Places to Visit in Thekkady (Periyar)
Thekkady conjures up the images of a continuous chain of mountains with fragrant spices filling up in the air of its village Periyar. Thekkady lies in the Idukki district of Kerala and is a home to India’s finest reserves of wildlife. A major part of the area comprises the forests of the Western Ghats. Thekkady is a retreat to any nature lover. Whether it is a trek through the woods or a ferry rides the place continues to surprise you with its natural beauty. Rejoicing, relaxing, rejuvenating and also spotting animals like tiger, bison, elephants, deer, boars, leopards, monkeys or the wild squirrels, the place will leave a mark on your memory forever. Here is a list of top 5 places to visit in Thekkady.
Periyar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary
Sprawling in an area of approximately 777 sq. Km with the thick, dense forest is the sole Tiger Reserve in the country since 1978. Periyar National Park encompasses an artificial lake; tourists can see the wildlife while on the ferry’s operating on the lake. One can either trek through the forest or take a boat ride to watch the wildlife from a distance or take an elephant tour in the jungle. The sanctuary is also a home to the endangered lion-tail macaque.
Vandiperiyar or the Periyar river flows throughout the centre of this village provides sustenance to the various coffee and tea plantations across. There are also a lot of tea factories surrounding Vandiperiyar, and tourists often flank the area to taste the wondrous types of tea and watch the process that goes on post plantation. There are also many cardamom plantations that you can take a look at while touring the place.
Also known as the Spring Valley Mountain, Kurisumala is extremely famous amongst the trekkers. For the lovers of adventure and nature, the place is an absolute delight. Being popular amongst the pilgrims, the hilltop has a Church where people often come to hail their offerings. The site provides a 360-degree view of the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary and the nearby town of Kumily. With a dazzling view from the hill top, the place is an absolute favorite amongst the visitors.
Thekkady, the spice belt of India, houses the Spice Garden, which is one of the major attractions of Kerala. The Shalimar Spice Resort is a spot of quaint cottages giving a homely feeling to the visitors. Among the variety of spices grown in this garden are cardamom, pepper, coffee, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, etc. Alongside the spices, there are also many herbs grown, like lemongrass, avocado, stevia, etc. You can get to know of the natural and agricultural importance of Kerala by visiting this famous tourist location, and also enjoy the fresh, innate atmosphere.
Along the course of the Periyar river is a long and twisting route to the hilly town of Pullumedu. You can take a good look at the various plantations; lush green trees, shrubs, vegetation, and vast spread of lawns while traveling in a jeep. There is also the famous Shree Ayyappa Temple, which can be seen while on this course. The rare surrounding and relaxed ambiance make this part one of the most tranquil routes of Periyar. The dense forests of Pullumedu give it a naturally beautiful feeling.
Well-known for its plantations of cardamom, pepper, and coffee the air is filled up with spicy fragrant that will attract anyone even from a distance. Covered in the haze and beautiful valleys of the Western Ghats is what makes Murrikaddy an experience to cherish. The slopes are covered with the plantations and being a prominent picnic spot of the region the place soaks you up in the peace and the greens of nature.
Mangala Devi Temple
With a typical Kerala, architecture is designed this beautiful temple of Mangla Devi located at the height of 1337 m above the sea level. The temple is opened for visitors only on the Chithra Pournami festival day, can be accessed with the prior permission from the Wildlife Warden. The Peak provides a majestic view of the eastern side of the Western Ghats along with few hamlets of Tamil Nadu. The temple is hidden in the dense woods at the peak definitely proves to be a charm for any traveler.
Kadathanadan Kalari Centre
The Kadathanadan Kalari Centre is well known for the martial arts technique about 3000 years old. It is believed that Kung Fu was originated from Kadathanadan. The full name of this technique is Kalaripayattu. There is a special place made for the audience to enjoy the old martial art forms used for safety purposes.