During our recent visit to Yercaud, we spent almost an entire day visiting the beautiful Coffee plantations. It was our first trekking experience with the kiddo. The walk through the pristine forests was refreshing and a great learning curve for the little one

We have done plantation walks during our trips to Ooty, Wayanad and other hill station in and around Southern part of India. This time around, during our visit to Yercaud, we were able to spend good amount of time in one of the famous Coffee estates. With the little one turning 3 this year, we felt she was ready for a trek and hence wanted to expose her to a trek which was easy.

We were staying at the Sterling resort and they had a package where one can make reservations to visit the “Gowri Woodland Estates”. The visit was scheduled for 1/2 a day, but we ended up spending almost the entire day in visiting this beautiful estate. The plan was to reach the resort by 10:30 and then spend around 4 hours in the estate, before heading back to the resort.

Tariff: Ticket cost is around INR 500 

We left the resort at around 9:30 AM and had to drive for around 45 minutes to cover a distance of 20 KMs to reach the resort. Please ensure that you download the offline Google maps before heading out for the drive. There is practically no network coverage once you start ascending the hills and it will become a bit tough to reach the destination if you do not have the assistance of google maps.

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The 45 minutes drive that one needs to take from Yercaud town to reach the estate.

 

The Drive:

The 45 minutes drive became a good 1 hour drive, thanks to the multiple stops that we took to capture the landscape. I also had to drive slowly to ensure that the motion sickness did not affect the little one. Some of the snaps that we took en-route.

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The roads were freshly laid. The windows were rolled down and the sunroof open to ensure that we gutted every bit of the fresh air 🙂

 

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Another stop, another click – there was hardly any traffic on this route. The vehicles that passed us were either fellow visitors or commercial vehicles plying towards the estate.

 

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One of the small towns that we crossed during the drive.

 

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Do not overspeed as the road is very narrow. Also we found few dangerous pits on the roadside. If you are not concentrating on the road, we might end up end up in one of them and damage your vehicle.

 

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One of those rare spots where the sun could filter through the rich cover of vegetation.

 

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And finally after all the photo sessions we managed to reach the estate parking lot. There is ample car parking. Considering that we were visiting on a weekday there was hardly any crowd

 

The Plantation Walk:

We had called the estate before we left the resort and had given them a tentative time of our arrival. Once we reach the estate, the designated tour guide was already ready and it took up only 10 minutes to start our guided tour.

If you are planning a walk through a plantation or a trek with kids, you might want to keep the following things handy:

  • Quick snacks like biscuits, cakes, health bars etc.
  • Carry enough bottles of water. Some of the walks take you through humid conditions and can drain your fluid levels. We were carrying enough water for the little one but missed carrying one for ourselves. 😦
  • Insect repellent and hand sanitiser
  • Shades and a head gear to keep the sun at bay

 

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And the tour walk starts – for few meters we walked through the well laid asphalt road

 

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All along the road we could find the coffee beans. The green coffee beans were still raw and would take couple of months before they can be plucked.

 

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Within a 10 minutes walk, we reached the first stop, which was a private lake. The views were perfect and the weather perfect for boating. We spent a good 30 minutes relaxing by the lake and boating in our very own private lake 🙂

 

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Another view of the lake. After boating one can spend sometime fishing by the lake or feeding the fishes. My daughter had a great time feeding the fishes.

 

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Heading towards our peddle boats. They were in very good condition. The peddles were very smooth and it was very easy to ride them.

 

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The pathway that leads from the Lake towards the plantation.

 

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As we started our plantation walk, the sun gradually started disappearing behind the vegetation and clouds.

 

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After a 45 minute trek through the plantation, we reached this pit. The guide explained that this was one of the tribal storage pits where they used to hide and store their supplies. The pit is 4 feet in depth and a good 6 feet in diameter. They used to close this pit and leave a marking stone or tree so that they can return and identify where they have stored the items.

 

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After a short snack break, we started our exploration and continued our plantation walk.

 

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One of the big wells that we found inside the plantation. Apparently during monsoon, this well is filled to the brim

 

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And that’s how Pepper looks like – when they are raw. 🙂

 

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Finally after a good 4 hours of walk through the plantation, we reached this spot. “Heavens Ledge campsite” is a small resort inside the plantation which has some amazing view of the valley. We spent a good hour soaking in the beautiful landscape.

 

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And that’s the view that one gets from the top.

 

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The Panaromic view of the valley from the top !!!

 

 

If you are planning a trip to Yercaud, I will recommend you to keep this plantation walk in your itinerary. Though you will be spending around a day in the estate, it is totally worth the effort and time.

 

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