I had never heard of Wayanad before I arrived in India. So, I was excited to explore this untouched beauty in the north of Kerala. If you are new here, I was one of the winners for Kerala Blog Express Season 5 and was exploring Kerala with Kerala Tourism and 28 other bloggers. You can read what I learnt from this experience here.
Friends, Wayanad does not only have the relaxing calmness of green beauty; but also amazing treks in the mountains to safaris in Wildlife Parks, there’s some adventure in every activity Wayanad offers. This the green paradise is nestled among the mountains and is home to some of the friendliest people I met during my India trip. Though there are many adventure activities that one must try while in Wayanad, here are a few that I would personally recommend.
1. Bamboo Rafting
For someone with the fear of deep water, I was not feeling safe going on a bamboo raft tied with ropes! I was terrified but the adventurer in me was like go-go-go. In the end, it was all, okay. It was my first-time #bamboorafting and amazed to see that long stick was all the guide needed to maneuver bamboo raft. We also took turns to give it a go, was fun, glad I participated.
You can do it in Kuruva Island or Pozhuthana River in Kerala. During the rafting experience, you can even try your hands in steering the bamboo raft with the help of the rafting guide.
2. Hiking and trekking
If you know me, I am a hiker in the heart. Whether I am travelling or at home, I go hiking at least once a month. I love the fitness aspect of it and also the view from the top. So, when the opportunity came around to go hiking with Kerala tourism I was thrilled. Although it was a short hike, the view didn’t disappoint. However, if you are big into the trekking, you can do Chembra Peak Trek. 2100 meters above sea level, Chembra is the highest peak in Wayanad. It is a challenging mountaineering endeavour and would take a full day. The scenic beauty of Wayanad, which is visible from the top of Chembra, is very exhilarating. The surrounding areas offer exceptional photo opportunities and camping at the peak is an unforgettable experience. You can also hire guides, sleeping bags, canvases, huts and trekking things.
This is another adventure activity I recommend in Wayanad. My first abseiling and rock climbing experience was in the Blue Mountains in Sydney back in 2012, followed by one Saree Beach in Thailand back in 2014. Besides that, I used to love going to an indoor climbing scene in Sydney. So, yes I love this sport and totally enjoy it even though it does scare me a little bit. Basically, I climbed down a vertical rock face while being securely tied to a rope and passing over a big rock. If taken adequate precautions, rock (or waterfall) rappelling is a safe and extremely thrilling adventure.
4. Exploring Tea Plantation Estate
Although I had seen it online before, this was my first tea plantation experience in Munnar. The name Munnar is pronounced “Moon-aar” meaning “Three rivers” which is derived so, as it lies in the confluence of three mountain rivers Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala. There are waterfalls en-route along with beautiful greenery all along the way. I was also pleased to be there because I love tea and what great place to learn more about tea than tea estate in India! There are 15 factories and tea leaves are usually handpicked by women. They pick approximately 100-120 kg a day. 100 kg picked tea leaves to yield down to 25 kg of finished tea. Then after leaves are picked, they are taken to the factory for withering, rolling. fermentation, drying, sorting and packing. The high-quality tea is always hand-picked, and the medium quality tea is picked with a tool. While there I also discovered a premium tea called “white -tea” and from the first sip I was a fan. So, I bought two big packets which I am drinking as I’m writing this blog. Good memories! PS: Munnar in Kerala is preparing to welcome the ‘Neelakurinji blooming season’ in 2018 after waiting for 12 long years.
5. Ezhuthapara Caves
Although I was expecting a tiring hike, it was 10 minutes steep downhill hike to get to Ezhuthapara Caves. Despite the name, the Edakkal Caves are not actually caves. They are part of a prehistoric rock shelter, formed naturally. It is among the oldest human settlements ever discovered. Inside the caves are pictorial drawings and engravings that indicate the presence of ancient human settlements in the region. Such as Stone Age rock engravings of human figures, animals, tools, vehicles, day-to-day occurrences and more. You can make it a day of exploring Ezhuthapara Caves, short hike and surrounding areas in a day. Above is our guide showing us some engravings.
6. Zip lining, Kayaking and more
I didn’t have enough time to do Ziplining or Kayaking but I have done them in the past and recommend considering them if you are looking for things to do in Wayanad. MuddyBoots, one of the longest operator in the Kerala state, can help you organize activities like Zip lining, Kayaking and Quad-biking or I assume your hotel manager would be able to sort it out for you as well. One of the other travellers I met, also mentioned you can do the cliff jump around the area but please do your research first. And, If you are not into hardcore adventure, I suggest exploring Wayanad Heritage Museum and the beautiful nature of Wayanad. Perhaps waterfalls sound like a perfect activity for you? The Meenmutty waterfalls in Wayanad is the second largest in the State. It is one of the unmissable things to do in the hill station. Nestled in the greenery of the Mepadi forest range, the waterfalls are breathtaking. Adventure-seekers and nature lovers are absolutely in love with the locale and the sight. If all else fails, chilling in your hotel with an infinity pool watching the sunsets never goes out of style 🙂
I hope some of these tips help you plan your Wayanad stay. x
Camera pieces of equipment I use to take photos:
This has been my favourite Camera so far. I love how my pictures come out crisp and colourful. It also has a screen which is useful when v blogging. You can check out what I meant on my Instagram which is here.
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This is my good old Go pro that I take with me everywhere. I recommend it because it is small, lightweight and waterproof. I have had made many memories with this trusted item and looking forward to more.
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I have been using SanDisk since my first camera which was back in 2009. They build quality memory cards. I recommend getting at least two, just in case something happens to one of them.
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Ps: Let me know in comments if you enjoyed reading this post. Also, comment if you have been to Wayanad, India or want to visit.
Until next time,
Hi! I am Anna, Nepali-Australian who, not too long ago, left my career in corporate Information Technology and Services to become a world traveller. Since then, I’ve travelled to over 37 countries, lived in 4 and have ticked some big adventures off my bucket list. I enjoy travel writing, travel photography, and a minimalist lifestyle. I have written for Ariana Huffington, Matador Network, TripZilla and collaborated with Hyatt Regency Hotel, National Geographic Australia, Uber, Red Cross, Lightroom, SilkAir-Singapore Airlines, Kerala Tourism Board, and some more. My goal is to show you how you can travel the world easily, safely, and adventurously on your own. I hope to inspire you to live a life you love.