Yercaud (Tamil Nadu)
Situated 32 kms away from Salem and on the Shevroy Hills at a height of about 1500 metres above the sea level, Yercaud is the only hill station in the whole of Northern Tamil Nadu. The word Yercaud means in Tamil forest lake (Eri means lake and Kadu means forest). The air in the place is fresh, pure and invigorating. Coffee, tea cardamom and pepper plantations thrive on the hill slopes. Coupled with verdant tranquil environment and many beautiful natural views, Yercaud has won itself a popular name as the Jewel with Crown of the State. As a pretty hill station, with delightful climate, it has served as a sanatorium long before the Nilgiris were first known. There is a fine all weather road leading up to the top of the hill from Salem. There are a few interesting places to visit on this hill.
The Lake: The first thing that attracts the visitors on the hills is the beautiful lake, the pride of Yercaud, situated near the town. A perennial mountain spring feeds the lake. Varieties of bushes, flowers and trees border the lake. Apart from being an excellent picnic spot, boating is a popular sport. Adjoining the lake is the sacred Shola or wooded grove where a feast is held every year.
Kalliyur Water Falls: This is the only waterfall in Yercaud. Amidst sylvan surroundings, the stream cascades from a height of 20 metres into the valley.
Selvaroyan Temple: At the highest point in Yercaud, about 1800 metres above sea level, under a huge tree, a small temple is situated deep inside a natural cave, dedicated to the deity of the hills, Selvaroyan. Tribals from the surrounding villages assemble for this annual festival.
Bears Cave on the way to the Selvaroyan temple is a fine place from where a bird's eye view of the lake and the township can be seen. Arthur, seat is another place where similar panoramic view can be experienced. Pagoda Point is a place where breathtaking view of the eastern side of the Shevroy hills can be seen. Cauvery Peak gives a grand view of the flowing river Cauvery in the plains.
How to reach Yercaud:
Yercaud is connected with a good system of regular buses from Salem throughout the year. In addition, a number of taxis and tourist buses operate frequent trips to this place, particularly during the holidays and week -ends. On the hills there are a few luxury hotels, moderate lodgings. Youth hostel and a tourist lodge is there to provide accommodation to the visitors.