5 Incredible Hill Stations in Kerala (2023)
Kerala is a state that is best known for its beautifully serene backwaters and charming coastal beaches. However, Kerala also has numerous majestic and breathtaking hill stations that are a popular retreat for those looking to escape the heat of the summer months. These hill stations are usually full round the year, with tourists flocking in from all over the country, especially from North India, to escape the scorching summer sun. These hill stations are well known for their pristine beauty and pleasant climate.
The hill stations of Kerala display some of the most refined beauty and biodiversity of the Western Ghats.
5 Incredible Hill Stations in Kerala
Here are the top hill stations of Kerala that you must check out when you visit the state.
Munnar is one of the most famous hill stations in Kerala. The quaint little town is located at an altitude of 1600 meters in the heart of the Western Ghats. Due to its natural beauty, Munnar is very aptly known as the ‘Kashmir of South India.’Image Source
Where is Munnar Located?
Munnar is part of the Idukki district in Kerala on the banks of three rivers – the Madupetti, the Periavaru, and the Nallathanni. The hill station is divided into two parts – the Old Munnar and the newer part of the town where much of the shopping areas are located.
What Is There To See In Munnar?
Munnar is blessed with greenery and many beautiful tea plantations. The town has four major directions that serve as a guide to how to this beautiful hill station. These are the Mattupatty Direction, the Adimaly Direction, the Coimbatore Direction, and the Thekkady Direction. The tea plantations are the main draw for tourists in Munnar. In fact, these plantations appear like a plush green carpet that has been laid out for miles around.
There are many natural viewpoints in Munnar from where you can get a bird’s eye view of the entire Western Ghats. Some of the places to visit in Munnar include:
- Subramanya Temple
- Rose Garden
- Carmelagiri Elephant Park
- Mattupetty Dam
- Signal Point View Point
- Idly Hill View Point
- Lockhart Tea Museum & Park
- Periyakanal Water Falls
- Thankaiah Cave
- Pothamedu View Point
- Cheeyapara Water Falls
- Eravikulam National Park
- Anamudi Peak
- Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary
What Is The Best Time To Visit Munnar?
September to March is the best time to visit Munnar as the weather remains very pleasant at this time. The summer months of April to June can be a little warm, but due to its altitude, the weather is still manageable if you want to visit. It is best to avoid visiting Munnar during the monsoon season due to the heavy rainfall, which causes frequent landslides and road blockages.
Idukki is the spice garden of Kerala. This landlocked district is said to be the most nature-rich area in all of Kerala. In fact, it is so densely green that over half of the region is covered with forests. This beautiful hill station is known for its rubber plantations, miles and miles of forests, tea factories, beautiful bungalows, and wildlife sanctuaries.
If you want to take a break in the lap of nature, then Idukki is the best place to head to. Idukki is the land of mountains, spectacular streams, and stretches of valleys. The town derives its name from the Malayalam word Idukku, which means a narrow gorge.
The mountains of Idukki are a starting point for many rivers, the most famous one being the River Pamba.
Living up to the meaning of its name, Idukki is home to the Periyar River and the hills of Kurathi and Kuravan on both sides, forming a narrow gorge. The Idukki forests are rich in rosewood, teak wood, and sandalwood. Located amidst the misty hills, visiting Idukki feels like visiting paradise itself.
What Is Idukki Famous For?
The hill station of Idukki is famous for many things, top amongst them being the spice and tea plantations, the many waterfalls, and wildlife sanctuaries. Here are some of the major attractions to visit while in Idukki:
- Shri Krishna Temple in Thodupuzha
- Mangala Devi Temple
- Thumpachi Calveri Samuchayam
- Nadukani, which offers a panoramic view of the mountains around Idukki and the River Mauvattupuzha.
- Hommankuthu Falls – where the water famously cascades over seven different steps. It is also known as the Seven Steps Waterfall.
- Keezharkuthu Falls – also known as Rainbow Waterfalls, this natural wonder catches tourists off guard due to its sheer natural beauty.
- Nedumkandam Hills
- Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary
- Kurinjimala Sanctuary – home to the Neelakurinji flower, which blooms only once in 12 years.
- Thattekad Bird Sanctuary
- Idukki Arch Dam – which is one of the first arched dam in India and also Asia.
- Tea Museum
- Anamudi Peak – the highest peak in India
The district of Idukki is trying to establish itself as a center of ecotourism.
When Is The Best Time To Visit Idukki Hill Station in Kerala?
