Another Weekend in Nelliyampathi…
It was in October 2013. Myself and Sayed planned for another Week end outing.Last time we visited Athirapalli, Charpa and Vazhachal. It was not really planned in advance. It was a working Saturday for me and Sayed also couldn’t go to hometown for some reasons. After the office hours we met at Sayed room. I was planning to stay there for that day and being a Sunday on the next dawn we thought of moving out for a ride instead of wasting the whole day doing nothing. At any given point of time I always keep some choices in my mind because I don’t know when and where I get the call form my inner self to go on road. We had a little discussion on the places we could possibly cover. And at last finalized to do Nelliyampathi. We decided to do it in bike as it would be a bad idea to go in bus or any other mode of transport. It is almost 150 km one side and if we start little early we were sure we could call it day before it is very late and come back before it is really dark.
Nelliyampathi is a hill station in the district of Palakkad in Kerala and which was heard to be a superb scenic and a wonderful place to be for a day. I had read quite a few travel blogs and articles about this place and have seen a lot of pictures which always tempted me to visit this place. As it was quite a long drive we planned to start bit earlier and went to bed after a little chit chat. We woke up early in the morning and started for Nelliyampathi. We were planning to do it via Aluwa> Angamaly > Chalakudy >Trissur> Vadakkanchery> Nenmara and Nelliyampathi. We started by 5 in the morning and could cover a good distance before it was day break as there was not much traffic in the high way. It was little cold when we started so we were under cover in our jackets. Road was also good and hence we could spin the wheels really fast. In hardly one and a half hour we could reach Trissur and we covered the stretch of Vadakkanchery and Nenmara in another one hour or so. After taking the deviation from Nenmara to Nelliyampathi the back ground color of our ride turned green. We could see lot of rice fields and small hill ranges along the road. We took some short breaks for some photo sessions but kept on moving without much delay. We had our breakfast from a country shop and it was really delicious. Idly, sambar and tomato chutney gave a homely taste.
On the way we stopped for a quick look at the Pothundy Dam. As it was early in the morning we were the first visitors on that day. The dam gave a superb view in the morning light. The hills and the forest cover on the banks of the river were superb and spend some good time there.
The ascend to Nelliyampathi starts sometime after the Dam. There is a check post on the way and from the check post the ascend really starts. The road condition is OK type but was through a rich cover of forests. It gave some good picturesque spots and after attaining some height we can see the whole of Pothundy Dam Reservoir to the left. After each hair pin curves we attained more height and the sight of the dam becomes more and more beautiful. There are some viewpoints also on the way before reaching Nelliyampathi.
We reached Nelliyampathi in another 1 hour stopping at some more viewpoints to get some good views and snaps. Nelliyampathi is a small town area with quite a few shops, Hotels, taxi, auto and Jeep stands. We were planning to visit Manpara, Rajah Cliff, Seetharkundu viewpoint and some other nearby attractions. Unfortunately Manpara and Rajah Cliff are not open now for tourist and entries are restricted by the forest department. We decided to go to Seetharkundu view point which is the highlight of Nelliyampathi. All tourists who comes to Nelliyampathy will visit this place. The view point is inside a private plantation but public are allowed to visit this place. From Nelliyampathi we need to go another 4 odd km for reaching this place. After parking the bike we need to take a walk to the view point.
Reaching the view point in 10 minutes’ walk we were amazed to see the view. The view from the suicide point was breath taking and I didn’t dare to go close to the edge. There were no fences or any security measures there. Wind blow was also on a higher side. The place was so dangerous and we wondered how come such a place where lot of tourists comes can be kept so unsafe. There was not even a single guard there to look out for people venturing some close encounters with the deep cliffs.
We could take a walk through the edge of the cliff through which two people can hardly walk in a line. It would be a free fall of at least 1000 yards down the hill. We saw the bench mark tree of Nelliyampathi which is the key picture used in almost all blogs and articles about the place.
