The Munnar region is full of tea estates covering the hills and valleys, which border the main roads leading to various tourist destination. These tea estates have several pathways running through the rows of tea bushes to enable the tea pluckers to do their job. A very pleasant walk can be enjoyed on these 'tea paths' in any estate that is unfenced. Do not climb over fenced areas. When you walk on a tea path, look out for colourful local birds and butterflies that flit in and out. Some tea estates give great views of mountains and valleys, and the air is so fresh and clean. It is possible to climb right up a mountain along a tea path, so look for the opportunity as it is much easier than rock climbing ! Another good easy trek opportunity is to enter the shola forests that sometimes abut the tea estates. If you look carefully, you will find little pathways going in. These jungles are dripping with ferns and orchids and are a delight for any nature lover. Watch out for leeches in warmer seasons. You will usually find small streams and waterfalls inside the shola forest.
iam a restless person when it comes to making the most of 24 hours when on a travel sojourn.
after arriving from kochi the earlier evening i was still quite keen to get the earliest view out of the window of dawn breaking over munnar.
it was breathtaking!!!!
mists arising out of valleys as the early sunrays caressed the skies over munnar.
i quickly got into my gear.and randomly selected a path which took me to tea county resort where i hoped i would get the best view.
on the way i could see the early morning activities in this tea town. laborers having tea and small chat before the day began. women hurrying up to catch the jeeps which took them to the plantations.
i arrived at the gates of tea county the KTDC resort. it was a dead end but there was an alternative route which turned left and crossed a small stream and went up the hill.
fresh flowers showed their colors as the day became brighter.birds chirped butterflies flitted over flower beds honeybees droned.
as i continued uphill i warmed up nicely and my legs felt nice after the initial stiffness.
i stopped at every turn trying to take in as much i could.
small groups of students went uphill in groups.
as i neared the top of the hill a beautiful building stood at the top.
i climbed the last bend and could read that it was an engineering college.well the students learning here are the luckiest people. who would not love to learn in such salubrious and stimulating surroundings.
i rested a bit more to mediatate and allow my mind to feel the beautiful morning atmosphere.
today i was not in a hurry. time did not matter.
aituated between neriyamangalam and adimali on the right hand side while going towrads munnar.
beautiful roar and there is a small roadside stall where you can sip on black coffee while little raindrops fall outside.
the waterfall adds to the mysticism of the place especially on a cloudy monsoon afternoon.
travelling from kochi to munnar after the initial steep ascent you suddenly come across a big white milky waterfall with a big roar.
known as cheeyapara the water cascades down in seven steps adding to the grandeur and the atmosphere.
unlike other waterfalls you can be very close to the waterfall without being in danger.a small observation culvert ensures that your vehicle is not on the road and allows you time to get out and refresh yourself.
BEST TIME TO VISIT august september just after the rains when the falls are at their magnificent best.
on the way to madupetty we came across "malathi" the cow elephant giving rides to excited foreign tourists.
along the roadside was a small canopy below the level of road which is her home.
at INR 150 per person maximum 3 people at a time it was a good deal remember it takes upto INR60000 pm to maintain an elephant.
so these rides add to the income of the "mahout"elephant keeper to sustain both of them.
sometimes these animals also get tired especially during peak tourist season.
the ride can be a daunting experience as you have to stretch your legs to the maximum so they start aching when you are over with the ride.there are some saddles where you can seat with legs on one side which is very comfy but then you miss out the view as the elephant makes forward progress.
elephant hairs are prickly and long.
elephants are preferrred mode of transport in wildlife viewings as they move so silently and their deftnes and agility is remarkable for their sheer size.
they can cover difficult terrains easily.
as you take the elephant ride you are quite a part of the spectacle as tourists in vehicles who have never seen an elephant stop and photograph the show.
AN ABSOLUTE MUST FOR ANY TRAVELLER TO INDIA.
also plz do not forget to feed a small bunch of bananas from nearby shop to these giants after work well done!!!!they love it.
This is situated 20 km from Munnar. Kundala is a picturesque town on the way to Top Station. The golf course which belongs to Tata Tea Ltd is located here. The kundala artificial dam is another attraction, Aruvikkad waterfalls is also near Kundala.
Marayoor is situated 40 km from Munnar. This is the onbly place in Kerala that hasa natural growth of sandal woold trees. The sandal wood factory of the forest department, the caves (Muniyaras) with murals and relics from the new stone age civilization andf the children's park spread across a hectare of land under the canopy of a single Banyan tree are of great intrrest to tourists'. Thoovanam waterfalls and Rajiv Gandhi National Park also near by.
This lush green carpet of tea plants is situated 22 km from Munnar.A trip on the spendid reservoir is an unforgettable experience. The Anayirankal Dam is surronded by the Tata Tea Plantations and evergreen forests. It is an ideal picnic spot.
Power House waterfalls is situated 18 km from Munnar. This waterfall on the way to Thekkady from Munnar cascades dwon a steep rock, 2000m above sea level. The spot is enriched with the scenic western mountain ranges, and is an ideal place for a break on the way to Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Thekkady.
This lovely point is situated 32 km from Munnar 1700 m above sea leverl, this is the highest point on the Munnar- Kodaiknanal road. The rare Nilakurinji (strobilanthus) belongs to this region. This plant blooms every 12 years bathing the hill sides in bright blue. Top station also offers a panoramic view of the Neighboring state of Tamilnadu.
Nyayamkad is situated 10 km from Munnar . This land of breathtaking waterfalls is located between Munnar and Rajamala. The water cascade down a hil from height of about 1600 m. The enchanting surrondings make an excellent picnic spot and trekking point.
A panorama of mountains, tea garden and a samll lake named anyirangal Dam. This is situated 30 Km from Munnar.
Chancellor British Banglow:) A hideout for the nature loving travellers at chancellor resort Chinnakanal situated amidst 350 acres of thick cardamom and coffee plantation is place where you can have taste of real cardamon estate and its activites.
Situated 10 km from munnar. With tis sleepy little cottages , bungalows, old playgrounds and courts, Chithirapuram exudes an old world charm. Home of the Pallivasal Hydel Power Project, this hill town is also famous for its pictureque tea plantations
Tourist Circuits in Munnar
Munnar - Mattupetty Dam - Indo Swiss Livestock Project - Echo Point - Kundala Dam - Top Station (34 km).
Munnar - Pothamedu - Chitirapuram - Pallivasal - Cheyappara - Adimali - Valara (40 km).
Munnar - Rajamala - Marayoor - Chinnar (70 km).
Munnar - Devikulam - Lock Heart Gap - Power House Waterfalls - Anayirankal (32 km).
Trekking Points in Munnar
Anamudi, Rajamala, Meesapulimala, Top Station, Kundala, Devikulam
Besides tea estates, Munnar is known for Neelakurinji, the flower that blooms only every 12 years. Official information says Neelakurinji can be found next in year 2006. In reality, the flower blooms in different hills each year. However, it's very difficult to find them if you don't know where there are blooming.