If you fancy enjoying a steaming cup of probably the best tea you’ve ever had (unless you’ve been to Darjeeling) and a wondrous view in an enchanting setting, you’ve come to the right place.
If you have harboured fantasies of almost limitless private space and escaping from your web of worries then Wayanad is the paradise you’re looking for. It simply reeks of wonder, and bewitches the traveller with a treasure trove of some of the best delights India has to offer. With its lofty ridges, towering peaks, crystal-clear waters and lush, green forests, it has many things to feast your eyes on and occupy your mind, and its mesmerising beauty will simply capture your soul.
I have always been a lover of natural, private spaces. Therefore, unwinding in a tree house, sipping that amazing tea and savouring the moment is a dream come true for me.
But if you feel like stepping out, sightseeing just doesn’t get any better and myriad attractions abound. Monsoon season (between June and November) is the best time of year to visit this place as it adds to the flavour of its charm. Getting there isn’t that difficult, either. The nearest airport is Calicut International Airport, which is 54km away. Oman Airways, Jet Airways and others serve the route. Buses and taxis will take you there from the airport.
By, Devika Sreekumar
My favourite place- When seen from the Neelimala viewing point, the Meenmutty Waterfalls, which are set against a vista of verdant valleys, are a sight to behold. Chembra Peak, the highest in Wayanad, sits 2,100 metres above sea level and offers a range of trails for the more adventurous. It also boasts a heart-shaped lake atop the peak. Edakkal Caves is one place you shouldn’t miss out on if history is your thing. Its rock gravings are invaluable treasures of Wayanad’s enviable heritage, with the area offering a spectacular panorama with the timeless appeal of the prehistoric caves. You can also visit the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, at Muthanga, which is rich in biodiversity with a large population of pachyderms, or elephants. Yet another delight is Pookot Lake, a freshwater lake that nestles within evergreen forests and simply shimmers in a delightfully pinkish hue.
Highlights- A quest for adventure is the key highlight in this magnificent landscape. It has a lot to offer to those who are seeking something out-of-the-box. Trekking and mountain climbing are two of the best things to do here.
Lowlights- None that I can think of. Everything about this place is unique and magical.
Souvenirs- Wayanad is well-known for its pure honey and spices. You can buy many traditional artefacts and crafts that have been made by local tribespeople. Souvenirs are available at shops near Pookot Lake.
Where to stay- There are lots of accommodation options here to suit every budget. Plenty of natural, private spaces are also here for those wanting to get back to nature. Tree houses are a very popular choice here and resorts, hotels and lodges abound, and you can find most of them on sites such as TripAdviser, Booking.com or Expedia.
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1. Check out Chembra Peak
2. Explore the Edakkal Caves
3. Take a boat ride on Pookot Lake
4. Marvel at the view from Neelimala
5. Visit the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary