The winding roads in Munnar take you through hills covered in greenery and shrouded in mist. Sounds like paradise, doesn’t it? And given Delhi’s insane temperature levels, checking it out for yourself will sure feel like it, too.

When you’re done wandering around the never-ending tea estates and spice plantations, you can explore the rare wildlife ecosystem, add a spot of adventure to your trip, or just stop to stare at the many waterfalls in the hill station. LBB curates a must-do list for your next trip to Munnar.

Spot The Nilgiri Tahr

Image courtesy: Wikipedia

Image courtesy: Wikipedia

The rambling Shola forests of the Western Ghats make up the vast Eravikulam National Park, home to the biggest population of the endangered Nilgiri Tahr, a mountain goat with a chocolate-brown coat. A bumpy ride through the national park will take you right to the foothills of the Nilgiri Tahr’s habitat. From there, you’ll have to hike up to spot it sauntering about without a care in the world.

While the climb to the top can knock the air out of you, the sight of the Tahr and the other denizens of the jungle {the national park is home to gaurs, deer, jungle cats, wild dogs, and over 132 endemic species of birds} will more than make up for it.

View From The Top

All those picturesque mountains reaching for the sky, someone’s got to scale them! You can sign up for guided trekking and camping trips that’ll take you through the high altitudes of the Western Ghats; through thick forests, plantations and villages.

Don’t have much time on hand? You can also get on a day-long natural trail, where you can negotiate steep climbs, wade through grasslands and catch a panoramic view from the top. Our recommendation: Head over to Top Station, Munnar’s highest point. Located on the Munnar-Kodaikanal Road, Top Station offers great views of the surrounding Western Ghats, and enough hiking opportunities.

Tea Time Tales

tea museum at munnar

Image courtesy: Jean-Pierre Dalbéra

In Munnar, you’ll see a tea estate no matter where you are. If the origins and production of one of the most popular beverages in the country {and the world} excites you, head to the quaint Tea Museum for a peek into the history and the making of tea, and get acquainted with various antiquities from the Munnar of yore.

You’ll see an original tea roller from the early 20th century, the Pelton Wheel once used for power generation. and a rail engine that used to help people and trade material travel around back in the day. In the back rooms, you can even witness the actual tea-making process.

Watch Them Bloom

Life’s a bed of roses, at least in Munnar. The Floriculture Centre {popularly known as the Rose Gardens} is where you can stop and smell the flowers along the cobble-stoned pathways. Roses, orchids, hibiscuses, anthuriums, lilies and a whole lot of other blooms make for a dazzling display in colour that’ll surely brighten up your day.

Hi Hi Birdie

malabar grey hornbill at thattekad birds sanctuary in munnar

Imge courtesy: Wikimedia

Do you love birds? Your trip to Munnar, then, is pointless without dropping by the Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary {also known as the Dr Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary}. About a two-hour drive from Munnar, it was the first bird sanctuary to be established in Kerala. India’s favourite ornithologist, Salim Ali, even described it as “richest bird habitat in peninsular India”.

On treks guided by forest authorities, you can spot Orange Headed Thrushes, Whiskered Terns, Oriental Darters, Jerdon’s Nightjars, and a variety of cuckoo birds.

Go Back In Time

Marayur, a small town close to Munnar {around 42 kilometers away}, has long fascinated archaeologists and anthropologists alike. At the centre of their fascination are the Muniyara dolmens, believed to be from the Megalithic Age. These circular, short stone structures are made from four stones topped with a slab of stone; many of them having been once used as burial chambers. The dolmens give you an invaluable glimpse into the earliest of civilisations, and should not be missed while you’re there.

Apart from that, Marayur is also famous for its sandalwood forests, wildlife reserves, and pre-historic rock paintings that are all worth gaping at.

Featured image courtesy: Bimal K C