A dream destination nestled in a state fondly called as ‘God’s own country’, Wayanad is brimming with unexplored treasures. It cosily sits atop every tourist’s list of places to visit when in Kerala. The scenic roads, absolute tranquillity, the verdant jungles with an abundance of animals and the lush greenery of Western Ghats are a few reasons why people love Wayanad. The best part is that Wayanad is unlike other parts of Kerala – it’s very pristine and continues to retain its natural charm.
As you approach Wayanad, from the mountain roads surrounded by lush green rainforests and the thin misty air, this must visit place welcomes you with open arms. This is the prelude to a vacation that is going to be memorable.
Whether it’s a big or small place or popular or offbeat, everywhere in Wayanad, natural beauty will envelop you. Along with the pristine and clean natural beauty, the history and culture here will leave you mesmerised.
In a small radius of Wayanad, you can find plenty to keep you occupied for days.
If you are planning a vacation for a couple of days, here’s a bunch of things to do in Wayanad with your family:
Trek to One of the Many Trails Like Chembra Peak
Wayanad is a heaven for adventure seekers, and one of the must-do activities in Wayanad is trekking. Those who love trekking should visit this district as it has several of the best trekking routes in the state. Trekking trails vary from deciduous forests, high grasslands, rocky river-beds laden with enormous boulders and thick shola evergreen forests which provides different terrains to trek. A few famous trails include Chembra Peak trek, Pakshipathalam trek, Banasura Sagar Dam trek and Brahmagiri Peak trek.
One of the tallest peaks in Wayanad is Chembra Peak that is 2,100 meters above sea level. Trekking up this rugged trail is considered as a great experience. It’s even well-suited for amateur trekkers. Along the way up, you will encounter the heart-shaped lake which is a major attraction. Supposedly, this lake has never dried up!
Brahmagiri Peak trek is another route whose beauty will leave you spellbound. The scenic views all through the trek mandate a camera to be carried to capture every single moment. From the top of the second tallest summit, Brahmagiri, you can see the Chembra peak. Just like many novelists and artists who’ve drawn inspiration from this mountain, so can you!
Although the Pakshipathalam trek provides breathtaking views from a height of 1740 meters above sea level, the trek is a challenging one. To reach the top, you have to trek through caves, wild forests and rocks. But the surroundings are beautiful, and they present great opportunities for photos.
With so many great places, one of the things to do in Wayanad is trekking – so add this to your list! Have a look at these top 3 trekking places in Wayanad to enjoy a fun trek with your family.
Spend Some Time at Pakshipathalam Bird Sanctuary
Get your binoculars and get ready for an entertaining day at Pakshipathalam Bird Sanctuary. Apart from trekkers, activities in Wayanad include something for bird lovers, nature lovers and ornithologists. In this sanctuary, you can find several avian species and can spend hours in the thick green forests spotting them. The hills, streams and virgin forests together form the perfect ecosystem for birds. It’s also one of the most important breeding grounds.
To make the most of your experience, you can go on a 3-hour trek through the sanctuary and watch birds in their natural habitat.
The word Pakshipathalam translates to ‘birds in the nether region’. This nether region is a cave which is in the northern region of the Brahmagiri Hills. Legend has it that the ‘king of birds’ Garuda looked after his subjects here.
With so much history and wildlife, this is one of the things to do in Wayanad that you and your family cannot miss.
Immerse Yourself in Nature at Kuruva Dweep
On the Kabini River lies this river delta that comprises of a cluster of islands. The ecological isolation and the geographical peculiarities have resulted in creating distinct habitats of a variety of flora, and fauna. This small island is spread across nearly 950 acres of land, and the entire area is evergreen and serene.
You can reach the island by bamboo rafts, and if you want to explore further, you can go on a walk or trek in the jungle through natural paths. It’s the perfect way to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and refresh your body and mind for a few days.
There are two small freshwater lakes around the island which are a haven for migratory birds. Plus, the surrounding area makes for a good picnic spot.
Apart from the natural beauty, the island’s main attraction is the birds.
Keep in mind that this island is closed from June to September which is the rainy season and it’s open only from October until May.
Know more about how to reach Kuruvadweep & opening & closing time of this rain forest in Wayanad, Kerala.
Learn the Region’s History at the Wayanad Heritage Museum
One of the best and the largest archaeological museums in the state, Wayanad Heritage museum houses object d'arts which date back to the Neolithic ages. From various parts of the district, there are rare and exquisite collections that are showcased here in four different blocks which are Devasmruthi, Gothrasmruthi, Jeevanasmruthi and Veerasmruthi.
