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Yercaud Tourism And Travel Guide
19.7° C / 67.5° F
October to June
1 to 2 Days
Salem Airport (47 kms)
Salem Junction Railway Station (32 kms)
Yercaud is a hill station in the Shervarayan range of hills in the Eastern Ghats of India. The hills are an outcrop in the Salem District of Tamil Nadu, in the south of India.
Yercaud, as is true of all hill stations, is a relaxed sojourn in the midst of nature. Although smaller than Ooty the ‘Queen of Hill Stations’, Yercaud is picturesque enough to be called the ‘Princess of Hill Stations’. For years, Yercaud had been inhabited by tribal clans, until Sir Thomas Munro who was the Governor of Madras Presidency stumbled upon this place in the early 19th century. With the initiatives of more British administrators like David Cockburn and Dr. Wallich, the untamed Yeri (lake) and Kaadu (forest) transformed into the thriving hill station of Yercaud, complete with coffee and spice plantations and fruit orchards. Deep into the backwoods of the reserved forests on the slopes of Yercaud live bison, smaller mammals and a plethora of birds. Yercaud is a simple, unassuming hill station, most ideal even for a day or weekend holiday getaway.
If you would like to take a trip to Yercaud, our travel and tourism guide will help you plan a memorable trip to the hill station.
How to Reach
Yercaud lies very close to the cities of Bengaluru, Salem and Coimbatore. You could visit Yercaud on a day’s trip from these cities. The easiest way to reach Yercaud would be to travel by train to Salem and then proceed by road to Yercaud.
You can book a flight from Chennai to the nearest airport at Salem. There is a taxi stand outside the airport and you could book a cab to Yercaud.
There are several trains chugging into Salem Rail station from all major cities round the country. Again, you can hire a cab to Yercaud or to the bus stand and proceed to Yercaud by bus.
It’s an absolute breeze driving up the winding slopes to Yercaud from Salem or Bengaluru. There are buses aplenty from Salem to Yercaud. It takes about an hour and 15 mins to arrive at Yercaud from Salem. Then there are those adventurous ones that ride a bicycle up the hill.
If you are not driving up to Yercaud on your own, you could find auto rickshaws or cabs to take you around the hill station. But some areas, especially around the Lake, can be covered on foot.
Weather and the Best Time to Visit
Yercaud has modest rains in monsoon, cool winters and warm summers; so the best tourist times are from October-June.
Summer (March – June):
Summer’s great because summer time in the plains is hot and sweltering and up here it’s mildly warm and pleasing. Summer is the most inviting tourist season and it does get crowded at times. Annual Flower shows brighten up the atmosphere further.
Monsoon (July – September):
There might be moderate to heavy rainfall during these months. You might not be able to do a whole lot of sightseeing. But monsoon turns the whole region so verdant and green that you might choose clear daylight hours for a day’s trip and back.
Winter (October – February):
Winter is misty and luxuriant after the monsoon has rained away. There might be occasional showers in December from the retreating northeast monsoon. It’s ideal for photography and long drives up the hill. Gear up for cold winter nights with bonfires.
Things to Do
32 km Loop Road:
This is one of the best things to do in your itinerary. The 32 km Loop Road begins from Yercaud Lake, zips past a beautiful landscape fringed by coffee and pepper plantations and tiny villages before returning to the Lake side. The tour is ideal for photography and picnic by the plantations.
Yet another view point that gives a bird’s eye view of the town of Yercaud, Yercaud Lake and the Shervarayan Peak. If you take the steep climb up north about 1 km from the town centre, you’d have reached Arthur’s Seat.
White Elephant’s Tooth:
These white quartz rocks standing in stark contrast to the greenery around, are said to be the remains of a meteorite. You would find them on the southern side of the Shervarayan hills, on the eastern side of the Ghat Road. The White Elephant’s Tooth that is about 120 ft high is a trekkers’ delight, although the rocks crumble as one descends!
Kottachedu Teak Forest:
Home to Yercaud’s wild flora and fauna, the teak forest is a lovely place for a stroll or a drive. Check out the Vanier River that meanders through the Forest. Said to have been cultivated over lands abandoned by the hill tribes, the Teak Forest is under the care of the State Government. The Kottachedu Teak Forest is about 11 km from Yercaud.
Veera Anjaneya Temple:
The Veera Anjaneya Temple at Muluvi is situated in such a beautiful lonely locale surrounded by flowering shrubs, creepers and tall trees. The temple is on the Nagalur to Bengaluru Road and has a meditation Hall, library and accommodation as well.
Maintained by the Horticultural Society, the Anna Park is worth spending an evening exploring the place. This is one of the venues for the annual flower shows. Check out the Japanese Park, with its unique Bonsai collections.
Yercaud comes alive with the summer festivals that coincide with the annual tribal festival at the Shervarayan temple in May. Lakhs of flowers are displayed at various venues, with thematic floral structures with anthurium, carnations and roses promising a visual treat. Dog shows, photography and healthy baby contests, tribal cookery shows and a boat race for tourists add zing to the festivities. Special buses run from Salem to Yercaud and all the way to Pagoda Point, Lady’s Seat and Shervarayan Temple.
The little hill station would obviously have anything that is natural and organic. Go in for coffee powder or beans, pure honey, cardamom and pepper, figs, oranges, jackfruits and avocados grown on the slopes and of course, homemade chocolates. You could also invest in simple winter clothes and a supply of perfumes, essential oils as well as medicated and aromatherapy oils. When you are driving back home via Salem, don’t forget to pick up a parcel of Salem’s favourite street food called Thattu Vadai to eat on the way. They are rather like crispy fried cookie sandwiches with veggies and chutney fillings and so particular to Salem.