With its picturesque greenery, refreshing cool winds, and comfortable climate, Thekkady ranks top in the list of tourism destinations in Kerala. If you are a nature lover who yearns to enjoy the natural beauty of God’s own country, this will be the perfect spot for you. Located in the Idukki district, the place is a buzzing tourist destination in Kerala. At this haven, you can unwind, de-stress, and take a break from the hectic day-to-day activities.
Located at a height of 700 meters above mean sea level in Idukki, Kerala, the serene place consists of many tourist locations that will enchant you. The major tourist attraction in Thekkady is a 777 square kilometer area of preserved forest devoid of human intervention. Periyar National Park, as the place is named, is renowned for its tropical flora and rare fauna including endangered species like the lion-tailed monkey, tiger, leopard, sambar deer, and so on.
For those who enjoy drifting through Thekkady backwater, Periyar Lake awaits. It is another tourist spot in Thekkady that provides an option for boating. The placid artificial lake offers not only a unique view into diverse wildlife but a fun-filled ride through it can indeed take your mind off things. The rejuvenating ride through the 25 square kilometer water body is an experience unique to Thekkady.
The calm and serene atmosphere of the area does not make it a dull place for adventure lovers. The tourist location offers many fun-filled experiences that will enthrall them too. Activities in Thekkady like trekking, boating, safari, and adventure rides are diverse and exciting. You can also enjoy indigenous Kerala foods and do some shopping. Tourists are excited to buy handicrafts, high-quality spices, and also collect some souvenirs.
There are many places in and around this paradise on earth that can excite those who love to get close to the bosom of Mother Nature. The following are the 10 tourist places near Thekkady that should not be missed at any cost on a tour to Thekkady. So when you are traveling to the destination make sure to map your route through these serene places.
Top attractions in Thekkady
Periyar National Park
Periyar National park may be the first location that comes up on your search for the best places to visit in Thekkady. The dense evergreen forest of Periyar National Park with its deciduous trees and lush green flora can enchant anyone. The preserved area devoid of human intervention pulsates with the innate beauty of nature. You will be thrilled when you see the wildlife-filled with elephants, deers, Nilgiri langurs, and sambar living peacefully in their natural habitat. The exciting safari gets you very close to their unperturbed life in the wildlife sanctuary in Thekkady. Periyar National Park also houses a tiger reserve which presents a trekking opportunity for adventure lovers. The prospect of seeing an Indian tiger up close makes the trip much exciting.
Though Periyar National Park is the major tourist attraction of Thekkady, the lake ride through Periyar lake is so exotic to the point that it almost eclipses the fame of the wildlife sanctuary. The boat cruise through the placid backwater of Thekkady provides a unique perspective of the wildlife. It is usually the children who enjoy the fun-filled ride more than their parents. Nevertheless, if you have a taste for bird watching, you can find rare species like Malabar Grey Hornbill and the Nilgiri Wood Pigeon resting peacefully on the logs standing alone in the lake. It may interest you to learn that the lake was formed artificially while building the Mullaperiyar dam. The pristine lake is reminiscent of the great human effort that took to build the gravity dam.
At a distance of 4 km from Thekkady, Kumily stands as a typical Kerala village famous for its hospitality. The tranquil countrysides of the region can calm your nerves and blot away all your worries. It is a cheerful experience to take a ride through the winding road in between the densely growing green vegetation and small hills. Some Tourist packages to Thekkady also offer you options for purchasing souvenirs and relish spicy foods that are indigenous to Kerala.
Mangala Devi temple
Deep in the forest of Periyar National Park rests an unlikely surprise for the tourists, a historic temple of Mangala Devi Kannagi. Believed to be erected by the ancient Tamilakam king Cheran Chenguttuvan nearly 2000 years before in remembrance of the legendary character Kannagi, the temple is an amusing monument for history lovers. The trek to this nearest sightseeing spot of Thekkady, which is at a height of 1337 meters above mean sea level, and the spectacular view from the high point will surely etch an unforgettable memory.
Located just 5 kilometers away from Thekkady, Pandikuzhi is an exotic location that will impress you with its green hills, rich vegetation, and chilling streams. For those trapped in the hustle of city life, the breathtaking landscapes and captivating environment of the place is a great getaway. The serene atmosphere of this tourist spot in Thekkady is sure to reenergize anyone who enjoys getting connected with the environment.
Chellarkovil is one of the most gorgeous viewpoints in Thekkady. Anyone who has been to the place will never forget the serene sunset. The green foliage of the valley assumes a golden glow when the last rays of sunshine on them. Combined with the music of distant waterfall which overlaps with the orchestra of chirping birds returning to their nests, the sunset creates a heavenly feeling
Vandanmedu offers a unique opportunity to learn the commercial processing of one of the most expensive spices in the world; cardamom. Tourists can also buy and relish high-quality cardamom at a reasonable price. Those who enjoy the aroma of the spice will find it difficult to get out of the place as the incessant cool breeze is impregnated with it. The busy tourist spot in Thekkady also showcases some old buildings constructed around the early 20th century. The post office, known locally as the Anchal office is one of the kind. It is considered as one of the first post offices established by the British during their rule of India.
Best Time To Visit Thekkady
- Winter Season ( October to February): Winter is considered to be the best season in Thekkady. The weather at the time will be cool and pleasant. The highest temperature will not be more than 15-16 degrees Celcius. So if you are someone who loves morning chills this is the best time for you. Moreover, October to February is the time when most festivals take place in Thekkady. The bright colors and loud and exciting music are the special features that will give you a new experience.
- Summer Season ( March to May): The temperature starts to rise from the first week of March, marking the beginning of summer in Thekkady. The temperatures can rise up to 35-degree Celcius during afternoons making it the hottest season in Thekkady. If you love the warm climate, this is the best time for you. The upside is that the prices of the package tours to Thekkady at this time will be low compared to other seasons.
- Monsoon Season (June to September): Monsoon is a great time in Kerala. The beauty of pouring rain is incomparable to any other season in India. You have the option to get the first-hand experience of the season if you visit Thekkady between the months of June and September. The pouring rain drenching the trees and filling the backwaters of Thekkady is a refreshing sight.
How To Reach Thekkady
The beautiful hill station in Kerala can be easily reached through the road. It is the easiest way to visit the tourist destination.
- By Road: If you have an option to drive to the location, you should definitely prefer that. The ride through the quaint countryside with tea plantations and the green forest is an exciting experience. You can easily get a bus from nearby places like Kottayam and Kochi. There are state-run busses from long distances like Thiruvananthapuram. Private busses and cabs are also available options to reach Thekkady.
- By Air: Madurai Airport which is located at a distance of 136 kilometers is the nearest one to Thekkady. Cochin International Airport is the closest international terminus. But it is located almost 190 kilometers from the destination. Nevertheless, you can hire a cab from the airport and reach the hill station within 2 or 3 hours. If you are traveling from North India you can prefer it.
- By Rail: Kottayam railway station is the closest location to Thekkady. It is almost 114 kilometers away from the tourist spot. To get to Thekkady, you can hire a cab or get into public transport from Kottayam.