Periyar National Park

Location: Kerala

Main Wildlife Attractions: Tiger,Nilgiri Langur,Sambar, Barking Deer,Elephants, Gaur, Wild Pigs,

Coverage Area: 305 sq.kms

Established: 1982

Best Time to Visit:November to February

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Periyar National Park in Kerala is a protected wildlife reserve. The area covering 350 sq km right in the middle of serene Periyar Lake was declared as a National Park in the year 1982. The National Park is situated right at the heart of Pandalam Hills and Cardamom Hills of Southern Western Ghats.



How to reach Periyar National Park

By Air

Madurai Airport at a distance of 140 km is the closest airport to the protected forests.

By Rail

Kottayam Railway Station, located at a distance of 114 km from Periyar National Park, is closest in proximity.

By Road

Periyar National Park can be reached easily by road from major cities including Kottayam (100 km), Madurai (110 km), Kochi (120 km) and Kumily (4 km).



What is the best time for visiting the National Park?

Periyar National Park remains open for the most part of the year. Climate-wise, the best season to visit is during the winter months of November to February as the weather remains pleasant. Though, the aroma of wet mud during monsoon season gives a special appeal to the National park during this season, even though a lot of wildlife is not spotted at this time. Elephants in search of water come out during summer months of March to June and hence, for best wildlife viewing, summer is the best season.

What are the opening and closing hours of this National Park?

  • General Timings: 0600 hours to 1900 hours everyday
  • Boat Safaris: 0730 hours to 9.30 hours; 0930 hours to 1130 hours; 1145 hours to 1345 hours; 1345 hours to 1530 hours
  • Guided Nature Walks: 0700 hours to 1000 hours; 1400 hours to 1700 hours
  • Border Hike and Bamboo Rafting: 0800 hours to 1700 hours

What are the charges inside the National Park?

Entry Fees:

  •   Adults: INR 25 for Indians and INR 300 for foreigners
  •    Children: INR 5 for Indians and INR 105 for foreigners
  • Boat Safari: INR 150 for people above 11 years of age, INR 50 for the rest
  • Periyar Tiger Trail Treks: INR 5500 for one night and INR 7500 for two nights
  • Note: The fee prices are liable to change without any prior information.

What is Periyar National Park in Kerala known for?

The exotic National park is God’s own Country is famous among tourists as elephants and tigers reserve.

When were the Protected Forests established?

The construction of Mullaperiyar Dam in the year 1895 gave birth to Periyar National Park. The dam that was built across River Periyar caused a stoppage of the river flow and formed a water reservoir in the area, which led to the formation of an artificial lake in the valley.

During 18th and 19th centuries, the reserve acted as the hunting area for the Royalty. Edapalayam Lake Palace was the meeting point of all the royal guests.

By the year 1899, the regions around Periyar Lake were declared as forest reserves and were named as Periyar Lake Reserve. This was done to put a stop on the animal hunting and cutting of tea plantations.

By the year 1934, the area around Periyar was named as Nellikkampatty Game Sanctuary by S. C. H. Robinson who acted as the first game warden and also rose to be the Maharaja of Travancore in the same year. By 1966, the area was declared as a protected wildlife sanctuary to put a stop on the dwindling wildlife population in the area.

By 1978, Periyar was included in the Project Tiger which was started in the year 1972 by Central Government.  It was declared as a National Park in the year 1982. In the year 1992, Central Ministry of Environment and Forests initiated the ambitious Project Elephant and Periyar National Park became the launching ground for it.

By the year 1996, India Eco-Development Project too was initiated in the reserve to preserve the ecosystem. The sanctuary was segregated into Periyar East and Periyar West by the year 2001.

The tiger population in the park reached to 40 tigers which prompted the Union Ministry of Environment and Forests and National Tiger Conservation Authority to give a “very good” work assessment report to the faculty of Periyar Tiger Reserve in the year 2011.

Where is Periyar National Park located?

Periyar National Park is located in Pathanamthitta and Idukki districts of South Indian state of Kerala.

What all species of flora and fauna can be seen inside the National Park?

Fauna

  • Mammals: Royal Bengal Tigers, Stripe-Necked Mongoose, Indian Elephant, Sambar, Indian Giant Squirrel, Wild Pig, Travancore Flying Squirrel, Sloth Bear, Jungle Cat, Nilgiri Tahr, Nilgiri Langur, Lion-Tailed Macaque, Salim Ali's Fruit Bat, Nilgiri Marten, Gaur etc.
  •    Birds: Malabar Grey Hornbill, Black-necked Stork, Nilgiri Wood Pigeon, Nilgiri Flycatcher, White-bellied Blue Flycatcher, Crimson-backed Sunbird, Black Baza, Nilgiri Thrush, Spot-bellied Eagle-Owl, Little Spiderhunter, Brahminy Kite, Rufous-bellied Hawk-Eagle, Great Hornbill, Oriental Darter, Sri Lanka Frogmouth, Blue-winged Parakeet etc.
  •    Reptiles: King Cobra, Lizards, Malabar Pit Viper, Caecilians, Toads, Frogs, Malabar Gliding Frog, Fungoid Frog, Asian Toad, Bicolored Frog, Turtles, Striped Coral Snake etc.
  •   Others:, Travancore Loach, Atlas Moth, Periyar Latia, Channa Barb, Butterfly Taxa, Periyar Trout, Lime Butterfly, Travancore Evening Brown, Malabar Tree Nymph, Periyar Barb Etc.
  • Flora:

Cardamom, Eucalyptus, Grasslands, Taxa, Teak, Orchids, Rosewoods, Sandalwoods, Terminalias, Jacarandas, Jamun, Mangoes, Tamarind, Sacred Fig, Banyans, Plumerias, Kino Tree, Royal Poinciana, Bamboos, Nageia Wallichiana, Conifer, Gloriosa Lily, Syzygium Periyarensis, Habenaria Periyarensis, Tea, Coffee,  Deciduous Forests etc.

What are the major attractions in and around the Park?

  • Kumily: For enjoying the tranquil surroundings of spice plantations of Kerala, the town of Kumily, located just at a distance of 4 km from Periyar, is the best option.
  • Cardamom Hills: The stunning cardamom hills are a must visit when on a tour to Periyar.
  • Boat Cruises: The best way to traverse the protected forests is by availing the Boat cruises across Periyar Sanctuary.

What kind of accommodation facilities are the best nearby Periyar National Park forests?

The best accommodations that are suitable for all kinds of tourists that visit Periyar National Park are the wildlife resorts or wildlife lodges that are situated at a very convenient distance from the wildlife sanctuary. All these lodges and resorts can plan the boat safaris or jeep safaris inside the forest for those who stay in there.

Also, the tourists have an adventurous time with a stay in these guest houses as all of them are located amidst the serene and tranquil surroundings of Cardamom Hills. Also one could constantly hear the sound of wildlife with a stay so close to the forests which.

All the necessary requirements are fulfilled in wildlife resorts in Periyar. Some of the best lodges that are recommended include Jungle Village Resort, Hotel Taj Garden Retreat, Hotel S N International, Hotel Tree Top, Lake Palace Hotel and Highland Resorts Idukki.

Some travel tips before visiting the famous Periyar National Park Forest National Park:

Check out these useful tips on a tour to Periyar National Park National Park: