A Trip to Yercaud – a picturesque Hill Station in South India

This time we happened to make a trip to Yercaud, a lesser known hill station of South India. But being less known in no way demeans the beauty of this picturesque hill station. Yercaud is located in Salem district of the south Indian state of Tamil Nadu. And it is part of the Shevaroy Hills in Eastern Ghats, which are widely known for their orange groves, coffee, fruits and spice plantations. Yercaud gets it name from Yercaud Lake and forests around this lake. In Tamil, “Yeri” means lake and “Kaddu” means forest. Both of these words together make Yercaud which means Lake Forest.

Trip to Yercaud

Yercaud is located at a distance of 30 KM from Salem, around 250 KM from Bangalore and around 350 KM from Chennai. It is a great choice as a weekend gateway from the Bangalore. And one can easily plan a trip to Yercaud from Bangalore. After Ooty and Kodikanal, Yercaud is the third hill station in Tamilnadu that we have visited.

Planning a trip to Yercaud

I must admit that this trip to Yercaud was not a very thoughtful planed trip for us. In the beginning of August we planned to utilize upcoming long weekend, which was going to come with our national holiday 15th August. So, we thought to visit some place near to Bangalore which we have not visited before. Bangalore being the silicon valley of India, many peoples here are always on look out for a long weekend. So that they could get a chance to get a break from there long tiring work schedule and could revive themselves. Hence, until if you have not planned well in advance it is very difficult to get accommodation in famous and well known tourist places around Bangalore.

And we also faced the penalty of starting late with our planning. Accommodations at most of the famous places we tried out were already full. So, as a plan B we started looking for some not very known and as popular places. And in this course of action we zeroed down to Yercaud and planned a trip to Yercaud. Although Yercaud was also not as freely available as we thought. But we managed to get an accommodation.

Trip to Yercaud

Journey Day

It was a road journey. And on the day we started our trip to Yercaud around 6 AM in the morning from Bangalore. We reached Yercaud around 11 AM, after a 5 hours of scenic driver. And this time includes all the pit stops we had taken for breakfast and other refreshments, which may sum up to around 1 hour. The route taken by us was through Bangalore – Hosur -Krishnagiri – Salem – Yercaud. Most of the part of this route is very scenic and a visual treat to drive through. It reminded us one of the most scenic driver that we had taken to Kodaikanal few years back.

Things to do in Yercaud

There are many places of attractions in Yercaud, ranging from lakes to view points to gardens to water falls. So, one can plan places to cover based on ones interest and schedule. These are the few places which we could visit in our limited timeframe. Moreover, these places are quite popular among tourists and are worth to give a shot:

Yercaud Lake

A trip to Yercaud is not complete without visiting Yercaud Lake. As mentioned, Yercaud gets it name from this lake. And, this lake is located in the centre of Yercaud town and is at a distance of 1.5KM from Yercaud bus station. Yercaud lake, also known as Emerald lake is spanned in a very large area. Moreover, this is a completely natural lake.  Also, this lake is surrounded by cloud laden hills, gardens and well groomed large trees. Whole area around the lake feels very vibrant and pleasant. So, I must say this is a visual treat to be there for anyone.

As an activity you can go for boating in Yercaud, either by hiring a self-pedal boat or on a rowing boat. Through the boat ride you can get chance to explore whole lake. Trip to Yercaud

Deer Park and Leisure Park

Deer park and Leisure park located on the bank of the lake is also a major tourist attraction. Especially deer park will be fun for kids. This park is not very big in size but is well maintained. Other than deers this park has many other species such as swans, peacock and hamsters. Also, there was a kids play area inside where kids can enjoy their time. Further, at different spots they have placed swings, where one can sit and relax swinging.

Trip to Yercaud

Botanical Garden

Botanical garden is one of the top attractions of Yercaud. It is located at a distance of 2.5 KM from Yercaud bus station and around 3 KM from Yercaud lake. Yercaud botanical garden is house of various exotic species of flowers and plants. Further this garden is divided in multiple sections such as butterfly garden, herbal garden, rock garden, foliage garden, water garden, sensory garden topiary garden and bonsai garden. If one enjoys being amidst nature and loves to explore various types of plants and flowers, botanical garden is a must visit for him or her.

Garden has amazing range of rare plants and flowers along with many preserved endanger species. Among all these one of the most attractive part is Orchidarium. The National Orchidarium is established in the year 1963 and it spread in an area of 18.4 hectares. It is the third largest Orchidarium in India and is run by the Botanical Survey of India. The Orchidarium houses many endangered species of orchids. And it has a large collection of native orchids. Similar to Orchidarium, the green house is another major attraction in the garden.

