Places Around Mysore | Attractions in Mysore
Mysore City | Distance to Mysore
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The road distance between Mysore and Ooty is about 164 km. It takes about 4-5 hours travel, from Mysore to Ooty by road.
Let’s first see the driving directions for those of taking your car/bike to Ooty from Mysore. Somewhere later in this page you’ll find the public transport options to Ooty from Mysore, that’s essentially the bus and those private maxicab services.
Here is the road route:
Route 1 ( 136 km ): Mysore City —- 24km — –> Nanjangud — 43km –> Gundlupet — 20km –> Bandipur National Park — 8km –> Karnataka Tamilnadu border — 5km –> Theppakkadu (leaves NH67) —- 7km –> Masinagudi — 8km –> Ghat section starts ( 36 hairpin bends ahead ) — 14km –> Joins NH67 (Ghat section ends) – 7km –> Ooty
Route 2( 183km ): Mysore City — 24km –> Nanjangud — 43km –> Gundlupet –20km –> Bandipur National Park — 5km –> Karnataka Tamilnadu border — 7km –> Theppakkadu – 17km –> Gudallur Town – 46km –> Pykara Lake — 21km –> Ooty
So its actually two routes to chose from after Theppakkadu. One goes via Masinagudi and the other via Gudallur town. The first looks a bit shorter , but a lot tough to drive thanks to the steep climb and those hairpin bends. Irrespective of the route, the road quality is pretty decent all the way from Mysore to Ooty.
The first task from Mysore is to get to the Nanjangud road. This is nothing but the Calicut (Kerala) bound NH212, also called the Nilgiri road. This starts from the southeast part of Mysore Palace compound. You can also take the JLB Road or the Outer Ring Road , both joins the NH212 in the outskirts of the city.
Traffic from Mysore to Nanjangud is relatively high thanks to those numerous trucks and the buses on this stretch. Further from Nanjangud up to Gundlupet the traffic thins down. Nevertheless this too is a busy route.
Immediately after the Gundlupet town the highway makes a broad right bend with a left fork (rather a straight road) branching out. This is the starting point of NH67. The right leads (NH212) to Calicut. Take the straight road (ie NH 67) that heads towards Bandipur and Ooty. In short you are leaving NH212 at Gundlupet and countinue to Ooty on NH 67.
If everything went well you should reach this point in about 1½ hours from Mysore city.
After about 20-30 minutes you’ll hit a village called Hungala. Take the right deviation for the popular Gopalaswamy temple (popularly Himavad Gopalaswamy Betta).
After about 4km from the deviation arrives the Pugmark Restaurant on NH67 operated by the Jungle Lodges. This is a great place to take that much needed break after Mysore. The easy landmark is a shrine in the middle of the highway where the road makes a split around it. This is some 4km after Hungala mentioned above.
The Pugmark Restaurant will appear on your left after about ½ km from this shrine. Another one more kilometer you enters the Bandipur National Park. In one stork the whole surrounding changes.
Now your drive is through the forest. The road is now in decent condition, though you are restricted to drive slow while inside the forest. There are quite a few rules to be followed while inside the forest. Do not get out of your car. Halt well ahead to give way if you find wild animals crossing your path. Don’t honk and so on. In short safely cross the forest without disturbing the wildlife.
A little ahead after the forest entry gate, the road bifurcates making it into a one-way road. After this rejoins (some 2½ km later) you’ll pass the Bandipur’s tourist center. Those heading for Bandipur as a day trip from Mysore end up here to take the safari. There is a forest outpost and a gate nearby.
About 8km from the safari point is the Karnataka Tamilnadu border. A bridge across the stream marks the state border. An arch welcomes you to Tamilnadu. Around the bend is the check post of Tamilnadu.
Though it is the a contiguous forest, on the Tamilnadu side it is called Mudumalai National Park.
About 5km from the border you’ll reach a place called Theppakadu. This is the place the route to Ooty via Masinagudy deviates from the NH 67, that heads to Ooty via Gudalur.
The main traffic to Ooty (bus,trucks etc) goes via Gudalur. However the adventurous ones can take the Masinagudy route. You’ll find the safari point, forest guest houses and even an elephant camp ( Mudumalai Elephant Camp) near this junction.
