Imagine this - misty mountains wrapped with tea gardens, whistling of winds, birds humming brand new tunes and greenscapes filling your eyes as far as you can see. This is what Wayanad welcomes you with. It sits on the edge of UNESCO heritage site Nilgiri biosphere in Kerala with amazing divergence in nature.
Three hours drive from Calicut airport, Wayanad is a blissful destination for every nature lover. The drive through the green carpets is almost surreal, especially coming from the urban jungle of Mumbai.
Our resting point for the next five days was Vythri Village Resort embraced by a tropical rainforest. I was dwelling in perfect harmony with nature, pristine and waiting to be explored. This place allows oneself to be seduced by the orchestration of exquisite sounds accompanying nature’s theatre.
Wayanad is a place to master the art of ballet with nature, while exploring its cultural side. The Priyadarshini Tea Estate located at Mananthavady in Wayanadmajor tea estate under the State Government is aimed at the rehabilitation of tribal population. The sprawling estate is a humble reminder of how with hard work and passion we can achieve so much.
Another highlight of my trip was the bamboo rafting through still waters. The silence of the place was alchemy. Just the sound of the bamboo sifting through the waters and the sounds of birds was therapeutic.
Wayanad takes you back to your roots and teaches one humility. especially the Uravu workshop. In addition to being one of the most interesting things to see in Wayanad, it is also an example of how to build a self-sufficient economy for the society. Located in the Thiraikkaipetta settlement of Wayanad, the motto of Uravu is that bamboo is the ‘green gold’ for the Indian economy and needs to be efficiently utilised.
There are many places to visit in Wayanad like the Eddakal Caves, Soochipara falls, but what made it special for me was the Chembra Peak trek. Known as Home to the ‘heart-shaped’ lake this trek offers some spectacular views of Wayanad. Walking through the light and shadows of the mountain terrain, soothing winds for company and some great bird life make this trek a paradise for climbers.
Once I reached the top the unbelievable sight of the terrain and the lake was so surreal. With sunlight dropping its love on the peaks of the mountains was truly magical. As they say 'the best views come after the hardest climb’ and Chembra peak is one of them.
Wayanad offers a lot in terms food, art and culture. The various art forms like Kathakali (Indian classical dance), Theyyam (ritual form of worship of North Malabar in Kerala), Chenda (a cylindrical percussion instrument) and Kalaripayattu (martial art form of Kerala) are a reminder of our gorgeous traditions. When in Wayanad one must try the Avial, Appam (is a type of pancake made with fermented rice batter and coconut milk) and their traditional tea which is a spectacle in itself.
Wayanad has lot to offer for the soul. It is a state of mind with breathtaking vistas!