Tourist Places in Wayanad
Wayanad is part of the forest reserve, located near the border of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The beautiful district is decorated by the Northern hills of Kerala and maintained by the Wayanad District Tourism Promotion Council of Wayanad.
Wayanad is famous for its camping and trekking trails, breath-taking waterfalls, caves, bird-watching places, flora, fauna, and much more.
This area has been a popular and favourite place according to the tourists for many years. Tourist places like Kanthanpara Waterfall, Karapuzha Dam, Edakkal Cave, Lake Pookode, and Lake Karlad are some of the attractions that attract tourists from around the world. Moreover, exotic products such as spices, coffee, tea, bamboo, honey, and herbs can be found here.
Also, if you're a traveller, the Cheengari Rock Adventure Center is a very famous place to visit here.
Furthermore, its wild greenery provides magnificent scenic beauty alongside the experience of viewing wildlife. The climate of Wayanad is mostly constant. However, the ideal time to visit this beautiful place is between October to May.
Wayanad is a beautiful natural delight with amazing shopping malls and streets in and around the city. Apart from Kerela spices, Wayanad crafts work and hand-woven products are available as Wayanad souvenirs.
The crafts are mainly assembled with coconut shells, ivory, canes, wooden and metals. Other shopping attractions include embroidered mats, Munnar tea, Wayanad coffee, and spices.
Looking to explore more about this place?
Here is the list of some of the beautiful tourist places in Wayanad.
1. The Edakkal Cave
Edakkal Cave is 25Kms away from Kalpetta. The place lays two caves that show nature's beauty and philosophy on architecture. These caves are about 1,200 meters above sea level on Ambukutty Mala. 'Edakkal' implies or refers to a stone in the middle.' So, it is "A cave formulated by a heavy boulder straddling a fissure in the rock".
It is said the formation of Edakkal cave is done by many legends. One of the popular stories states that the formation of Edakkal caves was done by the arrows thrown by Lava and Kusha, the sons of Lord Sri Rama, and another story is linked with the Goddess Mudiampilly and Kutti Chathan. The local individuals used to go on a pilgrimage day trip to this region to respect and regard the Goddess.
Furthermore, the cave was discovered in 1890 by Fred Faucet, then Chief of Police in the Malabar district, during a hunting trip to Wayanad. He discovered the rock shelter of Edakkal on the west side of Edakkal Mara. Surprisingly, he identified the place as a habitat for Neolithic people. Edakkal Cave is famous for its pictorial paintings (cave paintings). Tourists need to trek through Ambukutty Mala to reach the cave, and it takes approximately 45 minutes to climb the hills. However, all the effort is worth the beauty and tourists will surely not be disappointed with their journey to these historic caves.
There are two chambers inside the cave. Human sculptures, animal figurines, and human-made objects and sculptures can be found on the cave's walls. These sculptures are excellent examples of a highly sophisticated civilization from pre-historic times.
Edakkal is one of the rare places in India where Stone Age carvings can be found. Here you can see Neolithic and Mesolithic sculptures. Apart from these pictorial sculptures, you can see them in Tamil and Brahmi scripts in the caves. The figures in these caves have upraised hair, and some have masks.
Furthermore, this cave is said to have a connection with the Indus Valley Civilization. Recently, about 400 signs have been discovered that indicate a relationship with ancient civilization. The most renowned amongst them was that of a man with a jar cup".
Tourists can go to the bottom of the Ambukutty hills by buses or cars, and from there, one has to climb the hill. Up to the middle of the hill, one can use a jeep organized by DTPC. Also, entry to the cave has a reasonable entrance fee.
2. Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary
This is commonly known as Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary. It is located approximately 16 km away from the Sulthan Bathery and is a rainforest that links with Nagarhole and Bandipur in Karnataka and Mudumalai Parks in Tamil-Nadu. It spans an area of 345 square km and is a place with enormous varieties of flora and fauna. The Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary was set up in 1973 and came under the Project Elephant from 1991 to 1992. It is considered the second largest wildlife sanctuary in Kerala and is bio-geographically one of the richest areas on the Indian Peninsular. Here you can see semi-evergreens, moist deciduous trees, and dry deciduous forests. Muthanga is the greenest place with a variety of trees and other plants.
Here tourists can enjoy seeing spectacular flora species like Maruthi, karimaruthi, Rosewood, venteak, Bengal, and more. Also, travellers can enjoy viewing magnificent wild animals such as elephants, tigers, leopards, jungle cats, civets, monkeys, and wild dogs and an endless species of birds, including peacocks, cuckoos, owls, woodpeckers, and jungle birds.
