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How To Reach Munnar
The beautiful hill station of Munnar is located in Kerala. The region in and around Munnar varies in altitude from 1,500 m to 2,695 m and is South India’s largest tea-growing region. The picturesque hills, lush tea plantations and exotic flora and fauna attract tourists from all over India and abroad throughout the year. Here we have listed the various travel options available to help you decide on how to reach Munnar.
Munnar does not have an airport of its own. The two nearest airports are the Kochi International Airport (110 km by road) and the Madurai International Airport (140 km by road), well served by major airlines. From both Cochin and Madurai, state transport and private bus services are available for the continuing journey to Munnar. In addition one can also hire a pre-paid cab from the airport kiosks.
Munnar is also not directly approachable by rail. The nearest railway station from Munnar is at Aluva, located at a distance of 110 km. The Ernakulam Railway Station is 130 km away, while the Madurai Railway Station is at a distance of 135 km. Some of the most popular train routes are: Malabar Express, Guwahati-Trivandrum Express, Howrah-Kanyakumari Express, Mumbai-Madurai Express, Chandigarh-Madurai express etc. From these railway stations, you can opt for the state-run/private bus services or rent a taxi.
The several state-run or private buses provide an easy solution to the question of how to reach Munnar. The regular network of buses, plying from various towns in Kerala and adjoining states, makes this a convenient way to travel to Munnar. Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (http://www.keralartc.com/) provides regular bus services to Munnar from all the major cities in Kerala. So does the Tamil Nadu State Transport which runs buses to Munnar from Madurai, Kodaikanal and others. The Karnataka State Transport also runs regular bus services to Munnar from Ernakulam, Bangalore etc.
How to reach Munnar by road? We have listed the most scenic routes to make your road trip a memorable one.
Munnar is located about 130 km from Kochi, along the National Highway 49 and the road trip takes about 4.5 hours. The beautiful scenic route traverses the towns of Kothamangalam and Adimali en route to Munnar. The drive between these two towns is through a lush natural forest with cascading waterfalls which makes for an incredible experience. From Adimali as the car enters the final stretch of the journey to Munnar, one is greeted by the spectacular sights of tea plantations bordering the road; and a panoramic view of the majestic Western Ghats.
Munnar is roughly at a distance of 153 km from Madurai. The most popular and picturesque route is Madurai- Theni - Bodi – BodiMettu - Devikulam - Munnar, travelling along NH 49.
The distance from Munnar to Coimbatore is about 160 km and the journey can take up to 4 hours. The route is along Coimbatore- Pollachi - Udumalapet - Chinnar - Munnar. The stretch between Pollachi and Udumalapet is fringed with large windmill farms which make for an interesting sight. The lush greenery all around is a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of the city.
Since the roads to Munnar are generally narrow with many bends and curves, one must be extremely cautious while driving.
Getting around in Munnar
There are various ways of getting around in Munnar. Rented cycles and motorbikes are the most popular options for exploring the tranquil beauty of Munnar. Auto rickshaws and taxis are also available for hire. The main bus station is located at the heart of the city and one can avail of the public buses for local sightseeing.