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IDUKKI

Idukki district is one among the 14 districts of Kerala state, India. The district headquarters is located at Kuyilimala in Painavu. The name of the district is derived from the malayalam word Idukki, meaning narrow gauge. 

Idukki has an area of 5,105.22 km2 (1,971.1 sq mi) and is the second largest District of Kerala. About 97 percent of the total area of the District is covered by rugged mountains and forests. There is only a strip of Middle land (3%) in the western part of the district. Low land area is totally absent in the district. More than 50% of the area of the district is covered by forest. Anamudi, the highest peak in India south of Himalayas, is in the Kuttampuzha Panchayat of Adimali Block, in the K.D.H Village of Devikulam taluk. 13 other peaks in the district exceed a height of 2,000 m (6,562 ft). The Periyar, Thodupuzhayar and Thalayar are the important rivers of the district. Kundala Dam, Mattupetty Dam, Munnar head works, ponmudi dam and the kallarkutty Dam are constructed across the various tributaries of Periyar. There are a few natural lakes in the district. They are Eravikulam and Devikulam lakes in Devikulam taluk, Elavizhapunchira, in Thodupuzha taluk. Two types of the soil are found in the district. The highland area is covered by forest soil(Alluvial soil) and the other parts by laterite soil. 

Due to the Large scale of Migration to the District from other parts of Kerala and from the Neighboring Tamilnadu, Idukki is having a mixed culture. 

A landlocked district, Idukki is one of the most nature rich areas of Kerala. High ranges and wooded valleys are girded by three main rivers - Periyar, Thalayar and Thodupuzhayar - and their tributaries. The River Pamba also has its origin here. As a tourist destination, Idukki offers diverse attractions like Wildlife sanctuaries, Hill stations, Dams, Spice plantation tours, Mountain treks, Elephant rides etc. 

Idukki is a hilly district having many unique topographical and geographical characteristics.The altitude varies from 2500 ft above MSL in Kulamavu to more than 5000 ft above MSL in Munnar.There are eleven peaks in the district, which exceed a height of 6000 ft above MSL. The highest peak in Kerala, Anaimudi is located in the K.D.H village of Devikulam taluk.The High land area is covered by forest soil (Alluvial soil) and the other parts by laterite soil.The climate undergoes a sudden variation as we go from west to east.The regions has a comparatively cold climate. Annual rainfall in this district varies from 250 cms to 425 cms. Munnar, Devikulam, Pallivasal, Vellathooval etc. are places getting high rainfall while Marayoor, Kanthalloor, Vattavada, Thaliar etc. experience low rainfall. 

It is also a home for large number of trible population known for their unique customs and beliefs. Idukki had a population of 1,129,221 as of 2001. Census[2] Eminent persons from Idukki district include K.M. Beenamol (Sports), K.M. Biju,(Sports), Shiny Wilson (Sports), P.J. Joseph (Politics). 11516 Scheduled tribal families are living in the district, including: Malayarayan, Mannan, Muthuvan, Oorali, Paliyan, Hilpulayan, Malapandaram, Ulladan and Malayan. 

This district has several protected areas including: Periyar Tiger Reserve in the south, Kurinjimala Sanctuary to the east, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary to the north east, Eravikulam National Park and Anamudi Shola National Park to the north, Pampadum Shola National Park to the south and Thattekad Bird Sanctuary in the west. These protected areas are especially known for several threatened and endemic species including Tiger, Nilgiri Thar, Grizzled Giant Squirrel, Nilgiri Wood-pigeon, Elephant, Gaur, Sambar Deer, Purple Frog and Neelakurinji. 


ACCESSIBILITY

 

By Air Kochi is the nearest airport from Idukki.
By Rail Nearest railheads are at Kochi and Kotayam.
By Road The important towns of the district are well connected by road.

MAJOR ATTRACTIONS

Palkulamedu

This is placed at 12 kms distance from Idukki. This is located 3125 m above see level from where Kochi, Alappuzha and other nearby towns e.g. Kalvarimount , Peermede ,Thekkady etc. can be seen.