Veerasmruthi is the first block which displays a variety of Hero stones that are locally known as ‘veerakkallu’ which show primitive wars, brave warriors of the bygone era and tiger hunts which date back to 14th and 16th century AD. The headstones were used on the tombs of warriors to honour their heroic deeds – like their attempt to kill wild animals or in a war.
Next, Gothrasmruthi and Jeevanasmruthi are where you can see a variety of items related to tribal life. Things like jewellery, headgear, cowbells, fishing gear, hunting gear, farming implements, musical instruments, etc. are displayed here.
For those who want to see artefacts from the Neolithic age and 17th century A.D, head to Devasmruthi. This section attracts a lot of scholars and students that are interested in archaeology. From terracotta figurines to stone idols that date back to the 12th century to local artworks excavated from the Malabar region, everything is on display here.
One of the things to do in Wayanad is for tourists to head to the multimedia theatre which is adjacent to the museum to catch a 50-minute show on details of Kerala.
Indulge in Shopping in Wayanad
It's not only the stunning scenery and the views which attract tourists; Wayanad offers a lot more such as a plethora of stores, and one of the top activities in Wayanad is shopping in these stores. No trip is complete without a bunch of gifts and souvenirs for friends and family back home.
The people of Wayanad are creative. They love arts and crafts, and this has resulted in plenty of markets popping up which sell a wide array of products. From spices to authentic honey to handicrafts to antiques, you will find anything and everything on the streets of Wayanad. While the popular items are available everywhere, for quality or specific goods at a reasonable price, you have to know where to go.
• Santhi Pappadam – Amid the busy Market Road, you will find this bustling market. If you love handloom or handicrafts, this is the place you should visit. Spices and honey are popular here too, but it's better known for the former. It's the perfect place to pick up knick-knacks and souvenirs for friends and family. Other items which could pique your interest include textiles, bamboo articles, furniture, native crafts, herbal plans, garments, antiques, etc.
• Easwaran Nanmboodiri – This is another well-known market in the Wayanad area which is in Kalpetta near Vivekananda Hospital. This place is heaven for bibliophiles as it sells a variety of paper items, books and stationery. You can also get your hands on spices. While the adults’ shop for spices, the children can roam around the streets looking for new pencil boxes and books for their upcoming academic year.
• The Focus Mall – If you want to avoid street shopping and shop in the comfort of the air conditioner, then this mall is perfect. Located on Rajaji Road, you can find anything in this mall like footwear, clothing and other accessories. Families can spend some time together, window shop and test local cuisine at the numerous restaurants. This mall caters to all budgets so feel free to drop by and splurge a little.
• Uravu – This is an NGO in Wayanad which makes use of bamboo, a local and natural resource to make handicrafts. The locals are trained and taught how to process bamboo. This NGO aims to empower women, traditional artisans and the indigenous people. One of the things to do in Wayanad is for you to join in on their venture by visiting here and learning more.
• Trident Arcade – This mall is frequented by tourists and locals alike. Located in Sulthan Bathery, here you can find anything and everything you want. Hence, it’s a go-to spot for most. From fashion accessories to designer crockery, you can get your hands on just about anything. Additionally, the architecture of Trident is also appealing. It’s a great place to seek respite from the outside heat and shop in a comfortable environment for local as well as international brands.
• RP Mall – A shopping centre in Wayanad which offers a variety of goods such as handbags, sunglasses, watches, fashion items, beauty products, etc. It also has a multiplex where you catch a great blockbuster movie with your family. You can spend the day shopping, watch a movie and wind up with a delicious dinner at RP Mall.
• Dubai Shopping Centre – Popular among the locals, Dubai Shopping Centre is the perfect place to shop for electronic goods. From famous brands to local ones you can find just about anything. You can also find products related to styling and wellness. Once you walk through the enormous centre, you can visit the many eateries in the vicinity which offer a variety of delicious foods.
Wayanad is one of the best places to shop for essential oils, spices and tea products. It’s best to visit renowned places when you shop for items like spices and essential oils to ensure you buy authentic products.
Also, have a look at famous places for local street shopping in Wayanad during family vacation.
Relax and Unwind at a Spa
Life in the city can leave you tired and stressed. The best way to unwind and relax during your vacation in Wayanad is to visit a spa. There are numerous Ayurvedic spas in Wayanad which come with the perfect remedies for your ailments, stress, etc. and provide complete relaxation.
