MUNNAR TOURISM GUIDE:
Map: Munnar Tourism, Kerala, India
Location: Idukki District, Kerala
Altitude: 1600 m Above Sea Level.
Best Season: September To May
Main Languages: Malayalam, Tamil, Hindi And English
Munnar is situated at the confluence of three mountain streams namely Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala.
This hill station, located at an altitude of 1600 m above sea level, was once the summer resort of the erstwhile British government in South India. Sprawling tea plantations, picture book towns, winding lanes and holiday facilities make this a popular resort town. Among the exotic flora found in the forests and grasslands is the ‘Neelakurinji’.
This flower which bathes the hills in blue every twelve years will bloom next in 2006 AD. Munnar also has the highest peak in south India, Anamudi, which towers over 2695 m. Anamudi is an ideal spot for trekking.
MUNNAR PRIME ATTRACTIONS:
Mattupetti (13 km from Munnar): Situated at a height of 1700 m, Mattupetti is famous for its highly specialised dairy farm, the Indo-swiss live stock project. Over 100 varietes of high yielding cattle are reared here. Visitors are allowed into three of the eleven cattle sheds at the farm.
The Mattupetti Lake and dam, just a short distance from the farm, is a very beautiful picnic spot. The sprawling Kundala tea plantations and the Kundala lake are other attractions in the vicinity. DTPC Idukki provides boating facilities on the Mattupetty Dam. Speed Launch and slow speed motor boats are available on hire.
Pothamedu (6 km from Munnar): Pothamedu offers an excellent view of the tea, coffee and cardamom plantations in Munnar. The rolling hills, the lush mountain and the breathtaking scenery here is ideal for trekking and long mountain walks.
Pallivasal (8 km from Munnar): This is the venue of the first Hydro Electric Project in Kerala and a place of immence scenic beauty.
Attukal (9 km from Munnar): A panorama of waterfalls and rolling hills, Attukal, located between Munnar and Pallivasal, is a feast for the eyes. The place is also ideal for long treks.
Nyayamakad (10 km from Munnar): Located between Munnar and Rajamala, Nyayamakad is a land of breathtaking waterfalls. The waters cascade down a hill from a height of about 1600 meters. The enchanting surroundings makes an excellent picnic spot and trekking point.
Chithirapuram (10 km from Munnar): With its sleepy little cottages, bungalows, old playgrounds and courts, Chithirapuram still exudes an old world charm. Home of the Pallyvasal Hydel Power Project, this hill town is also famous for its picturesque tea plantations.
Lock Heart Gap (13 km from Munnar): This is an ideal place for adventure tourism and trekking. The fresh mountain air, the mist-clad hills and panoramic view make it worthy of a visit.
Rajamala (15 km from Munnar): The natural habitat of the Nilgiri Tahr,Rajamala is 2695 m above sea level. Half the world’s population of the rare mountain goat or tahr, which is fast becoming extinct, is now found here.
The Nilgiri Tahr in Rajamala is now to be found in small herds found in Eravikulam-Rajamala region. The total number of Nilgiri Tahrs in Rajamala is estimated to be over 1300. Visitors are not allowed during the monsoon.
Echo Point (15 km from Munnar): This scenic place gets its name from the natural echo phenomenon here. Echo point is on the way to Top Station from Munnar.
Eravikulam National Park (15 km from Munnar): The 97 sq. kms park is situated in the Devikulam Taluk and is home to the Nilgiri Tahr. The Anamudi peak (2695 m) is located in the Southern region of the park. Originally established to protect the Nilgiri tahr (Nilgiri Ibex), the Eravikulam National Park is situated in the Devikulam Taluk of the Idukki District.
It was declared as a sanctuary in 1975. Considering the ecological, faunal, floral, geo-morphological and zoological significance, it was declared as a National park in 1978. It covers an area of 97 sq kms of rolling grasslands and high level sholas (evergreen forests).
The park is breathtakingly beautiful and is easily comparable to the best mountain ranges found anywhere in the world. The park is divided into 3 regions – the core area, the buffer area and the tourism area.
Visitors are allowed only to the tourism area, which is in the Rajamala region. The Nilgiri Tahr can be observed at close quarters here. Trekking facilities are available here. Tourists are allowed to go on foot up to Anamudi. This is also a place for adventure tourism.
MUNNAR TREKKING AREAS:
Power House or Chinnakanal Waterfalls (18 km from Munnar): The waterfall on the way to Thekkady from Munnar cascades down a steep rock 2000 m 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 the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Thekkady.
Kundala (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 Waterfall is also near Kundala.
MUNNAR SIGHTSEEING EXCURSIONS:
Anayirangal (22 kms from Munnar): It’s a lush green carpet of tea plants. A trip on the splendid reservoir is an unforgettable experience. The Anayirangal dam is surrounded by Tata Tea plantations and evergreen forests. It is an ideal picnic spot.
Devikulam (7 kms from Munnar): This idyllic hill station with its velvet lawns, exotic flora and fauna and the cool mountain air offers a rare experience to visitors. The Sita Devi Lake with its mineral waters and picturesque surroundings is a good picnic spot. The lake is also ideal for trout fishing.
Valara (10 kms from Adimali on the Kochi-Madurai highway): Valara has a chain of waterfalls surrounded by thick green forests.
Marayoor (40 kms from Munnar): This is the only place in Kerala that has a natural growth of sandalwood trees. The sandalwood factory of the forest department, the caves (muniyaras) with the murals and relics from the New stone age civilization and the children’s park spread across a hectare of land under the canopy of a single banyan tree, are of great interest to tourists. Thoovanam waterfalls and Rajiv Gandhi National Park are also nearby.
HOW TO REACH MUNNAR:
Air: Near by airports are at Kochi (130 kms) and Madurai (142 kms).
Rail: Nearest railway stations are at Kochi and Kottayam.
Road: The place is well connected by a well developed network of road transport.
Local transport: Local buses, cycles.
PLACES TO STAY IN MUNNAR:
Periyar Mist Valley.
Royal Retreat. Elseem Garden.
Marthoma Rest House.
Misha Tourist Home.
Idukki Tower, Thodupuzha.
Gemini Tourist Home, Thodupuzha.
MUNNAR TOURIST INFORMATION:
- Tourist Information Centre: District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC)
- Information Centre, Old Munnar; District Tourism Office, Kumily.
- Banks and Money Changers: State Bank Of Travancore, State Bank Of India.
- Post Office: Main Post Office, Munnar.
- Hospitals: Tata General Hospital, Matha Hospital, Arun Hospital.
- Ayurvedic Massage Centre: Surya Ayurvedic Health Resorts.
- Spices And Fresh Strawberries: DTPC, Munnar.
MUNNAR GENERAL INFORMATION:
Altitude: 5000-8000 Feet Above Sea Level.
Area: 26.2 sq. kms.
Rainfall: 275 cms.
Summer: Max: 25.8°C, Min: 15.2°C
Winter: Max: 10°C, Min: 0°C