Keezharkuthu

This place is situated at 25 kms from Thodupuzha. The Rain Bow waterfalls, which flows down a rock from a height of about 1500 m is a wonderful attraction of this spot. It can be seen through out the year in full swing. This place is also important as various medicinal plants grow here. It is an ideal place for rock climbing, mountaineering and camp trekking because of these reasons young people like this place very much.

Thommankuthu

This is situated at 17 kms away from Thodupuzha. There is a 7 steps waterfall, which is lovely picnic spot. At each step of this waterfall there is a cascade and pool beneath. This place named as Thommankuthu is an ideal place for adventure tourism.

Malakara Reservoir

This is situated at 6 kms from Thodupuzha on the Thodupuzha-Moolamattom road. This artificial road is accessible by road only. This place is ideal for boating and fishing. Many tourists come to visit this place only for these attractions.

Kalliyanathandu

The aerial view of the Idukki reservoir can be seen from this place. The scenic beauty of peaks and forests make this spot a marvelous one. The scenery, which is visible here, is something heavenly.

Cheruthoni

This place is the Idukki Arch Dam sight, which has an aerial view of the reservoir. Its scenic beauty is very beautiful at this place.

Painavu

This place has a scenic beauty, which has a trekking point, evergreen forest. This place is a District Headquarters.

Kulamavu

This is actually a dam sight, which has a trekking trail. This place has an excellent viewpoint. Kulamavu is a famous hill station in Idukki District of Kerala. Situated at a height of 3,000 ft above sea level, it is an ideal place for trekking and a quiet relax. Kulamavu is in close proximity to Nadukani, which is about 70 km from Thodupuzha. Kulamavu Dam, which extends to 33 sq km, is one of the three dams of Idukki Reservoir Project. St Mary's Church at Pothumattom is a place of worship here. Idukki Arch Dam, Moolamattom underground power station and Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary are the nearby excursions.

Thumpachi Calveri Samuchayam

This is actually a picnic spot but also ideal for meditation and relaxation. This place is ideal for watching sunset. This is located at 35 kms away from Thodupuzha.

Nadukani

It is an ideal place for one-day picnic. As the name indicates, this park offers panoramic view of the large area of nearby districts and villages. A two-storied pavilion makes an ideal place for enjoying the landscape and beauty of nature. People always come here to enjoy a short stint.

Chinnar Wild Life Sanctuary

It is situated on the Tamil Nadu Border at 60 kms away from Munnar. This wild life sanctuary is spread across 90.44 Sq. Km.

Cheeyappara

The Cheeyappara and Valara waterfalls are located between Nariamangalam and Adimali on the Kochi-Madurai highway. The Cheeyappara waterfalls descend in seven steps. The panoramic view of this place is awesome and also a great place for trekking. Meenuli: It is famous for two acres of evergreen forests upon a huge Rock. The rock is more than 500 acres in area and is an ideal spot for mountaineering. It is a real beauty as it is placed above the rock.

Marayoor

This is 40 kms away from Munnar. This is the only place in Kerala that has natural growth of sandal wood trees. Among the interesting spots in this place some are stated in the following: the sandal wood factory of the forest department, the caves with murals, objects from the new stone age civilization and the children`s park spread across a hectare of land under the canopy of a single Banyan tree. Thoovanam waterfalls and Rajiv Gandhi National Park are also near by to this place.

Anayirankal

This place is situated at 22 kms away from Munnar. It is a lush green carpet of tea plants. A trip on the splendid reservoir is a memorable experience. The Tata Tea Plantations and evergreen forests surround the Anayirankal Dam, which is an ideal spot for picnic. Top station: This place is 32 kms away from Munnar. This is placed at 1700 m above sea level; and is the highest point on the Munnar-Kodaikanal road. The rare Nilakurinji or strobilanthus belongs to this region. This plant blooms in every 12 years and filled the hillsides in bright blue. Top Station also offers a panoramic view of the neighboring state of Tamil Nadu.

