Photograph the Eiffel Tower between two fingers, support the Leaning Tower of Pisa with your beefy shoulders and dangle the mighty Taj at the mercy of your thumb and index finger holding the pole atop the minaret….
These stereotypes of tourists ensue all the way to the Western Ghats in Munnar, one of the top tourist destinations in Kerala, in the form of selfies in sprawling tea plantations not caring slightly for the ardent efforts to understand the mighty history of tea in Munnar that dates back to the industrial revolution in Great Britain.
Thankfully unlike tourists, travellers have a different perspective altogether. They are here to make memories. To feel the rush of adrenaline when they venture into the unknown. They are here to learn, to help, to understand… they are here to make experiences.
This piece is dedicated to all those travellers out there. Here is what we offer you.
- Attukad Village Trek: Entire Munnar is sub divided into different tea estates, each one completely self-sufficient with little schools, dispensaries, shops, play-grounds, churches, temples, mosques etc. The far flung village that you see from your balcony in our boutique resort in Munnar, is Attukad village. Why don’t you start your day early from Blackberry Hills Retreat & Spa (eco-resort/ eco-friendly resort) and trek down our exclusive trekking tracks breathing the most verdant air and continue the odyssey beyond our estate down into the village? En route, you will cross splendid landscapes of sprawling tea gardens, assistant manager’s bungalow of the Attukad Tea Estate etc. Reach the village and witness local estate life first hand. Interact with them, maybe even teach a little lesson in their school.
- Chora Peak Trek: Our resort in Munnar is surrounded by mountains, and we are overlooking the valley where all of them joins. The tallest one towards the east is Chokramudi – Translates to ‘the hair bun of Lord Siva’ because it resembles how Lord Siva ties his luscious hair into a bun. It is also one of the tallest peaks in South India after Anamudi. Start your trek early and make your way up the mountain crossing lush cardamom plantations, tree houses, camp-sites etc. Claiming the peak of Chokra is a full day activity. You could start at 9 am and finish make your way back down by 5 pm. Apart from one of the best a
erial views that your eyes can set on, Chokra peak allows you to witness pure Shola Vegetation. Survey Munnar in its entirety from up above. If you get lucky, you could also spot Wild Bisons, Deers, Nilgiri Tahrs, Elephants, Malabar Giant Squirrels etc. Yes we are a jungle resort in Munnar too.
This is a full day activity and the trek is relatively difficult.
- Kolukkumalai Estate Jeep Safari: Kolukkumalai tea estate is one of the highest altitude tea estates in the entire word. En route you cross splendid landscapes while you ride through the gap road making your way up to Kolukkumalai. This estate belongs to Harrisons Malayalam unlike most of the other estates in Munnar that belongs to Kannan Devan Company. The flavour of Kolukkumalai tea is special because of the high altitude. So remember to buy a few packets before returning.
Travellers love walking in Kolukkumalai and visiting the old tea factory located there. Bear in mind that this tea factory which was founded by the British in the year 1935, producing purely organic tea using traditional methods, is the only one that allows visitors.
This is a while day activity and requires a 4 wheel jeep. Start by 10 am and you Contact our friendly staff who will help you to plan your journey.
- Cardamom Walk: While the king of spices, pepper, is a little hesitant in Munnar because of the altitude, cardamom, the queen, thrives in this weather. This exotic spice could bless you with aroma and good health. Let our local planter take you on a soft walk to his cardamom estate so that you could learn a thing or two about harvesting it. You could also taste a few samples!
These are just a few expeditions in Munnar that could be arranged by us on short notice. Even if you seek adventure trips in Munnar or if you seek sightseeing trips in Munnar, our team will be at your service to plan an itinerary that suits your needs.
– author is the Chief Executive Officer at Blackberry Hills Retreat & Spa