Weather :

Tags : Hills & Valleys

Timings : 24 hours

Tickets & Surcharges at Cairn Hill : Trekking:
INR 350 per person

Eco- Cottage:
INR 1350 for accomodation for two people

Vehicles Charge :
Two-wheeler - INR 5
Four-wheeler - INR 10
Heavy Vehicle - INR 20
Bus - INR 50

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Cairn Hill, Ooty Overview

Situated in the hill town of Ooty, Cairn Hill is an eco-tourism and a reserved forest site which came into existence in the 1860s and sprawls over a massive area of approx 168 hectares.

Considered to be the land of one of the oldest and most massive Cyprus plantations in the Nilgiris, the beautiful natural hotspot is dotted with resorts and hotels offering a tranquil stay owing to its serenity, quietude and ataraxy.

The highlight of the spot is a trekking trail in the centre of the attraction, that is a calling for the several tourists, enthusiasts and nature lovers for its solitude and picturesque setting. Undertaking this soulful trek is one of the prime things to do at Cairn Hill. In addition to that, it has a watchtower which can let you enjoy beautiful views of the surrounding hills and valleys. Known to be a haven for birdwatchers, Cairn Hill also has bird watching facilities and jeep safari activities available for the tourists.

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History and Etymology of Cairn Hill

Cairn Hill came into existence in the 1960s when it was developed as an eco- tourism site by the British. It was demarcated as a reserved forest area and the trekking trail which is at the centre was one of the few original walks enjoyed by the Britishers. The name ‘Cairn Hill’ has been derived from the English word ‘cairn’ which means ‘a mound of rough stones built as a memorial or landmark, typically on a hilltop’. Originally, the hillock was a prehistoric burial site of the tribals and had a pile of stone accumulated at the top for the same.

Things to Do at Cairn Hill

  1. Birdwatching

    Nilgiris is considered the hotspot when it comes to exotic avifauna and bird species. Considered to be a haven for the birdwatchers and nature lovers, the place is a breeding ground and home to some of the most exotic species of the birds which include Amur Falcon, Pied Bushchat, Canary Flycatcher, White Throated Kingfisher, Kestrel, Black and Orange Flycatcher, Crested Serpent Eagle, Indian Hornbill, Malabar Pied Hornbill etc.
  2. Trekking

    Known to be a perfect place to trek and hike, the Cairn Hill has a popular trekking trail in the heart of the property which was earlier used as the walking trail by the Britishers. There are several treks conducted across the same route which takes you through a dreamland of dense woods, filtering sunlight, dainty brooks and innumerous flora and fauna. The route followed is Interpretation Centre to Watch Tower to Bird Watching area and back.
  3. Watch Tower

    The prime objective of the Watch Tower is no doubt to offer beautiful panoramic vistas of the surrounding beauty- the mountains and the emerald forests and a 360 degree bird’s eye view of the valley from the vantage point. However, besides the tourists, it is also used by the management to spot forest fires, animal movements, unnatural activity in the nearby woods, watching birds and nearby attractions like Parson’s and Avalanche etc.
  4. Safari

    Cairn Hill has the facility to book private in- house vehicles to go on a safari of the area. The safari takes you through routes unexplored where you can admire and adore the magnanimous natural beauty and luscious scenery. Through hills and valleys, woods and meadows, the safari offers views which are truly a visual treat.
  5. Stay- in in the Eco Huts

    The premises also house eco- friendly tourist huts and you can experience the joy of staying in one of these properties amidst dense woods and bounteous nature.
  6. Tribal Products Exhibition

    You can also browse through an assortment of products made by the tribals which are put on sale here. Some of the items include wicker basket, wood works, local candles etc. Purchase some to take back home with you as souvenirs.
  7. Hanging Bridge Walk

    Cairn Hill has a hanging bridge within the premises and taking a walk atop the bridge is one amongst the most thrilling and entertaining activities available at the site. Make sure you climb up this bridge and cross it atleast once while you are there.
  8. Eco-Shop

    Eco- Shop is the souvenir shop at Cairn Hill which sells little knick knacks and cutesy stuff which is all made from eco- friendly material. You browse through the products and pick some up to take back home with you.
  9. Canteen

    The canteen at Cairn Hill sells simple but delicious food, all very reasonably priced. And while you are here, you should definitely try and taste some of it.

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