Ooty, is also known as “Udhagamandalam” is abe best tourist place in south India. It’s been rightly titled as the as Queen of Hill Stations. Ooty, the headquarters of The Nilgiris district is one of the famous hill station tourist place in India. It is situated at an altitude of 2,240 meters above mean sea level. The word Nilgiris means Blue Mountains. It is a land of picturesque picnic spots and had been a popular summer and weekend getaway for the British during the colonial days. There are plenty of interesting tourist places like Botanical Gardens, Lakes, Boat houses, water falls, shooting spots, Wildlife Sanctuary, Tea estates and many more.
The Queen of Hills is connected to the Chennai City (Capital of Tamilnadu state) by a train at night hours. The train called as Nilgiris Express or Blue Mountain Express which leaves from Chennai at night, and reaches Mettupalayam a small town at the foothills of the Nilgiris early the next morning around 6.30am. The train The Nilgiri Mountain Railway (Toy Train) leaves Mettupalayam at7.10am. The train is very smaller one and can only accommodate few passengers. A through ticket from Chennai to Ooty will ensure a place in the smaller train, although many prefer the faster route of taking a cab or a bus from Mettupalayam.
The steam train takes a very scenic route, and the pace of travel will let you take in the beautiful scenery at leisure with stops at stations for the engine to take on water (the journey takes about 5.1/2 hours compared to 2 hours by road). The train often travels only at 5 – 10 Kmph, allowing some adventurous passengers to disembark from the train and walk along the train.
Mettupalayam can prove to be a bottle-neck during the peak season of April-June with cabs charging exorbitant rates. The train is often quite regular in this part of the country, and is by far the most comfortable way to get here. There are other trains from Chennai to Coimbatore also.