It’s been 2 years and I’m still proud of single handedly planning an entire trip from my aunt’s maternal home. Back in 2017 July, my parents asked if I wanted something grand on my birthday or maybe just a small gathering. And I knew this would be a perfect time to demand what they wouldn’t allow on a normal day, a trip to Yercaud. 

While I did expect a 180 degrees negative response from both, my mother seemed quite alright, as her sister lives in Salem and would be able to accommodate me for 2 days. 

And voila, with a major chunk of my internship money saved (no hotel booking, you see), I was ready to pack my bags. In two days, I was to reach my aunt and of course, being able to see my cousin brother made me happier than ever. I mean, a trip plus visiting your favorite cousin? This gift couldn’t get any better!

The Birthday Trip

My mama (maternal uncle) suggested that I should book a top-rated taxi in Salem to reach their house. After all, why be stuck in public transport after such a long journey, especially on your birthday? Upon reaching their home, I still remember the big chocolate birthday cake which sat on their dinner table. Everyone wished me as I cut the cake, of course not without trying to pull my leg by singing that absurd song. 

We began planning for the next day as there were many places to visit. While I had just a few in mind, my brother recommended various other sightseeing options. In an hour, the list was getting bigger to fit within a 24 hours gap. But, these were the ones we were able to check-in:

Rose Garden

It took us an hour to reach the Yercaud Hillstation’s Rose Garden. We had to start our journey early as the line would begin from 8 am sharp. The 10 Rupees extra for my camera did cut a sweet deal as within the garden, was a heavenly sight.

This was not your ordinary strolling path as the Rose Garden had various sections of exotic shrubs and flowers. My aunt and I began with the bonsai garden. Now I know about the bonsai from several Japanese animations from my childhood. Up next, there were topiary, butterfly and foliage gardens which were fragrant and lush with greenery. 

The Botanical Survey of India did work wonders to preserve various endangered plant species under a welcoming environment. 

The Emerald Lake

The Emerald Lake which was 5 Kms away from the Rose Garden, is a natural formation and of course, a part of my bucket list. Of course, we had to hurry as the tourist attraction would close at 5:30 PM. 

Although, the afternoon light made the lake look beautiful and gleaming as ever. 

The lofty hills and floating fountain in the background made the entire backdrop feel like a dream. My uncle and cousin booked a 4-seat motor boat with paddles. Although this was a 20 minutes motor ride, I was able to relish in the views, the sounds, and the serenity of the environment. Not to forget, the deer park on the banks was quite a wonderful surprise. 

Pagoda Point

The next day, our plan was for Pagoda Point. We began our journey to reach by 10 AM. I rented a licensed and well-reviewed car with an experienced driver. Because this was my last day to stay here with my aunt’s family. 

The wonderful surroundings in Pagoda Point filled my soul to the brim. Not to forget, I also got to know of the Pyramid Point name due to stone formation to look like a Pyramid. As art from the local tribes, this stood to be the focal tourist attraction. 

My aunt showed me Salem town in the distance which was a sight to behold!

The entire trip was my first solo journey (to the location, of course) and will remain in a special place for me. Upon returning, I made sure to share all the pictures with my cousin. Although it felt sad to leave for home back then, now I can plan an entire solo trip there and this time, a surprise visit to my aunt’s.

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