At a glance
|At a glance|
|Altitude||2,200 m above sea level|
|Elephant, bison, sambar deer, wild dog, jungle cat, tiger, wild boar etc.|
|Cobra, viper, krait and a number of non poisonous snakes|
|Jungle fowl, myna, laughing thrush, black bulbul, peafowl, woodpecker, kingfisher etc.|
A landlocked district , Idukki is one of the most beautiful districts of Kerala in India. High ranges and wooded valleys are girded by three rivers - Periyar, Thalayar and Thodupuzhyar - and their tributaries. The sacred river Pamba also originates from the mountain ranges here. As a tourist destination, Idukki is incomparable - forests, wildlife sanctuaries, hill stations, spices & plantation tours, mountain treks, elephant rides and some of the most spectacular landscapes anywhere in India.
Idukki has a large population of tribals, the main tribes being Muthuvan, Malayarayan, Mannan, Paliyan, Urali, Ulladan, Malavedan and Malampandaram. These tribes of Kerala have unique customs and beliefs and maintain an ethos which is distinctly different from that of the mainstream culture. They are unique in their closeness with nature and relate closely with the dynamic eco-systems of these beautiful mountain ranges.
Idukki can also claim its place in the sun in the world of spices. It was the pepper and cardamom harvested from these regions which put India on the map of the ancient world. The tradition endures to this day. Idukki is today the source of most of the world's spices. The turn of the century also saw huge tea estates coming up in Munnar, a hill station about 5000-6000 feet above sea level. The intrepid British planters wisely used the local expertise and the tribal knowledge to make this area a major source of tea in the world. Tata Tea (makers of Kannan Devan Tea) carries on the tradition after the departure of the British. Their contribution to conservation of the fragile Eco-system of this region has in no small measure helped conservation efforts by the State Forest Department.
Idukki is also home to some of the finest forest and wildlife sanctuaries seen anywhere in India. Project Tiger which aims at conservation of the tiger in the wild, has been very effective in the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary (Thekkady). The endangered Nilgiri Tahr has found a new lease of life at the Eravikulam National Park, which was instituted solely with the aim of preservation of this species. The Chinnar Sanctuary is unique in its flora and fauna. No trip to this state will be complete without a visit to these magnificent and well preserved sanctuaries- perhaps the best preserved in all of India !
Idukki Arch Dam
This is the world's second and Asia's first arch dam, constructed across the Kuravan and Kurathi hills. 550 ft high and 650 ft wide, the dam lies close to the Cheruthorathi barrage. To its west is the Kulamavu dam. Idukki wild life sanctuary is located nearby.
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