The start of this year has been unusually good for me! Mostly because I did something I have never done before for New Year’s – I took a trip with my family! And not just to any place but to Wayanad!
Wayanad is a beautiful hill station located towards the north-east of Kerala. The best time to visit the place is Dec-Jan because that’s when the temperature drops and you get to experience the awesome climate of Wayanad!
We took off on our trip at three in the morning and headed out to Kozhikode. After a five hour drive we reached the Kozhikode railway station just in time to pick up Anna who was joining us for the trip.
During the next two hours we were driving up the winding roads to Kalpetta, surrounded by lush greenery on all sides. We could feel the fall in temperature as we drove up the hills; thankful for the cool breezes brushing our faces instead of hot dusty winds like those back home!
The trip was even more special because we were taking our Etios out on it’s first ever long drive!
I am going to tell you that from here on, my descriptions are going to be minimal. I shall let the photos speak for themselves. You may notice that some of the photographs have been taken from elsewhere; only because I believe my photography skills will not do justice to these beautiful sights!
To start off, here’s a glimpse of what the roads to Wayanad look like!
Notice the little guy on the railing?! We saw plenty of his kind and man were they adorable!! 😀
Next I can show you the resort where we put up! I have to thank my dearie Lasoo for having arranged our stay at such a good place; that too within such short notice! I’d recommend Haritagiri Hotel and Ayurvedic Village any day!
Looks good right?! We had a comfortable stay without doubt! Though the only trouble we faced was when it came to our meals – the hotel’s idea of vegetarian food was horrifying!
Let me give you an example..
After we freshened up on Day 1, we went to the restaurant to eat lunch. We decided to order something light because we did not want to miss out on the sight seeing. And so I ordered a veg sandwich. After about ten minutes of waiting, I was served a sandwich consisting of toasted bread and a slice of cheese in between! I sat there for a minute feeling baffled as to why there was no tomato or cucumber or lettuce in my sandwich. My family looked at me quizzically as if to ask “Is this what you had in mind?!”.
Which chef in his right mind serves just bread and cheese as a veg sandwich?! The one at Haritagiri.
Being annoyed, I called the waiter and informed him that there was no vegetable of any kind in my sandwich. He immediately apologized and scurried off with my untouched plate to the kitchen. He came back five minutes later and placed the sandwich before me again. What had changed?
There was now a single slice of cucumber between each triangle of the sandwich. Imagine the cheek of the chef! As much as I was snubbed by what had just happened, there was no time to waste and so, I quietly ate my sandwich (giving the waiter grimacing looks of course!). I shall not share the horrors that other dishes caused!
Post lunch we headed out to Pookode Lake. We found the place to be surprisingly calming and pleasant as we took a long stroll along the path around the lake. We did not go pedal-boating owing to the fact that we had done it plenty of times before at Ooty and Munnar. One other thing about this place? You find monkeys everywhere! 😀
Finished with the lake, we managed to find a decent vegetarian restaurant near our resort for dinner and made up for the bad lunch!
Next day morning, we set out at 5 a.m. to the Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary. It was an amazing experience! I loved how I could blow out puffs of fog/smoke like forms owing to the cold! Just so you know, where I come from the daily average temperature is 30 degrees Celsius and thus, any cool thing is much appreciated. (Pun intended!) 😀
The following video should give you an idea about the place!
Next we headed to the Edakkal Caves which is one of the most coveted tourist destinations in Wayanad. The caves are located at about 1,200 meters above sea level and it takes a 3 kilometer hike to get there! But once you are up there. The view is well worth it! Take a look. 🙂
Further, inside the caves you can find carvings on the rocks which archaeologists believe date back to the Stone Age.
Later we left Edakkal caves and went to Soochipara waterfalls. If it hadn’t been as crowded, we would have enjoyed better though!
The previous day’s trekking had left us all feeling exhausted; maybe even handicapped! (We trekked for 7 kilometers mind you and I don’t even exercise!) Our travel guide had warned us about this previously. So we had saved Kuruvadweep for the end!
Here’s a video I took when crossing the river on a bamboo raft.
After this point I did not click anything simply because I got too busy hopping from one island to another and drowning myself in the river while I was crossing it waist deep in water!! There’s only so much you can explain to people. Everything else needs to be experienced! 😀
Like all good things in life, this trip too came to an end. But I am not complaining! It’s given me a whole lot of memories and an idea of where I want to go next. *fingers crossed*
So, that’s my travel tale for the week. What have you been up to?! 🙂