Amidst the beautiful landscape and terrain, one of the top activities in Wayanad and one of the best ways to rejuvenate and pamper yourself is with a spa treatment or massage.
Ayurvedic spas are inspired by ancient traditions and theories of Ayurveda or the ‘science of life’. It is believed that God is the one who handed over the wisdom of Ayurveda to the sages so that humanity could benefit. Initially, it was only practised by traditional Ayurvedic Vaidya families or doctors.
The spas in Wayanad provide extensive Ayurvedic treatments, massages, wellness therapies, packages and practices, etc. for visitors who are rejuvenating and refreshing.
The treatments and methodologies used are meant to create a healthy balance of the mind and body.
Most resorts these days come equipped with top-class spas. So, while the adults have a day of pampering and relaxation, the kids can spend time on the premises of the resort enjoying the various activities. No wonder it’s a topper in the list of things to do in Wayanad.
Have an Adventurous Day Out at Pozhuthana Pozhuthana
is a tiny village in Kerala, and it's a popular tourist place as it's known for its hilly terrain interspersed with tea plantations and flat valleys. This sleepy little town comes with immense beauty, and hence it's one of the things to do in Wayanad and a place worth visiting during your trip to the state. Apart from the beauty, this charming little town is also known for its adventure activities in Wayanad such as bamboo rafting.
A trip down the Pozhuthana River, a slow flowing river, on a bamboo raft is soothing and almost resembles the serene backwaters of Kerala. You can spend a couple of hours here sailing on the smooth waters and capturing several amazing photos. It's one of the best spots to view the hidden beauty of Pozhuthana and should be on your list of things to do when in Wayanad.
Similarly, you can also river raft here. Enjoy the gushing waters of the river while stunning sceneries pass by all along the way. Apart from the adrenaline rushing through you while rafting the green valleys and hills are a sight to behold.
For a tranquil walk amidst Mother Nature, you can go on a hike in Sugandagiri Forest. Although it’s not one of the most popular things that tourists opt for here, it’s certainly one for those looking for a pristine, charming, serene and adventurous environment.
Riding a bicycle along the tea plantations and under the canopy of trees is another great pastime for those interested to explore the jungle.
Pozhuthana is a gorgeous place to visit when in Wayanad, for the entire family alike, where you can enjoy nature’s trails among lush greenery.
Visit the Edakkal Caves
Around 25 kilometres from Kalpetta and at 1200 meters above sea level, is a bucket list destination – Edakkal Caves. The caves are famous for the petroglyphs or rock engravings from the Neolithic age, and they are supposed to be one of the oldest caves known to mankind.
It is believed that the superintendent of police of Malabar District discovered this cave during one of his hunting trips. Upon exploring, he found that this cave was the habitat of neolithic people.
The caves are famous for the paintings of figures of animals, letters, symbols and humans which supposedly date back to 6000 BC. These paintings are a testament to the lives and culture of those who lived here millions of years ago.
If you go inside the caves, in the inner walls, you can also find stone carvings from the Stone Age. They are incredible and will leave you in awe.
Another one of the adventurous activities in Wayanad you can experience here is trekking from Ambukuthi Hill to the cave. Not only will it be an exciting challenge but you will also encounter some lovely scenery along the way. Along the way, one of the things to do in Wayanad is to keep an eye out for the coffee plantations and carvings of Adam, Eve and Satan. There is also a small shack that serves snacks.
These caves are thought to have existed here since the Indus Valley Civilization and are a significant point of interest for archaeologists from all across the globe.
Spend Time at Soochipara Falls
Also known as Sentinel Rock, dense forests and huge hills surround this three-tiered waterfall. The waterfall falls from a height of 100 feet to 300 feet and forms a pool below which is typically used for swimming. The water from here is known to join the Chaliyar River or Chulika River. The rock nearby looks like a needle, and hence this waterfall got the name Soochippara. In Malayalam, Soochi means needle and paara is rock.
Apart from the waterfall being a visual delight, one of the things to do in Wayanad around here people can also go on nature walks and rock climb. Trekking about 1.5 kilometres from the falls will get you to a viewpoint from where you get a panoramic view of the Western Ghats.