The Wayanad wildlife sanctuary consists of elephant camp visits, jeep safari, trekking, bird watching, and tribal folklore. Also, eco-tourism in this place aids in creating conservation awareness among the tourists and maintaining the sanctuary and its surroundings.
The ideal time to visit this Wildlife Sanctuary is from June to October. For reaching the destination, buses are available regularly. Visitors can visit many other destinations near the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, such as Bandipur National Park, Mudumalai Elephant Park, and Nagar Hall Wildlife Sanctuary.
3. Thirunelli Temple
It is an ancient temple devoted to Lord Vishnu and is situated in the Wayanad on the side of Brahmagiri hill. The temple is 32 Km away from Mananthavady, surrounded by beautiful hills & trees. Shyamalan Kshetram and Kashi of the South are two other names for the temple.
There are many legends behind this temple. One of the most popular stories is that while touring around the world, Sri Lord Brahma witnessed a spectacular hill now known as Brahmagiri Hill. Draw by its magnificence, he went down the hills and discovered an idol resting on an Amla (Gooseberry) tree. He identified the idol as Lord Vishnu. Then, with the support of other deities, he established the idol there.
Soon after this, at Brahma's request, Lord Vishnu assured that the water around the temple would help in washing away all the sins. Thus, the Papanashini River was created, which destroys all sins. So, the temple's name comes from Nelli, which means Amla (gooseberry), and is known as Thirunelli.
Travellers experience peace and calmness after visiting this temple.
The rituals at this temple take place on the bans of the Papanashini River, which runs through the Brahmagiri hills. The stream is said to have a healing effect. There is also a sacred rock in this temple where individuals pray for their ancestors. Also, Gunnika Cave Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is located west of Thirunelli Temple. Thus, the trinities of Shiva, Vishnu, and Brahma are present in Thirunelli. Near the Papanashini River, you can see the sacred pool Panchatheertham. In ancient times, it is believed that five rivers merged here. There are dense bushes around the pond, and the stone slab in the middle of the pond bears the footprints of Sri Lord Vishnu. The pond dries in the summer.
Tourists visiting the temple can also plan a trek to Pakshipathalam, which is just 10 km away from Thirunelli Temple.
4. Chembra Peak
If you are a lover of adventure and love the soothing natural beauty. Then, you can enjoy an adventurous trip to Wayanad's Chembra Peak. The highest peak of Wayanad, i.e. the Chembra peak (2100 m), is 8 km away from south of Kalpetta, near the town of Meppady. The peak of Chembra adjoins the Niligiri Hills in Tamil Nadu and the Vallarimala in Kozhikode. One can reach the highest peak by walking from the town of Meppady. Peaks can be seen from almost every part of Wayanad. This location is perfect for trekking and other outdoor activities. Before trekking on Chembra Peak, tourists must take prior approval from the office of Meppady forest.
Also, staying at Chembra Peak is not permissible due to the danger of wild animals. The climb to the pinnacle of Chembra peak takes minimum of three hours, and on the route to the top, tourists can come across a heart-shap lake, which is the most popular attraction of the peak. 'Hridhayathadakam' is the name of this lake. From here, tourists can get a mesmerizing view of Kozhikode, Malappuram and Niligiri districts.
There are many peaks near the Chambra peaks. However, they are difficult to climb since they are covered with bushy forests. Also, trekking must be avoided during the rainy season since it becomes quite slippery to trek. Chembra can be reached via various public and private bus services.
5. Kuruva Island
Kuruva Dweep, also known as Kuruva Island, is a protected river delta that consists of a collection of Islands over the Kabini River. The island of Kuruva, which covers more than 950 hectares, is densely populated with abundant flora and fauna. Due to the island's geographical uniqueness, the place is evergreen with a quiet and calm atmosphere. Tourists can find many fascinating things on exploration trips, such as bamboo bridges and other rare tree species. Moreover, rare species of birds, orchids, and herbs inhabit uninhabited Islands.
Peace, tranquility and close to nature, Kuruva Island is a gift from nature to Wayanad. Streams surround the island, and tourists may take a boat trip or go rafting while visiting the island's stunning scenery. The Kerala Tourism Department provides the boats and rafts, and it will take a few hours to visit every island. The raft is made of bamboo and offers an exciting and thrilling journey through the stream.
