Kaziranga National Park

kaziranga National Park

Morning view at kaziranga National Park

kaziragna National Park

kaziranga National Park

 

Kaziranga National Park,  a world Heritage site,  hosts two-thirds of the world’s Great One-horned Rhinoceroses. Kaziranga boasts the highest density of tigers among protected areas in the world and was declared a Tiger Reserve in 2006. The park is home to large breeding populations of elephants, wild water buffalo, and swamp deer.  Kaziranga is recognized as an Important Bird Area by Bird life International for conservation of avifaunal species.  Located on the edge of the Eastern Himalaya biodiversity hotspot, the park combines high species diversity and visibility.

Kaziranga is a vast expanse of tall elephant grass, marshland, and dense tropical moist broadleaf forests, crisscrossed by four major rivers, including the Brahmaputra, and the park includes numerous small bodies of water.

(Courtesy : Wikipedia)

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Wayanad travel

Wayanad,  is one of the loveliest hill stations of Kerala located in the heart of the Western Ghats mountain ranges at an altitude of 700-2100m above sea level. Wayanad is a beautiful scenic place with panorama of fascinating nature, sprawling plantations of various spices and tea. Situated amidst lush green vegetation and mist capped hills and smiling breeze blowing round the year, the place offers a lifetime experience to its visitors. The name Waynad is derived from the expression ‘Wayanadu’ which means land of paddy fields.

Wayanad is a beautiful hill resort with fascinating waterfalls, lakes, ancient caves, and varieties of wildlife. Wayanad shelters endangered species as it has an amazing range of flora and fauna. Wildlife aficionados and nature lovers will find Wayanad wildlife sanctuaries as the right place of visit. The place enjoys a pleasant climate the whole year. Having an influential history, numerous evidences depicting new Stone Age civilization is seen on the Wayanad hills. Around Wayanand, Edakal cave is awaiting you with the experience of trekking, feel the serenity of the nature in Kuruva Island, have boating in Pookot lake, refresh your mind by visiting many more places in Wayanad and make this a memorable journey.

Wayanad, Kerala, India

Wayanad, Kerala, India

View of Wayanand

View of Wayanand

Tea garden in Wayanand

Tea garden in Wayanand

Tourist attractions in Wayanad

Sulthan bathery – Edakkal caves:

Eddakkal cave is located 3 kilometres from Ambalavayal which is 25 kilometres from Kalpetta. The depth of both the cleft and the fissure is 30 ft. The new Stone Age pictorial writings on the walls of these natural caves are evidence of the civilization that existed in these regions in prehistoric times,  which drawn attention of worldwide historians and archaeologists. Archeologists suggest that these cave etchings date back to at least 5000 years. One of the legends about this cave states that the caves were formed by arrows shot by sons of Sri Rama, the Hindu god from the epic Ramayana. Another local legend relates the little devil of Malabar, the Kuttichattan with the Edakkal caves. The Edakkal cave site is considered as a habitat of Neolithic people based on the Neolithic carving on the inner side of caves.

The caves can be approached by 1km trekking trail starting from Edakkal. The best visiting hours are morning and it is open till 5 pm. Tourists need to indulge in a one and half hour long trek to reach the entrance of the caves. The roads are in good condition. In order to reach the actual cave, tourists will have to trek uphill for another 45 minutes.

Stone carving inside edakkal cave

Stone carving inside edakkal cave

Muthanga /Wayanad wildlife sanctuary:

The Wayanad wildlife sanctuary is rich in bio-diversity. The sanctuary is an integral part of the Nilgiri biosphere reserve. It is located on 345 square kilometers of densely forested land. This sanctuary have abundance of peacocks, babblers, egrets, snipes, bulbuls, peafowl, and cormorants  . The Wildlife Species that could be spotted during Wayanad Wildlife Safari include Asian elephants, leopards, cheetahs, tigers, gaurs, spotted deer, sloth bears, and sambars etc are reside here. There are also tiny and brightly colored butterflies flitting on sweet flowers and shrubs. You can arrange for an elephant ride into the dense forest to explore the sanctuary by contacting the Forest Department.

During the months of June through October, you will be able to see a flourishing atmosphere in Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary. The Western Ghats, Nilgiri Sub-Cluster including all of the sanctuary, is under consideration by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee for selection as a World Heritage Site.

Wayanand wild life centuary

Wayanand wild life centuary

Chembra Peak:

Chembra Peak, the uppermost spot in Wayanad is situated at 6,900 feet above the sea level  is a beautiful spot located in the Wayanad hill ranges in Western Ghats. Chembra peak is neighboring to the Nilgiri Hills and Vellarimala. From Meppady, Chembra peak can be accessed by walk. District Tourism Promotion Council provides guides and trekking equipment’s with a little charge from the tourists. Permission from the forest office in Meppady is required for trekking up to Chembra Peak. From the top of Chembra peak you can view almost the whole of Wayanad.  Climbing Chembra peak is a really exiting trekking experience. For nature lovers it may take a whole day to enjoy the beauty of this peak and reach the top. The picturesque locations and viewpoints from the Chembra peak are really fascinating.

