There are as many as 50 tiger reserves in India, Parambikulam Tiger Reserve is one among them. Are you surprised to hear that? Did you think Africa has more tiger sanctuaries than any other place in the world?
Here is one more surprise for you. If you are an Indian reading this post, you would be proud to note that 70% of the world population of tigers like and live in India
Of the 50 tiger habitats in India, the Nagarjuna Sagar-Srisailam tiger reserve in Andhra Pradesh is the largest.
However, it is not the highest visited tiger reserve that is bagged by the Kanha national park in Madhya Pradesh State.
Today, I am going to tell you about the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve that is located in Palakkad district, Kerala. It lies on the border of Tamilnadu state, near Pollachi town and the tiger reserve is also a sanctuary of other diverse wildlife of Anamalai Hills, Western Ghats.
How to reach the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve?
From Pollachi, near Coimbatore, you can drive a car and reach the Parambikulam forest area in about 2 hours, covering a distance of 55 km. You have to climb the Valaparai Hills and go beyond the Top Slip peak and enter Kerala on the other side of the Nelliampathy Hill.
The nearest major railway station is Coimbatore from where Pollachi is located at a distance of just 45 km. Pollachi also has a railway station where trains from both Tamilnadu and Kerala stop.
Those entering from the Kerala State can take a bus from Palakkad and it is 100 km away from Top Slip peak in Valparai.
For those who wish to fly from other major cities of India, Coimbatore should be their destination.
Best time to visit the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve.
Like any other wildlife sanctuaries in India, the best time to visit is immediately after the monsoon when the lakes and tanks situated within the forest get filled and prey for birds and animals are abundant preceding the winter season.
Forest Lodges and Log Cabins in Parambikulam Tiger Reserve.
The choice of staying within the sanctuary is really wide in Parambikulam. You can choose to stay in:
- Tree huts
- Swiss Tents
- Honeycomb Complex
- Dr. Salim Ali Centre
- Veettikunnu Island Nest
- Bear Hut
- Perivari Island Nest
- Bison Valley Lodge
To reach the accommodations built on the two river islands, you have to travel by a modified boat (raft) built with bamboo poles. The journey time is about 90 minutes which you can enjoy unspoilt lush green nature during your raft ride.
Things to see and to do in Parambikulam Tiger Reserve:
- A forest guide will take you for trekking inside the forest.
- There are several, simply exciting trekking trails that the tribes of Valparai will guide you. Their names are Bear Path Trail, Pugmark Trail, Karianshola Trail, and the Elephant Song Trail.
- A van will take you for animal safari. Choose the evening session to increase the probabilities f spotting the wildlife.
- You can see tigers, leopards, Nilgiri Tahr, langurs and a great range of mountain birds, the predominant among them is the blue kingfisher and the common myna.
- Other familiar forest animals that live in the wildlife sanctuary of Parambikulam are:
- Unlike other wildlife sanctuaries in India, the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve is home to a great variety of reptiles that include all the poisonous snakes of India including the King, Rock Python (malai pambu) and the Travancore wolf snake and the Western Ghats flying lizard.
- The flora of the Parambikuma forest is simply breathtaking. Mostly, the local tribal people will also act as your guide and they will take you through the tropical and evergreen forest, teak plantations, and shola forests where the birds congregate.
- Try to embrace the Kannimara teak tree that is 450 years old. Oh man, how much I love to touch such a specimen!
- Visit the Thuvaiyar Waterfalls
- Climbing up to the peaks of karimala, Pandaravarai, Vengoli, and Puliyarpadam which is located at the least height (3000 feet) when compared to the other 3 peaks.
The Western Ghats offer full of stunning natural attractions and the nearby hill stations of Munnar, Chalakudi, Athirapalli waterfalls, Kodaikanal, Thekkady, and Mudhumalai Wildlife Sanctuary are just samples.
There are two man-made reservoirs (dams) that you can visit with your family.
- Thunakadavu Dam
- Parambikulam Dam
Forest Department Permission:
Since the Parambikulam forest area is a protected eco-tourism place, you need to take a prior permission for the local forest officer.
The Wild Life Warden,
Parambikulam Wildlife Division
Anappad, Via Pollachi, Palakkad
Phone: 04253 277233 Mobile:9447979102
One visit to the Parambikulam Tiger Reserve and you will join thousands of nature lovers who voted Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary as the most attractive piece of wilderness in the entire stretch of Western Ghats.
The myriad mountain streams, strikingly beautiful butterflies, lovely songs of the birds that always hide behind thick foliage and the vast expanse of panoramic grass and the variety of thick bushes would simply sweep you off your feet.