The straight road ( NH67) take you to Gudalur after 18km from Theppakadu. This is a relatively large town you would cross after Gundlupet. Another 28km you’ll pass the Pykara (one of the Ooty’s attractions) lake. From Pykara to Ooty town is about 20km.
Back to the Masinagudi route. For this you’ve to take the left turn at Theppakadu, leaving the NH67. The easy landmark is a big arch bridge across the river on your left. This bridge called Ari Gowder Bridge. It was constructed in 1939 and named after a popular leader of the region .
7km later you’ll reach Masinagudi. This is a very popular destination among trekking fans and also popular for the many resorts/home stays around. Baring the Masinagudi village limits, you are very much in the forest region. About 6 to 8km later you’ll hit the ghat section known for the formidable steep climbs and hairpin bends. You’ve to negotiate some 36 of them that appears one after another in quick succession on a narrow uphill road. Not for the week hearted (car,driver and the co passengers included!).
For about 15km you’ll be on the first or second gear while climbing and negotiating those hairpins. If you fumble and the engine stops, your car will start sliding downhill. And there would another vehicle right behind you! The road is pretty narrow, a little more than a single lane. One side is the mountain cliff and the other side is a gorge, anyway.
So, what is the moral of the story?
Never drive dead close to that vehicle ahead of you while climbing. It’s not enough to keep that typical “breaking distance” you keep while driving on city roads.
The uphill vehicles are given priority (give way) especially while negotiating the curves. Vehicles in the downward direction stops well ahead of the bends allowing the climbing vehicles take the turn easily, though the road at the bends are relatively wider. While climbing blow horn at the blind bends to see to that you’ll not meet another vehicle at a narrow bend. Either you go first, if that’s not the case allow them the take the turn first.
If you thought climbing was tough, you will be proved wrong when taking this road while returning from Ooty. If you are not careful, your can car go out of control much faster than you think.
Keep it on the first,second or third gear while climbing down. This is the best control than relaying on the break ALONE. First of all the breaks may not stand for such intense load given the road is too steep and that too for such a long duration (10-15km). They are not meant for such It will get heatedup and may get jammed , or even worst, fail altogether.
And finally do not try to enjoy the scenery while driving, though it is immensely tempting. If you want, take the passenger seat and leave the driving to someone else. Stay alert and focused on the road.
By the way the Masinagudi route is closed for traffic in the night.
At the end of the ghat you’ll reach a place called Kalhatti , you can stop here to watch clouds at your level or even beneath. A short detour (3km to right) from this point can take you to the Kalhatti Falls. Otherwise Ooty town is 10km away.
So that’s it about the driving directions from Mysore to Ooty.
As promised earlier, here are some details about the public transport scenario in the Mysore Ooty route. There are about 20 daily services to Ooty by both Tamilnadu and Karnataka state transport corporations. Both of them operate from the Mysore KSRTC bus stand located in the city center. Out of this about 12 are operated by KSRTC.
The class of services vary. Four of them are Bangalore to Ooty Airavat (AC Volvo bus) services via Mysore. One is in morning (9.30am) , Two are in the noon (12.15 pm and 1.15pm ) and the last Volvo bus to Ooty from Mysore is by 5.30pm.
There are 3 Rajahamsa (non AC with reclining seats ) services from Mysore to Ooty. The first one is at 7am and the rest two are in the midnight (11.30pm & 11.39 pm ).
There are 5 express buses by KSRTC at regular intervals spanning over the day (8.30am, 9am,10am, 12.35pm,1pm).
In short you will find a KSRTC bus to Ooty every hour from 7am to 5pm. And a few more in the midnight. Ticket cost and traveling time varies according to the service. Typically its is between 4½ and 5½ hours. Ticket costs are about Rs85, Rs123 and Rs184 for Express, Rajahamsa and Airavat respectively.
In addition to the bus services, many agencies too operate vans and mini buses between Mysore and Ooty.
Check with the ksrtc website (ksrtc.in) for the schedules and ticket costs. You can even reserve seats online (See KSRTC Booking) through the KSRTC’s portal.