Just about 15km from Kalpetta is Pookode Lake which looks like it’s straight out of a postcard. The lakes stillness coupled with its beauty is extraordinary. Just imagine drooping trees forming stunning reflections in the water and the birds soaring in the sky. Almost resembling the shape of the Indian map, this lake also has a host of lotuses floating aimlessly on the surface which adds to the beauty. Also, keep an eye for the Pethia Pookodensis which is a cyprinid fish that is exclusively found here. The Panamaram rivulet, of the main tributaries of the Kabini River, originates from Pookot Lake and later flows into Panamaram Valley.
The 360-degree surrounding beauty makes this place an apt spot for photography. So, one of the things to do in Wayanad is to bring your camera along for some great shots.
Another popular activity that visitors partake in is boating. Pedal boating in the lake amidst the greenery and serenity is a unique and exciting experience. In the vicinity, you can also find a children’s park, freshwater aquarium and a shopping centre which sells spices and handiwork. Moreover, visiting the lake during sunrise or sunset is recommended as the lake with the backdrop of the sun rising or setting is a sight to behold. All in all, a trip to Pookode Lake is well worth your time and a great family outing for the entire bunch.
Here is a list of places to explore near Pookode Lake during your family trip.
Just about 29 kilometres from Kalpetta is this beautiful waterfall which gushes down from a height of 300 meters. This is one of the tallest waterfalls in Kerala. Meenmutty is a combination of two Malayalam words which are 'meen' meaning fish and 'mutty' meaning blocked. You can reach here via a 2-kilometre trek through the forest from the Ooty Wayanad road. The trek is worth the effort as the sight of the waterfalls is beautiful. This waterfall has three different stages and hence looks like it’s presenting a triple-decker effect. It's a great spot to picnic amidst the greenery and the sound of the calming waters. If you have time, then you should include this in your list of things to do in Wayanad because it’s the perfect spot for a family outing.
Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary
Also known as Tholpetty Wildlife Sanctuary, this sanctuary is the second largest one in Kerala and is spread across 345 square kilometres. It’s a part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve which is one of the first of the 14 biospheres in India. There are four ranges here which are Muthanga, Sulthan Bathery, Tholpetty and Kurichiat. In 1992 this sanctuary came under the elephant jurisdiction project to protect the population of wild elephants.
The Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary comprises of two sections which are Tholpetty and Muthanga. The former is on the north side, and the latter lies on the southern side.
One of the things to do in Wayanad is to explore the sanctuary. To do so, you can go on a jeep safari or an elephant ride.
Flora and fauna here are primarily made up of deciduous forests, oak trees, teak trees and eucalyptus trees. Also, there are supposed to be 45 species of mammals, 30 species of amphibians, 45 species of reptiles, 203 species of birds and 59 species of fish. You can spot leopards, tigers, jungle cats, panthers, monkeys, common langurs, bears, bison's, civet cats, deer, woodpecker, peacock, cuckoo, babbler, owl, etc.
August to March is the best time to visit, and the Sanctuary remains closed from March to April.
You might need to walk a lot, so it's recommended that you wear the right footwear and comfortable clothing. Safaris take place in the morning from 7 am until 10 am and in the afternoon from 3 pm until 4 pm; so, ensure you reach in time for the same.
Be in Awe at Banasura Sagar Dam
Constructed in 1979, the Banasura Sagar Dam, placed in the foothills of Banasura hills, is one of the largest eastern dams. It’s built across a tributary of the Kabini River, Karamanathodu. The dam got its name from the Asura king Banasura who is supposed to have attained penance in the surrounding hills.
The dam was built to help with irrigation and drinking water requirements and aiding the Kakkayam Hydroelectric Power Project. It was built as part of the Banasurasagar project which took place in 1979.
The Banasura Dam is made up of huge boulders and stones. One of the top things to do in Wayanad is to trek around this area. The trekking trails offer stunning views of the valley down below and the surrounding mist-covered hills. The dam also provides boating options which are a fun family outing. You can choose a pedal boat or a speed boat depending on your choice.
A gorgeous sight to behold is the group of islands in the dam's reservoir that were formed when the reservoir was submerged in the monsoon season. This along with the Banasura hills that form the backdrop is a treat, especially for photographers.
The best time to visit here is from November until May. You can also visit here and combine this trip with several other spots in the vicinity like the Shri Ayyappa Mandir, Nirur Shiva Mandir, Shri Nath Mandir, etc.
All in all, it will be a great family outing. Have a look at things to do near Banasura Sagar Dam in Wayanad during your family vacation.
