The two-centre trek offers you the best of both worlds. The trek at Munnar focuses on the high altitude cloud forests while the Periyar trek through the rain forests of Periyar Tiger Reserve highlights the wildlife of tropical Kerala.
Day 1 – Meesapulimala Trek
The trek starts at Silent Valley Estate, about 20 kms from Munnar. The trek from an altitude of 1500 m gradually goes to over 2600m, passing through sholas (high altitude rain forests) and grasslands which are typical to the higher areas of the Western Ghats. The area also has wildlife – notably elephants, sambar, sloth bear and the Nilgiri tahr - the latter being endemic and endangered. You will head for Meesapulimala - the second highest peak in the Western Ghats. There is a panoramic views of the plains of Tamilnadu & the world’s highest tea estate Kolukkumalai in the undulating hills below. On the way down, there is also a chance to visit the Kolukumalai Tea factory located in the world’s highest organic tea estate. Descend and continue trekking through grasslands and high altitude rainforest to the camp at Suryanelli, overlooking the magnificent Anaerangal Lake in the valley below.
Day 2 – Mathikettan National Park Trek
Today you will be trekking through the Mathikettan Shola National Park. This is a high altitude rain forest saved from ‘development’ and preserved through a campaign by environmental activists here in Kerala. Your destination is Santhanpara, set amidst luxuriant vegetation and cardamom growing hamlets. En-route you will be passing large cardamom forests where cardamom, pepper & coffee are grown within the canopy of the forests. Elephants are common here. You will reach Santhanpara by noon & transfer to Periyar.
Day 3 & 4: Periyar Tiger Trail
Tiger Trail programme starts at 08:00 & ends at noon on Day 5. This is a conservation-based three day long trekking and camping in the Periyar Tiger Reserve in Kerala. The programme is unique in that it is conducted by a team of former poachers & local community members who have turned protectors of the forests. The proceeds of this programme largely goes to sustaining their livelihood in return for joint participatory management of the forest in which they play a positive part. This is an international award winning eco tourism programme.
Periyar Tiger Reserve is one of the best managed Wildlife Reserves in the country, with verdant forests extending over an area of 777 sq. km. Here, in the crisp, cool air of the Western Ghats you will experience wilderness and abundant wildlife first hand. The uniqueness of this sanctuary is the Periyar lake, an artificial lake, which was created by damming the Periyar River a century ago. The open grasslands and varied topography supports a magnificent variety of animals - elephants, Gaur (Indian bison), Sambar deer, Barking deer, Mouse deer, Nilgiri langur, Bonnet macaque, Lion-tailed macaque, leopards, Jungle cats, Wild dogs and most importantly the tiger. An estimated 40 tigers inhabit the Reserve. Other important animals are bear, Porcupine, Jackal, Indian Giant Squirrel, Malabar flying squirrel, Wild boar, small Indian Civet, Mongoose and the Pangolins. The tiger is the main predator in the Periyar Tiger Reserve. The trek starts at 8 am and ends by noon on Day 5. The team usually consists of a maximum of 5 visitors, 5 guides, 1 armed guard and 2 forest officials. Normally 20 to 35 kms of trekking distance will be covered, depending on the route chosen.
Trekking, camping, guide, accommodation in dome tents, refreshments, mineral water while trekking, all meals.This trip can also be tailor-made to suit your interests of time and budget requirements as necessary.
Visitors to India must obtain a Visa before departure. All visa information is subject to change. You should confirm all visa related issues with the nearest Indian Embassy/ High Commission/ Consular Office for the same.
Airport or departure taxes are not applicable if you depart from Kochi.
It’s advisable to take personal travel insurance policy to cover against sickness, accident, loss of baggage, unexpected alterations to travel arrangements and travel disruption, cancellations, etc.
Internet Access: There is no possibility of accessing internet on this itinerary.
Telephone: There is mobile telephony coverage from the second day of the trek.
The South Indian subcontinent is tropical - warm, humid and often wet. During the main monsoon, (July to September) there is heavy rain. Best time to visit Kerala is from October-March. At the Rodo valley camp, temperatures can go down below freezing during winters.
Food is a very important part of these journeys and we have ensured that the Kerala Cuisine is a part of this adventure besides both North Indian & South Indian food - vegetarian and non vegetarian. All meals and bottled mineral water are provided on all days. Any special food requirements could be met if sufficient notice is given.
Our guides have been adequately trained & qualified in first aid and always carry a comprehensive first-aid kit. In case of any medical emergency we have facilities to transfer you to the nearest hospital immediately, followed by evacuation to the tertiary-care hospital at Kochi (if required).
What to bring
• Warm sets of clothes (Fleece, Jacket, hat and gloves) are required for trips going through Munnar and other high altitude areas.
• Hiking shorts
• Hiking pants/track pants
• Waterproof jacket.
• Casual Shirts/T-shirts
• Binocs & Camera (optional)
• Water proof bags for docs & Electronics
• Personal First Aid Kit
• Insect repellent
• Sunglasses, cap
• Sun screen
• Day pack