Kerala, God in God's Own Country, is well endowed with natural beauty. It would be really difficult for you to make choices from the sandy beaches, unexplored backwaters and serene hill stations. The hill stations in Kerala looks ravishing rising from the Western Ghats spotted with numerous springs, waterfalls, rivers, forests and wildlife. Experiencing salubrious climate, tranquil locales, green surroundings and not much affected by modernization, hill stations in Kerala are haven for weekend getaways as well as long vacations. In the hill stations of Kerala are home not only to wildlife population but also to spices such as cardamom, cinnamon, pepper and cashew nut.
Important hill stations in Kerala are:
Idukki derives its name from a Malayalam word 'idukku', which means narrow gorge. As the name suggests, Idukki is a hill station with mountains, valleys and streams. If you are in search of diverse tourist attractions at one place, visit hill station Idukki. The most renowned attraction of Idukki is the Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary. Spread over 70 sq km of area, the sanctuary is in the vicinity of the Arched Dam. In the rich green forest, you may easily spot animals like the elephant, bison, sambhar, deer, variety of snakes and birds like the jungle foul and laughing thrush. On a distance of 65 km is Thekkady, a hill station with pristine natural beauty and good wildlife population. Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary lies in the region of Thekkady. You may also go on excursion to Peermade, the summer resort of the rulers of Travancore.
At an altitude of 1,600 m, Munnar is considered to be most attractive hill station in Kerala. Anamundi, the highest peak in south India rising to a height of 2695 m lies in Munnar. Munnar, which means the 'Three Rivers', lies on the confluence of the three mountain streams, namely, Muthirapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala. European settlers thronged to this place for centuries as summer resort. Visit Devikulam, another hill station at a distance of 7 km from Munnar for pristine pastures, flourishing flora and fauna and plush mountains. Sita Devi Lake, rich in minerals with curative properties, is ideal for trout fishing and picnic. 10 km from Munnar is Chithirapuram. Admire the beauty of the town lined with cottages, bungalows, old playgrounds and courts of the colonial era. To get enticed by the absolute natural beauty of scenic locales, waterfalls and hill all around, go to Attukal, 9 km from Munnar. Nyayamakad, a natural picnic as well as trekking point, is just 10 km from Munnar. Go on picnic to Mattupetty Lake and Dam, 13 km from Munnar. You may also enjoy a visit to Kundala Tea Plantations and the Kundala Lake near Mattupetty. Visit the Eravikulam National Park known for Nilgiri Tahr or Ibex, 15 km from Munnar.
Palakkad also known as Palghat is called the "Granary of Kerala". Visit Palakkad for pleasant climate, dense vegetation, rich valleys, rivers and streams and variety of flora and fauna. Palakkad Fort lies in the center of the town, is one of the best-preserved forts in Kerala. Built of granite in 1766 AD, Hyder Ali patronized this fort. 10 km from Palakkad is Thiruvalathoor, the site of an ancient temple famed for fine wood craftsmanship and stone sculptures. Dhoni, 15 km from the town, is a reserve forest area with several small and fabulous waterfalls. Malampuzha Garden lies on the lower hills of the Western Ghats and is 10 km from Palakkad. The Rose Garden at Malampuzha Garden has more than a hundred varieties of roses. A picnic lunch is very enjoyable both for the young ones and grown ups.
Ponmudi, at an elevation of 1000 m above the sea level is a treat for the eyes. You will find nature at its best here. You can explore the entire hill station on treks and strolls and may come across fresh green hills, prolific valleys, rich tea plantations and colonial cottages. People love to come to Ponmudi for picnics and weekend getaways. Enjoy the Aaranumala Boat Race at Ponmudi. You can also go on excursion to Varkala Beach.
Wagamon, surrounded by three chain of hills, namely,
Thangal hill, Murugan hill and Kurisumala, enjoys an
elevation of 1100 m above the sea level. The tourists
frequent this place for peace and tranquility. You will
find yourself amidst beautiful tea gardens. You may
visit the Kurisumala Hill while trekking. Here you will
find a small church on the top of the hill and the Kurisumala
Ashram. The tourists interested in adventure sports
will find ample opportunities
for long treks, paragliding, mountaineering and rock
climbing. Wagamon is soon to become India's foremost