Visit Neelimala View Point for Breath-taking Sights
All along your drive in Wayanad, you will have several chances to view stunning sceneries and mesmerising views. Among the many places, Neelimala viewpoint is where you can catch pristine views. You can also get a clear view of the Meenmutty Waterfalls, and the view is spellbinding, alluring tourists by the numbers.
One of the things to do in Wayanad for those who are interested is to trek up to the waterfall. This is a beautiful trek, and all along the trek, you will be surrounded by greenery and flowers. Plus, the fresh smell of coffee will follow you all the way through.
The trek couples with the amazing vista and your family around making it a perfect outing.
Stand in Awe at the Lakkidi Viewpoint
On the southern edge of Wayanad district lies Lakkidi viewpoint at the height of 2296 feet above sea level. Fondly known as the ‘Gateway of Wayanad’, this viewpoint is just 5 kilometres from the famous town of Vythiri. Along the route to this viewpoint, you will go through steep mountains and come across nine hairpin curves down towards Lakkidi from Adivaram. This journey through the ghats is an experience in itself.
It’s a great spot to get some amazing views of the surrounding valleys. The panoramic vista will leave you speechless and in awe. One of the top activities in Wayanad if you wish to spend quality time with your family is to have a picnic here with your family while enjoying the views. Lakkidi View Point is famous for its mesmerising scenery and the drive that gets you here. A trip here will envelop you with natural beauty and charm and hence, is a must on your travel to do list.
Lakkidi is also known to receive 600 centimetres of rainfall every year which makes it a region with the highest rainfall in the state. No wonder your surroundings are lush, green and a sight for the eyes! To catch the best views, visit the viewpoint either early in the morning to witness the mesmeric sunrise or in the evening to sight the captivating sunset.
Also, another attraction en route is the Ficus tree with a huge chain around it. The legend behind this is that Karinthandan, a tribal youth, discovered the Wayanad Ghat route. After hearing the Viceroy’s announcement about a reward for anyone who could build the way, a British engineer shot Karinthandan and took all the credit. It is believed that until this day his soul is chained to the tree.
One of the things to do in Wayanad is an outing to the viewpoint. It is an adventure and shouldn’t be missed!
Spend Some Time at Thusharagiri Waterfalls
About a 40-minute drive from Kalpetta and 32 kilometres, is a scenic waterfall which is one of the most beautiful ones. Among the many waterfalls in Wayanad, this is well-known and frequented by tourists.
Thusharagiri translates to snow-capped mountains. The name is derived from the two streams which originate from the Western Ghats and meet here to form the Chalippuzha River. This river branches out to form three waterfalls which create a snowy-like spray and thus, the name.
Erattumukku, Mazhavil Chattom, and Thumbithullum Para are the three. Of the three, the highest falls from a height of 75 meters. You can easily reach the first waterfall while you need to trek through the forest to reach the other two. This place is also known as a trekker’s paradise and offers challenging treks and opportunities for rock climbing as well. The experienced trekkers can opt to trek from Thusharagiri to Vythiri; it is not for the fainthearted. It's almost a day-long trek which is you start in the morning, you complete by evening.
If trekking is not your thing, one of the things to do in Wayanad is for you to settle down around the waterfalls and enjoy a picnic with your family where the gushing waterfalls and evergreen forests will encircle you.
Monsoon here is from June, and this brings in plenty of water which generates a more magnificent roar for the falls. However, this waterfall is known to be perennial and can be visited throughout the year. It's advised that during the monsoon you be careful as the conditions are wet and slippery. If you are looking for a carefree time, then visit here from September to December.
Whether you are a nature lover, wildlife enthusiasts, a family looking for a day out or a romantic couple, these falls are perfect for a day out.
Find Some Peace in Thrissilery Shiva Temple
Located in the Western Ghats surrounded by mountains, hills and greenery, in the Thirunelli village is this Shiva temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Thirunelli is brimming with history. It is known to be the place which was once ruled by the Pandavas, the Vijayanagar Empire, the Cholas, the Madurai Nayaks, the Carnatic kingdom, the Malabar and Tirunelveli Sultanates and the British (not in this order).
In Thirunelli, 19 kilometres away, there is another Vishnu temple. The Vishnu temple and this Shiva temple have a mythological connect. Apart from Lord Shiva, the other deities worshipped here are Saraswati, Vishnu, Muruka, Vinayaga and Hanuman. This Shiva temple was built in the medieval periods by the rajas and the architecture displays just that. The temple is known for its brilliant carvings, designs, paintings and stunning views.
