Contrary to the popular assumption that hill stations worth visiting are situated in the northern part of the sub-continent, the hill stations of Kerala has a host of delights to offer. The state of Kerala ,bordered by the western ghat ranges on its eastern fringes has a number of hill stations to boast of, some of the top hill stations of Kerala include Munnar, Wayanad, Ponmudi, Neliampathy, Wagamon, Tushargiri and many others.
Set against the background of lush green picturesque surroundings, these hill stations are either enveloped by acres of tea, coffee and spice cultivations, or they are an abode of dense forest nursing and grooming exotic breeds of flora and fauna.Criss-crossing mountain streams, breath-taking waterfalls, completes the picture of tranquility and calm where the souls rewinds in self and meditates upon the mystery of existence. The more adventurous spirits find the trekking along the labyrinthine mountainous roads more enchanting with new avenues of adrenalin rush at every hair-pin turn.
Although connectivity by both rail and airways are made available, it is advised that taking the road by car from the nearest railroad or hill stations are the best means to visit and revel most of the hill stations of Kerala. It can be rest assured that the experience of a vacation at these top hill stations of Kerala would be an unforgettable moments to cherish and share, and in no way subordinated to the vacations spent in Shimla, Darjeeling or Shilong.
Top hill stations of Kerala:
Munnar Hill Station of Kerala:
Set in the Kannan-devan hills, often tagged as the Kashmir of Kerala and bathed by the confluence of three mountain streams Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and Mundane, Munnar is perhaps the most popular hill stations among the top hill stations of Kerala. A place of summer retreat for the erstwhile British Empire it is a picture perfect town with colonial bunglows, cozy hotels, lush green tea estates clad in mist and mystery. The tea gardens of Munnar are among the highest tea estates of the world, the average height of the place being 1600 mt. The highest peak of the Western Ghat, Anamudi rising tall to 2695 mt is situated near Munnar. Anamudi is famous for its trekking tracks making Munnar on of the most sought after hill stations in the Nilgiris. Among the floras, the visitors, if there are lucky would become the witness to the rare phenomenon of the flowering of Neelakurunji flowers that blooms every twelve years and shrouds the slopes with its shades of blue.
Wayanad Hill Station of Kerala:
Situated at the height of 700-1200 mt, Wayanad offers mist clad mountains, mountainous rivers the soil highly conducive for the cultivation of tea, coffee, rubber, pepper, cardamom and other spices. For the top hill stations of Kerala it is always the story of mist and impeccable greenery. The Wayanad wild life sanctuary, established in 1973, is rich in bio-diversity and it is an integral part of Nilgiri biosphere reserve and is a home to an exotic variety of plants and animals, making this place one of the most sought after tourist destinations among the top hill stations of Kerala.
Ponmudi Hill Station of Kerala:
The surroundings are thickly wooded by lush green forests and clad in mist, the Ponmudi hill station is about 900 mts from the sea level. The best resorts, the winding hilly paths, the mountain streams, the trekking trails are set against wooded background with its rich trove of floras and faunas are worth every penny that is spent here. Many varieties of butter flies can be observed in this place. Ponmudi also boasts of deer park where variety of deer is conserved.
Idukki Hill Station of Kerala:
It is a narrow gorge inhabited by the indigenous population of the region who has a culture and heritage distinct from the mainstream population. Watching the way of life, artifacts, and festivals of this tribal people is quite an experience for the visitors who had hailed from another world. The thickly wooded place with its tranquil and soothing greeneries relaxes your nerves and its quiet surroundings are conducive for meditative ambience. This small hill station is surrounded by forested valleys, meandering pathways, wildlife sanctuaries, spice cultivations, wonderful trekking routes and all that you can expect in one of the exquisite top hill stations of Kerala. Three rivers along with the tributaries bathe the place namely Periyar, Thalayar and Thodupuzhayar. River Pamba originated from this place.
Wagamon Hill Station of Kerala:
Situated 65 km from the Idukki , this hill station is ideal for the trekkers and nature lovers who love the height as well as the greenery. It is an undulating land of lush green and enveloped by different types of cultivations especially tea estates and forested land. The average height of this place is 110 mt.
Devikulam Hill Station of Kerala:
A legend is associated with this place. It is said that Devi Sita, the consort of Lord Rama ,who was one of the avatars of Vishnu and the hero of the epic Ramayana came here to take a dip into the lake situated amidst the hill and ever since the place is named as Devikulum. It is 16 km southwest of Idukki and one of the top hill stations of Kerala. Enriched by the lake hidden amid the thick foliages Devikulam is really a place to cherish in the memories once you visit this place. The land ascends to about 1000 mts as rolling hills also known for its red and blue gum tree cultivation.
Mattupetty Hill Station of Kerala:
Along with its own variety of rolling land and thick foliage, Mattupettu among the top hill stations of Kerala is famous for its dairy farming which owes its origin to the indo Swiss project. Hundreds of high breed cattle are bred and reared and one gets the freshest milk ,butter, cheese thanks to the presence of the farms. The visitors often make it a point to visit the cattle sheds where well-fed cows are taken care of by scientific methods. Situated more than 1500 mts above sea level, the Mattupetty Lake with the dam is the chief picnic spot of the region . Kundala tea plantation and Kundala lake nearby is also visited every year.