Kundala

Kundala is a beautiful town on the way to Top Stations. The Golf Course that belongs to Tata Tea Ltd. is located here. The Kundala artificial dam is another attraction, which caters to the tourists. Aruvikkad waterfalls are also near Kundala, which is situated at 20 kms away from Munnar. There are some places, which can be mentioned as the places for excursion from Munnar. These are as follows:

Power House waterfalls

This waterfall is found out on the way to Thekkady from Munnar cascades down a steep rock and this is placed at 2000m above sea level. The spot is enriched with the scenic western mountain ranges, and is an ideal place for a break on the way to the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Thekkady. This is 18 kms away from Munnar.

Eravikulum National Park

The 97 sq. km. park is situated in the Devikulam taluk. The 2695m high Anamudi peak is located in the southern region of the park. This is placed at 15 kms away from Munnar.

Rajamala

This is the natural habitat of the Nilgiri which is 15 kms away from Munnar. Half of the world population of rare mountain goat or Hemitragas bylocres, which is becoming extinct found here. The Nilgiri tahrs are today reduced to small herds found in the Eravikulam-Rajamala region. The total number of Nilgiri tahrs in Rajamala is estimated at 1317.

Nyayamakad

This place is based at a distance of 10 kms away from Munnar. This is mainly Located between Munnar and Rajamala. Nyayamakad is a land of breathtaking waterfalls. The waters cascade down a hill from a height of about 1600 metres. The enchanting surroundings make an excellent picnic spot and trekking point.

Attukal

This place is located between Munnar and Pallivasal, which is 9 kms away from Munnar. This place is ideal for long trek. The other attractions are undulating hills and waterfall .

Lock Heart Gap

This place is 13 kms away from Munnar and ideal for adventure tourism and trekking. The fresh mountain air, the foggy hills and the picturesque beauty make the place worthy to visit.

Chithirapuram

This is placed at 10 kms away from Munnar. Situated at a height of 1700 m, Mattupetty is known for its highly specialized dairy farm named as the Indo Swiss Livestock Project. Over a 100 varieties of high-yielding cattle are reared here. One can visit the place from 7 a.m. till 11 a.m. and again from 2 p.m. too 8.30 p.m. The rate is Rs.5 per head. The Mattupetty Lake and dam, just a short distance from the farm, is a very beautiful picnic spot. The sprawling Kundala tea plantations and the Kundala Lake are other attractions in the neighborhood. DTPC Idukki provides boating facilities on the Mattupetty Dam. Speed launch and motorboats are also available on hire at this place.

Devikulum

This place is situated at 7 kms from Munnar. This place is very beautiful as this is a heavenly hill stations with its velvety lawns, exotic flora and fauna and the cool mountain air. The presence of all these in a single place is itself a rare combination. The Sita Devi Lake with its mineral waters and picturesque surroundings is a good picnic spot. The lake is also ideal for trout fishing.

Pothamadu

This place is 6 kms away from Munnar. .. Pothamedu offers an excellent view of the tea, coffee and cardamom plantations in Munnar. This place is ideal for trekking and long mountains walk because of its undulating hills, the abundant mountains and the magnificent and incredible scenery. Pothamedu offers an excellent view of the tea, coffee and cardamom plantations in Munnar. The rolling hills, the lush mountain and the breathtaking scenery here is ideal for trekking and long mountain walks.

Munnar

Set at an altitude of 6000 ft in Idukki district, Munnar is one of the major attractive tourist spot in God’s own country. Munnar is situated at the meeting point of three mountain streams namely Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala. Munnar was the favored summer resort of the erstwhile British rulers in the colonial days. One of the most popular hill stations in India, Munnar is situated at the confluence of three mountain streams - Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala. This hill station is recommended by Kerala tour operators. Sprawling tea plantations, picture-book towns, winding lanes and holiday artifacts make this a popular resort town. The Neelakurinji is the most exotic flora and grassland found here. The Neelakurinji is the most exotic flora and grassland found here. This flower that covers the hills in blue every twelve years, will bloom next in 2006 AD. Munnar also has the highest peak in South India, Anamudi, which towers over 2695 m.

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