Apart from the tranquillity, one of the main significances of the temple is the incarnation of Jala Durga which is located in the temple tank. This shrine is said to be installed by Parasurama and supposedly never dries up. As this temple is primarily dedicated to Lord Shiva, one of the things to do in Wayanad is to witness a prominent festival here which is Maha Sivaratri. Two other important festivals celebrated here are Meenam during March-April and Puthari during October-November. The people here believe that the performance of ancestral rites in Thirunelly remain unfinished unless offerings at this temple are made.
PS – at this temple, you can get some of the best sweets to satiate your palate like halwa and other sweets made from ghee, sugar and wheat.
Go on a Day Trip to Vythiri
Just about 12 kilometres from Lakkidi is the small town of Vythiri. At an altitude of 3750 to 4500 feet, this hill station is the perfect summer retreat when looking for a holiday spot in Wayanad. Its greenery, weather and terrain all combine to form the ideal place for a vacation.
When in Vythiri, you can experience peaceful environments, old world charm and modern amenities. Plus, the tea, coffee, cardamom, rubber and pepper plantations speckled throughout along with the greenery make it a sight for visitors to behold.
These evergreen forests are also home to a wide variety of wildlife and birdlife. Those interested can spot many birds and animals when roaming around here. It's the ideal place for those who love nature, wildlife, greenery and unwind amidst breathtaking surroundings in a tranquil setting.
Apart from relaxing and sipping on hot coffee while taking in the views, you can also visit a number of attractions which are nearby, such as Pookote Lake, Eddakkal Caves, Chembra Peak, Banasura Sagar dam, etc.
One of the things to do in Wayanad if you and your family are looking for some quiet time while being surrounded by the stunning landscapes is to visit Vythiri. If you visit from May until October then along with a good view, you can also experience great weather, making your trip ideal.
Explore the Ripon Tea Factory
Built by the British in the 18th century, the Rippon Tea Factory is a popular estate and factory in Wayanad. Both the lush tea plantations and the colonial factory give you a glimpse into history and famous teas of the region. This estate is at the height of 2000 meters and sprawled over 443 hectares.
You can find some of the best quality tea in the Ripon Tea Factory. Three different types of teas are produced here which are blended, leaf and dust. As a visitor, one of the things to do in Wayanad is to view the entire processing method right from when the green leaves are freshly plucked to how it's packaged in the factory. If you are interested, make sure you book your tour in advance.
Get Lost in the Beauty of the Karapuzha Dam
In a land that’s covered with greenery, blessed with history and adorned by the everlasting magnificence of nature, there’s plenty for tourists to see.
To break away from your busy routine, an escape to the serene Wayanad is the key. In Wayanad, visiting the Karapuzha Dam must be on your list. It is one of the largest earth dams in the country. With the backdrop of the panoramic views of the Wayanad region adds that extra touch of charm to the Karapuzha River. If you listen carefully, you can even hear the sounds of the water gushing.
A combination of the scenic environment, hills and flowing water makes it the ideal spot to catch a couple of great photos or relax and soak in the environment. This man-made dam is surrounded by stunning vistas and best visited during the day to capture its real beauty.
Apart from picnicking with your family, there are plenty of attractions here. You can visit the aquarium, go canoeing or boating, biking around the Karapuzha Dam, trek around the Karapuzha Dam and even go on peaceful nature walks amidst greenery. Those who love clicking photos, this is heaven for you. Every direction has a shot that you cannot miss! Plus, with birdlife thriving, there are plenty of opportunities to sight local and migratory birds. The history and architecture of the Karapuzha Dam will also attract those interested.
Although you can visit the Karapuzha Dam throughout the year, during monsoon, the water is at the fullest which makes it beautiful to see.
Catch the Striking Views of Phantom Rock
Phantom Rock is a rare archaeological structure. It’s a naturally shaped rock that is formed out of huge metamorphic rocks, and it’s shaped like a skull or phantom head and thus the name, Phantom Rock. This picturesque site is about 26 kilometres from Kalpetta, and you can drive up to a certain point after which you need to trek to get here. It's a short and easy trek. Locally, Phantom Rock is also known as ‘Cheengeri Mala' and is at the height of 2600 meters above sea level. Once you reach up here, you will be surrounded by lush greenery. It's the perfect place to get some amazing shots of the surrounding scenery and the valley down below.
Apart from the scenic vistas, it's a historical site and hence allures a lot of tourists. There are even ample opportunities for trekking and camping around here. Those with an adventurous streak can also trek to the top of the rock! From the top, you will get uninterrupted views of the entire surrounding area.
