Munnar. Clean. Green. Beautiful. My third time in God’s Own Country Kerala.
This was my second team outing with Global Analytics (first one was to Mysore around six months back). Twenty seven of us started from Chennai in a special train which religiously followed the Indian Stretchable Time and took us to Dindigul an hour late. Almost immediately we boarded the bus which was waiting for us outside the station and began our journey to Munnar. It took us around six and a half hours to travel to Munnar, which included a brief halt at Theni for breakfast.
The amazing climate began soon after we crossed Theni. One by one most of the cameras started coming out followed by some furious clicking. We reached our resort ‘Ayur County‘. Its a nice resort with quite a few cottages and offered a stunning view of Munnar.
Music Above The Clouds – Munnar
After lunch at a restaurant just outside the resort we stood with no idea of what we were going to do next. The resort usually organizes fishing and trekking for its visitors. But that day we didn’t have any of those options. The only option that we had was to to go for a safari. Many of our team guys didn’t wish to go for that. Hence after a long discussion with our bus drivers we went to a dam located a few miles away. There were a couple of elephants taking thrilled tourists for a few metres long ride near the dam. We had plans to go for boating at that dam but it was closing time and there were quite a few people ahead of us. The sad thing about Munnar is that everything closes early. All we could do was to get back to our rooms and have an early night, just to see Chennai losing to Mumbai in the IPL.
The next day all of us started at around 7.30 and moved among the misty mountains to reach the Eravikulam National Park. There was a huge line where we stood for about an hour just to get the tickets. Once we had the tickets in our hand we boarded one the mini-buses to get into an area that is restricted for private vehicles. We travelled further along those fascinating tea estate roads to reach the Eravikulam Park. It has a small room at the top with some enchanting images depicting the story of the park.
The park is famous for the rare Nilgiri Tahr and the Neelakurinji. The Nilgiri Tahr is a type of mountain goat that was amazingly acclimatized to human presence. They behaved as though they were domesticated. Neelakurinji is a type of flower that blooms once in twelve years and paints the hills violet. And the time that we went there wasn’t the season for the flowers. I hope I get a chance to see these hills transformed into floral festivity in the near future.
We walked about one to two kilometers further along the roads to see a small family of Nilgiri Tahrs grazing around. We were stopped at a point beyond which we weren’t allowed to proceed, even though it was well accessible. We were a bit disappointed but well, nothing can ever satisfy the human desire. We tried to satisfied ourselves with the mesmerizing views that the spot provided. Soon clouds started covering the entire place and it gradually began to rain. We started running down to get back into one the mini-buses to reached our base.
The rest of the day was spent in bus travelling back to Dindigul to catch our return train. It indeed was a very small trip but even then we was sufficient for us to be seduced by Munnar’s charm and I would never forget the few hours we spent there.
The following is one statement which I found at the Eravikulam – Take back memories. Leave no trace. This sure would resonate well with my fellow trekkers at Chennai Trekkers Club who follow it devoutly.
Link to a few of the photos that I clicked – http://www.facebook.com/media/set/fbx/?set=a.10150163590935496.299898.501815495&l=7f554f1bb0