Thekkady, located in the Idukki district of the enchanting state of Kerala in India, is a picturesque town that offers a captivating blend of natural beauty and cultural heritage. Known for its lush greenery, wildlife sanctuaries, and spice plantations, Thekkady has become a favorite destination for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts alike. Let’s delve into the history, explore the tourist attractions, discover possible tours and day excursions, and find the best hotels and resorts in Thekkady.
The history of Thekkady can be traced back to ancient times when it served as a transit point for spices and other commodities traded between the eastern ports and the western coast of India. The region was under the rule of various dynasties, including the Chera, Pandya, and Chola dynasties. Thekkady gained prominence during the colonial era when the British established tea and coffee plantations in the surrounding areas. Today, it stands as a testament to its rich historical and cultural heritage.
Tourist Attractions near Thekkady:
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary: One of the most famous wildlife sanctuaries in India, the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is a haven for nature lovers. Spread over an area of 925 square kilometers, it is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including elephants, tigers, sambar deer, and numerous species of birds. Embark on a boat safari in the serene Periyar Lake to witness the majestic animals in their natural habitat.
Mangala Devi Temple: Located atop a hill, the Mangala Devi Temple is a revered ancient temple dedicated to Goddess Mangala Devi. The temple offers breathtaking panoramic views of the lush green surroundings and is open for visitors during the Chitra Pournami festival.
Spice Plantations: Thekkady is renowned for its spice plantations, where you can take a guided tour to learn about various spices like cardamom, pepper, cinnamon, and clove. Immerse yourself in the aromatic flavors and indulge in some spice shopping.
Elephant Junction: Get up close and personal with these gentle giants at Elephant Junction. Enjoy an elephant ride, bathe them in the river, and learn about their conservation efforts. It’s an unforgettable experience for animal lovers.
Possible Tours in Thekkady:
Bamboo Rafting in Periyar: Embark on an exciting bamboo rafting adventure in the Periyar Tiger Reserve. Traverse through dense forests, spot wildlife, and relish the serenity of the surroundings. It’s a thrilling experience for nature enthusiasts.
Jeep Safari in Gavi: Explore the untouched wilderness of Gavi, located deep within the Periyar Tiger Reserve. Hop on a jeep safari and witness the untouched beauty of dense forests, waterfalls, and rare bird species.
Trekking in the Western Ghats: Thekkady is nestled amidst the majestic Western Ghats, offering excellent opportunities for trekking. Explore the diverse trails that lead you through picturesque landscapes and give you a chance to connect with nature.
Day Excursions from Thekkady:
Munnar: Take a day trip to Munnar, a charming hill station renowned for its sprawling tea plantations, misty valleys, and pleasant climate. Don’t miss attractions like Mattupetty Dam, Eravikulam National Park, and Echo Point.
Kumarakom: Embark on a scenic journey to Kumarakom, a serene backwater destination. Cruise through the tranquil backwaters, visit the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, and experience the traditional lifestyle of the locals.
Vagamon: Discover the idyllic hill station of Vagamon, famous for its lush green meadows, pine forests, and beautiful waterfalls. Enjoy activities like paragliding, trekking, and boating amidst nature’s bliss.
Best Hotels and Resorts in Thekkady:
Greenwoods Resort: Offering a luxurious and eco-friendly experience, Greenwoods Resort provides comfortable rooms, Ayurvedic spa treatments, and a range of activities to indulge in. The resort’s serene ambiance and excellent hospitality make it a popular choice among travelers.
Spice Village: Nestled in the midst of spice plantations, Spice Village is a charming eco-resort that showcases traditional Kerala architecture. The resort offers cozy cottages, an Ayurvedic center, and opportunities for spice plantation visits.
Cardamom County: Located close to the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, Cardamom County is a boutique resort that blends modern comforts with nature’s tranquility. The resort features spacious rooms, a swimming pool, and a multi-cuisine restaurant serving delectable dishes.
The Mountain Courtyard: Situated amidst lush greenery, The Mountain Courtyard is a boutique hotel that offers well-appointed rooms, a rooftop restaurant with panoramic views, and a range of facilities to ensure a comfortable stay.
Plan your visit to Thekkady, and immerse yourself in the vibrant culture, breathtaking landscapes, and abundant wildlife. Whether you seek adventure, relaxation, or a glimpse into history, Thekkady has something for everyone.