If a genuine tourist is interested to visit any place in India for his
second trip, no wonder, his first preference would be Munnar, in
Kerala, the God’s Own Country. Yes, the mystic Munnar calls her
visitor again to her calm and cool cradle. This hill station is also
known as Kashmir of the South India, set in an altitude of 6000 ft
above MSL in Western Ghats of India. She embraces everything,
wildlife, flora, waterfalls, misty tea plantations and innocent host
population. The climate is so gorgeous as one may have to wear
sweater even in the summer months of March to May. The word Munnar
comes from the conglomeration of the three perennial rivers,
Mudirappuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala (moonu-Aar means three rivers).

The fascinating beauty of Munnar was realised since the colonial days.
The dangerous flood during 1924 washed off Munnar including the
Kundala Valley Railway – the first mono rail system in India. But
with its amazing beauty, Munnar reborn like a phoenix bird and become
the natures wonder which attracts the world. Munnar, once known as
the tea production centre of Kerala, it was the initiatives of Kerala
Tourism Department which brought the panorama of this place to the
world and cashed the tourism industry boom. As a result, the basic
infrastructures also started developing. Just a travel of 4 hours
from Kochi even in public transport can fetch here at a very low cost.
Transport access is also from Tamil Nadu.

The main attraction of Munnar is the confluence of all the factors a
leisure-timer needs, ie. pollution-free cool atmosphere, greeneries,
trekking, watching wildlife, peaceful but low cost shelter and budget
shopping for spices.

Have you confirmed the plan to visit Munnar? Plan well in advance.
You should plan for maximum days to have the rejuvenating beauty of
the Queen of Hills. While approaching to Munnar from downsides, one
will start the feelings of the heavenly Munnar – the cool breeze
washes off his sweat when the vehicle start climbing uphill. When the
vehicle passes along the National Highway amidst the tea plantations,
the aroma of tea makes him rejuvenated and even tempt him to have a
cup of tea.

After reaching Munnar, one has to settle at a convenient shelter.
Depending on your budget, accommodation is available. Conveyance to
various tourist spots are also available, bus, auto rickshaw, luxury
cars – all depends on your purse.

The evenings are always calm and quiet. Mist will gradually embrace
you from the close heavens! Almost all hotels, homestays and lodges
are cordial to the visitors. Most of them are located in close
proximity to luxurious sylvan riches. After a sound relaxed sleep,
the sweet avian music will gently wake you up for another thrilling
peaceful day.

If you are interested in wildlife, proceed to Rajamala – the natural
habitat of Nilgiri Tahr, Eravikulam National Park, where you can
have a close watch of the most endangered wildlife, Ibex. After that
make the trip to Marayoor, the natural sandalwood forest area.
Enroute, you would be fortunate to watch spotted deer, elephant and
Indian Gaur in wilderness. If time permits, visit Chinnar area which
is a low rainfall area and Amaravathy where crocodiles are available.

Another interesting trip is to Top Station to watch the panoramic
beauty of lower Tamil Nadu. Enroute feel the thrill of your echo at
‘Echo Point’. While returning, enjoy the boating at Mattuppetty dam
and Kundala arch dam.

Next, an exciting trip which feels like touching the clouds, to
Kolukkumala – the highest tea plantation in the world. The vehicles
suited for the estate road from Surianelly to Kolukkumala is available
there. The anayirangal reservoir and its picturesque surroundings
remains in the eyes of the visitor who returning from Surianelly
amidst the lush green cardamom hills.