The third largest city of the state, Coimbatore,is one of the most industrialized cities in Tamil Nadu, known as the textile capital of South India or the Manchester of the South, the city is situated on the banks of the river Noyyal, Coimbatore existed even prior to the 2nd or 3rd century AD by Karikalan, the first of the early Cholas. Among its other great rulers were Rashtrakutas, Chalukyas, Pandyas, Hoysalas and the Vijayanagara kings. When Kongunadu fell to the British along with the rest of the state, its name was changed to Coimbatore and it is by this name that it is known today, except in Tamil, in which it is called Kovai.
Coimbatore at A Glance
In the rain shadow region of the Western ghats, Coimbatore enjoys a very pleasant climate all the year round, aided by the fresh breeze that flows through the 25 kms long Palakkad gap. The rich black soil of the region has contributed to Coimbatore's flourishing agriculture industry and, it is in fact the successful growth of cotton that served as a foundation for the establishment of its famous textile industry. The first textile mills came as far back as 1888 but there are now over a hundred mills. The result has been a strong economy and a reputation as one of the greatest industrial cities in South India.
There are more than 25,000 small, medium, large sale industries and textile mill. Coimbatore is also famous for the manufacture of motor pump sets and varied engineering goods. The development of Hydro electricity from the Pykara Falls in the 1930 led to a cotton boom in Coimbatore.
Coimbatore serves as an entry and exit point to neighbouring Kerala and the very popular hill station of Udhagamandalam (Ooty) is 70 kms from Coimbatore. It is the disembarking point for those who want to take the Mountain train that runs from Mettupalayam just 35 kms away from Coimbatore, regular bus services also available daily from Coimbatore to Ooty and other districts, towns and major cities .