Keep close to nature's heart….and break clear away, once in a while and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean –John Muir

Kodaikanal is one among those places which will wash your spirit clean. It is known for its greenery surrounded with rocks, woods, serene lakes and fresh air. Kodaikanal is also referred to as "The Princess of hill stations".The word Kodaikanal can be split into two words 'kodai' and 'kanal' which in Tamil language means 'gift'and'forest'rendering kodaikanal as 'Gift of the forest'. There are more three possible interpretations in Tamil language regarding the meaning of its name.

Kodaikanal History

The artefacts that have been found in the kodaikanal areas dating from early Chera dynasty have proved that the first human habitation in these regions were by the palayar (primitive)tribal people. Some of their relics and artefacts are still preserved in shenbaganur museum. During the 14th century Kannuvar Vellalans from Coimbatore plateau emigrated into kodaikanal, they were the industrious farmers who did agriculture with the tribal people who already existed in Kodaikanal. During 17th and 18th century Kannuvar Vellalans rule was followed by Marathas and Muslims, during their rule, their people struggled from many hardships which forced them to migrate to the Vellagavi hill in Kodaikanal. This led to the first development of the Kodaikanal.

The British Lieutenant B. S. Ward who had his central quarters in Vellagavi was the first westerner to visit Kodaikanal. The missionary people from Europe and America who suffered from the diseases caused by the heat in Tamilnadu wanted to protect themselves from the heat and went to kodaikanal. Impressed by the climate and environment they built their residence there and were the first group of foreigners to settle in kodaikanal. Later in 1853 they built The Anglican Church of St.Peter which is the first church in kodaikanal. Many foreigners built their residence in Kodaikanal and got settled there. They supported in the further development which resulted kodaikanal as one of the best tourist place in India.