Another thing to do on this wonderful island is taking a relaxing and lazy nature walk. Celebrations and picnics are prohibited on the island of Kuruva to protect the area's eco-tourism. Tourists can enjoy the beauty without endangering the natural world and also plan trekking on Kuruva Island. Entry to this island is prohoibited during the monsoon season (June-September). The island is open from October to May, and entry is free to the island. The island is 15 km away from Mananthavady, 58 km away from Sultanbathery, and 40 km away from Kalpetta. Also, there are several buses available from Mananthavady to Kuruva Island.
6. Pookode Lake
Wayanad's beautiful freshwater lake lies 15 km from Kalpetta. Surrounded by evergreen forests and the Western Ghats, the lake covers 13 hectares and is 40 meters deep. It is one of the most- liked and wonderful tourist attractions in Wayanad. You will be surrounded by a serene, pleasant, and peaceful environment as you visit this lovely lake. Surrounded by forests, the lake is full of greenery, making it an ideal place for photographers and nature lovers.
The Panamaram river, one of the main and most beautiful tributaries of the Kabini River, begins here. The perennial freshwater lake looks like a map of India. You can see blue lotus, freshwater fishes and blue water lilies. Another famous thing about this place is the sight of wild animals and birds in the surrounding forest of the lake. Pethia Pookodensis is a kind of cyprinid fish found here only. Many monkeys can also be seen here.
Lake Pookode also has boating facilities like pedal and row boats for tourists. Boating on the lake and viewing breath-taking scenery is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. You can also go shopping for handiwork and spices or visit the nearby freshwater aquarium or children's park, or a shopping area. The District Tourism Promotion Council owns the shopping malls and it has a huge collection of bamboo and coconut husk products. At this mall, tourists can buy many things made of bamboo and coconut shells. It is always advisable to visit this lake at dawn or dusk. The South Wayanad Forestry Authority maintains the lake. Buses frequently run to help the visitors in transportation.
7. Banasura Sagar Dam
Banasura Sagar Dam is India's Largest Earth Dam and Asia's second-largest dam. It is positioned across the Karamanathodu River, a tributary of the Kabini River in Kalpetta. The dam is perfectly situated in the foothills of the Banasura Hills. Moreover, it is titled after 'Banasura,' the son of King Mahabali, Kerala's renowned ruler. On top of the hills, "Banasura" is believed to have performed severe penance". Banasura Hill is the third highest Peak in the Western Ghats. The dam here was built in 1979 on behalf of the Banasura Sagar Project to support the Kakkayam Hydroelectric power Project to meet the water needs for irrigation and drinking purposes. The dam, few Kms far from Kalpetta, is a lovely tourist attraction in Wayanad. The Banasura Dam is constructed of enormous stone and rock piles.
The series of islands in the dam's reservoir, which were formed when the reservoir drowned the surrounding territories during the monsoon season, is one of the most magnificent sights here. With the hills of Banasura in the background, these islands are a visual pleasure for visitors who visit the dam and its facilities. Due to this peculiarity, tourists are fascinated by this destination. The dam is near Lake Karalad, which is another tourist spot in Wayanad. Trekking and boating are available at the Banasura Sagar Dam, and tourists can go on a hike to Banasura Peak's dark woodlands and the forests.
Boat trips on lakes and dams are also a unique experience for travelers. They can choose between speedboats and pedal boats. The ideal time to visit the Banasura Sagar Dam is from November to May. You can also plan a trip to visit temples such as Sri Ayyappa Mandir, Sri Nath Mandir, and Nirur Shiva Mandir, which are very close to Banasura Sagar Dam.
8. Soochipara Falls, Wayanad
This is also referred as the Sentinel Rock Waterfalls. Also it is a three-tiered waterfall located near Vellarimala, Wayanad. This waterfall is one of the best in the world, surrounded by deciduous, evergreen, and montane forests. The trip from Meppady to Sentinel Rock Waterfalls offers breath-taking views of some of Wayanad's finest tea estates.
Wayanad's Soochipara Waterfalls is a very famous attraction among tourists. This fascinating waterfall is 200 meters high and has rock walls that are ideal for hiking or trekking. The water which falls from the waterfall forms a huge pool where visitors can swim and enjoy bathing. The water which flows down from Soochipara later crosses the hills of Kerala and Tamil Nadu and joins the Chaliyar River, also known as the Chulika River.
