Bangalore to Munnar
We set out for the Munnar trip after rigorous planning. The first day of our trip was dedicated to the drive from Bangalore to Munnar. We zoomed on the highways of Tamilnadu visiting Gudimangala windfarms, Marayoor Sandalwood forest, Kannan Devan viewpoint. We also got to see the distant view of Thoovanam waterfalls and Anamalai Hills.
Munnar is approximately 450 kilometres from Bangalore. We had two routes in mind. The first, as shown by Google Maps, is via the Salem Erode highway. But we wanted to go through the Satyamangala forest. However, after calculating the time required to travel that route, we decided on the Salem Erode highway route. The goal was to arrive in Munnar as early as possible so that we could spend more time exploring in the evening.
Best route to Munnar 🚧
Even though there are multiple route options available, we chose the following route because it was the fastest and shortest route from Bangalore at the time.
Route we took
Bengaluru > Hossur > Krishnagiri > Dharmapuri > Salem > Erode > Avinashi > Mangalam > Palladam > Gudimangalam > Udumalpet > Marayoor > Munnar > Anachal
We had reserved our stay at Gokulam Homestay in Anachal, which is 15 kilometers south of Munnar.
Fuel and washroom break
We left our house in Electronic City Bengaluru at 3:30 a.m. and stopped at Ranganathar & co. Petrol bunk, Salem at 6 am for fuel and loo break. This petrol station has clean washrooms.
I drove 125 kilometers west on NH 544 and came across a restaurant with ample parking called Cafe Udupi Ruchi near Avinashi. Even though it was only 7:45 a.m., we decided to have breakfast here. The restaurant was very spacious both inside and out. It served mediocre food and was relatively quick. By 8:15 a.m., we were back on the road.
Gudimangalam Wind Farm 🎡
We were greeted by numerous wind turbines on both sides of the road as soon as we crossed Palladam. We drove to the base of a wind turbine to get a good look at it.
Few intersting facts about Gudimangalam Wind Farm
- Gudimangalam wind farm is Tamilnadu’s fourth largest wind farm, producing approximately 21MW of electricity.
- The wind farm was commissioned in 2014 and is operated by the Tamil Nadu Energy Development Agency (TEDA).
- The Gudimangalam wind farm generates enough electricity to power over 50,000 homes in Tamil Nadu.
- The wind farm helps to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by replacing fossil fuel-based electricity generation with clean, renewable energy.
- The Gudimangalam wind farm plays a key role in the state’s goal of increasing its renewable energy capacity to 20% by 2020.
- The wind farm has received several awards and recognitions for its contributions to the state’s renewable energy sector, including the National Award for Excellence in Energy Management.
- The wind farm is located in a region with high wind speeds, making it an ideal location for wind energy generation.
- The Gudimangalam wind farm is part of the Tamil Nadu government’s efforts to promote clean energy and reduce reliance on fossil fuels.
It was a reminder of the potential of renewable energy and the positive impact it can have on communities. I left feeling hopeful for the future of clean energy and the role it can play in shaping a more sustainable world.
Stops at Checkposts 🚥
One thing we noticed was that we had to stop and provide travel information at four checkpoints before entering Munnar, the first of which was at the Anamalai Tiger Reserve checkpoint. There was a long line of vehicles waiting to enter here. Before we could proceed, we had to pay a 50 entry fee.
The road narrows after this checkpoint, and at times it is stop-and-go traffic due to numerous bottlenecks and curvy and tricky ghat roads that require coordination between to and fro traffic.
Then we crossed the Chinar forest checkpost at Tamil Nadu-Kerala border, one need to get off the vehicle and make entry at the check post. After this point, traffic eases and the route becomes very scenic.
Thoovanam waterfalls 🌊
About 8 kilometres after the Chinar forest checkpoint, on the way to Munnar, there is a viewpoint with a beautiful view of the Thoovanam waterfalls from a distance.
