Munnar is a very famous hill station which is located in Idukki district. Munnar lies at the confluence of three mountain rivulets namely Mudrapuzha, Nallathani and Kundala. The name Munnar is formed from two Malayalam words “Moonnu” & “Aaru “ and in that “Moonnu” meaning three and “Aaru” meaning river as the place is at a confluence of three river. Munnar is called as the “Kashmir of South India” with its cold climatic nature. The highest peak of South India is located near Munnar namely the Anamudi hills which heights over 2695 m and is the most preferred honeymoon tour destination in South India.
Site-Seeing Specialties in and around Munnar:
Atukkad Waterfalls: Atukkad Waterfalls is scenic waterfalls amidst hills and jungles near to Munnar Town. It is just about 5 km from Munnar on the Kochi-Munnar Highway. The road leads to the waterfall is very narrow and is a exciting experience to drive on.
Chithirapuram: Chithirapuram is an old hill town located at a distance of around 10 km from Munnar. Chithirapuram is famous for its tea plantations which gives a feel of a green carpet of earth. This small town also has old playgrounds and courts, bungalows and sleepy little cottages which all give this place an old world charm.
Blossom Park/Hydel Park: Blossom Park is a beautiful garden with rare varieties of plants and flowers located on the outskirts of Munnar city on the Munnar-Cochin road. The presence of shady trees, facilities for water cycling, boating cycling for kids, roller skating etc are amusing and is an excellent spot to spend the evenings in Munnar.
Pothamedu View Point: Pothaamedu is an exciting scenic view spot with excellent view of the tea, coffee and cardamom plantations in Munnar.
Photo Point: It is an excellent scenic point for photographers filled with lined woods midst of tea gardens with a small stream nearby on the way to Mattupetti. The beauty of this spot is mind-blowing and is very fascinating.
Mattupetti Dam: Mattupetti is around 10 kms from Munnar and one of the most sought destination by travellers. This spot is famous for the enchanting storage masonry dam and the lake part of it surrounded with rolling grasslands and the Shola forests. Activities like boating and horse riding is a great way to enjoy and experience the beauty of this marvellous place.
Echo Point: Echo Point is around 15 km from Munnar on the way to Top Station and is a small lake set amidst rolling hills part of the Mattupetti Dam. As the name resembles, the specialty of this spot is the echoing effect; you could enjoy the pleasure of returning your voice again and again to you. Every loud sound from a spot on the lake embankment is returned by the echo from the surrounding hills. Young tourists and children enjoy this place with lot of excitement.
Elephant Arrival Spot: A bout 20 kms from Munnar, this spot is famous for the scenic beauty and sometimes travellers get a rare chance to see Wild-Elephants passing through this region. Now the local business centres have arranged Elephant Safari facility here. Interested can enjoy a Elephant ride here.
Kundala Lake: Kundala Lake is part of the artificial Sethu-Parvathi Dam and is considered as the first arch dam built in Asia in the year 1946. This beautiful lake amidst in lush jungles has facility for hiring Shikaras (Kashmiri Boats) or Pedal Boats and exploring the lake and its panoramic view of surroundings. Kundala is situated about 27 km from the Munnar Town and is at an altitude of 1700 m above sea level.
Top Station: Top Station is the top rated tourist attraction in Munnar. At a distance of about 40 kms from Munnar Town this place gives astonishing views of the Western Ghats. It is located on the borders of two states, both Kerala and Tamilnadu. Top Station is very popular for the rare “Neelakurinji” plant, which flowers only once every 12 years. The flower is violet in colour and during the blooming time the hills will appear like violet carpet on earth; which attracts lot tourists from whole around the world.
Tata Tea Museum / KDHP Tea Museum: Tata Tea Museum, also known as the KDHP Tea Museum is about 2 km from Munnar on the Nallathany Estate road. It is a must see place in Munnar; as the tourists can see a collection of odd bits from the colonial era, the remains of the older Munnar and the portraits explaining the story of transformation of Munnar to the plantation centre of the Kerala. The special attraction here is the visitors are taken around the factory to understand on how tea is processed.