We walked along the ridge for some time and reached the tip of the cliff. From this point we could go down further down losing some altitude down to the valley and see a stream there. We decided to go and have a look at it. After getting down some heights we need to cover a stretch of thick grass land and after that some shola forest cover. The stream down there is a narrow one and doesn’t give any fantastic views. But the stretch from the top of the cliff to the stream is wild and beautiful. Having a short break there we started back to the top of the cliff which was not an easy task. It was very easy to get down to this site but we won’t know the altitude we lose on the stretch down but will definitely have a regret feeling to get down when we go up. The ascent is so steep that we gasped for breath after reaching the top again. After spending some more time roaming around in all directions we planned to move back to Nelliyampathi again and look out to explore more.
We took another route from the Junction again to reach another view point. The road to the view point was through superb tea plantations which gave us wonderful view of unending landscapes of tea plantations. From the tea factory we need to take a deviation through a metal rid road which can be done on foot only. It was a walk of 15 minutes and we reached a wonderful hill side. The first part of the hill was rock and after reaching the top to we need to get down losing some elevation. The descend was little tough through the rocky portion but the view from there was worth a try.
We could see the entire 180 degree hill range from there. The whole area was rich forest cover and at road which we came to Nelliyampathi including the last view point enroute the top was also visible. Wind was blowing on to us from the depth below and was cool. Being there for some time took away all the tiredness away from us. Taking some good snaps there we turned back after 1 hour and reached Nelliyampathi again.
By then we were feeling hungry. Had food from a hotel and started our journey back in half an hour. Climate was good on top of the hill and hence we enjoyed the time there. As we get down the hill it becomes hot. We had to cover a lot of distance back to Cochin. Sayed was handling the ride and hence I could take a good look at the forest covers and green carpets on the way back. It rained a little on our way back but was only for a short while. We drove slowly and as it was the evening time the traffic was also a constrain to get it rolling. We reached back at Cochin by 6.30 Dropping Sayed at his room I went to mine. Had a look at the pics. It was yet another good day. Covered a lot of ground and got some superb memories.
Location: Palakkad. Kerala
Topography: Hilly terrain
Height/Elevation: 1572 Mtr
Nearest town: Nenmara- 28km, Palakkad- 30km, Vadakkanchery-44km, Thrissur-75km.
Best time to Visit: All around the year (can expect heavy rain from June to September)
Things to do: Trekking, Visit viewpoints, drive thought forest covers.
Nearest attractions: , Seetharkundu view point-4km ,Padagiri hills-6km, Rajas cliff/Manpara 9km-closed for public visit now, Pothundy Reservoir-20km, Parambikulam WLS 104km, Malambuzha gardens- 61km,
How to reach: Reach Nelliyampathi by Air
The nearest Airport from Nelliyampathy is Coimbatore Airport, roughly two and a half hour drive from Nelliyampathy. Coimbatore Airport is well connected to the places in India and abroad such as Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Bangalore, Cochin, Pune, and Ahmedabad.
Reach Nelliyampathy by Road
Nelliyampathy is 24 Kms from Nenmara, 35 Kms from Alathur, 53 Kms from Palakkad 71 Kms from Thrissur, 88 Kms from Cherpulassery, 149 Kms from Koch i, 125 Kms from Ponnani, 347 Kms from Thiruvananthapuram and is linked through Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) and some private travel services.
Reach Nelliyampathy by Train
The nearest Railway Station from Nelliyampathy is Palakkad Railway Station, located at a distance of 54 Kms from Nelliyampathy. Palakkad Railway Station is well connected to the major cities like Kochi, Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi and Mumbai via Ernakulum Sf Express, Trivandrum Express, Kerala Express and Kanyakumari Express.
Nearest ATM: NO ATM in Nelliyampathy. SBT-Nenmara, PNB-Nenmara, Canara bank-Nenmara.
Nearest Hospitals : PHC Nelliyampathy(04923246456), Sai Medical Center Kolengode, Cresent Hospital Alathur
Nearest Stays: Greenland farm house, Rooms starts from Rs1800+, 04923246246,90486-2202 contact person Martin,/ ITL holidays and resorts- ( 04923-246464,04923-246395),/ Ciscilia Heritage -04923 205583, 202383. Mobile: +91 9447033560, +91 9495566454/ Orange valley resort Nelliyampathy- 04923-246666./
Please note that the contact details of Hospitals and Stays are verified and confirmed in July 2014.
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