Travel

By the lake in Kodaikanal

As we swelter under the merciless heat wave, nobody wants to get baked on the beach or the streets of touristy places during the vacation. The time is just perfect to plan a trip to the hills, where you can bask in the crisp sun during the day and feel the chill in the nights.

With clouds hovering over Kodaikanal, the princess of hill stations is experiencing a perfect 21 degrees Celsius temperature. There can’t be a better time to this cool and calm destination.

The weather is ideal for walking or cycling in shorts and T-shirts, say the locals. And, there is no better path than the five km that skirts the 154-year-old, artificially-built lake. It is the most beautiful and expressive feature of Kodaikanal. There are many ways of doing the lake. Simply walk around it. Or, hire rowboats or pedal boats at the Kodaikanal Boat Club and go boating at least for an hour to relax and look around.

Though pocket pinching, horse rides for kids are fun. And, if you are a motorist who has chugged up the hills, then yield to the ubiquitous two-wheeler! Depending on the make, you can rent gear bicycles at ₹30 to ₹50 for an hour.

On a sunny day, when a gentle breeze brushes against your cheeks, a simple bicycle ride is a fulfilling experience. Stick to the paved path that takes you past several glorious bungalows covered in blooms of various hues, the beautiful nursery hidden under a canopy of trees, the Green Acres resort with a beautiful play park for children, the roller skating hall... Even the concrete has a charm here. Once you have worked your legs enough, take a break and eat like a local.

Sip on a cup of garam chai and savour an omelette at the small kiosk by the skating school or munch on corn on the cob (bhutta) and boiled peanuts or go for the momos at Royal Tibet.

By the lake in Kodaikanal

At the cost of a few drops of sweat in the pleasant weather, you could also check out the farmers’ market from 10.30 am to 1.30 pm, if you happen to be in Kodaikanal on any Saturday (Till May 31). At the Stony Croft complex (on the BSNL Exchange road by the lake), a handful of farmers come with their organic and home-made produce. Jacqueline from France sells some of the most delicious freshly-made jams, Krishna and her husband Paul come from Perumalai with the high-end brand Caroselle cheese, lawyer Abdul Hamid brings baskets of organically and home-grown fruits and vegetables, George Penner, a Canadian by birth, gets his all-natural gourmet culinary products, from bagels, English muffins, biscotti, pizza bases, fresh pastas and pesto to a variety of sauces such as the picnic relish, barbecue and chilli garlic. The farmers sell and also offer samples of their produce to interested locals and tourists.

Ready to explore a weekend of fun, activity and some shopping?

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Printable version | Oct 24, 2020 11:20:30 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/travel/cycle-around-the-kodaikanal-lake/article18154340.ece

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