Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Short Break to Kodaikanal

Hello Friends,

I am back from my kodaikanal vacation and being my latest trip there is so much to share with you guys. 

Kodaikanal is situated in Tamil Nadu and is one of the most popular hill resorts in India. The name Kodaikanal means "the gift of forest". Though I would not qualify this place for honeymoon couples, as I feel this place is more apt to go with family and friends to have a fun adventurous trip.

To start with... we took a little longer adventurous route to reach Kodai, flew to Bengaluru then a train journey from Bengaluru to Kodai and the final lapse by driving up the hills of Kodai before reaching our final destination "The United 21 Resort".  The Resort which was the highlight of the trip is situated right on the edge overlooking a beautiful scenic valley. We were accompanied by friends on this trip which made it even more enjoyable and fun.

United 21 Resort -  Kodai 

The location of the resort is breath-taking, with a beautiful scenic valley view visible from the balcony of the hotel room. Each room has this huge balcony where you can chill out and mesmerise yourself with the beautiful landscape in front of you.

The hotel has a small well-manicured garden with beautiful flowers all over. It’s not a five star kind of hotel but surely qualifies for one with location to its advantage. The rooms were clean and toilets hygienic but lacked the star appeal. Hotel staff were always smiling, courteous and helpful. Service is good and prompt. It has a decent size restaurant with good tasty food. The breakfast spread is equally tempting with south Indian food along with western breakfast catering to needs of different types of people from various places.  However the overall menu variety will leave you a bit disappointed if you are a true foodie and want to experiment with variety of food.

There is a facility to host a private party, in case you want to plan a surprise party or organise a get together. They do entertain such events  provided they are informed quiet in advance. 

Cable TV where you have many channels to keep you entertained in case you just want to laze around watching on a movie and having a relaxed time. Though the channel options are limited.

Funny Facts ...

We started off in a car with AC on and as we were going upwards, spotted many people wearing sweater, jackets and head scarf. We were wondering why this people were wearing warm clothes on a sunny day. After reaching our final destination when we stepped out of the car, fresh chilled breeze hit us giving chills to our bodies, making us realise,  why those people on our way were dressed with warm woollen clothes. We could not help ourselves from laughing and shivering in that cold weather. This was a surprise as when we check the weather over our dear old google it said 20 degrees and this was surely much below that.

Since we believed google blindly we were not prepared to face the freezing cold weather hence bought some warm clothes from the local market of Kodai.  Ahem ! nothing pleases more than little shopping

Sight Seeing what to look forward to and what to miss

All the places of sightseeing are not worthy, so we skipped few and tried to cover up more on which we felt were more worthwhile.

Flower Garden: I don’t recommend this, not that big and the collection of flowers are also very limited.  You won’t find this place very interesting. It starts and ends very quickly without much of an attraction.  I remember the dialogue from munnabhai film “bhai yeh to shuru hote hi khatam hogaya”.  Pretty apt for this location.

Kurinjiandavar Temple: Even If you are not much of a worshipper, you should add this temple to your itinerary. It is situated 4 kms away from the main city and has the idol of Lord Muruga. The temple premises have Kurinji plants which bears flowers once every twelve years. You can visit the temple, enjoy the view and shop few souvenirs from the shops which are just outside the temple.

Both right hand and left hand side of the temple edges look over the entire valley of Kodai.  Excellent views from both sides.  You can see the clouds below in the valley passing by and giving you a feeling of being in heaven.  This was the statement made by our friends little and innocent daughter Arya :).

Bryant Park: Byrant Park is a very popular and hard to miss tourist spot. You will find tourist swamping all over the place. This place has a small lake where you can enjoy boating and bicycle ride. However you will be really sad about the traffic management while trying to ride a bicycle. 

Pine Forest :  Even though crowded with lot of tourists, it still manages to retain its natural beauty charm. This is a place worth going for scenic photos and ideal for picnic spot. 

Coakers Walk : Its a 500 meter pathway to walk where one side, has a panormic view of the valley and nearby town. Since it was too foggy, we could not see anything at all. I would not recommend this, as there is hardly anything worth seeing.