Eravikulam (Rajamalai) National Park: Rajamalai is part of the Eravikulam National Park and the national park is created to preserve the Nilgiri Tahr (Hemitragas hylocres), a rare type of the wild mountain goats found only in Himalayas. Rich flora and fauna, lion-tailed macaque, leopards, tigers are part of Eravikulam National Park. Once in every 12 years the hills of Rajamalai turn Blue of Neelakurinji Flowers. In February-March every year due to the breeding season of the Nilgiri Thar the park remains closed and no one is allowed inside. It is recommended to reach the park on early morning hours as there is always a high rush on the ticket counters.
Anamudi Peak: Anamudi Peak part of the Eravikulam National Park and is the highest peak (2,695 m) in the southern part of India. Trekking facility is available for interested parties on permission from the Eravikulam National Park authorities.
Lakkam Water Fall: Lakkam Waterfall is situated on the way to Marayoor from Munnar. It is a beautiful waterfall which attracts the photography lovers. This is one of the most preferred spots in Munnar and is in Lakkam, nearby Vagavurai Estate.
Marayoor: Marayoor is about 40 km from Munnar and is famous for the presence of natural sandalwood forests. There is a sandalwood factory of the Forest Department of Kerala. Marayoor is also known for pre-historic rock paintings, natural caves (Muniyaraas) with murals, and relics from late Stone Age civilisation.
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary: Chinnar wildlife sanctuary is part of the Wester Ghats of Kerala and is one of the protected areas in the Western Ghats as Chinnar has a large number of plants and animals.
Devikulam Lake: Devikulam Lake is also known as Sita Devi Lake as it is believed that the goddess Sita Devi of the Ramayana epic bathed in this beautiful lake water. Prior permission need to be taken from the Tata Tea Ltd, Regional Officer to visit this lake.
Lockhart Gap & Rock Cave: Lockhart Gap is an ideal place for adventure tourism and trekking lovers. It is at a distance of 13kms from Munnar on the way to Munnar-Madurai National Highway. This spot offers panoramic view of kilometers of surrounding area and could enjoy the beauty of the silver clouds roaming through the mountain its valleys. The presence of a Rock cave near this spot attracts lot of tourists.
Kolukkumalai: Kolukkumalai is a Tea Estate near Devikulam and is at a height of about 2175 meters from sea level. Kolukkumalai is claimed to be the highest tea plantation in the world. It is about a distance of 40 kms from Munnar and the old tea factory here is a charm for its wooden interiors. The view of the Western Ghats is absolutely enchanting from here.
Anayirankal Dam: Anayirankal Dam is a popular picnic spot near Munnar which is about 22 kms from Munnar. The dam has a rare sight of herd elephants visit the lake to quench their thirst and that how the dam got its name Anayirankal (Elephant Sight). The scenic beauty of the lake, the lush green mountains and surrounding tea gardens attracts lot travelers to this spot.
Tourist Destinations near Munnar
Chathurangappara Wind Farm: Chathurangappara is a Hill point on the Munnar – Thekkady State Highway. This spot gives a panoramic view of the Western Ghats and the valleys of TamilNadu. The other major attraction is the Wind Mills part of the Hills here. And you can enjoy a feel of this entire hill place if you are coming in terrain vehicle and can make it to the top point. It is a perfect place for a Jeep/Terrain Safari.
Ramakalmedu: Ramakkalmedu is a hill station in Idukki district with a panoramic view of Tamil Nadu villages and towns. Ramakalmedu is also a prime Wind Farm region in Kerala. It has the highest wind-blow rate in Asian continent and the wind blows at a speed of around 35kms/hour in all seasons here. Ramakalmedu is at a height of about 3500 feet above sea level. People who dare to move up to the tip of the rock on the hill can feel to be at the top of the world.
