The mesmerising hill station of Ooty paints a beautiful picture, with its high waterfalls, lush greenery and quaint, relaxing stays. But, did you know that this beloved hill station has caught the fancy of many Bollywood directors as a shooting spot for its scenes?
Often called the Queen of the Hills in South India, Ooty is a stunningly beautiful destination that is nestled within the Nilgiri Hills. The destination is not just a travel hub but is also known for its medicine production, as well as for coffee plantations, spices and more. In addition, places here such as the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Mountain Railways (Nilgiri railways) and pine forests make for some pretty sights to visit — both for their natural beauty and mesmerising views.
No wonder, then, that for years now, Ooty has captured the attention of several Bollywood directors and film producers. From the railway station to the Botanical Gardens, Ooty has ample shooting spots that can be seen in movies through the years. So, if you’re a movie buff, be sure to check out these places on your next trip to this hill station.
Ooty shooting spots featured in Bollywood movies
Ooty Railway Station
The Nilgiri Mountain Railways have been featured in several movies and shows, the most iconic of them being Dil Se. The film’s song, Chhaiya Chhaiya, starring Shah Rukh Khan and Malaika Arora, was picturised atop a train on this scenic route and captured Ooty’s rustic natural charm and the mesmerising mountains in the background.
Ranbir Kapoor and Katrina Kaif’s Ajab Prem Ki Ghazab Kahani had some really beautiful locations throughout the movie. And probably the most iconic among them was the one where Prem (Kapoor) proposes to Jenny (Kaif). This sequence was shot at the Pykara Lake in Ooty, which is a great spot today for boating and other fun activities.
If there’s one place in Ooty that has been a shooting spot for multiple movies, it’s the Pine Forests. From the romantic track Gazab Ka Hai Din from Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak or scenes from movies such as Raaz, Deewana, Raavan, Barfi and more, the woods have cemented their place on celluloid, with a lot more to come.
Western Catchment Area
The eternal Bollywood romantic song that encapsulates first love, Pehla Nasha from the movie Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikandar, was shot at the Western Catchment Area in Ooty. Featuring the mountains, the clear skies and the sweet emotions of young love, the song (featuring Amir Khan and Ayesha Jhulka) is one that will transport you to the hills in no time!
Maine Pyar Kiya, which was the movie that catapulted Bhagyashree and Salman Khan to stardom, is one of the many movies that depict stunning places in Ooty. Some of the shooting locations in the movie include Botanical Gardens, where parts of the song Kabootar Ja have been shot.
A Shah Rukh Khan fan or not, there’s hardly a chance that you haven’t watched Kuch Kuch Hota Hai. The movie, which has been shot across several locations and spans years, was lauded for its dramatic scenes, intense chemistry between SRK and Kajol and the acting by Sana Saeed, who played SRK’s daughter. And if you remember the Shimla summer camp that young Anjali (Sana) runs away to, you’ll realise that it’s actually been shot at Ooty’s Wenlock Downs! The beautiful place was perfect as the setting for the rekindled love between Rahul (SRK) and Anjali (Kajol), and made for some much-loved and remembered scenes from the movie.
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