A sea of blue flowers! 

After all how much honey can the bees gather from a sea of blue flowers!?
-Manu Remakant

Athirappally and Vazhachal

Thirty kilometers from Chalakkudy town Athirappally waterfalls situated 1000ft above sea level on the Chalakkudy River, is at the entrance to the Sholayar range of Western Ghats. Set amidst thick forests Athirappally beckons you with its thundering boom even from a distance. The falls you see through the foliage leaping down from rocky ridges may seem like a massive white curtain glistening in the morning sun. The sight could heal sore eyes in a moment.

You can spend a whole day watching the spectacular falls from a distance, sitting around on one of the stone benches on the roadside. Or if you want to see it up close, explore the forest with the help of a guide. 

The breathtaking view of Athirappally falls

Walk with your ears perked up for the deep cry of hornbills, as this is one of their most favoured abodes in Kerala. Only recently did a few bird lovers come across the carcass of a male hornbill in the woods here. Finding food in its beak, they knew immediately, somewhere around them, atop a tree, a female hornbill could be waiting inside a hole in the bark for its food. As it was her breeding period, she would die along with her chicks inside the nests if her partner would not arrive in time. The bird lovers with the help of forest officials after an intense search in the woods found the tree, climbed atop, and began to tuck food inside the beak of the hornbill that came out of the hole. They would have to do that for two weeks before the she-bird breaks open her nest and come out along with the chicks.

Want to see the waterfall in all her glory; you must come during the monsoon. Excitement and fear commingle as your eyes strain to take in the majesty of the waterfalls as they bring into display all the rain that has amassed from the dense woods. 

Chalakudy River at Vazhachal

Another five kilometers from Athirappally you’d reach Vazhachal, which may not be as spectacular a sight as the former. Unlike the vertical falls at Athirappally, water gushes along a bed of tricky rocks beckoning you to try a dip. But beware. Rocks are so slippery here and the best way to enjoy Vazhachal is to sit on the banks of the river and savour the beauty of the woods around.

If you have time you can also explore further to places as deep as Malakkappara. It is a unique opportunity to enjoy the rain forests of Sholayar regions. A drive in your car gives you goosebumps as on a jungle safari. Sightings of elephants crossing the main road are not rare spectacles. 


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