Periyar is a protected area, and a nature reserve in the South Indian State of Kerala, set high in the mountains of the Western Ghats at the border to Tamil Nadu. It lies in the districts of Idukki and Pathanamthitta. The protected area covers an area of 777 km², out of which a 350 km² part of the core zone was made into the Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve, sometimes dubbed the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. Before the core area was made into a National Park it was wildlife sanctury.
Periyar is home to one of Indias largest Tiger populations. There are also gaur (Indian Bison) and wild boar. Please note you will be need to be very lucky to see a Tiger.
Periyar tiger Reserve, Thekkady, is an example of nature’s bounty, with great scenic charm, rich bio diversity and providing veritable visitor satisfaction.
Sprawled over an area of 777 Sq .km., Periyar is one of the 27 tiger reserves in India.
Zealously guarded and efficiently managed reserve is a repository of rare, endemic and endangered flora and fauna and forms the major watershed of two important rivers of Kerala, the Periyar and Pamba.
People oriented and park centered community based ecotourism is the hallmark of Periyar Tiger Reserve. These programmes are conducted by local people responsible for the surveillance of the vulnerable parts of the reserve. By taking tourists along, they are involved in the conservation of the forests of Periyar and some valuable revenue is generated for community welfare. People who once made a living by illegal operations in the forests have since become forest protectors and earn their livelihood through these programmes. Hence, as a visitor, when you join them in any of these programmes, you are directly contributing towards forest conservation and community welfare.
Eravikulam National Park is 97 sq. km. in extent, situated along the crest of the Western Ghats in the High Ranges of Idukki district of Kerala state, India.
Eravikulam National Park harbours the largets surviving population of Nilgiri tahr (Hemitragus hylocrius). This endangerd animal is endemic to the southern Western Ghats. Its nearest relative is the Himalayan tahr. The fully grown male is known as "saddle back" is much bigger and darker than the female and has a silvery saddle like patch on its back. Mating takes place during monsoons and the birth season is January-February. The estimated population of tahr inside the park is about 700. Wild dog, leoperd and tiger are the main predators. Apart from tahr, other little known animals such as Nilgiri marten, small clawed otter, ruddy mongoose, and dusky striped squirrel are also found. Elephants make seasonal visits.
About 120 species of birds have been recorded which include endemics like black and ornage flycatcher, Nilgiri pipit, Nilgiri wood pegeon, white bellied shortwing, Nilgiri verditer flycatcher and Kerala laughing thrush. Endemics confined to the shola-grass land ecosystem like the red disk bushbrown and Palni fourwing are among the 100 odd butterflies listed inside the park.
The shola-grassland ecosystem is a strange admixture of temprature and tropical qualities due to the combined effects of altitude as well as latitude. It is exceptionally rich in orchids and balsams. The spectacular mass flowering of the shrub neelakurunji (Phlebophyllum kunthianum) takes place in the grasslands in cycles of the 12yrs. The next neelakurunji "outburst" is due in the year 2006.
Duration : 4Nights/ 5Days
Tour Starts : Kochi
Tour Ends : Kochi
Day 1 - Kochi to Periyar National Park
Our tour begins in Kochi from where we leave for Periyar National Park. The drive from Kochi to Periyar takes about 5 hours and passes through many villages and hamlets and is a great way to explore the countryside.
We stay Spice Village at the Hotel, in Periyar. After a delicious lunch, we visit the spice gardens for which the area is so well known for. Since ancient times, spices were traded like gold in India and you see why…the cardamom and the pepper grown here has some superb aroma! We return to the hotel at dusk and end the day with dinner.
Periyar is one of the Project Tiger Reserves of India. It is one of the most picturesque and beautiful wildlife reserves in the world. In addition to the Tiger, Periyar is also home to the Indian Elephant, Gaur, Sambar (Horse Deer), Barking Deer, Mouse Deer, Dhole (Indian Wild Dog), Fox, Leopard and elusive Nilgiri Tahr.
We begin our day with a ride into the forest on elephant backs. It is the best way to see the forest and the animals! We return to the lodge for breakfast. You get to relax for a while and in the afternoon we head out for a nature walk. As the sun sets and the dusk sets in, its time for us to return to the hotel, have dinner and call it a day.
Start the day with a boat ride on the Periyar Lake. It is the best time to spot birds and do keep an eye out for the flamingos! After the boat ride, we return to the lodge for breakfast. Walking is the best way to explore the Park and you get to see some of the smaller animals, insects and monkeys when you are on foot.We do precisely this and walk in the forest till lunch time. After lunch, we leave for Munnar which is a 3 hour drive from Periyar.
Munnar is a beautiful town up in the hills, best known for the tea grown here. The tea has a delicate flavour of cardamom is can be used to brew the famous Indian "Chai"! Munnar also offers a splendid view of pristine valleys and mountains, exotic species of flora and fauna, and the aroma of cool, spice-scented air!
After checking into our hotel, you have the day to yourself…enjoy a stroll in the tea estates and a walk in the clouds!
After breakfast, we leave for Eravikulam National Park. We carry picnic lunch with us. As vehicles are not allowed inside the park, we explore the area on foot. After a whole day at Eravikulam, we return to our hotel in the evening for dinner.
Eravikulam was established to protect the Nilgiri Tahr, an endangered species of mountain goat. It is the only mountain goat species found south of the Himalayas. Sure-footed herds of Tahr are quite elusive, but you may be able to get a good view of them as they browse the hillside vegetation.
Eravikulam is also home to a variety of mammals that include the Nilgiri Langur, Lion-tailed Macaque and several endemic bird species such as the streaky brown Nilgiri Pipit and Blackbird. The Blackbird in particular looks very different from the familiar songster of Europe and is regarded by some taxonomists as a possible separate species.
Tour Quote Per Person: INR 39,500/- (Based on 2 adults)
TOUR COST INCLUDES:
1. Accommodation and meals as indicated in the itinerary 2. Ground transportation 3. Airport transfers 4. Sightseeing as mentioned in the itinerary 5. Park or reserve entry fees 6. Game drives /activities as mentioned in the itinerary with an experience naturalist 7. Taxes
THE ABOVE TOUR COST EXCLUDES:
1. Gratuities & Tips 2. All items of a personal nature 3. Insurance 4. Meals and drinks not specified above 5. Optional activities (if any) 6. Souvenirs 7. Any increase in taxes, insurance and emergency rescue costs
- Accommodation providers listed above are subject to change without notice. - The above rate is valid till March 2012. - Please note the cost given to you is not valid on 20th December 2011 to 2nd Jan 2012.