Chembra peak, Wayanand

Chembra peak, Wayanand

Banasura Sagar Dam:

Banasura Sagar Dam is approximately 21 km towards the north west of Kalpetta. It is considered to be the largest dam in India and the second largest in Asia. The dam extends to a wide area with crystal clear waters. Undisturbed and engulfed amidst the hills, it is an ideal place for picnic as it is surrounded by the bounty of nature and the low sound of the clear water gives a feeling of freshness.

In the dam’s reservoir there is a set of islands that were formed when the reservoir submerged the surrounding areas. The islands with the Banasura hills in the background provide a spectacular view for nature lovers and photographers. The Dam has become a major tourist attraction in Wayanad and undoubtedly it is a must view spot a in Wayanad. Boating facilities in the dam and it is an ideal starting point for hikes into the surrounding scenic mountains .

Kuruva Island:

Kuruva Island is situated on the tributaries of the river Kabani and is a picturesque picnic spot. With a total area of 950 acres Kuruva Island is plentifully rich with green woods.K uruva Island is a gift of nature to Wayanad tourists Its serene silence and wide expanse of the evergreen forest leaves you astonishing. This island is the home of uncommon species of birds, herbs and orchids.  It is far from the busy city life making it an exotic place for visitors to relax and enjoy the beauty of the nature. It is closed during monsoon (June to September).

You can also take a guided tour of this island, with the help of local guide arranged by the authorities. The island surrounded by streams and river can be accessed using rafts or fiber boats run by Kerala Tourism Department. Entrance to the island is restricted and monitored by Vana Samrakshana Samiti, a Dept of forest of Kerala.

Soochipara Falls:

The Soochippara Waterfalls also known as Sentinel Rock Waterfalls is  a thundering water  steam amidst dense greenery in the Western Ghats.  Soochipara Falls, is located about 13 kms from the town of Meppady in the Wayanad district of Kerala in India. The waterfall cascading from a height of 100 to 300 feet is a treat to the eyes.  To reach Soochipara Falls, one has to drive through lash green forest of tea, coffee and spice plantations which is an enjoyable destination itself.

Kanthanpara Waterfalls, Wayanad, Kerala

Kanthanpara Waterfalls, Wayanad, Kerala

Kanthanpara waterfalls:

Surrounded by bamboo forests, the Kanthanparra Waterfall is more noted for the breathtaking beauty of the path leading to the fall itself. The waterfall at Kanthanpara is about 30 meters in height. Even though Kanthanpara waterfalls are relatively smaller than Sentinel Rock Falls, it is also a beautiful cascading water body for exploring and trekking. The major advantage with Kanthanpara waterfalls is that it is an easy hike away from main road, and even children can reach the waterfalls with minimum effort.

Water Fall in Wayanad

Water Fall in Wayanad

The Pookot Lake:

The Pookot Lake is  surrounded by an stunning location. The water is clear and the foliage that surrounds it is a beautiful forest. Visitors can enjoy a boat ride against a serene backdrop.  The area surrounding the lake has an aquarium, children’s park and a small emporium selling handicrafts and spices

Thirunelly temple :

Close to the Papanashini stream in Wayanad district of Kerala stands the 3000 years old Thirunelly temple. The temple is devoted to lord Vishnu and is constructed with 30 granite columns to protect it. There is a bridge from the Papanashini stream coming to the temple. This is of great help to the Thirunelly temple as the Papanashini water is used for the temple directly for its precincts. Thirunelly temple is a marvel of temple architecture.

Towards the south of the Thirunelly temple is the holy pond called Panchatheertha. The pond is named Panchatheertha as it is believed that five rivers met at this point.

The Glass Temple of Kottamunda :

This temple is located on the slope of Vellarimala and is dedicated to Parswanatha Swamy of the Jain faith. The mirrors inside the temple walls reflect images of the icons in the temple’s sanctum sanctorum.

Best time to visit Wayanad

Wayanad experiences tropical monsoons and rather hot summer. Thus the best time to visit Wayanad is between the months of August and May.

How to reach Wayanad:

By Air : Nearest airport is Kozhikode.

By Rail : Nearest railway station is Kozhikode

By Road : Wayanad is well connected by roads from Kozhikode, Kannur, Ooty (175 km from Kalpetta) and Mysore (140 km from Kalpetta).

