Upper Bhavani Lake

Weather :

Timings : Tour: 10:30 AM - 3:00 PM

Time Required : 2-3 hrs

Entry Fee : No entry fee

Upper Bhavani Lake, Ooty Overview

The Upper Bhavani Lake is a mesmerising and breathtaking lake that is located above the Avalanche Area in the Nilgiri Hills in Udhagamandalam, (also known as Ooty), in Tamil Nadu. This beautiful lake, which was previously ignored and consequently unexplored, is now gaining some popularity and credit for its charming beauty and picturesque scenes. Prior permission by the Forest Department is required to enter the area, along with details of the number of the car and the people who are coming into this zone. The journey to the Upper Bhavani Lake from Ooty is a long car ride, followed by a trip in a bus/jeep and provides the tourists with spectacular views of famous attractions such as Avalanche Hydel Power, Cauliflower Forest, Bhavani Amman Temple and the Upper Bhavani backwaters. Tourists can also spot numerous animals and birds like peacocks and tigers on the way.

Even though no one is allowed to touch the water of this pristine lake, the view in itself is worth it. When even the tallest and most exquisite of hill stations in Ooty fail to provide a touristy feeling and adventure, the Upper Bhavani Lake comes to the rescue. The place primarily appeals to those who like to travel on the 'road less taken'. It is indeed a pity that almost 99% of the tourists who visit Ooty are unaware of this lake. Perhaps this is why the Upper Bhavani Lake continues to remain a uncrowded and untouched virgin place that one needs to explore.

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Ooty To Upper Bhavani Lake

A jeep or a bus takes visitors from the office of the forest department up to the Upper Bhavani Lake. The entire journey is a 2-hour affair since it takes 45 minutes to cover one side and then the bus/jeep stops at the lake for about 20 minutes. The vehicles also stop midway at a few places for some time, and tourists are allowed to click photographs.

The first halt of the bus is at Sholas, that is a steep valley full of trees that look as green as green can be! This is done to ensure that the ecology remains undisturbed and that the vehicle does not attract the attention of the wild animals in the forest like tigers, panthers and Nilgiri Lemurs. There are also some tree plantations inside the forest. The road journey also offers views of wild deer, peacock and monkeys enjoying in their natural habitat.

There is a small water spring running down the valley en route the Upper Bhavani Lake. The bus halts for around 10 minutes. The final stop is at the Upper Bhavani Lake. A massive dam is constructed on the lake, which helps in providing water to the nearby regions and that has profoundly helped in the development of agriculture. The view of the lake surrounded by the hills is fantastic. Tourists are left speechless by the scenery, the lush greenery and the clouds that fill up the blue sky.

Trek to Upper Bhavani Lake

The trek to the Upper Bhavani Lake is relatively easy but is quite long. Thus, it is best to take your vehicle to reach the destination. However, if you decide to trek on foot, it is mandatory to take a local guide along. Also, night trekking is not allowed without prior permission. The famous treks related to Upper Bhavani include:
1. Bangithapal - Silent Valley through Sispara
2. Manjoor - Thaisolai
3. Anikadu - Avalagi Dam

All of these trails lead through narrow and curved roads that snake their way over the forested hill. It is not uncommon to spot the endemic Nilgiri Tahr, along with jungle cats, giant squirrels, sambhars, deer, Nilgiri langurs, wild dogs, and leopards on the way. This trek is feasible all year round. However, avoid going there in the monsoon as you will deal with heavy rainfall and leeches.

Upper Bhavani Lake Timings and Entry fee

The Upper Bhavani Lake is open to the general public on all days.
The official timings for the opening of the forest department office are 10:30 AM. The tours are available between 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

There is no entry fee as such to view the lake.
However, to reach the Upper Bhavani Lake, you will have to hire government employed vehicles. The ticket to ride in the vehicle is as follows:
1. Safari Bus Ride: INR 150 per person
2. Safari Jeep Ride: INR 1200 (Maximum 8 people allowed)

Best Time To Visit Upper Bhavani Lake

Since the Upper Bhavani Lake is a dam reservoir, it is best to visit the lake immediately after the rains, when the water level is full. In the summer season, however, the water level recedes, and consequently, there is less greenery in the surrounding mountainous areas. Hence, try and visit the area during June, July and August. If possible, try and visit the Upper Bhavani Lake during the weekdays, when there is a lesser crowd.

Tips For Visiting Upper Bhavani Lake

1. Even though the official time for the opening of the forest department office is 10:30 AM, it is a good idea to reach around 09:30 AM to 10:00 AM to beat the crowd.
2. There is professional photography service that is available at the lake, where you can get yourself clicked for a small price. Make sure to avail the facility and keep your memories forever.
3. There are no eating places or shops that served packed food items around. Make sure that you carry food and snacks with you.
4. Keep in mind that you do not leave any garbage or empty water bottles in the area to preserve the ecosystem.

How To Reach Upper Bhavani Lake

To reach the Upper Bhavani Lake, you will first have to reach the forest department, which is near the famous four road crossing of Ooty. This place is around 24 kilometres downhill from Ooty and will take you an hour to reach. From here, the Upper Bhavani Lake is another 30 to 45 minutes drive away in forest department vehicles (tempos and buses). The vehicles stop for around 20 minutes at the lake, wherein you can enjoy the surroundings. The lake is not accessible via private cars or cabs.

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