We woke up early the next morning with messy hair and looked outside the window of our sleeper coach bus. It was evident that it had rained and the clouds smeared the hill tops that looked dark green because of the fresh leaves. Our faces beamed with joy as we understood that we had reached Munnar.
We had set off from Bangalore to Munnar on an overnight journey. The KSRTC bus services are one of the best ones I have availed so far. The bus journey was smooth as we meandered through the forests and muddy paths. Yes, we travelled during the monsoon season because Kerala looks breathtakingly beautiful during this season.
At the bus stop, we were greeted by the pick-up service that we had pre-booked from our hotel. Soon, we hopped into the car and started our onward journey to the hotel.
All the way to the hotel, we could only admire the beauty that nature bestows on Kerala; no wonder it is called "God's Own Country". The blue skies and green lands, the grey clouds floating over the hills- everything looked as if a postcard straight from the heaven had come to reality.
Munnar is blessed with numerous waterfalls, emerald-green tea plantations carpeted till the horizon, lush green hills of the Western Ghats and veiling clouds. Here is a list of few things to explore to give you an experience of a lifetime:
Some of the famous waterfalls are:
Power House waterfall
You can enjoy the cold waters and take a refreshing dip in the pool formed at the base of the falls.
The green tea gardens are spread across vast lands in Munnar. The are beautifully contoured and sculpted. You can take a stroll through the tea plantations and witness the sun going down across the horizon.
Eravikulam National Park
The Eravikulam National Park is a must visit at Munnar. It is situated atop a summit of Western Ghats. It is listed as a UNESCO Workd Heritage Site and is home to a plethora of flora and fauna. You can spot many species of bird and the Nilgiri Tahr - an endangered species of a mountain goat from South India. The park has routes that allows everyone to wander around designated places and take a walking safari.
The Anamudi Peak and the Naikolli Mala peaks are clearly visible from the top of the park alongside other panoramic views.
If you have seen the movie "Chennai Express", you will surely recollect the scene where Shahrukh Khan kicks the red color jeep into water. It was shot at this dam. Apart from being the shooting location of many films, this dam also offers a beautiful vantage point where you can absorb the tranquility of the place.
If you are a Bollywood fan and shout "Yahooo" just to hear it come back, do visit the echo point in Munnar. It is the confluence of three famous South Indian mountain ranges, namely, Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and the Kundala range. Situated on the banks of the Kundala Lake, the place offers a scenic green background. Do shout your name to hear it echo back from the lap of nature.
Go on a boat or shikara ride and enjoy the pristine surrounding. There are food and souvenir stall around the lake to have refreshments.
It is obvious that a place with so many tea estates will definitely have tea museum. You can visit the Tata owned Kannan Devan Tea Estate and Tea Museum. Here, you can learn the process of tea leaf processing to marketing. Shops within this establishment sells varieties of tea leaves that you can purchase as souvenir from Munnar.
Also known as the "Munnar Rose Garden", this place is home to lot of varieties of flowers and other plants that are grown with love and care.
Thirumeni Cultural Centre
This place is a must visit for all who are passionate art and tradition lovers to experience the two very famous and respected art forms of Kerala- Kalarippayattu and Kathakali.
Kalarippayattu is a form of martial art that is 2000 years old. It includes gymnastics and difficult hand movements. You would get goosebumps when the artists duel with swords, knives, spears, and fire so seamlessly.
Kathakali is a beautiful artform where the artists tell stories through dancing, expressions and various gestures.
There are many more places places that I could not visit due to time limitations, but have named them here. You can plan your trip to Munnar to include them in your itinerary as well.
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary
Pothamedu View Point
and many more...
So, are you ready to experience the beauty called Munnar. Visit my blog to know where I stayed at the magical beauty.