- Destination: Thekkady, Kerala, India
- Visited on: December 24th 2015 – December 28th 2015
- Peak Season: November to February
- How To Reach:
- By Car – Reaching Thekkady from Munnar is easy by car and takes around 4 Hours
About: Thekkady (Idukki district) is the location of the Periyar National Park. This place consists of spices and coffee plantations.
Our Journey Starts:
I and Anindita, left Munnar quite early and reached Thekkady after a journey of about 4 Hrs. The route to Thekkady from Munnar is scenic and through the tea-gardens. There are no tea-gardens when it reaches Thekkady town though. Thekkady is renowned for spices and Periyar National Park. Found so many farms with shops selling spices, on the way. The driver stopped at one of the farm. We went inside and took a spice-plantation tour. Saw some spice plants and rare trees. The tour of 30 mins was good but nothing extra-ordinary. We bougth some spices from the shop. The spices were indeed of very good quality and also quite cheap. Buying spices is highly advisable.
If anyone is interested, can bath an elephant in a closed enclosure. We didn’t did that activity as we had the plan of bathing an elephant in an open area. So we visited Dubare elephant camp (Not in Kerala) later. One can also watch Kerala folk dance in evening. Tickets for both the events are sold from the same location, i.e. 10 mins. distance from Periyar National park.
We reached our home stay in Thekkady naming “Kerala House”. This home-stay is located at the heart of the town and very near to the Periyar National Park, which is the only attraction of Thekkady. We checked-in and rushed to the Periyar National Park. There will be a long queue of cars to get inside. Our driver tried to divert us saying car doesn’t go inside. However, on forcing, the car went inside until the parking lot. Had to pay a parking fee at the entrance.
There are many activities conducted in this national park. It is highly advisable to book tickets online well in advance from www.periyarfoundation.online . Activities conducted are as follows –
- Nature walk/Green walk – A walk through the forest. Both the activities are almost similar, but different routes are followed in the jungle
- Jungle scout – A walking in the jungle at night with an armed-guard
- Bamboo rafting – This is one of the best of the lot. A ride in a raft.
- Boat ride – A ride in a huge boat propelled by diesel
- Jungle camp – Camping in jungle.
We opted for nature walk and bamboo rafting. In nature walk, we crossed the water body by standing on a raft. The guid took us inside the jungle and showed marks of tiger paw. It was quite a dense jungle and full of leaches. We had to cover our feet with short sacks. Leeches attacked us but couldn’t do any harm as we have taken the precaution. All precautionary measures were followed by the administration. After that, we took a stroll around the park. In the evening, we did, what we do every-time when we visit a new place. We walked around. And found there are many message centers (Spa).
The bamboo rafting was planned for next day morning. This happens from a different location (Near to Periyar National park). We had to walk through the jungle for quite some time with the guard to reach the point. There, we realized, we could have skipped the activity of “Nature walk” as most of the path we covered this time were identically same with the previous activity. Finally we reached the point and found two bamboo rafts waiting for us. This was the best part. There were chairs made of bamboo on the raft. We all took our seats and the boat-person was rowing the boat. Spotted some uncommon birds. Spotted a bright kingfisher. It gave a halt in an island and provided snacks. After a short break, boarded the raft again and returned, followed by a long walk through the forest.
We met a German lady there who came for a trip. She was out of cash and want to reach Allepey. We tried to take her in our cab, but the driver denied saying, it is against the policy in a packaged tour. No result even after calling the driver’s manager. We felt very bad. Luckily, somehow, we met her friends in Allepey. Anindita figured that out by overhearing their conversation as she knows German. They confirmed, she managed to come to Allepey by taking a bus. That gave us quite a satisfaction.
We left for Alleppey (Alappuzha), after completing the bamboo raft activity. Rafting in Thekkady was a nice experience.
- Visit Periyar National Park
- If on a tight schedule, go only for bamboo rafting
- Buy spices
- Kindly follow no trace policy and save mother earth.