Tourist Attractions in Kottayam
Attractions in Kottayam
The main tourist attractions in Kottayam are the Vembanad
Lake, Kumarakom, Pathiramanal, Aruvikkuzhi Waterfalls,
Anchuvilakku, Erumeli, Kayyoor, Nattakom and Panachikad.
The vast network of rivers and canals of Kottayam empty into
the great expanse of water called the Vembanad Lake. The
Vembanad Lake is situated about 16 kms. from Kottayam town in
Kumarakom. This enchanting lake has emerged as a prime picnic
spot and a famous backwater tourist destination. This place
provides boating, fishing and sightseeing experiences that are
truly exhilarating. The serene lake comes alive during Onam
with the spectacular snake boat races. It is very amazing to
watch hundred of oarsmen in one boat, slicing their way
through the waters to the fast rhythm of their own full
throated singing. The Kumarakom Tourist Village provides
Kumarakom is situated about 10 kms. from Kottayam. This
idyllic rich green, sleepy little sub-tropical paradise is
located on the banks of the Vembanad lake and interspersed
with enchanting waterways and canals. The mangrove forests,
lush paddy fields and coconut groves add to the beauty of this
small water world. Traditional country crafts, boats and
canoes floating leisurely on the backwaters are a sight to
behold. Kumarakom is an enchanting picnic spot and a famous
backwater tourist destination. This place provides boating,
fishing and sightseeing opportunities. There are a number of
resorts nearby which offers complete accommodation and
activities like Ayurvedic massage, yoga, meditation, boating,
fishing, angling and swimming, etc. The main attraction of
Kumarakom is the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary. This place is an
ornithologist's paradise and a favourite place for migratory
birds like water fowl, cuckoo, owl, duck, egret, darter,
heron, teal and Siberian stork. A cruise along the Vembanad
lake is the best way to view the bird life.
According to mythology, a young Brahmin dived into the
Vembanad Lake to perform his evening ablutions and the water
made way for land to rise from below, thus the enchanting
island of Pathiramanal (sands of midnight) was created. This
little island on the backwaters is a favourite place for
hundreds of rare migratory birds from different parts of the
world. The island lies between Thaneermukkom and Kumarakom,
and is accessible only by boat.
Aruvikkuzhi Waterfalls is situated about 18 kms. from Kottayam.
This beautiful picnic spot is located about 2 kms. down a mud
lane from Kumarakom. In this place, the streams tinkle as they
make their way through the landscape and water roars as they
cascade down the mountains from the height of 100 feet. The
tourists can also enjoy the shade of the rubber plantations
Anchuvilakku, about 22 km from Kottayam is a stone lamp post,
built near the Changancherry boat jetty. This lamp post is a
typical example of Kerala architecture, and was built by the
renowned freedom fighter Veluthampi Dalawa. The Changancherry
market, one of the largest in Kerala, was also established by
him. The five lamps on this post are lit by kerosene.
Erumeli is the nature rich village, located about 60 kms
northeast from Kottayam. It is nestled in the lush green
Western Ghats. This village is also the entrance point
to South India's most prominent pilgrim centre - the
Sabrimala temple. Erumeli is an important pilgrimage
centre for the Hindus and Muslims. Sree
Temple here is an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Ayyappa. At
Kanakapalam nearby, teak plantations dot the landscape.
Kayyoor is an enchanting landscape formed by the chain of
green hills at the Bharananganam panchayat. A shrine dedicated
to the Pandava brothers of the epic Mahabharata is found here.
Only ghee is used to light the lamps here. Women are not
permitted inside the temple.
Nattakom and Panachikad
These are the two quiet villages and the scenic reservoirs
together with vivid green adds charm to it. The migratory
birds came to this verdant landscape in every summer and
frolic in the natural splendours till the end of the season. A
boat ride from Kodoorar in Panachikad to Kumarakom is a great
way to relax and enjoy nature's bounties. Some of the
facilities like an Ayurvedic massage, boating, fishing and
swimming fulfills the recreational need of the tourists.
Hill Stations in Kottayam
The various hill stations in Kottayam are Ilaveezhapoonchira,
Mankallu Mudikal, Illickal Mala, Illickal Kallu, Kannadipara,
Vazhikkadavu and Vagamon.
Skirting the Kottayam district are beautiful valleys of
Ilaveezhapoonchira, spread over thousands of acres.
Ilaveezhapoonchira means valley where leaves don't fall and is
named so because the place has no trees. This beautiful picnic
spot is located in the midst of beautiful hillocks near Kanjar.
The verdant landscape is surrounded by three gigantic hills,
each rising to around 3200 feet, and is an ideal place for
trekking. During monsoons, when the valley fills up to form a
scenic lake, this place unveils yet another beautiful slice of
nature. This is also one of the best places in Kerala to enjoy
both sunrise and sunset.
The enchanting hill station of Vagamon is situated on the
Idukki-Kottayam border. This hill station is dotted with
tea garden and meadows and soon will be one of the
India's first ecotourism project. The breeding centre of
the Kerala livestock Board is located here.
The three hills in Mankallu
Mudikal lies close to each other. Their flat hilltops are
covered with lush grasslands. An aerial view of these resemble
a traditional clay oven. With no trees around, the hilltops
give you the feeling that you are walking in the clouds.
The numerous mountain streams in Illickal Mala peak, 600 feet
above sea level, flow down to form the serene Meenachil river.
The solitude, tranquility, gentle breeze and the star spangled
sky here are all enchanting beyond words. The tourists have to
trek up 3 km to reach the top of the hill.
Three hills, each rising to 4000 feet and above, together form
the huge hill of Illickal Kallu. Each of the hills have a
peculiar shape. Out of which, one of them resemble a mushroom
owing to which gets its name Kuda Kallu (umbrella shaped rock).
It is said that the medicinal herb Neela Kodduveli, which
bathes the hillsides in blue, grows here. This flower is
believed to possess supernatural powers which could increase
wealth and ensure a rich harvest. The second hill, has a small
hunch on the sides and is therefore referred as Koonu Kullu
(hunch back rock). Across this rock is a half feet wide bride
called Narakapalam (bridge to hell). From the hilltops, the
Arabian Sea can be seen in the distant horizon as a thin blue
line. The sunset on a full moon day is sensational, when the
moon can be seen rising up like another sun, as the orange sun
The valley of this rocky mountain reflects the morning sun
with a mirror like perfection. This is also the highest point
in Ilaveezhapoonchira. The Pazhakakanam plateau is about 3 kms
from here and nourished by the Kadapuzha river. Bamboo groves,
meadows and wild flowers make this place exotic. The another
attraction here is the Kazhukankulimali waterfalls that
playfully cascade down the mountain and greet the river below
with a magnificent splash. On the eastern side of Kannadipara
is a natural fort set amidst steep rocks.
Vazhikkadavu is a small hill station, situated on the
outskirts of the district. This hill station of rocky terrain
is known for its pristine nature. On one side of the main rock
are extremely tall and steep rocks and on the other hand is a
valley of fearful depth. Bordering this crude landscape like a
silver lace is the Meenachil river. During the month of
December, the landscape comes alive in a riot of colours with
orchids and wild flowers.