Coorg Travel

Coorg the most abundant hill station in South India which is situated 252 kms from Bangalore and 1525 m above sea level, in the state of Karnataka. Dense teak wood forests, lush green valleys of coffee plantations and mountain ranges make Coorg an exquisite location for the tourist. The coffee estates here produce some of the world’s best coffee. The location is enriched with rare species of flora and fauna, Steep hills, valleys and countless streams that flowing through them stuck trekkers and rock climbers. Tadiandamol, Brahmagiri and Pushpagiri peaks in Coorg are very challenging for the trekkers and the natural scenic surroundings of these peaks are really eye charming. Coorg is a spot for invaluable bird watch. The sheer beauty of the landscapes, the unpolluted fresh environments attract tourist in large number all-round the year. Coorg is considered as a mind blowing summer retreat for escaping from the hot summer days in downtown cities. Monsoon is also one of the best time to visit Coorg, many tourists arrive in Coorg in monsoon to enjoy the wild beauty during the monsoon. Coorg offers many exciting outdoor activities like angling, trekking and golfing for the adventures. It also furnish plenty of admiring facilities to the golf lovers with its three golf courses namely, ‘Mercara Downs’ in Mercara, ‘Coorg Golf Links’ in Bittangala, and golf course in Pollibetta.  

Coorg Hills

Coorg Hills

Morning view, Coorg, Karnataka

Morning view, Coorg, Karnataka

Misty Coorg Morning

Misty Coorg Morning, Photo courtesy Gopu P.( flickr.com)

Tourist attractions in Coorg

Madikeri:

Mandikeri, the capital of Kodagu (also called Coorg) district is located in a beautiful hilly setting surrounded by the forested slopes of the Western Ghats.  Madikeri is the picturesque town of Kodagu (also called Coorg), located in a beautiful hilly setting surrounded by the forest slopes of the Western Ghats. Covered with a chunk of red-roofed house and a bustling bazaar, the town, situated at an elevation of 1,525 m, has a charming old look. There are plenty of sight-seeing opportunities near Madikeri like the Madikeri Fort, Raja’s Seat, Raja’s Tomb, Omkareshwara temple and the Nisargadhama Forest in the town. A good place to visit the local eating joints for some typical Coorgi food.

Sunset at Madikeri, Coorg, Karnataka

Sunset at Madikeri, Coorg, Photo courtesy Vishal R.

Madikeri Fort:

Situated in the middle of Madikeri, this historic fort which was built in the 19th century, contains a museum, a prison, a chapel and a temple. The 19th century Madikeri Fort with its stone ramparts now houses the prison, a temple, a chapel, a small museum, and assorted government offices.

Nagarhole National Park:

The place derives its name from the twisting river – Nagarhole , meaning “snake river” – which flows through the park. Nagarahole has an astonishing abundance of wildlife, With over 250 varieties of birds, panthers, tigers, Asiatic elephant and flying squirrels, this park is made up of teak, rosewood, sandalwood, silver oak etc. The backdrop of the lofty Brahmagiri Mountains, the natural sounds of the jungle, the gurgling of streams and rivers, and the twittering of the birds make Nagarahole a memorable experience.  Jeeps and elephants are available to tourists for transport in this Park. A summer is the best time to visit, when animals roam more freely in search of water.

Nagarhole National Park

Nagarhole National Park, Photo by Orange County Resorts

Abbi Falls :

Abbey Falls is an astonishing waterfall where the Kaveri River cascades down a rockface from a height of 70 feet. A hanging bridge has now been built across the gorge for best view of the falls. The falls can be reached by a narrow road from Madikeri. Cars can reach the entrance of these falls from where a downhill walk of 500 metres on slightly paved steps takes one to the waterfalls. One has to makes the way past stocky coffee bushes and tall trees entwined with pepper vines, the falls make a dramatic appearance as they cascade their way down steps into crystalline pools to join the river Kaveri River. These falls are most impressive during the monsoons.

Abbi falls near madikeri, coorg

Abbi falls near madikeri, coorg

Iruppu Falls:

Located around 50 kms away from Madikeri town and 20 kms beside the Nagarhole National Park, the Iruppu falls presents a majestic sight with waters cascading down from a height of 170 feet. Originating in the lofty Brahmagiri peaks; the falls become a part of the Lakshman Teerth River in the plains. The never -ending music of the falls and the hush of the surrounding densely wooded forest make this a great picnic spot. . The people of Coorg believe that bathing in the Iruppu Falls will wash ones sins away. The Rameshwara Temple, located nearby the falls, attracts a large congregation of devout pilgrims during the festival of ‘Sivaratri’.

The Omkareshwar temple:

This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva, which was built in1820 and featuring a blend of red-tile roofed and Islamic -style domes. It has a mix of Islamic and Kerala architecture style. This template is located near Madikeri Fort.

