Periyar National Park, Tiger Reserve, Thekkady, is an example of nature’s bounty, with great scenic charm, rich bio diversity and providing veritable visitor satisfaction. Sprawled over an area of 925 Sq .km., Periyar is one of the 27 tiger reserves in India. Zealously guarded and efficiently managed reserve is a repository of rare, endemic and endangered flora and fauna and forms the major watershed of two important rivers of Kerala, the Periyar and Pamba.
Set high in the ranges of the Western Ghats, in God’s Own Country, Kerala, is the Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve. Periyar wildlife sanctuary has a picturesque lake at the heart of the sanctuary. Formed with the building of a dam in 1895, this reservoir meanders around the contours of the wooded hills, providing a permanent source of water for the local wildlife. Though its a Tiger Reserve, tourists come here to view the Indian elephants in the act of ablution and playfulness by the Periyar lake.
History, Periyar National Park
The Periyar Wild Life Sanctuary was declared a Tiger Reserve in 1978. This sanctuary offers the unique opportunity to watch and photograph wild elephants from close quarters.
Fun Facts, Periyar National Park
In Thekkady, one can enjoy cruise rides on lake as well as elephant rides. Trekking is also arranged for a visit to the ancient Mangala Devi temple located inside the reserve. Jungle walks with the help of a local guide are also fun for nature lovers. One can also go for the famous Ayurveda massages and visit tea and cardamom plantations which dot the area.
Shopping, Periyar National Park
An eco-shop near the entrance gate of Periyar Tiger Reserve, offers souvenirs, T-shirts, post cards, wildlife books, etc. for sale. There are no big bazaars as such in Thekkady, but one can find a few colourful stalls to buy knick-knacks. Tourists will find good quality spices like fenugreek, white and green pepper, rolls of cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, star anise, coriander, cloves, etc. One can also enjoy munching on the traditional banana chips that are fried in fresh coconut oil.
Where To Eat, Periyar National Park
Keralite as well as continental cuisines are served at many restaurants in Thekkady. For authentic Kerala food and various vegetarian south India breakfast, tourists can go to various restaurants.
Best Time To Visit, Periyar National Park
September to March is the best time to visit Thekkady and watch nature at its resplendent best. Bird watchers can spot migratory birds post monsoon and during winter months. The Periyar National Park is open from 6 am to 6 pm.
Opening hours of Periyar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary:
Open all days 06:00 am to 06:00 pm
Entry fee for Visiting Periyar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary:
The entry fees for Periyar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary is mentioned below. We have listed the entry fees for Indians, the entry fees for foreigners, camera fees and other charges if applicable.
- Domestic Adult: 25
- Foreigner: 300
- Still Camera Fee: 100
- Video Camera Fee: 250
- Cost per vehicle Rs. 50-100 for entry
URL for more details/booking: https://www.keralatourism.org
Approximate visit duration for : 300-360 mins
Other Attractions in Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Situated just 4-kms from Periyar, Kumily is a growing town where tourism is fastly catching up just like the spice trade, the major occupation of this small town. The town is also well equipped with the excellent hotels and resorts for accommodation.
Cradomom Hills :
Periyar and Kumily are the most convenient points from which visitors can easily explore Kerala’s beautiful Cardamom hills. Guide will approach you at offers of trips via jeep or taxi to the hills and if you can get a group together, these trips work out as a good travel value.
Boat Cruises :
Boat cruises make the best option to check out the wilds of Periyar Sanctuary.Today the Periyar lake presents an excellent boating spot for tourists. Although it is unusual to see many animals from the boats, still you spot a family of Elephants, Wild Boar, and Sambar Deer by the water’s edge. The upper deck is best for wildlife viewing when taking a boat cruise, but better turn up half an hour early to get the best seat. To maximise you chances, take the 7.00 am boat. You can also consider renting your own boat.
GETTING TO PERIYAR NATIONAL PARK
By Air :
Kochi (Cochin) at 200-kms or Madurai in Tamil Nadu at140-kms are the nearest airports from Periyar.
By Rail :
Kottayam at 114-kms is the nearest railhead from Periyar.
By Road :
Kumily, the nearest town from Periyar is well served by both state and private buses from Kottayam, Ernakulam and Madurai in Tamil Nadu.
There are many good hotel and resorts near Thekkady, we have given a quick link to Book Hotels. Hotels are generally fully booked during winter (October-January) as the climate is cool and pleasant. A regular room with basic facilities would cost about Rs 600. A standard room in mid-range hotels costs about Rs 1,200 which offers 24 hour room service and laundry facilities. Apart from hotels, tourists can also avail of lovely cottages and home-stay rooms. However, probability of finding room service in homestays are minimal.
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