In the last week of March two of my friends and I decided to visit Coonoor for the weekend to get away from the satanic summer Bangalore is currently suffering through and our lives in general. Although the trip was far too short to even be considered a holiday, we had a wonderful time in the tea gardens and winding roads of the hill station.
We decided to drive down so we’d have the luxury of having our own vehicle while in Coonoor- this had its pros and cons. The biggest con was that we spent a large chunk of our long weekend driving. We left Friday at about 7 30 am and reached Coonoor only at about 6- partly because traffic over the long weekend was crippling and partly because of a misguided trip to Thiripoor to buy ‘factory seconds’ (that is a whoooole other story 😀 ) The biggest pro was that because we had a car we were able to keep our trip a little flexible and do as we please, when we pleased !
We got only one full day in Coonoor- Saturday. Which we spent mostly just walking around the city. In the morning we took a walk through some tea gardens to the top of a hill where we spent an hour at the Tiger Hill Cemetery , built by the British during the raj. Rumour has it that Sarah Stoney, Alan Turing’s mother is buried at cemetery. We found out only later that evening, and hence didn’t get the chance to look for her grave, but I definitely will next time. The cemetery itself is stunning and is a must visit on your next trip to Coonoor. We then spent the afternoon lazing and stepped out again post lunch for a walk from Lamb’s Rock to Dolphin’s Nose – popular ‘viewing points’ in the hills from where the view of the valley is spectacular. Our timing was good and bad- good because we were walking along the side of the hill at sunset and the views on the walk to Dolphin’s Nose itself were incredible. Bad because we reached Dolphin’s Nose when it was almost dark, and the walk back in the dark would’ve been a very very bad idea, and there wasn’t any public transport available (we left the car at Lamb’s Rock- a good 6-7 kms away)! Luckily, after about half an hour of sitting in the dark at a deserted Dolphin’s Nose ,a kind autorickshaw driver came to our rescue and picked us up. All in all, it was quite an adventure!
It just so happened that some of my family was also in Coonoor for the weekend, and they very kindly invited us to their beautiful home for a night of board games and general fun, which went on well into the night. On our drive back, it turned out we weren’t the only ones up and about late into the night in Coonoor. On the (extremely narrow) road from my cousin’s house to the main road we passed a very large bison who was grazing barely 3 feet away from the car. Luckily both the bison and us were equally shocked by another party’s presence on an otherwise deserted road, and we sped off towards the main road before the bison caught onto what exactly was going on.
We woke up at noon on Sunday and left for Bangalore It would’ve been nice to have another night or two in the hill station, but even though the trip was so short. our decision of going to Coonoor for the weekend was a very good one 😀