Kiliyur Falls

Kiliyur Falls is located at a distance of 4 km from Yercaud Bus Stand. Visit to Kiliyur falls is a combination of serenity and adventure. So I will recommend to add visiting Kiliyur falls in your itinerary during your trip to Yercaud, but with a small disclaimer. If you are traveling with small kids and/or older people, then reaching to the point of Kiliyur falls will be little challenging. As, in the first part of your journey you will have to take a slant walk of around 1 km. Which is still manageable. But after that you will have to take some 200 plus narrow steep stairs to reach to the final point where fall is located. And climbing those steep narrow stairs is little daunting task and you will have to be careful with your steps.

But after taking all this trouble once you reach to the falls, you will not regret it at all. And all the tedious effort you had put behind to reach here will feel all worthy. You will encounter one of the most beautiful waterfall. Kiliyur falls is very live. You will witness the plethora of water crushing against stones. Chillness and freshness spread in the environment around the waterfall gives a mesmerizing feeling. Greenery around this waterfall is bliss to watch. I myself visited this place with parents and a 3.5 years old kid.

Lady’s Seat

Lady’s Seat is a famous view point in Yercaud from where you can get panoramic view of Salem town, ghat road and valley. In real, it is cluster of naturally made rocks in shape of a seat. As per local belief, a white English lady used to spend the evenings watching the panoramic view from this rock. Hence it got its name, Lady’s Seat. It is also a wonderful place to watch sunset. And, in dark you can get amazing view of glittering Salem town. Lady’s seat is located on the South West of Shevaroy hills, at a distance of 2 KM for Yercaud Bus Stand.

Pagoda Point

This an another famous view point in Yercaud located in eastern part of hills. It is at a distance of 4 KM from Yercaud Bus Stand. This point is away from hustle bustle of Yercaud main town. Pagoda point is also known as Pyramid point and it got its name from the for piles of four stones that have been arranged in the shape of Pyramid. Pagoda point is very famous for its wonderful surroundings and one can feel the aroma and chillness of nature at this point. Also, here one can observe amazing sunrise and sunset views.

Near Pagoda point there is a temple of Sri Rama. And this makes it also and important pilgrimage site which also attracts many devotees.

Trip to Yercaud

My Special Recommendation: Hotel Great Trails Yercaud By GRT

Plan to visit Hotel Great Trail (GRT) in Yercaud. Mainly it is a residential place and if you could get a chance to stay in this hotel during your stay in Yercaud then it is well good. But even if you could not get a chance to stay in this hotel, still you can plan to visit it. This hotel has a restaurant which is open to outsiders also. So you can plan a breakfast, lunch or dinner whatever suits you.

The reason why I asked to visit this hotel is its open air lawn. Hotel has a valley facing lawn which is accessible to in-house guest as well as to restaurants guest. And from this lawn you get a chance to capture heavenly beautiful view of hills and valleys. And this experience will be kind of lifetime experience. If small kids are accompanying you, then they will get ample of place to run and play. And, If you are visiting after dark then you can get a wonderful chance to capture sparkling view of valley with all lights lit.

Trip to Yercaud

Other Places of Interest

Apart from what I have mentioned above there are many other famous places which one can plan to visit during ones trip to Yercaud. Some of them includes:

Anna park (1 km from Yercaud Bus Stand), Tipperary Viewpoint (2 km from Yercaud Bus Stand), The Grange (a heritage site 2 km from Yercaud Bus Stand), Sri Raja Rajeswari Temple (4 km from Yercaud Bus Stand), Shevaroyan Temple (7 km from Yercaud Bus Stand) etc.

Also you can take a walk of Yercaud town. Yercaud is very green and natural. So taking a stroll in town will be an exercise of great worth. You will get chance to capture fresh shots of Oxygen and to feel the closeness of nature.

Trip to Yercaud

Travel Tips

Best time to travel

Although you can plan for a trip to Yercaud through out the year. But you season of monsoon from October to February will be quite pleasant with a temperature normally varying from 12°C to 25°C. Summer (March-May) is also good season to visit with temperature normally varying from 16°C to 30°C+ . If you are too much in sight seeings then you can avoid monsoon which ranges from July to September.

Transportation Option

Road trip is the best way to reach Yercaud. Either you can use your personal vehicle or you can hire a cab from all nearby major cities. Also you can go to Salem by bus and from there you can hire taxi/cab to go to Yercaud. You can also reach till Salem by train and from there you can hire taxi or cab to go to Yercaud.

Clothing and Wearables
  • In Winter season keep proper warm clothes with you. But in other seasons also keep light warm cloth handy. Because you may start feeling chillness anytime depending on weather condition.

  • Keep proper walking shoes with you. It will be be very useful in exploring Yercaud town on your feet.