Vythiri Hill Station of Kerala:
It was a favorite summer retreat of the colonial planters of the erstwhile British Empire which gave this town an ambience of European heritage. It is located at the northern ranges of Wayanad district and rises to about 2500 mt above sea level. The high hills are clad by mist and natural as well as cultivated fields along its slopes. The Pokoot lakes nearby is a favorite boating spot. The perennial streams flowing downhill, the dense green ambience, the refreshing weather, the pollution-free environment makes this place one of the most sought after among the top hill stations of Kerala. It is also easily accessible by roads.
Lakkidi Hill Station of Kerala:
It can boast of one the most highly elevated region of Wayanad and it has the rolling hills ,the cool ambience ,the lush greenery and all. Lakkidi is also the region recorded with second highest rainfall of the south. Kunjan Nambier ,the famous Keralian Satirist and poet has his birthplace here. He is believed to have invented the unique and world famous ottanthukkal dance. The house of Nambier is preserved as a heritage building by the government of Kerala.
Chembra Hill Station of Kerala:
Situated at about 14km west of Kalpeta ,the chembra peaks with an altitude of 2100 mt is the highest peak in the Wayanad region. Enveloped by lush greenery ,this hill station offers a perfect destination to the nature lovers and trekking enthusiast. This trekking route of Kerala is famous all over the world with its winding pathways, and breath-taking view at every turn. The hills are never barren and rocky but covered with natural as well as cultivated vegetation. It helps us to unwind in the peace and charm of this place.
Echo point Hill Station of Kerala:
This spot should be specially mentioned as a centre of much wonderment and joy experiencing the natural phenomenon of echo. It is situated on the way to Munnar and because of the distance between the two hills, any sound made at this point reverberates across the valley leaving behind a strange feeling of being answered by nature. Anyone planning for a visit to Munnar should stop at this place and experience nature at its tranquil best.
Rajamala Hill Station of Kerala:
It is about 15km from Munnar and a part of the Eravikulum wild life sanctuary. It is a home to many unique, exotic and even endangered species of plants and animals. A special mention should be made of the endangered species of mountain goat known as Nilgiri Tahr. The Rajmala eravikulam region has the largest collection of this endangered species of animal and their number is presently somewhere around 1500. The rolling slopes of Rajmala have a dense cover of foliages and it is a perfect place that cherishes both the natural habitat which is set against the undulating land and the discreet charms of a hill station and consequently you just cannot leave Rajamala in your Kerala tour itinerary for visiting top hill stations of Kerala.
Ramkelendu Hill Station of Kerala:
Located at about 40 km from Thekkady, one gets in touch with the picture perfect mountain villages of Kerala ,the most notable among them being Bodi and Cumbum set at the eastern slope of the Western Ghat. The villages are the places to relax and enjoy the tranquil beauty of nature. The accommodations found in the villages are comparatively cheaper. Along with the ambience of the hill stations ,one with an interest with the culture and native heritage of Kerala mingles with the local people and start exchanging their viewpoints and ideas. The slopes of the mountains are lush green as usual and food served at these local villages is healthy and tickling to the taste buds.
Chitirapuram Hill Station of Kerala:
It is 10 km away from Munnar and known for the Pallyvasal hydel power project. The hill slopes are enveloped by lush green tea plantations. The winding roads and the meandering streams along with the greenery of the place makes for a picturesque setting against which one views the post card perfect cottages and the quiet town that has emerged along the slope of the mountains. The beautiful cottages, the tea estates, the greenery and the labyrinthine ways along the gorges make Chitirapuram one of the top hill stations of Kerala.
Pullumedu Hill Station of Kerala:
Set against the winding path of Periyar River, Pallamedu is famous for its stunning picturesque surroundings. The hill slopes remain dark vibrating green throughout the year and interspersed by mountain streams and waterfall it is a favorite retreat for the nature enthusiasts and lovers of natural beauty. The inhabitants are peaceful and accommodating which make you feel at home here.
The famous Sree Ayappa temple with its enthralling Makara jyoti illumination from its shrine can be observed from this place. Pullumedu offers a delightful stay basking in natural beauty and wondering at the rich heritage of this place making it one of the top hill stations of Kerala.
Vandenmedu Hill Station of Kerala:
Since the ancient days, Kerala is known for its spice trade all over the world. According to the historical record, the ports of Kerala are busiest among the other ports of the world for its rare quality of spices. These spices are mainly grown at the hill stations and then transported to the ports. The soil is richly favorable for tea , coffee, rubber and cultivation of spices. Vandenmadu is one such important centre and it happens to be the largest auction centre for Cardamom. Those who are interested in the wonderful and exotic spice cultivation and trading should visit here to have a hand on experience of the spice trade. The other attraction of this top hill station of Kerala is of course its rolling meadow, the well kept lawns, the small town and beautiful villages along its slopes.
Chellarkovil Hill Station of Kerala:
This is a sleepy village , peaceful and profound in its ambience and extremely picturesque to look at . This is a perfect abode of those who wishes to retreat from the maddening crowd and the overwhelming pressure of the work regime to spend some day amidst the peace and quiet of the hilly villages. It soothes the mind and makes it reflective to the need of our inner nature. The gentle slopes are shrouded by mystical greenery and mist which gently slopes down to the coconut groves of Cumbum in the neighboring Tamilnadu. All these gifts of nature cherished by man make Chellarkovil one of the top hill stations of Kerala.
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