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Periyar National Park

Best location to spot tigers in Southern India


Periyar Tiger Reserve

The Periyar National Park is located in the Indian State of Kerala. It lies peacefully in the Cardamon and the Pandalam Hills. It is known for being one of the best tiger and elephant reserves in the Southern India. Tourists and wildlife enthusiasts from all over the world come and explore the beauty of Western Ghats and the hundred year old lake in the Periyar National Park. It was declared as a National Park in 1982.


According to the history, a Mullaperiyar damn was built on the river Periyar in 1895 under the reign of Pandayas to provide water for irrigation activities in Tamil Nadu. The Travancore Kings used the reserve for their hunting grounds. It was later in 1933 when Mr. S.C.H. Robinson, a retired Land Commission was designated as the Game Warden of the reserve by the Maharaja of Travancore. And it led to the creation of the Nellikkampatty Game Sanctuary. It was later included in the Periyar Tiger Reserve in 1978 by the Central Government after adding more area into the Periyar Wildlife Reserve.

Following are the main tourist attractions of the Periyar National Park:


Flora: Tropical evergreen forests and Semi- evergreen forests are present in the deeper valleys of the Periyar National park. The central region might have moist deciduous forests. The heights of these trees have reached the amazing 130-140 feet tall. Grasslands can be spotted near the edges of the water bodies and lakes in the park. The Periyar National Park is famous for having more than 2000 species of flowers, 171 grass species and also 142 different varieties of orchids. The most common trees found in the national park are those of Bamboo, Rosewood, Banyan, Tamarind, mango, Pipal and Gulmohar.


Fauna: Currently, there are around 38-50 tigers in the Periyar National Park. There are 62 varieties of mammals present in here. Around 1000 elephants can be found in the reserve. One can also different mammals such as Mouse Deer, Ligiri Langurs, Leopards, Malabar Squirrel, Porcupines and sloth beers. Around 180 different varsities of birds species are found in the national park. The most common ones are Kingfishers, malabar Hornbills, Darters and Cormorants. 45 different varieties of reptiles are found in the national park and these are mostly lizards, snakes and turtles. 38 different types of fishes are found in the national park, mostly like trouts and salmons which are indigenous to the Western Ghats.


Periyar National Park

Excursionist from Periyar National Park


Following are the main excursions which the tourists can indulge into:

Kumily: It is located at the outskirts of the Periyar National Park and is a busy little town which is known for the spice and tea plantations. It is located at a distance of 4 km away from the national park. There are impressive and comfortable hotel and accommodation services also present in the town.


Cardamon Hills: Kumily and Periyar are the beautiful locations for exploring the breathtakingly unique and marvellous virgin beauty of the Cardamon Hills in Kerala. They are called so, due to the impressive growth of cardamom spices.

When to Reach
The Periyar National Park is open through out the year. Though, the ideal time to visit the national park is between October to February when the climate is cooler and drier. The hot months of March and April are the best times for watching the elephants.


How to Reach
Air: The nearest airport to the Periyar National Park is in Kochi and Madurai.
Rail: The Kottayam railway station, located at a distance of 114 km, is the closest railway station to the Periyar National Park.
Road: Both state and private means of transport are available to Kumily which is located at the very edge of the Periyar National Park.



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