip at Croakers Walk must be added to your itinerary when you are visiting Kodai Lake. This beautifully made 1 kilometer walkway is perfect for strolling, cycling and clicking some memorable shot of yourself or your loved ones. Berijam Lake is not only a famous picnic spot but also has a gothic feel to it with the pine trees looming over making this a perfect setting for horror stories. It did inspire the writer in me to pen a few short stories.
Summer is also the perfect time to visit Bryant Park as the Annual Horticulture Show is held in the month of May which showcases beauties like green roses, cacti and exotic plants from across the globe. The geek in me took me to the Solar Observatory. The building itself is a thing of beauty, surrounded by green hills but the real magic happens inside. Telescopes and real time sun spots on display, the breaking of the white light into the rainbow and the vastness of our space is humbling and enriching at the same time.
Kodaikanal in Monsoon (July to September)
The months of June to September coats the valley in new shades of greens and blues but these shades will uplift your mood. The Kodaikanal Weather during monsoon is wet but if you can bear the chilly breeze then you are in for some splendid sights for the valley comes alive during monsoon, especially the waterfalls. The Silver Cascade Falls is known for a divine look as the silvery water comes gushing down the cliffs. The Vattakanal Falls is a paradise for the nature lovers are some of the biggest reasons to visit kodaikanal. But, don’t think that the falls are the only attraction for monsoon for the Pine Forest too becomes fresh and enchanting. If you are seeking solace or want to enjoy a few moments of togetherness with your beloved then this is the walk you should embark on.
But, the valley receives about 10 inches of rainfall during these months. You need to be careful of the slippery slopes and carry adequate monsoon gear like boots and raincoats. Also, it is best to avoid Pillar Rocks during this time for the boulders become especially slippery. Another thing that you need to be wary of is leeches. The best way to avoid them is wearing long clothes and carrying salt to get rid of any bug that hitches a ride on your leg.
Kodaikanal in Winter (December to February)
Trekkers will love the winters for the Kodaikanal Weather offers some amazing routes and views for the traveler. While the months of winter, which last from December to February, offer up temperatures that dip to 8 degrees, you should carry adequate woolen clothing and extra socks. Of course, at this time a walk around the town, visiting museums and heritage sites becomes pleasant. But, it is the hills that capture the heart and mind of the wandering soul. A winter picnic is a must and the best place to host one is at the Pillar Rocks.
The view from the three vertical boulders – that gave the place its name – is something that should not be missed. Green Valley View (Suicide Point) and the Silent Valley View justify their names and you can capture some heart winning Instagram pictures. While I did wonder why anyone would want to jump to their death at such a beautiful point, that thought soon left my mind as the panoramic view captivated me. Another interesting spot was the Devil’s Kitchen which is located just 1 km away from the heritage Pillar Rocks. The gorge is always filled with thick clouds which seem as if a large kitchen is in action somewhere in unknown heavenly boudoirs up above!
A trip to forget all woes
I decided to take the hike because North hill stations were full for the winter and I wanted some peace. As I came across Kodaikanal in my search I did not think twice but booked my flight and hotel instantly. The decision turned out to be the best for not only did the place make me feel calmer but it also gave me time to enjoy my own company and learn not only about a city less known but also find many hidden gems in my own country.
The Kodaikanal Weather is just perfect for me as I love winters and it was also the best trek of my life. I discovered some love stories and made a few characters of my own to fill the pages of my diary, giving me new perspectives as I came back energized.