Eravikulam National Park, located 15 km north of Munnar in Idukki District of Kerala, is one of the important destinations of wildlife tour in Kerala. Also known as Rajamalai National Park, the sanctuary is famous for its biodiversity. The most popular and interesting part of this reserve is the place Rajamalai, which is located deep inside the reserve. Here, entry of private vehicles is prohibited. Therefore, only few mini buses are operated inside the park by the park staff as a pollution control measure. Moreover, it is also an easy way to manage visitor traffic.
Eravikulam National Park was declared a wildlife sanctuary in the year 1975. Soon its status was raised to that of a National Park in a short span of 3 years, in the year 1978. It is interesting to note that though the main motive behind this exercise was the conservation and protection of Nilgiri Tahr or Hemitragus Hylocrious, the place now serves as a habitat for a number of other protected species of flora and fauna. Apart from the abundance of flora and fauna, another thing which attracts a large number of tourists to this place is the lush green abodes at the foothills of Anamudi Peak.
Eravikulam National Park has been divided into three major regions - the core area, the buffer area and the tourism area. Rajamalai is the tourism area of this park. Here, visitors are taken in depths of the forest so that they can explore the shoal grassland ecosystem, which is limited especially to this region. From this part one can observe the Nilgiri Tahr from close proximities. A trip to Rajamalai, which is usually organized by the forest authorities, can be best visited on foot. There are intervals when you are given the chance to explore the forest on your own.
Eravikulam National Park is located on the higher altitudes of the Western Ghats. As the park is situated on a plateau, most of its area is a consistent hill plateau with high rolling slopes. The average altitude of most part of this hilly plateau is 2000 m. The topography of this area primarily consists of high altitude grasslands sprinkled with patches of stunted evergreen tropical and subtropical moist broadleaf forests, which are popularly known as ‘shoals’. Anamudi, with a height of 2695 m, is the highest peak in south India. It is located within the premises of Eravikulam National Park. Due to this topological feature, a number of streams haphazardly cross this park. These are the small streams which later merge together to form tributaries of Periyar River and Chalakudiyar River. Lakkom Waterfalls is located in this region.
Eravikulam National Park is densely populated with a number of trees and shrubs. A few of these are rare and are found only in this part of the world. The grassland which is found at this park is called the climax grasslands. It is believed by experts that the grassland here has developed to its full extent and splendor. The scenic beauty of this place has evolved to perfectly harmonize itself with the climatic conditions of this place. The valley is abundantly adorned with sundry varieties of orchids and a number of other floral varieties of shrubs. A trip to the outskirts of this Park will let you learn a lot about the bio diverse nature of this national park.
The National Park was set up especially for the protection of Nilgiri Tahr. With time, it has become a natural habitat for more than 26 different species of mammals. A number of elephants, Langur and marten are found here. The park is also home to small-clawed otter, tigers and leopards. A visitor can spot a number of these animals dwelling in the forest. Apart from these animals, Varai Aadu or the mountain goat, which is an endangered species, can also be seen wandering inside this park. Quite recently a new species of frog was discovered in this park which is found only in a small part of this park and these are limited only to this place in the entire world.
Read about Eravikulam National Park, also known as Rajamalai National Park, which is a famous wildlife park located in Munnar, in Idukki district of Kerala.
Eravikulam National Park
|Location||15 km from Munnar in Idukki District, Kerala|
|Nearest Airport/Railway Station||Cochin International Airport / Kottayam Railway Station|
|Nearby Attractions||Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, Marayoor|
|Best Time to Visit||September to December|