Mysore’s heyday is steeped in royalty and rich heritage. The Mysore Palace is a remnant of those times, still standing in all its former glory. Ooty on the other hand is a year-round paradise, nestled above the clouds in the lush Western Ghats. Undertaking a road trip from Mysore to Ooty is a must for anyone who finds themselves in these magical cities. Additionally, nothing beats making this journey by bike. A famous route for bikers looking for a quick escape, here’s all you need to know about a bike trip from Mysore to Ooty.
Small Cities, Big Charms: Mysore And Ooty
Mysore is a compact city, tiny yet filled with tons to see and do. The Mysore Palace is just one fascinating stop for the curious traveller; there’s several sites to be explored like the Mysore Zoo and Karanji Lake Park. It is effortless to rent a bike and go adventuring in Mysore, especially for anyone seeking out authentic Mysore dosas! It boasts loads of amazing day trip destinations within its proximity. Additionally, its convenient distance from other cities like Wayanad and Ooty means anyone can jazz up their weekend with a trip to either of the two cities.
Ooty was founded as a summer resort for the British Raj, and retains its resort vibe to this day. It remains a popular holiday destination, be it for a weekend or an entire week. Pleasant weather pervades the year round, and it has plenty of tourist attractions. Bursting with life and boasting a functional steam railway line, Ooty is a city on most Indians’ bucket lists.
Your Route From Mysore To Ooty
There are 2 main routes for a bike trip from Mysore to Ooty. The shorter of the two is the 126 km route via Masinagudi on the Mysore – Ooty road. The second is the longer 156 km route via Gudalur. The first of these is famous as the 36 hairpin curve route, winding its way up to Ooty. It takes around 3.5 hours. The second is longer, taking about 4 to 4.5 hours, but the ride is just as scenic.
With both routes, you exit Mysore on the Nanjangud – Gundlupet highway, with thankfully good road quality. Your paths diverge at Gundlupet. Both routes take you through wildlife reserves with greenery on both sides. Additionally, there are bound to be stop posts, particularly when you cross over from Karnataka into Tamil Nadu. Ensure you carry all necessary documents like your driver’s license with you.
May, the month with peak traffic, brings a few changes. The hairpin Masinagudi road becomes a one-way, allowing only downhill traffic. In addition, only certain registered vehicles are allowed to make the descent. All other vehicles must take the much safer route via Gudalur. This is because the hairpin road has been the site for several accidents, and only local, experienced motorists can get a pass to traverse this route.
Apart from this, the road through the Bandipur Reserve shuts down at 6 pm. In this scenario, your only other option would be to head to Gudalur and spend the night there, before resuming your journey the next day. Take all the above points into consideration when planning your trip from Mysore to Ooty by bike. Ensure you plan your journey well and always leave on time to avoid rushing and potentially endangering your lives.
Who Is This Road Trip For
Both routes, when travelling from Mysore to Ooty by bike are long, and while it is scenic, both are a bit challenging. There are several road bumps when travelling through the Bandipur Tiger Reserve. You must be vigilant in case of deer or any other wildlife attempting to cross the road. The road conditions with both routes are a mixture of good to okay roads, and some caution must be exercised. We recommend that only experienced bikers undertake the bike trip from Mysore to Ooty. First-timers and amateurs can try their hand at some of the day trips from Mysore instead.
In addition, we recommend that only the most experienced riders attempt to travel on the Masinagudi route. The hairpin bends are no joke, and must be treated seriously. It takes an experienced hand to navigate these well. In case you are considering taking this route, check in advance whether it is open to motorists at the time of your trip. Or, simply avoid the hassles and travel via Gudalur. Lastly, travel in a group, and do not undertake this route alone, as your path winds through long stretches of forested area, which may get desolate at times.
Best Time To Travel
The parks are famous for being at their prime in the monsoon. The rain clads the surroundings with fresh flora and fauna, and the lush greenery takes your breath away. However, the monsoon is the last time you want to attempt a bike trip from Mysore to Ooty. Ooty receives a lot of rainfall in the monsoon, and the roads will be dangerous and slippery. Besides, the heavy rain and fog means you can’t do or see much in Ooty anyway. The best time would be ideally from December to March, when there is optimum visibility not obscured by rain or fog.
While we’ve recommended experienced riders for the bike trip from Mysore to Ooty, amateurs and beginners can always rent a bike in Ooty itself. Alternatively, consider exploring Mysore on bike, or taking a day trip from Mysore. With any road trip, ensure your bike is in good condition before you set off, especially for the journey from Mysore to Ooty. If you feel your adrenaline rising at the thought of this trip, wait no longer: kickstart your motorbikes for an unforgettable road trip.
See also: Bike Trip from Mysore to Wayanad|Exploring Ooty On A Motorbike