Wayanad :From the City To The Mountain Woods

This time I realized that the road trips can be so much exciting and breath taking.

We started our journey from Hyderabad on a fine Saturday morning, by 8 AM IST, right after the breakfast. ‘We’ includes two Kids and Three Adults. We could start without much delay as we did all the packing previous night.

The journey was so long and we didn’t have any plans to stop anywhere other than for lunch.  On the way we saw many bus waiting sheds, but couldn’t find anyone waiting for the bus or any buses stopping. As all of them had good shade from the hot sun, we stopped near a local bus waiting area for lunch.  Immediately after lunch we headed to Bangalore where we planned to stay for the night. By 8:30 PM we reached our destination in Bangalore.

By 10:30 AM in the morning   we again started our journey. The plan was to reach Mysore for lunch and cross the Bandipur Forest Road before it gets closed.

We could cross the Forest road on time and on the way we could see some monkeys.  But from the road and surroundings we came to know that Elephants cross the road, may be in the night. That part of the journey was so pleasant. It was like an escape from the city noises. We could find all vehicles passing by, keep their windows open, without switching on the a/c’s and listening to the nature.

By 6 PM we saw the Forest Guard house and that was the end of Forest road. From then on wards the road is no more straight,  a lot of curves were waiting for us, as from then onward the roads are mountain roads. Till we reached Thamarassery Churam or Mountain Pass it was calm. The hill high way mountain pass is 14 Km long with 9 major hairpin  bends. That part of the ride was scary and totally  a new experience. We all were sitting fingers crossed, except my husband who really love driving. On reaching valley we felt relieved and we reached Kozhikkode by 8:30 PM.

The plan was to go to Wayanad  with parents and hence we came to kozhikkode without stopping in Wayanad. So the next destination was Wayanad, Kerala’s not-much-explored mountain woods on western Ghats. A large area of the Wayanad District is covered by Forest even now. Our main motive was to enjoy the forest with its greenery, but without leeches. During rainy season the leeches will be more and hence we chose this time of year.

Way to Wayanad
Way to Wayanad

When we passed Thamarassery Churam the previous night, we couldn’t enjoy the beauty of it. But while going from kozhikkode to Wayanad,  we really enjoyed the beauty of that mountain pass. In the early morning and along with mist it was so beautiful which cannot be expressed by words. From the top, Lakkidi View Point, the beauty of that mountain valley, covered with mist was a very refreshing  experience. This made us to stay there for sometime. Also there were many monkeys and  my daughter  was so happy to see them. She was demanding a longer stay on the way.

Thamarassery Churam
Thamarassery Churam
Thamarassery Churam
Thamarassery Churam
Churam View from Lakkidi View Point
Churam View from Lakkidi View Point
Lakkidi View Point
Lakkidi View Point
Near one of the hair pin
Near one of the hair pin

Our next stop was in Pookkodu Lake. There we have only Pedal and row boats, no motor boats.  Also we have a nice path around the lake for jungle walk. I could go only for few meters as some visitors came complaining leeches and I was holding my daugher who wanted to walk even though she is just 1 year old. So I came back, but others tried the walk. On the way there were very old giant trees, different types of plants etc. My son got to see “Touch Me Not” plant for the first time. More than any, he enjoyed the walk as he found some new plants which he could never see while being in city.

Old Trees
Old Trees
Pookkodu Lake Boating
Pookkodu Lake Boating

Our stay was arranged in Banasura and so we started our journey to the Banasura Dam. This way is so beautiful that you cannot move without taking pics. Initially we were stopping vehicle and taking pictures, but then we realized that we will not reach the destination  on time as the whole way you could take pictures. On the way there are valleys, forest road, tea plantations and much more attractions.

Tea Plantations
Tea Plantations

You will come to know while reaching Banasura as on the left side of the road you can see reservoir area. In the reservoir we could see many small islands. From Wikipedia I read that these were formed when the reservoir submerged the surrounding areas. Banasura Dam is the Largest Earth Dam in India and the second largest in Asia.

Banasura Lake
Banasura Lake
Way to Banasura Dam
Way to Banasura Dam

The way to the dam top is again a hill road. You can chose to walk or there are  Jeeps running up and down. Me with kids went in Jeep and others came by walk. Even though the walk is tiring, once you reach the dam top you won’t feel that. You have such a nice view of Dam reservoir with many islands and the Banasura hills in the background. And the place is so windy and you can feel the fresh air blowing. we stayed there for sometime and then the guards started whistling to inform that its time to go back and close the place. While going back I  chose to  walk as coming down the hill is easier and  my daughter also enjoyed the walk.

Banasura Dam Top
Banasura Dam Top
Way to Banasura Dam Top
Way to Banasura Dam Top
Banasura Dam
Banasura Dam

Then we received a call from the people who arranged our stay. They advised to reach the resort before its get dark. So we started from there and on the whole way you can see the reservoir . The stay was arranged in Banasura island resorts which is situated within the forest area and its on the bank of Banasura Sagar and in the valley of hills. Reaching there in the night was a bit scary as the road is forest path and you are there for the first time. Then we realised why they were calling and checking if we will reach before its too dark. Somehow we reached there and we were so tried that we ate dinner and went to sleep.

Way to Resort in the night
Way to Resort in the night

The view from Balcony was so nice in early morning. We could see the Banasura Hills covered with mist.

Banasura Reservoir
Banasura Reservoir
Lake early morning
Lake early morning
View from Resort Balcony
View from Resort Balcony

After tea the guide came to take us for soft trecking. We went by  the path  which on the banks of the Banasura Lake. I had read about the bird Orange Minivet(Male) which is seen on this area.. And we were so happy to see one of them which was a new experience for my son who loves to watch birds.Also he could see Giant spiders and was thrilled to see them as he is a great fan of Spiderman. The whole way he was playing with ‘Touch-Me-Not’ plant which was a real amusement for him. The trees on both sides of the way are very tall . We could see monkeys on the very top of the trees and also Malabar Giant Squirrel. Then he took us to a stream which is flowing from the hills. The water is so clear and refreshing . My husband and son took bath in that stream.

Soft Trecking
Soft Trecking
Beginning of soft trecking
Beginning of soft trecking
Giant Spider
Giant Spider
The Tall Trees
The Tall Trees
The Stream
The Stream
Stream
Stream
Stream after falls
Stream after falls
Stream
Stream
Way to stream
Way to stream

After breakfast we continued our journey to Meenmutty Water Fall. As it is not a rainy season the waterfall is not in its full strength. Still we could enjoy the stream and the way going up to the stream origin. And on the way to Falls you will find nice homemade delicacies.

Meenmutti Water Falls
Meenmutti Water Falls
Meenmutty Water fall
Meenmutty Water fall
Origin of Meenmutty Water fall
Origin of Meenmutty Water fall
Way to Origin of the meenmutty water fall
Way to Origin of the meenmutty water fall

That was our last place in the trip. After lunch we started our journey back to Kozhikkode with a lot of new experiences and memories.

Waiting for a long weekend so that we can plan another trip to find out the unexplored locations.

Asha

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