  • Keep umbrella handy to deal with any unpredictable monsoon.

  • Sunglasses will also come very handy as when you get to face Sun in Yercaud, most of the time it will be of high intensity.

Communication
  • Majorly spoken language is Tamil. However at most of the resorts, hotels and major restaurants people will be able to communicate in English also. But when you get to deal with some locals or small vendors then it may be difficult to communicate in Hindi or English. As most of them won’t be well versed in these languages. But still you can communicate with the help of cab driver or some other available person nearby who are able to communicate in Hindi or English

  • You can also use some translation apps to manage communicate gap to some extent.

 

A trip from Bangalore to Yercaud

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24 Responses

  1. Excellent article, thanks a lot !!
    Planning to visit Salem

  2. Yercaud looks like really a great gateaway destination. I love mountains and traipsing my feet here would make me very happy. I love all the stunning scenery, it is very refreshing. The panoramic view up there has given me time to commune with nature. I hope to visit here soon If I get the chance. Thank you so much for sharing this with us.

    • This definitely makes for a serene getaway from busier cities nearby like Bangalore and Chennai. You will definitely like it here if you are a mountain person.

  3. Years back I visited Ooty and Kodaikanal but never heard about Yercaud. It lookes really picturesque and romantic. I’m sure that it remains a place for a honey moon destination

    • It’s definitely green and not very crowded. Accommodation options are limited, so, you need to book in advance particularly in case if you are visiting on a long weekend

  4. Loved your blog. I liked how you listed all the places to see in Yercaud. Last time I was there I went to Great Trails for a meal and of course to take pictures at the Skywalk. And I loved the avocados there at Yercaud- omg so cheap. Your blog brought back all the memories. Thanks for this.

  5. Wow! Yercaud is such a beautiful hill station! The lovely clouds, the sunset, the greenery, the splendid views – everything about this place is magical. The night view of the valley is simply mesmerizing. I’m still to discover South India and I’ve added Yercaud to my bucket list. Thanks for sharing the detailed information.

  6. Yercaud is perfect for those long weekends and not too hurried too. The pace is perfect to relax and yet do something. The lady’s seat is quite a scenic point and I loved my trek to those waterfalls. Still remember that vividly

  7. I had not even realised in my ignorance that there are hill stations in South of India, I had associated them with geographical foothills of Himalayas and not appreciated that there are other mountainous hill regions where they can also be located! Yercaud looks like a serendipitous find on your part because of late planning, how lucky!

    • Oh..you are missing on a lot Kavita. There are not just one but so many wonderful , beautiful hill stations in South India. Do visit some.

  8. Thx for this great post on South India, Neha. I would love to visit Yercaud.

  9. South India is one of my absolute bucket list places to visit. I’m hoping to visit late this year, it seems like such a beautiful country. The natural landscape is spectacular. Thanks for the tips!

    • Thanks! Definitely it is a very beautiful place with diverse landscapes. You will have a fabulous time when you visit here.

  10. For some reason I never associated Tamil Nadu with hilly places – certainly not places where it might get cold! It seems quite far though, from the big cities (probably that’s the point). Would you need to fly from Bangalore to somewhere? Or is a 250km road trip still the recommendation?

    • It’s a beautiful road trip from Bangalore to Yercaud, and in fact to most of the other hill stations of Tamil Nadu including Ooty, Coonoor, Kodaikanal etc. And each of these hill stations are mesmerizingly beautiful. We have gone to many of them more than once so far and we still feel like jumping to the next chance of going to any of these

  11. Yercaud is so beautiful and her landcsape looks lush. I can imagine how it must have felt looking for a place to stay for a getaway and you just decide to manage some places but finds out you’re wowed by such place. That’s the story of Yercaud. I look forward to visiting this non-croeded part of India. It’s perfect for a family time out. The lady’s seat sounds funny to me. Lol. When it comes to new places, I trust you always find the best, Neha.

    • Thanks Lydia. Yes, there are many other hill stations around, at more height and maybe more beautiful. But we are always at lookout of something new and something fresh. And that’s what Yercaud turned out to be. It is lush green, full of mists and clouds and beautiful. Not so crowded and serene. Perfect for a weekend getaway.

  12. Yercaud sounds like a lovely place to visit – with the beautiful natural landscapes and viewpoints to admire them from, including Lady’s Seat.

  13. Yercaud is probably the nearest hill station to Bangalore. However we are still to visit it. A few times we have planned to head out there but something else has intervened and we have gone somewhere else. Yercaud looks like a nice getaway close to Bangalore, but I guess it is better to go there on weekdays to ensure lesser crowds.

    • Weekdays always work better for holiday destinations. 2 days are enough to make a trip to Yercaud.

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