Berijam Lake: One of the most immaculate lakes in the city. It is situated inside the forest reserve and requires special permission for one to enter in. You can enjoy a breezy evening sitting beside the lake . The lake is a no plastic zone and pollution of any sort is prohibited. 

This is one place I would highly recommend, as you pass over the forest and if you are lucky enough, you can spot wild animals in midst of nature. The weather inside the forest is very chilled. You can spot monkeys all over the place, beautiful scenic landscape and dense forest makes it even more exciting and fun. 

All the points can only be worth watching when there is no fog. If the weather is foggy then you might not be able to see anything from any point. 

Other Activities 

Apart from sight seeing you should check out their selection of fruits which are very fresh and sweet. To name few... Avocado, Passion Fruit (has a jelly kind of seeds in the middle of the fruit which surprisingly is crispy), pears, apple, Jack fruit and carrot. 

If you haven't sipped on their authentic filter coffee then you have missed out on the most promising coffees. While coming down from Kodai there is a Green Valley Coffee Shop, the coffee out there is mind blowing and must have. The best one I had till date. 

You can also try the coffee at the Bengaluru Airport from Hot Kaapi, where they serve the coffee in a kulhad (traditional handle-less terracotta cup) not the best but worth a shot.  The coffee outside the Kurinjiandavar Temple is good with a promising taste that lingers on your taste buds for some time. 

Shopping Attraction 

Shopping is something we girls enjoy anywhere. Be it any small thing that we buy lifts our face with endless smiles and bring that known excitment from from within . Home-made chocolates face packs, spices, tea powder, Eucalyptus oil, souvenirs are few of the things that you can shop for your near and dear ones. 

Places to Eat

I was very much surprised when I spotted Domminos and Subway in Kodai. We came across Al Baiq Restaurant where you get good veg and non-veg food which is tasty and worth trying. Chicken Biryani was the hot selling dish in this restaurant as while waiting for our food to arrive, I could spot Biryanis served on many table around me.

While you are on a way to Kodai, you get Eden Gadern which I feel is the only good restaurant on the way. This place was very crowded while we were on our way to Kodai hence stopped at Kodai Plaza Hotel which in comparision to Eden Garden was very poor in the quality of food and the options were also very limited. On our way back we were lucky enough to catch up dinner at Eden Garden.

We came across this HFC (Hilltop Fried Chicken), which is our local competition to  KFC :)) though I haven’t tasted their meal but there is no harm in trying out. Menu seems to be limited and simple options to choose from.  

Another good hotel to have meal is Hilltop Restaurant, you get three types of thalis and there is a special thali for kids as well (which is very thoughtful).  There is ala-carte menu also to choose from, in case if you don’t want to go in for a thali. This particular restaurant is mostly crowded so finding a table would be a little challenging  during lunch time. 

You can always experiment with other hotels and find out but these were the ones that we tried during our stay and found to be good.  

Other things to be noted

All the local taxis charge around Rs. 100 to 150/- for any short trip. Traffic Management is a mess with cars parked on either side of the road. Toilets around are pay and use, some of them are quiet stinky. Advisable to carry umbrella as rains can come uninvited, making you run for the shelter. Carry warm clothes with you as the weather is quiet chilled.

Hotel details

United-21 Resort, Kodaikanal

Address : No. 20, Lourdupuram, Naidupuram,
Kodaikanal – 624 101, Tamil Nadu, India.
Email :

Website :

This was my experience while my stay in Kodaikanal. Overall we had an amazing time and have some very good memories of the place. I hope you find this post informative and helpful.

Coming up ... Review of Four Fountain De-Stress Spa


  1. nice set of pictures
    I love Kodia and Im sure weather must have been great

  2. Thank you Kirthi.... Weather was superb... Quiet chilled.

  3. Looks like a place I would want to travel. And Zah you look so pretty.

    1. Nice place indeed... next visit Fiona... plan it. Awwww cho chweet.... thanks for the compliment sweetheart.