Thekkady: Thekkady is famous for the Periyar Tiger reserve and the beautiful boating experience in the Thekkady Lake to see the wildlife. It is located near the Tamil Nadu boarder in Kumily and is about 180 kms from Cochin.
Kodaikanal: Kodaikanal is the most beautiful and highly preferred hill station in Tamil Nadu. The beauty of mountains with cool climate, the presence of calm & silent lakes and the Top station are the major attractions here. Kodaikanal is also famous for the apple plantations. The tourist can spend time in varying activities depends on their interests - one can go for cycling, horse riding, boating, trekking and many other adventure activities.
Cochin/Kochi: Cochin/Kochi is popularly known as the “Queen of Arabian Sea” and is famous for its enthralling backwaters. The name Kochi is derived from the Malayalam word Kochazhi meaning small lagoon. Cochin/Kochi city includes Willingdon Island, Fort Kochi, Mattancherry, Ernakulam city, Kumbalangi, and outlying islands and is about to become one of the metropolitan cities in India. The new Vallarpadam transshipment terminal, first of its kind in India is taking Kochi to the Industrial Hub of India.
Kodanad: Kodanad is about 30 km from Ernakulam town in the highranges on the southern bank of the River Periyar and is famous for the largest elephant training centres in Kerala.
Bhoothathankettu: Bhoothathankettu is about 50 kms from Cochin and is a famous destination in Kerala with trekking facilities. The boat cruise in the Bhoothathankettu dam is a nice experience.
Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary: Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary is located in Ernakulam district on the banks of the Periyar River and is the first of its kind in Kerala.
Thommankuthu Waterfalls: Thommankuthu Waterfalls has seven steps and cascades down from a height of 1500 m and is situated near Thodupuzha in Idukki district. The main attraction of this waterfall is the pools that are formed at each step of the fall.
Ilaveezhapoonchira: Ilaveezhapoonchira is an enchating view point which attracts adventure tourist. This is a nice trekking spot which offers panoramic view of large parts of Idukki, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Alapuzha, Pathanamthitta and Thrissur districts. Also is the best place in Kerala to watch sunrise and sunset.
Malankara Dam: Malankara Dam is a major irrigation project in Kerala and the Reservoir is constructed across the tail waters of Moolamattom Power House of Idukki hydroelectric project. Malankara Dam is a gravity dam and the artificial lake created here in the Thodupuzha–Moolamattom Road (SH 33) attracts lot tourists for its breath taking beauty.
Naadukani: Nadukani means ‘to see the country’ is an ideal location offering panoranmic view of Malankara Reservoir, Moovatupuzha River and the cloud touching mountains. The view of a vast area of landscape is a beauty to watch.
Idukki Dam: Idukki Dam is one of the highest arch dams in Asia and is the third tallest arch dam in the world. Idukki Dam is the major hydroelectric project in Kerala. It is surrounded by the Idukki wildlife sanctuary. Wild Elephants are the major attraction in the sanctuary and is also famous for the rich flora & fauna.
Kalvarimount: Kalvari Mount is one among the popular hill station in the whole of Idukki. This view point provides a panoramic view of the Idukki Reservoir from Idukki to Ayyappancovil on one side and lush green mountains on the other side.
Vagamon: Vagamon is a hill station located near the border of Idukki district which is close to Kottayam. The cool climate and the green meadows attract lot travelers to this location. Vagamon is also known as the Scotland of Asia. The enchanting pine forests, mists, fogs, tea estates, waterfalls with the green lush mountains are really striking and are a beauty to watch.
Kumarakom: Kumarakom is famous for its backwater tourism and is located near the city of Kottayam. Kumarakom is one of the most preferred tourist destinations in Kerala. The boat cruise on the backwaters is an enchanting experience to be remembered for lifelong.