Yelagiri is about 150 km from Bangalore and 250 km from Chennai (Madras), good for a four hour bike ride with breaks along the way. Take the NH7 out of Bangalore towards Hosur, turn towards Chennai (onto NH46) at Krishnagiri and continue until you get just before Vaniyambadi. You can see the Hills from quite a distance (on your right). From a break in the highway that comes approx 2 km after the toll gate, turn right into the underpass road that takes you to Tirupathur. Continue some 5 km and at Ponneri Junction take a left to Yelagiri Hills. The routes are all marked with signboards in English.
Yelagiri is about 258 km from Chennai-Tambaram. Take the Poonamalee High Road out of the city to Ponamalee Town. From Poonamalee, take the Bangalore highway towards Vellore. The distance to Vellore is about 140 km and the route passes through Sriperumbudur, Walajapet. Vellore would be a good place to plan a break, there are a lot of eating places right on the highway. From Vellore continue on to Ambur and then towards Vaniyambadi. On the highway about 45 km from the third(counting from Chennai) toll station, watch out for a signboard for “Elagiri – 22 kms”. Take a left at this exit. Its easy to miss this left and if you overshoot this you would reach the Vaniyambadi toll station in about 1km. Continue on this road (SH18) till you reach Ponneri junction which has Thirupathur straight and Yelagiri on the left. Watch out for this one as it is easy to miss. (On the left, you’ll see a big sign board ‘Tamilnadu Tourism Department Welcomes You’. Turn left at this junction, there’s a sign board pointing towards Yelagiri.)
The roads are well punctuated with signboards in English, and the roads especially the Chennai-Vaniyambadi stretch are excellent (in 2007). It is fairly safe, watch out for the occasional truck that changes lanes abruptly. The last petrol pump is after you turn left at Ponneri, a little before you start on the ghat section. There are no petrol pumps on the hills.
There are 14 hairpin bends on the ghat road from Ponneri to Yelagiri and the road is pretty narrow so you can’t actually park a car to enjoy the view except at some of the wider hairpin bends. Bikes won’t have this problem though.
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If you are coming by train from Bangalore, Chennai or Coimbatore you have to get down at Jolarpettai Junction. Cabs and buses are available from there.
If you prefer to take public transport, buses come from Thirupattur and Jolarpet. You can take a taxi also from these places. You can negotiate for about 1200 INR (2011) to drop you in Yelagiri Hills from Jolarpettai Junction.
Things to remember
Note there are no petrol stations in Yelagiri, thus you have to fill up the tank at the last available petrol station in the plains. Except for a few tire changers there are no vehicle repair shops in the hills.
Also, please take your first-aid kit along with your regular medicines, if any, with you. There is a government primary health centre, and a private clinic. The nearest health centre is in Tirupattur.