Wandering to Wayanad (part two)

The last post I wrote was dedicated to all the rain-lovers of the world. Yeah, I should have probably mentioned that in the last post, but never mind.

Wayanad is a beautiful place, rain or shine. But what’s there to see in Wayanad when the clouds have all cleared?

Actually, it’s always wiser to go sight-seeing in Wayanad when it is not raining (unless you like getting your expensive trousers patterned with mud). Most of the adventure-seekers visit Wayanad between October and May, to make hay while the sun shines. (That’s a metaphor, people. Sheesh!)

Most of the resorts and hotels in Wayanad have packages that include trekking and sight-seeing. But if you’re the more adventurous kind, you can go trekking yourself (with guidance, of course), or just hire a cab and visit all the following places to complete your sight-seeing.

Places to see:

  1. Banasura Sagar Dam: Probably named after Bana the Asura, son of Bali, this dam is built on one of the tributaries of the Kabini River. It’s a popular tourist spot, with facilities for boating and trekking. The combination of the unbelievably blue water and the bright red hills is breath-taking.
  2. Soochipara Falls: Also called the Sentinel Rock waterfalls, it is located near the town of Meppadi. It falls from a height of 200m, and has a pool where visitors can go bathing and swimming. The rock formation here is also suitable for rock-climbing. The falls are generally closed in April and May, though.
  3. Chembra Peak: An ideal trekking area, Chembra Peak is the highest peak in Wayanad, again located near the town of Meppadi. It is said that one can see the whole of Wayanad from the top of the peak.  A small fee gets the visitor permission to climb, as well as a guide from the District Tourism Promotion Council.  The heart-shaped LoveLake lies halfway up the hill.
  4. Pookot Lake: Located 3 kilometres from the town of Vythiri, the lake is surrounded by forest. It’s an idyllic picnic spot. Visitors can also go boating, and observe the wildlife at the edges of the surrounding forest. Be warned, though – the place is absolutely crawling with tourists, especially in the afternoons.
  5. Sulthan Bathery: This bustling town derives its name from Tipu Sultan, who used a Jain temple here as his Battery in the eighteenth century. Visitors can buy curios and other souvenirs here. Tea, coffee and spices (all locally grown) can also be purchased here.
  6. Edakkal Caves: These caves are famous for the pre-historic pictures carved into their stone walls. Situated 25 kilometres from Kalpetta, these caves are the only known  examples in South India of carvings dating back to the Stone Age. They have also been linked to the Indus Valley civilisation.
  7. Thirunelli Temple: A historic and religious site, Thirunelli Temple is located amidst the hills and forests of the Western Ghats. Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, it is believed to have been built by Lord Brahma himself.  Nearby, the Papanasini River flows; a dip into it is believed to wash away all the sins committed in one’s lifetime.

Wayanad has many more places to offer the adventurous visitor. But then, it wouldn’t be fair if I spoiled the mystery of these places for you – go ahead and discover them yourself! Hope you enjoyed reading my posts on Wayanad – do send in your own travel stories too.

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