|Kerala, the land of beautiful beaches, calm backwaters where blue lagoons stretch out endless distances into the sky, the lovely forests and sanctuaries of Periyar and Eravikulum, is also famous for its hill stations. The Kerala hill stations are concentrated in the Western Ghats hill ranges, as well the Sahya ranges. The hill stations were first established by the British administrators who wanted to escape the humid summers of Kerala. The British have gone, leaving behind a legacy of colonial style hill mansions, churches, chapels and schools. The Kerala hill stations are also famed for their tea, coffee and spice plantations.
The major Kerala hill stations are Devikulam, Idukki, Wagamon, Vythiri, Ponmudi, Munnar and Lakkidi. Devikulam, on the shores of the Sita Devi Lake, is one of the most beautiful of the Kerala hill stations. The little mountain brooks and the cool, refreshing dew scented breeze on the mountains does wonders to the mind and soul. The Chithirapuram hill station, a site of old colonial bungalows and chapels, is also known for its lush tea gardens. Nature lovers should definitely visit Idukki, the land of dense woods irrigated by the springs of three major rivers- Periyar, Thlalayar and Thodupuzhahar. Idukki also has a wildlife sanctuary, and is a paradise for trekkers. Outdoors lovers can go on elephant rides, or go boating on one of the many lakes of Idukki.
At Lakkidi, you will come across the Thamasseri Pass, almost 800 meters above sea level. The breathtaking view of the gushing mountain springs and green forest ridges is a sight not forgotten easily. Munnar, the major destination on the itinerary of anyone visiting Kerala hill stations, is a picture postcard township of verdant tea gardens, small, old fashioned streets and homes, and the site of the famed Neelakurinj flower that blossoms once in two years. Ponmudi, close to the capital Thiruvananthapuram, is famous for its forests, tea gardens and a magnificent view of the sea from high on the cliffs. Vythiri is must visit owing to its tea, coffee and rubber farms.
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