In the humdrum of daily life, traveling plans often take a backseat. Personally, I had abandoned my trip from Coimbatore to Idukki more than a few times, before I could finally make it to this beautiful location. It felt like a dream come true for me. It was a brief two-day trip, but the memory was long-lasting. Here's how it went.
Starting point: Coimbatore
Travelled with: All alone.
Travel mode: Personal car
Number of days: 2 days, 1 night
Destination: Idukki hill station
Available routes below:
Route 1: Coimbatore - Udumalpet - Munnar - Idukki
Route 2: Coimbatore - Palakkad - Idukki
Day 1 Journey - Coimbatore to Idukki
Eagerly waiting for Friday to end, I chose route 1 for this destination. All keen to chase approximately 195 km by myself, there was no looking back, since I loved nature as well as driving. So, I was getting the best of both the worlds. Clear streets surrounded by lush green forests all along the way and a beautiful destination as a final reward for my chase. It was a four-hour drive, so there wasn't too much of halting in between, except for the most sought-after halt at Eravikulam National Park.
Upon arrival, I was told that the endangered Nilgiri Tahir goat is the only animal in this park that can be seen from a distance. However, I soon realized that the park had a lot more to offer in terms of scenic beauty. As such, it's a protected area, but a certain part of the park is open for the tourists. I parked my car at the base parking station, as private vehicles were restricted from going any further. I had to stand in a semi-long queue for a bus ticket that took people to the park. Once the bus dropped me, I truly enjoyed the uphill walk in the pleasant environment.
After being delighted by my visit to this wildlife sanctuary, I somehow regained my focus to head towards Idukki hill station. Few more hours of driving through the lush green area, and I reached Idukki hill station, a place blessed with natural beauty. Upon arrival, I wandered around a bit to feed my hungry stomach and stopped at the Pappens Restaurant. The food was tasty, the servings were good, and the location was simply great. I found the ambiance and staff up to the mark as well. It's a simple hotel that serves good food, so I was satisfied with my brief visit over there for breakfast. With my stomach full, I set out to see the deadly combination of man and nature, the Idukki Arch Dam.
As a first timer, I was mesmerized with the structure. Located on the Periyar River, the Idukki Arch Dam is 550-feet high and 650-feet wide. The entry is restricted though. However, two of the nearby dams and the common reservoir can be spotted clearly from different points. I learned that the dam is opened only on special occasions like Onam and Christmas. Having lived in a city for most of my life, the site of these three dams along with the common reservoir was a remarkable experience.
PC : Coolmallu1
I had heard about Devikulam from the tourists before, so it proved to be my next destination in Idukki. Devi Lake, Pallivasal Falls and Thoovanam Falls were some of the terrific attractions at Devikulam. I also witnessed the green tea and spice plantation around the area, so it was such a delight for a nature lover like me.
Anamudi peak was next on the list for my day 1 exploration. It's said to be the highest peak in South India. So, I was able to see nature at its best from the top. The cool breeze, lush green plantations, crystal clear waters and beautiful overhead clouds offered a divine experience. The peak is also known for Neelakurinji flowers, which blossom only once in every twelve years. With an excellent feeling, worth cherishing, I left Anamudi peak to book a hotel for the night stay.
PC : Jaseem Hamza
I chose Bellmount Resorts for my stay. I was quite hungry at this point, so I had a very heavy dinner. The food was quite delicious, and the hotel rooms were clean and spacious with good interior. The service was excellent as well. The amenities and stay were at a budget-friendly rate. With a full tummy and a bit of exhaustion, I was willing to do nothing but sleep.
Day 2 Journey
I got up all refreshed the following day. I decided to visit Hill View Park, a park that offers great sightseeing of animals as well as nature. The elephants over there did not seem shy of tourists. Also, there was a mini lake that was made available for tourists. It proved to be a nice start for my second day.
Next on my visit list in Idukki was Thommankuthu Falls. Unlike other waterfalls, it's not a single stretch of waterfall. It's a seven-step waterfall in the midst of beautiful hills. I would say, the combination of waterfall and trekking makes this an ideal place to visit for adventurous tourists. It's also a perfect place for taking beautiful pictures. I decided to spend the final few hours of my journey at this exotic place. After spending some splendid hours at this waterfall, I headed back to the hotel for my backpack, to head back to Coimbatore.
PC : Kiran Gopi
Some Travelling Tips
Do not visit the place during the early months of the year such as Jan, Feb, and March because the park is generally closed during this time of the year.
Wear comfortable shoes that support trekking activities.
While the evening atmosphere is pleasant in Idukki, the days are sunny. So, carry an umbrella and your water supply as well.
My visit and stay at Idukki was a remarkable experience for me. A journey that went extremely well, right from the beginning. I seriously hope to plan another trip to this awesome hill station in the near future...