Trekking and camping require you to bring your gear. There are no guides, so it's best to arrange for someone before starting your journey.
Phantom Rock is the perfect place for families to get some peace along with some adventure. It’s the right mix which will leave all visitors satisfied. Don’t forget to carry your camera to capture the breathtaking sights all around you.
Seek Solace at Pallikkunnu Church
Just about 35 kilometres from Kalpetta, you will find the Pallikkunnu Church. It is a Latin Catholic Church and a famous pilgrimage centre in north Kerala. Among the many religious places, one of the things to do in Wayanad is visiting this holy site.
This Pallikkunnu Church is dedicated to Lourdes Matha, and it is more popularly known as ‘Our Lady of Lourdes Church'.
Established in the year 1908 by a French priest Fr. Jefreno, Pallikkunnu Church is completely built in the European style. When you see the church, you will instantly point out its distinct architectural style. Along with its unique architecture, the surroundings are calm, and the backdrop of greenery adds that extra bit of charm.
This church is known to have several practices and rituals that are very similar to those prevalent in Hindu temple. Devotees also believe that no prayer goes unanswered here.
Every year an annual church festival is held here starting from the 2nd February, and they go on until the 11th of February. The main festivities are on 10th and 11th of February. Not only do a lot of locals come by at this time but also a large number of tourists throng during the festive season.
It’s an experience to visit a site of such historic significance, especially during the time of fun and festivities.
Revel in the Beauty of Arippara Waterfalls
A short ride for about 37 kilometres from Kalpetta will get you to Arippara waterfalls. Although this is one of the top things to do in Wayanad for most tourists, it is a place that you should include in your list if you have the time. Arippara waterfall is a tributary of Iruvanjipuzha or Iruvanji River, and the cool waterfall cascades down past the rocks and pebbles into a beautiful and pristine pond. With the hills and greenery in the backdrop, this is a sight to behold. This fall is said to have eight levels along with Nirannapara, Sullu Kallu, Olichuchaattom, Vattakkuzhi, Neelakkayathadaakam and Shwasakkuzhi as its companions.
The Nirannapara falls sprawls across 2000 square feet and right below is the Shwasakkuzhi falls where you can sit under the descending water and enjoy the cool spray. All in all, the combination of the rocks, the gushing water, the lush greenery and the scenic location makes this the ideal spot to unwind and relax with family. One of the things to do in Wayanad while here is to pack some food and enjoy a small picnic with breathtaking backdrops.
The best time to visit here would be from November until May. At times, during the peak monsoon season, it can be dangerous due to floods and slippery rocks. Even in summer, the undercurrents can be strong so although you are a good swimmer be cautious when you venture out.
Spend Some Family Time at Irupu Falls
Just on the border of the Wayanad district of Kerala is the magnificent Iruppu Falls. Irupu Falls is formed by a stream which originated in the Brahmagiri Peaks, Lakshmana Tirtha, and joins the Kaveri River. Locally known as the Iruppu Falls but actually called as Lakshmana Tirtha Falls is one of the top things to do in Wayanad when you visit with family. It is believed that Lord Rama and his brother Lakshmana were in search of Sita amidst the Brahmagiri range. When Lord Rama was on the lookout for water to drink, his brother shot an arrow at the Brahmagiri hills which then brought about the rise of the Lakshmana Tirtha River.
Amidst the thick Western Ghats, the Irupu Falls are at the height of 170 feet via several stages. The gushing water and the picturesque surroundings make this the ideal spot to enjoy a family picnic. You can even stand at the bottom of the falls and play with the water that cascades down. En route to the falls, you can also make a pit stop at the Rameshwara Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is believed that Lord Rama himself installed the Shiva lingam inside the temple. An approach road to the temple is available, but from there you need to go on a 15-20 minute walk to reach the falls.
You can easily while away half a day at the falls. It's best to visit here from September to December, but August to January is good too.
Pay Your Respects at the Pazhassi Tomb
Thousands of people regularly visit the Pazhassi Tomb to pay their respects to the popular Kerala Varma Pazhassi Raja or the ‘Lion of Kerala’. A fierce king, Pazhassi Raja is among the few leaders from India who rebelled against the British and won. His body was cremated, and the tomb is constructed on the same place which lies on the banks of the Kabini River. In 1996, his tomb was transformed into a museum, and at present, the museum contains some of his possession, and this attracts researchers and historians from all over the world. His memorial has antiques, paintings, ancient coins and other such items in the complex. The Kerala State Archaeology Department maintains this memorial.