The name is a result of two words Soochi which implies Rock, and Para whch implies Needle. The waterfall here is also known as Sentinel Rock Falls because the rocks here resemble needles. These beautiful waterfalls have three water levels, from 100 feet to 200 feet. It is a frequent destination for tourists for visiting, trekking and rock climbing.
The monsoon season is the ideal time to plan a trip to this natural wonder. During the monsoon season, you can enjoy the waterfalls of Sentinel, and tourists can also enjoy the hills and valleys, which are surrounded by rich flora and fauna. The waterfall is dry in the summer and is not available for tourists from March to June.
9. Neelimala View Point
Neelimala viewpoint offers stunning views of the Meenmutti waterfall and surrounding valleys. From this point, tourists can see the milky white stream that flows down the path and connects with the river. You need to walk a lot to get to that place. However, it is great for adventure and trek lovers. The narrow, uneven road from the nearest motorway guides tourists to the view of Western Ghats Mountain folds on the left and the grassy and rocky hillsides on the right.
This place is so mesmerizing and serene that tourists can never forget its beauty and charm of this point. Mist and aroma form an enchantment that will keep you engaged in its beauty for a long time. This place is a magnificent tourist attraction where tourists can enjoy nature's companions in the misty clouds and their pure atmosphere.
The beauty of this popular trek and campground is highlighted by the Meenmutty waterfall, which offers the most beautiful views of the place. The ideal time for visitors to visit this location is between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. The preferrable time to visit this place is from January-May and September-December.
10. Meenmutty (Kalpetta) Falls
Meenmutty Falls is the best and most attractive tourist place, and this is also the most visited place. This three-tiered waterfall is 984 feet high and is surrounded by a green forest. It is a wonderful hideaway in nature. To reach this natural wonder, you must trek about 2km through the green and heavy forest.
The waterfall has a variety of display platforms, and the view from above is incomparable. Shutterbugs must carry a camera to capture a compelling view. The perfect time to visit this location is between October and May, and the tourists require approximately 2-3 hours to visit it. Visitors can book a cab or take a taxi from the Wayanad Center to reach Meenmutty Falls, which is 30 km away from the centre.
11. Arippara Waterfall
If tourists are looking for a peaceful getaway from the hustle and bustle, then they must visit the most beautiful place, i.e. Arippara Falls near Wayanad. This breath-taking waterfall springs from the Iruvanji River, and it is divided into eight layers surrounded by lush greenery.
In addition to admiring the beauty of nature, here tourists can enjoy a picnic with family and friends or cool off in the pool. The ideal time to travel to this place is from November to May. The ideal duration for visiting this place is 2-3 hours. As the waterfalls are 50 kms away from Wayanad centre, tourists can book a cab or take a local bus to cover the distance.
12. Iruppu Falls
Down the hills of Brahmagiri Hills, surrounded by the majestic Western Ghats, the Iruppu Falls is a fascinating place to visit. The place is full of refreshing greenery, melodious birds chirping and a quiet environment. It greatly delights nature lovers and birdwatchers. Adventurous tourists can take an exciting hike to the waterfall after getting permission from the Forest Department.
Iruppu Falls is a popular pilgrimage place related to the mythological history of Ramayana. The waterfall is said to be blessed with the power of God, and it is said that the sins get washed away after taking a bath in this waterfall. The ideal time to visit this place is in August-January.
13. Karapuzha Dam, Wayanad, Kerala
The Karapuzha Dam is positioned 16 km away from Kalpetta. Also, it is one of the largest earth dams in India, built on Lake Karapuzha. The characteristic or the main attribute of this lake is that it is comprises of around 12 other lakes. Construction of the Karapuzha dam commenced in 1977 and was finished in 2004 for irrigation purposes. The Tourism Board has developed an aquarium near the dam and set up boat and canoeing facilities.
Beautiful mountains surround these lakes. The sound of water flowing down from the dam and the charming mountains in the background create a magnificent view. This location is also an excellent breeding area for various aquatic birds. If you enjoy photography and want to go on a nature stroll, here is the best place to go. The preferred time to visit this place is in monsoon season.
Wayanad is a Kerala hill station that invites domestic and international visitors. Wayanad's cold climate, along with its wonderful natural beauty, makes it one of God's country's top tourist attractions, and it is known as Kerala's green paradise.
Edakkal Caves, Chembra Peak, Neelimala View Point, Karapuzha Dam, and Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary are some important tourist places in Wayanad.