The second highest peak in the Western Ghats after Anamudi, Meesapulimala in Idukki district is a popular spot for trekking and camping. The hill (mala) gets its name from its resemblance to a whiskered (meesa) and tiger (puli) when viewed from the southwest direction. Situated around 20 km from Munnar, the hill is located between Anaimalai Hills and Palani Hills.
To reach Meesapulimala, we have to opt for the trekking conducted by Kerala Forest Development Corporation Ltd (KFDC). From Munnar, we have to reach the base camp of the hills which is around 40 km away. We can take either the Suryanelli-Kolukkumalai tea estate road or the Aruvikkad estate-Mattupetty route (around 25 km). Upon reaching the base camp, we have to take a jeep to reach Rhodo Valley, which is 4 km away. The next part of the journey has to be covered on foot. The travel to the top of the peak amid beautiful rhododendron trees is exhilarating and refreshing. At the top, it is heaven in waiting. Clouds float beneath us amid the cool breeze and whispers of the wind.
From the peak, we can get a good glimpse of Munnar and neighbouring Suryanelli, and if enveloping clouds descend we can see the border shared between Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The cool mountain air, lush green environs, the gushing streams and the blooming rhododendrons along the valleys - all add exquisiteness to the fame of the mountains.
We can either stay in the tents arranged by Kerala Forest Department at the base camp and go trekking to Meesapulimala or Rhodo Valley. Another stayover programme, especially for honeymooners, is the Sky Cottage located on a cliff facing a waterfall. We can have amazing and unending views of Anamudi peaks and also get a view of the starry sky at night. Rhodo Mansion is another excellent stay option for those who wish to explore the altitudinal starry night.
To have a quick look at the charm of Meesapulimala, check https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8ASwdYhlkJo
KFDC Ecotourism MUNNAR
Mattupatty Road, Munnar
Phone: + 91 4865 230332, +91 8289821408
Nearest railway station: Aluva Railway Station, about 130 km | Angamali Railway Station, about 130 km
Nearest airport: Cochin International Airport, about 130 km | Coimbatore International Airport (Tamil Nadu), about 200 km