It’s one of the things to do in Wayanad which will take you down memory lane and give you a lesson or two in history.
Spend Some Time in Koottamundu Glass Temple
On the hilly Vellarimala and at a short distance from Kalpetta lies this Jain temple, Koottamundu Glass Temple. This temple is dedicated to the famous Jain saint Parshawanatha Swami. Several devotees flock here to pay their respects and medicate in the serene environment.
The temple’s exteriors and interiors are made up of mirrors. The interior mirrors reflect the image of the idols which lie inside the main temple. The usage of mirror throughout the temple has given this temple the glass temple title. The workmanship of this temple will leave you in awe. It’s an interesting site to visit and definitely one of the things to do in Wayanad if you are close by.
Enjoy a Day Out at E3 Theme Park
Nestled in the Wayanad region, E3 Theme Park is the place for environment, education, entertainment and excitement all rolled into one! There are plenty of things to keep everyone satisfied.
There are plenty of activities here which range from rifle shooting, rope course, rock climbing, archery, magnetic free fall, volleyball, rappelling, zip line, etc. Other than the adventure activities, you can enjoy the duck show, pet zoo, retro to metro theatre show, dino park, horror tunnel, waterfalls, boating, acrobatic show, etc. For more action-packed fun, you can visit the 12D theatre, play basketball, ride bumping cars, bull ride, jump on the trampoline, play air hockey, etc. For the convenience of guests, there’s ample parking and other facilities like a prayer hall, restrooms, wheelchair access, etc.
There more than enough to keep every member of your family entertained when you visit this park. Plus, the cool breeze and the stunning scenery add to the beauty!
Explore the Pakshipathalam Caves
At the northern end of Brahmagiri Hills, buried deep in the wood at the height of 1740 meters is the Pakshipathalam Caves. In Malayalam, Pakshipathalam means ‘the adobe of birds’ and the caves are home to a variety of species of birds. Most predominantly, you can see bats here.
A trek to Pakshipathalam Caves takes you through rolling hills, deciduous forests, narrow rocky caves, open grasslands and slippery trails. There are no proper tails, and you have to hike and trek through the jungle, which can be challenging for some. You cannot camp here so you will need to make your way back before sunset. According to legends, the saints used the cave for meditation. If this interests you, it's one of the things to do in Wayanad that you should include in your itinerary.
Go on a Farm Tour
Wayanad filled with greenery has many farmlands that are worth exploring. Escape from the daily hustle and bustle of the city and spend a few hours experiencing the simplicity of rural life. Farms tour in Wayanad let you explore villages which are well-known for paddy, spices, bamboo, forests and mountains. Live the life of a farmer for a day and visit their farmlands, learn about the crops they grow, see how they make a living. It’s all a humbling encounter that is worth experiencing. There are different farmlands and different tours, pick one that interests you and your family. It’s certainly a good learning experience for kids and hence, one of the top things to do in Wayanad.
Hike to Kurisumala Peak
Also known as 'Amrithamedu' or the ‘Mountain of Cross’, Kurisumala is a delight for trekkers. It’s also a pilgrim centre which denotes the troubles that Jesus Christ endured during the last phase of his life. The cross on the mountain is said to be a symbol of his suffering.
The trek goes past undulating terrain, but once you reach the top, you are rewarded with breathtaking views.
Want to explore the best of Wayanad with family? Have a look at this Kerala tourism guide to ensure you enjoy a memorable family vacation in Wayanad, Kerala.
Where’s Your Next Getaway?
Are you looking for a quintessential southern hill station for the perfect weekend away from the city? Look no further than Wayanad. Not only are there many places to see in Wayanad but also so many things to do for the entire family. No matter what kind of traveller you are, there’s lots to keep you occupied and have a memorable trip.
From trekking to cycling to visiting temples to sightseeing, the list is endless. With so much to do, after a long and tiring day, you would need a comfortable place to come back to. Club Mahindra affiliate resort in Wayanad, Kerala present the perfect setting for a comfortable and relaxed stay after a long day. They provide comfortable and modern amenities with spacious rooms, a host of amenities, friendly staff and their in-house restaurant has a variety of food which comprises of both local and multi-cuisine; ingredients to make the perfect trip! The best part is that the Club Mahindra reviews are nothing short of the best!
Book with Club Mahindra and every moment of your trip will be nothing but memorable.