Omkareshwara Temple, Coorg

Omkareshwara Temple, Coorg

The Raja’s Seat:

This is a beautiful viewpoint in Coorg. This hilltop offers stunning views of the surrounding forests and the view of the sunset. It is said that the kings of Kodagu came to this viewpoint to see the panoramic view of their kingdom and spent their evenings.

View of Coorg from Raja's Seat, Madikeri

View of Coorg from Raja’s Seat, Madikeri, Photo courtesy Avinash Bhat

Bhagamandala :

It is situated at the confluence of 3 rivers (the Cauvery, the Kanika and the Sujyothi). Among many small shrines dedicated to various gods, the main temple, known as the Sri Bhagandeshwara temple, is constructed in a large, stone courtyard. It possesses pagodas and multi-layered roofs that have a reddish hue. Each pagoda ends in the form of a silver hood of a snake. The temple also hosts idols of other Lords, like Subramanya, Mahavishnu and Ganesh.  Bhagamandala is also famous for its bee farming.

Talacauvery :

Talakaveri is considered to be the source of the river Kaveri. It is situated at the Brahmagiri hill. Talakaveri is situated approximately at a distance of 48 km from Madikeri. At the spot that is said to be the origin of the Cauvery, a tank or ‘kundike’ has been erected on a hillside. There is also a small temple at the spot, and the area is frequented by pilgrims. The river originates as a spring that feeds this tank that is considered to be a holy place to bathe on special days. The waters are then said to flow underground to emerge as the Kaveri River some distance away.  On Tulasankramana day (October 17th) thousands of pilgrims flock to this place to witness the miraculous rise of the fountainhead, when water rise up from the spring at a predetermined moment.

Cauvery Nisargadhama:

It is a beautiful river island, the biggest of a cluster of five islets created by the river Cauvery. It can be accessed by traveling over a hanging bridge from the mainland. Nisargadhama covers with green floras, thick bamboo groves, teak, and rosewood. Located 25 kms from Madikeri town, this popular nature resort boasts of a deer park, orchidarium and elephant rides amid bamboo groves.

Cauvery Nisargadhama, Coorg

Cauvery Nisargadhama, Coorg

Bylakuppe:

One of the largest Tibetan settlements in South India, Bylakuppe is spread over four regions just before Coorg. It is known for its monasteries, handicrafts, carpet factories, and an incense factory. This place is filled with several monasteries; the main ones amongst these are the Great Gompa of Sera Je and Sera Mey. The Mahayana Buddhist University is located at Sera. It also has an enormous prayer hall. The other important monastery in the neighboring settlement of Bylakuppe is Tashi Lhumpo monastery.

Tibetan settlements, Coorg

Tibetan settlements, Coorg , photo by Joydeep Mitra

Buddhist Monastery, Coorg

Buddhist Monastery, Coorg, Photo courtesy Anupam Chatterjee

Dubare Elephant Camp:

The place is a good place for rafting amateurs.  Dubare Elephant camp is a project undertaken by forest department and Jungle Lodges and Resorts Ltd. This camp has plenty of elephants which are trained under naturalists .The reserve forest is famed for its amazing variety of fauna, an elephant training camp and angling possibilities on the Cauvery. Elephant interaction in the morning time is the popular activity attracts hundreds of tourist daily.

Harangi Dam:

Around 8 Km from the Madikeri Kushalnagar Road is the Harangi Dam. The Harangi River forms a huge reservoir that looks beautiful. It is a nice place for a picnic lunches and leisurely stroll.

Tadiyendamol :

Tadiyendamol, the tallest peak in Kodagu . The hill top offers views of the surrounding and also serves as a landmark to sea travellers. During clear days, visitors can view the coastline too. Rock climbing in Thadiyendamol Hill attracts a lot of sport lovers every year. Rock climbing is usually arranged between the months of September to May. The Nalnad Palace is located at the base of the mountain and is ideal for a stay.  

Tadiyendamol Peak

Tadiyendamol Peak

Valnur Fishing Camp:

Valnoor fishing camp,  is celebrated as one of the most exotic angling sites in the state of Karnataka. The destination is located near Kushalanagar, on the backwaters of the river Cauvery, nestling in the south-western part of the state of Karnataka. The place is a home to a few rare species of fishes. Some of the more common varieties of fishes that can be spotted include mapps, marals, eels and mahseer. Valnur is also a heaven for birdwatchers, with innumerable avian species to be spotted and identified.

Best time to visit Coorg

The climate of Coorg is very pleasant and can be visited during any time of the year. But the most ideal time to visit Coorg is between September and March..

How to reach Coorg:

By Air: The nearest airports are Mangalore 136 km and Bangalore 260 km.

By Rail: The nearest Railway Station to Coorg, located in Mysore is at 114 km.

By Road: Coorg is well connected with major cities like Mysore, Mangalore and Bangalore.