Eravikulam National Park
Eravikulam is one of Kerala’s finest wildlife reserves, and its excellent
location, a mere 16 km from Munnar, makes it an unforgettable experience
for any lover of the outdoors. The park, a spread of 97 km across
Rajamalai Hills, is a combination of grassland and shola forests. The
Atlas moth, the largest of its kind in the world, is a unique inhabitant
of the park. Other rare species of fauna found here are the Nilgiri Langur,
the lion-tailed macaque, leopards, tigers, etc.
Anamudi Peak inside Eravikulam National Park is the highest peak (2695 m)
in peninsular India. It towers over the sanctuary in majestic pride. The
hill is abundant in all kinds of rare flora and fauna. It is best know for
the endangered Nilgiri tahr (hemitragus hylocrious) although it does
harbour a number of other equally interesting denizens— such as Atlas moth
(the largest of its kind in the world), Nilgiri langurs, lion-tailed
macaques, leopards and tigers. An ideal place for trekking, facilities are
provided here and tourists are allowed to go on foot up to Anamudi.
Thattekad Bird Sanctuary
The sanctuary lies near Kothamangalam and is 80 km from Munnar. Also known
as the Dr. Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary (after India’s most famous
ornithologist, who was instumental in its establishment). Thattekad
spreads out over a relatively small area of 25 sq km of dense forest of
rosewood, teak and mahogany. But don’t let the diminutive size of the
sanctuary put you off; this modest bit of land harbours a fairly
impressive selection of avifauna, guaranteed to have any avid bird-watchery
yearning for more.
Thattekad’s resident species number more than 270, of which the more
prominent ones are crimson-throated barbets, rose-billed rollers,
sunbirds, shrikes, Malabar grey hornbills, Malayan night herons,
rusty-tailed flycatchers, Ceylon frogmouths and parakeets. In addition,
the sanctuary is home to more than 200 species of butterflies, plus a few
mammals—including leopards and bears.