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How To Reach Thekkady
Located in the lap of the Western Ghats near the border of Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the picturesque town of Thekkady is home to the Periyar Tiger Reserve. The place offers an experience of a lifetime to all nature and wildlife enthusiasts. Thekkady is the place to go for a memorable, adventurous jungle vacation. Apart from its wildlife sanctuary, Thekkady is also known for its spice gardens, hiking and bamboo rafting in the Mullaiperiyar dam catchment area. Thekkady attracts tourists from all over the world for its varied offerings. Wondering how to reach Thekkady? Here are the options.
Thekkady doesn’t have an airport of its own. The closest airports to Thekkady are Madurai (140 kms) and Cochin International Airport (190 kms). Both airports are served by all major domestic airlines. One can use the state transport bus services offered by the Kerala State Government to reach Thekkady. You may also book a pre-paid cab from the airport.
The closest stations to Thekkady is Kottayam Railway Station. The station is connected to major cities including Mangalore, Trivandrum, Thiruvananthapuram, New Delhi, Mumbai, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Vizag, etc. The metropolitan cities of South India have daily trains to Kottayam. The most popular trains to Kottayam are Mangaluru Thiruvananthapuram Express, Amritha Express, Chennai Central-Thiruvananthapuram Central SF Express, Malabar Express and Island Express. From Kottayam, travellers can reach Thekkady via State transport buses or by pre-paid taxis.
The Kerala State Transport Corporation connects nearby cities to Thekkady. Superfast buses ply daily from Kottayam, Kochi and Trivandrum to Thekkady. Bengaluru, Chennai, Salem and Tiruchirapalli also have buses plying to Thekkady.
Listed below are some of the most beautiful routes to drive to Thekkady. However, we suggest you carry a few litres of extra petrol or diesel with you in case you run out of fuel on the way - fuels stations on the way are few and far between.
Situated at a distance of 170 kms, Thekkady is a 3 hour drive from Kochi. The route will take you through the towns of Thiruvankulam, Vannapram, Idukki, Kattappana and finally Thekkady/Periyar. The entire stretch of roads here has the most scenic of views. This route will be a photographer’s delight.
The 144 km route from Kottayam to Thekkady is interspersed with hilly terrain as well as normal roads. However, fuel stations are very few in this route. This 3 hour drive will take you through the picturesque stretch of the Western Ghats.
Getting around in Thekkady
This tourist town has ample modes of transport to get around. One can easily get autos, buses or taxis to move around the place. For the adventurous and nature loving travellers, some hotels will also be able to arrange bicycles or other two wheelers for you on request.
While in Thekkady, do not miss out on the Bamboo Rafting, a visit to the plantations, the elephant rides and the boat cruises on the Periyar lake. If you’re visiting Thekkady during Chitra Pournima, do visit the Mangala Devi Temple that is situated 15 kms inside the forest.