Munnar is a small town amidst a hill station in Idukki district on the Western Ghats. The name ‘Munnar’ in Tamil means Three Rivers. It is named so as the three rivers Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala creates a confluence here. However the whole place is called Munnar at times.
It is a picturesque hill station carpeted with tea plantations which contribute to the scenic view around, whenever moved out of the town. The hill stations have many towns and villages where the inhabitants are mainly Tamilians and Malayalees. The tea plantations in the hills are owned and maintained by Tata Ltd. There are many Tea factories in the hills. The towns around Munnar are Marayoor, Devikulam and Adimaly. The pincode is 685612 and the STD code is 04865. The suitable time to visit Munnar is from September to June
Distance from known places
How To Reach
By Air: Madurai (Tamil Nadu) Airport is about 140 km away from Munnar. Cochin International Airport is about 190 km away.
By Rail: Theni (Tamil Nadu) railway station is about 60 km away from Munnar, Changanacherry,is about 93 km away.
Places to Visit
Aattukadu waterfall is located near the road branching out of main road towards cochin. The route to this waterfall is narrow and the falls can be seen from a distance. Driving further down through the road takes us to the very closer view of the falls. The water flows through rocky terrains and taking bath here can be dangerous. The view of the hills from this place is breathtaking.
There is a small hotel near the waterfall where they serve different flavours of Tea.
The Nyamakkad estate is present on the way to Rajamala from Munnar. The estate has a waterfall inside and is a private property. The waterfall is surrounded by tall trees on all sides which makes it interesting to visit.
Luckum falls is located on route towards Marayoor. The place is shallow and the force of flowing water is less which makes it an ideal place to take bath.
This waterfall is present deep inside the forests of Chinnar wildlife sanctuary. It can be seen from the road. Binoculars can be used to get a good view of this falls from the road. However one can also trek for a couple of kilometers to reach the falls.
Chinnakanal waterfall is present on the main road towards Theni. It has a good amount of water after the rainy season i.e. July. There is also a good view of the valley from near the waterfalls.
The main place to visit in Rajamala is the Eravikulam National Park. The National Park is the habitat of the Nilgiri Tahr. The park officials take tourists on their vehicles from the main road to the park and private vehicles are not allowed inside the park. The highest peak in South India, Anaimudi, is located here inside the Park.
Top Station is a destination in the hills belonging to Theni District of Tamil Nadu. It is present in the Kerala border and reachable by road only through Kerala. The altitude of this place is 1880 meters (6,170 ft). It is near the highest point in the Munnar-Kodaikanal Escape Road.
From Top Station one should walk down some distance to get to the view point.
Photo point is a scenic place in a Tea estate where the trees are arranged to give a good view for taking photos.
Marayoor is a town 42 kilometer north of Munnar on the way to Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary. The town is famous for the natural Sandalwood forests. It has a population of around 9500.
Places to see in Marayoor
Kanthalloor is a part of Marayoor, famous for extensive winter fruits and vegetable cultivation.
Muniyara caves are situated 1 km away from Marayoor on the way to Kanthalloor. It is believed to be an ideal place of meditation for sages of ancient times.
There is a small Children’s park in the heart of Marayoor where the main attraction is a Banyan tree. From the park Monkeys and Deers can be spotted.
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary
The Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary is spread across a wide area of around 1187 sq.km in the Anaimalai hills near Tamil Nadu border. The sanctuary is home to 225 species of birds. The altitude of the wide spread area varies from 400 m to 2522 m.
Mattupetty Dam is a Concrete Gravity Dam built to conserve water to generate Hydro-Electric power. It also acts as bridge for the road which takes us to the Top Station. The view is great from either sides of the dam. Boating is available in the Mattupetty lake. There are Speed boats and Pedal boats available here.
Echo point is the next destination from Mattupetty dam while travelling from Munnar to Top Station. It is a scenic location with an exotic view of the Mattupetty lake.
Kundala Dam is situated at 20 Km from Munnar town. It is an Arch Dam. Boating is available here.
Anayirangal Dam is a scenic place near Poopara Village which is on the way to Bodi . Its a scenic place with water all around the place.
This place provides a great panoramic view of the hills and the lush greenery. It is around 13 km from Munnar.
The Flower garden is present on the way to Mattupetty from Munnar. The have a collection of Plants of Flowers and Spices.
Here are some of the flowers from Flower Garden.
Blossom park is situated along the Headworks dam with and area of around 15 acres. It is around 3 km from Munnar. The rare varieties of Plants, Flowers and trees are grown here. Tree Houses, Ropeways and Swings are placed here for attracting more tourists.
The Shooting point has been named so, as it is the favourite place near Munnar for the Film shooters. It has a nice view of the mountains at the back from the grassland. The grassland is of fresh green colour which makes it one of the most popular place for shooting.
KDHP Tea museum
The tea museum has been setup near the Nallathanni Estate as a tribute to the people who made places around Munnar a Major Tea plantation. The museum portrays the Tea processing machines from older age to the Modern age. A Demonstration room has been attached to give the tourists an experience of Different flavours of tea.
Pothamedu View Point
The view point at Pothamedu is located at a distance of around 6 km from Munnar. The Tea, Coffee, Cardamom plantations and Pallivasal Tea factory and a Hydro-electric power plant can viewed from here clearly.
Other places around Munnar
Valara Waterfalls is located amidst a dense forest at a distance of 42 Km from Munnar
Cheeyappara Water falls
Cheeyappara Water falls is located near the Valara Falls. The water from Cheeyappara falls cascade down in seven steps. This place is also ideal for trekking.
Jungle Honey Bee Nest
Honey Bee Nest is located at 4 Km away from Munnar on the way to Mattupetty. This place is also called Honey Bee Tree spot by the tourist guides here.
Panniar Dam is located 22 Km away on the way to Thekkady from Munnar. The reservoir is located in a place surrounded by a beautiful landscape.
Escape road was a proper road connecting Kodaikanal with Munnar. It is now defunct. It is now being used as a trekking route by trekking enthusiasts. The road connects Top Station to Berijam Lake near Kodaikanal.
By Kristopher and Tyler Stengele – http://www.flickr.com/photos/marcus334/4010997687/sizes/o/, CC BY 2.0, Link
By Peter Vangeit – http://picasaweb.google.com/peter.vangeit/EscapeRoadMar08#5181163511445722946, CC BY 3.0, Link
Indo Swiss Farm
The Indo Swiss Farm is located in Mattupetty. A group of high yielding cattle are being reared here. The area in a beautiful green grasslands with the view of surrounding mountains.