Thoovanam waterfall is situated on the Pambar River, which is a tributary of the Cauvery River. It is a popular destination for nature lovers, with crystal clear waters and lush greenery surrounding the falls. This place is located in a remote, secluded area and can only be accessed by a 2km trek from the nearest road.
The falls are located at an altitude of 900 meters above sea level, making them a cool, refreshing escape from the heat and humidity of the surrounding region. The Thoovanam waterfalls are a must-visit destination for anyone interested in nature, adventure, and outdoor activities.
We spent about 10 minutes admiring the beauty of nature, taking photos, and then continued on our way to Munnar.
Marayoor Sandalwood forest 🌳
We entered the Marayoor Sandalwood forest area after driving 6 kilometres further towards Munnar and passing through Marayoor town. Marayoor Sandalwood Forest is a protected area located in the Indian state of Kerala.
Few facts about Marayoor sandalwood forest:
- It is the only place in Kerala where natural sandalwood trees grow, making it a unique destination for those interested in botany and forestry.
- The forest is home to a wide variety of plant species, including bamboo, teak, and orchids, as well as a diverse range of wildlife, including elephants, tigers, leopards, and the endangered Nilgiri Tahr.
- Marayoor is also known for its ancient megalithic sites, including rock paintings and dolmens, which are evidence of human habitation in the region dating back to prehistoric times.
- The forest is also home to the “Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary” which is a protected area and a popular spot for trekking, wildlife spotting and bird watching.
- Marayoor is a great destination for those interested in botany, wildlife, and cultural heritage and for those who love to explore nature, culture and adventure.
- The sandalwood from this forest is considered as one of the best quality sandalwood in the world.
Just driving slowly through this forest area gives a soothing feel.
Kannan Devan Viewpoint 🌄
Let’s be honest. A Kannan devan viewpoint does not have a specific location. Kannan Devan company owns the majority of the tea plantations in Munnar, and there are many beautiful places to stop and enjoy the scenery. We came to a halt at the best of such points and considered it as Kannan Devan View Point. 😀
Kannan Devan viewpoint offers beautiful panoramic view of Kanna devan tea plantation. The plantation is known for its high-quality tea and its beautiful rolling hills covered with tea bushes. The plantation is run by the Kannan Devan Hills Plantations Company, which is one of the largest tea producers in South India. The company operates several tea factories on the estate where they process the tea leaves to produce different grades of tea. Visitors to the plantation can take guided tours of the tea factories and the tea gardens, learn about the history and process of tea production, and also sample some of the tea. The plantation also offers a range of outdoor activities like trekking, cycling, and bird watching. It’s a great place to learn about the history of tea and the culture of the local people.
Gokulam Homestay of Munnar 🏠
We had reserved a room at Gokulam Homestay, which was 14.5 kilometres from Munnar town. When we arrived in Munnar, it was already 1.25 p.m. We ate lunch at Hotel Hill View, which is located near the town bus stop, and arrived at our homestay at 2.45 p.m. We took a short break before heading out to explore Munnar in the evening.
Tips For Travelers ✅
- Carry all the vehicle related documents.📃
- Drive sensibly in the narrow ghat road.🚘
- Please follow queue system at various checkpoint. It is understood that everyone is in hurry to get to Munnar
- Don’t forget to collect the receipt for the fee paid at Anamalai Tiger reserve check post (1st check post on the way from Udamalapattai to Munnar). This need to be produced at later check posts. 🎫
- Dont forget to stop and enjoy the nature at vairous viewpoint you get along the way 😀
Places to Visit Nearby
|Destination||Distance from Munnar Town (In Kms)|
|2nd Mile View Point||8.5|
|Chithirapuram View Point||10|
|Pothamedu View Point||4.5|
Food Options at Munnar 🥘
- Saravana Bhavan at the heart of Munnar town is the best option for vegetarians. Vehicle parking is on your own though 😋
- Hotel Hillview Munnar serves decent food and has good ambience. Service being very slow is the only complaint
Live the Experience 📹
We suggest you to watch our short informative video on this place before visiting.