If you google ‘hill stations in South India’, you’ll probably book a hotel in Coorg, Ooty, Munnar or Chikmagalur. Considering how famous these destinations have become over the last decade or so, we don’t blame the tourist for thronging these places. But wait, there’s more.
For years tourists have frequented hill stations of Ooty and Munnar for their lush green meadows and tea estates. But over the last few years population has boomed in these destinations thanks for over commercialisation due to an influx of tourists. They no longer have the appeal of a quaint hill station; rather you are greeted by traffic jams as soon as you enter the city, parking issues and the lack of personal space while walking their busy streets.
We love travelling to the hills and tea estates and were looking for alternate destinations when we happened to hear about Valparai from a friend. We booked a nice bungalow and were off the next weekend. Words won’t do justice to the beauty of this place so we rather do justice with pictures.
Apparently, it all started in 1846, when Ramasamy Mudaliar started a coffee plantation here. Then in 1875, during the British Raj, the British army build a guest house for soldiers in the Valparai hills.
Then in 1875, Prince A.P. WALES EDWARD VII visits India and plans to head to this region for hunting. All arrangements are made but the trip gets canceled. Move forward to 1890 when tea plantations were made by the British and the result is this heavenly abode amidst the Annamalai Hills.
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