The best to visit Idukki is during the winter months of November to February. Though you can visit the hill station throughout the year as well due to pleasant weather.
Wayanad is commonly known as nature’s abode in Kerala. This hill town is home to many waterfalls, historic caves, and luxurious resorts and homestays. This hill station is located on the fringes of Kerala and Tamil Nadu, and the entire region is known for its lush greenery, sloping hills, and natural life.
What Is There To See In Wayanad Hill Station in Kerala?
Wayanad is famous for its wildlife reserves, which are home to a wide variety of flora and fauna. The Wayanad wildlife reserve is an important part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, nestled in the heart of the Western Ghats. You can catch sight of a variety of animals here, including elephants, bears, and leopards.
Some of the top tourist attractions to visit in Wayanad include:
- Banasura Sagar Dam
- Chembra Peak
- Kuruva Island
- Pookode Lake
- Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary
- Edakkal Cave
- Thirunelli Temple
When Is The Best Time To Visit Wayanad?
The temperature in Wayanad remains pleasant throughout the year. Nevertheless, the best time to visit this town is between October to May.
Known as the Scotland of Asia, the sheer beauty of the Vagamon hill station is breathtaking. Sometimes also spelled as Wagamon, this hill station is located near the Idukki-Kottayam border. Vagamon is not as famous as Munnar and Wayanad, but this offbeat hill station is a breathtaking tourist spot with its lush green hills and meandering rivers. Over the years, though, the popularity of Vagamon is also growing rapidly.
Pine forests, numerous cascading waterfalls, tea gardens, and mesmerizing meadows are just some of the things that make Vagamon the perfect hill station getaway.
What is Vagamon Famous For?
Vagamon is gaining popularity as being one of the topmost adventure tourism spots in India. For the adventure seeker, there are exciting activities like rock climbing, trekking, paragliding, ziplining, and many others that tourists can participate in. Cycling through the majestic mountains is another activity for those seeking a thrill and want to explore this quaint little hill town up close.
There is an International paragliding Festival that is organized by the Kerala Tourism Department and the Adventure Sports and Sustainable Tourism Academy (AASTA) in Vagamon every year. This festival is becoming very popular with the locals and tourists.
Some of the attractions in Vagamon that you must check out include:
- Ulipooni Wildlife Sanctuary
- Vagamon Meadows
- Pine Hills
- Kurisumala – a famous Christian pilgrimage spot
- Vagamon Falls
- Kurisumala Ashram
- Barren Hills
- Murugan mala
- Maramala Waterfalls
- Mundakayam Ghat
- Vagamon Pine Forest
What Is The Best Time To Visit Vagamon?
Being a hill station, you can visit Vagamon through the year, though the best time to visit Vagamon is during the summer months of March to June, and in the winters, you should ideally visit from October to March. It is best to avoid going to Vagamon during the monsoon season of June to September when the region experiences heavy rainfall.
Located just 62 kilometers from Kozhikode, Vythiri is a beautiful and famous resort town that is known for its old-world charm. Cottages, tree houses, and log huts that are cozily nestled inside the forests of Wayanad add to this old world charm of this town. It almost appears like a town frozen in time.
Where is Vythiri Located?
Vythiri is located at an altitude of 700 meters in Wayanad. It is made up of 18 villages. Vythiri is the headquarters of the Vythirir Taluk, and it is an all-season tourist destination in Kerala.
What Is There To See In Vythiri?
Vythiri is the perfect tourist destination with its quaint little cottages and resorts that are surrounded by beautiful and green scenery. The place is ideal if you want to get a glimpse of the past and experience a slice of a simpler life, but with urban and modern facilities at your disposal.
The major attractions of this town include the Pookot Lake, Meenmutty Falls, the Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary, and the Chembra Peak.
Here are some other places that are a must-visit when you are in this beautiful hill station of Kerala:
- Soochipara Falls Trek
- Lakkidi View Point
- Chain Tree
- Karalad Lake
- Thamarassery Churam
- Kanthanpara Waterfalls
Many of these beautifully exotic places make for the perfect picnic spot. So think about getting a little packed lunch and some beverages to enjoy a picnic at the many breathtaking sights of Vythiri.
When Is The Best Time To Visit Vythiri?
The winter months of October to April is said to be the best time to visit Vythiri. However, since Vythiri has a pleasant climate throughout the year, you can visit this town at any time. The summer months of April to June is the best off-season time to come here as the crowds are less and the off-season pricing is also significantly lower.