Ooty People: What makes place truly appealing to tourists? Is it the scenic beauty of the place? Is it the cultural heritage? Is it the hospitality of the locals? More likely, a place becomes truly appealing when you find a confluence of all the factors mentioned above which makes it truly a memorable experience for the tourists. Ooty people are very hospitable and friendly by nature. They are always ready to help a soul in need. Very soft spoken and down to earth they are sure to be among the most friendly lot that you will come across in your travels.
Apart from some indigenous tribes the local population mainly consists of people who have migrated from other parts of South India like people who have migrated from Mysore to Ooty or from other parts of Tamil Nadu. There are also those who have migrated from the Malabar and North Kerala. Due to the presence of these varied origins the people of Ooty speak a number of languages like Tamil, Kannada, and Malayalam. Some of the tourist guides can take you by surprise by speaking a foreign language or two like French or Spanish. Regardless, all of them are quite fluent in English. So communication is bound not be a problem if you are stranded in some alley in Ooty.
Among the original habitants of Ooty the Todas form a formidable number. Although most of them have been bought into the mainstream they have still managed to preserve their traditions and beliefs. So have other tribes like the Kurumbas, Bagadas and so on. The fabled Toda huts are a source of curiosity for a first timer in Ooty as they have no windows. These barrel shaped structures can barely accommodate a family of four and the doors are small enough that you have to stoop low to enter the hut. Yet they are main source of attraction for the tourists.
But as time passes the numbers of Todas are readily decreasing and last accounted for, there were only 1000 odd Todas left. But the local population of Ooty truly represents a cross section of the whole of South India as you find people from all the states here. Most of them arrived here as part of mass migration in search of better livelihood. Now they form one single happy community co-existing with each other. But all the distinct cultures are well preserved and this is truly visible when the people celebrate the Ooty festivals. Also many of these cultures have stuck to their family jobs like weaving, farming and so on.
Toda shawls are really very famous and of high quality. It is a good idea to buy a couple of them while you are shopping. The local population and their hospitality plays a very important role on the impression that place creates on the mind of the tourist. Ooty people leave an everlasting impression in your heart and you are sure to leave Ooty with a firm promise to come back again.