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Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is located in the hills of western ghats of South Indian state – Kerala. Travelers can enjoy lush green surroundings and soothing atmosphere here. Enjoy the various sightseeings like cormorants drying their wings, herd of elephants, freshwater tortoise sunning on stumps jutting out of water and deer gazing in open grassland. Periyar is one of the 27 tiger reserves in India, rich in bio diversity.
Best time to visit : September to May
Nearest Airport : Mudhrai, Tamil Nadu (145km)
Nearest Railway Station : Kottayam (114km)
Nearest Town : Kumily (4km)
About Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Set high in the ranges of the Western Ghats, in God's Own Country, Kerala, is the Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve. Periyar wildlife sanctuary has a picturesque lake at the heart of the sanctuary. Formed with the building of a dam in 1895, this reservoir meanders around the contours of the wooded hills, providing a permanent source of water for the local wildlife. Though its a Tiger Reserve, tourists come here to view the Indian elephants in the act of ablution and playfulness by the Periyar lake.
The reptile population of the park is also commendable with around 45 species found. Out of these, a majority (30) of them are snakes. The rest of them comprise of 2 turtle species and 13 lizard species. Frequent sighting of King Cobras and Python, two extremely poisonous snakes is also an attraction for the visitors to the park.
The birds of the park include around 180 species. Prominent among these are Darters, Cormorants, Kingfishers, the great Malabar Hornbill and racket-tailed Drongoes. Tourists interested in spotting a large number of birds need to carry along their binoculars.
The Flora in Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Periyar National Park Western Ghat Hills, constituting a major portion of the park, are thickly wooded and stand dotted with water bodies, huge grasslands and a thick forest cover. A number of deeper valleys inside Periyar National Park of Kerala contain tropical evergreen forests, which are full of wild vegetation. Some of the level areas forming the park comprise of marshy grasslands near the edges of the lake and other water bodies. Apart from Periyar River, the water needs of the Periyar Wildlife Park of India are met by Azhutha and Mullayar Rivers. There are also patches of semi-evergreen forest across the boundaries of the park.
The Fauna in Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Tigers form the main attraction of the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary of India. The best place to spot a tiger is the area around the lake. One can also watch Elephants, Barking Deer, Mouse Deer, Sambar, Nilgiri Tahr, Sloth Bears, Otters, Gaur, etc. Then, there are the magnificent Nilgiri Langurs, Common Langurs, Lion Tailed Macaques, Bonnet Macaques, Porcupines, Malabar Squirrels, Wild Boars, etc.
The Avifauna in Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
More than 246 bird species breeding in the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is a great delight for birdwatchers. Periyar India is homeland to numerous avifauna species such as Giant Hornbill, Darter, Racket-tailed Drongona, Cormorants and many more.
Boat ride on lake is the best way to explore the amazing charms of the Periyar wildlife Sanctuary. Boat services are available in the sanctuary, which will take you around the lake. Visitors can enjoy elephant safari to get glimpse of many nature's wonders such as herd of elephants, cormorants drying their wings and many more, which will surely delight the nature lovers a lot.
How to Get there
Kochi (Cochin) at a distance of about 200 Kms and Madurai in Tamil Nadu at a distance of 140-kms are the nearest airports from Periyar.
Kottayam at a distance of about 114 Kms is the nearest railhead from Periyar.
By Road :
Kumily, the nearest town from Periyar wildlife sanctuary/ tiger reserve is well served by both state and private buses from Kottayam, Ernakulam and Madurai in Tamil Nadu.
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