Periyar Tiger Reserve, Thekkady

The Periyar Tiger reserve is located in Thekkady in Idukki district. Periyar is a protected area that covers 925 sq kms of land. Around 350 sq kms of this area has been considered as the Periyar national Park and Tiger Reserve. It is also called as Thekkady wildlife. The Periyar sanctuary was declared as a Tiger Reserve under the Project Tiger Scheme and it is a major centre of attraction for all the tourists. Periyar wildlife sanctuary is famous for its large wildlife and landscape. It is at a height of around 900 to 2,019 m above sea level. The highest peak of this area is Kottamalai which has a height of 2019 m.

There is also a lake called as Periyar Lake through which one can take a cruise to get a glance of the wildlife. Even though this is a tiger reserve tourists mainly come here to get a glimpse of the elephants enjoying in the Periyar Lake. The tourists can conduct trekking trails and various other adventurous activities. Some of the economic activities are nature walk which involves trekking through various trails, Tiger trail which is a trekking that is protection oriented, Border Hiking which is the trekking along the border of the Tiger reserve that enables one to enjoy the flora and fauna.

There are different types of trekking programmes that ranges from 2 hours to a whole day. These are organized by trained guides. Those who wish to have a day long trek, it is best to take the Border hiking. It starts at early morning and ends in the evening. On the way one can see various species of animals and birds. In the dense forest there is a stone temple of Goddess which can be witnessed on the journey. Around 10 tourists can participate in the programme.

One of the trekking programme here is called the Tiger trail which is a two or three days trekking programme that starts in the morning of first day and ends in the afternoon of the next day or the third day. It is an adventurous trekking and the distance covered will be 20 kms and it may be even 35 kms depending upon the package chosen. The trekkers reach the base camp after a trek of 4 hours. Vegetarian lunch will be provided and there will be a guide to explain about the various species of animals that you see on your way. It is the eco committee members who make the various trekking trail routes. It is estimated that around 5 lakhs trekkers come to this place in a year. Every week around 20 people are allowed to participate in the tiger trail programme.

Another trekking programme here is the Night trekking which is the jungle patrol. It is a part of the night patrolling in the development zones in this reserve. The time for trekking is from 7 pm to 4 am. Only those who are physically and mentally fit to walk at night can participate in this. The trekkers will be accompanies by watchers and armed guards.

Nature walk is an interpretive trekking programme that offers opportunity to watch the flora and fauna in the route. The trekkers are accompanied by a guide and the route is normally 4 to 5 kms.

Nearest Bus Station is Kumili
Coimbatore International Airport at a distance of 145 kms
Railway Station:
Kottayam railway station at a distance of 114 kms

Tourist Place to Visit in Idukki District, Kerala