The fertile plains, undulating hills, steamy jungles and manicured plantations of Kerala are fantastic walking country.
Kerala’s green hills dotted with colonial bungalows, waterfalls and lakes, protected forests home to endangered wildlife, exotic spice plantations and panoramic views make it hard not to be tempted into some biped action. Whether you simply want to stretch your legs on a leisurely stroll or undertake a more challenging hike in ‘God’s own country’ we can recommend a variety of guided walks and places to stay to suit your ability.
Estate and plantation walks
In northern Kerala, there are well defined networks of paths and jeep tracks through the plantations and estates of Idukki and Wayanad. Our local guides will walk you past the intricacies of coffee cultivation, latex production, or perhaps even find an elephant hard at work. In the hills the pachyderm is still king and makes machinery look like Tonka toys. We take care of any transfers and permits you might need and you walk at your own pace, returning to your lodge or plantation retreat for a well-earned meal and comfortable bed for the night.
Hike to higher altitudes and you’ll find yourself treading in the footsteps of Tamil women clipping tea into an intricate maze that that carpets the hills, all the more impressive when you consider the huge baskets strapped to their heads. The sight of their colourful saris among the endless greenery helps to stop you from going the equivalent of snow blind. Above Munnar, the only way to reach the highest tea factory in the world is by jeep – or on foot through the Kolukkumalai Eastate high on the slopes Meeshapulimala (2640m). The spectacular views, especially from your tent at sunrise, are well worth the effort.
In other remote areas we can arrange for you to spend all day yomping through jungles and grasslands accompanied by a trusty guide who could be a reformed poacher or descended from one of the original jungle dwelling tribes. In Periyar, as well as a myriad of birds and butterflies you might be lucky enough to view wild elephant - you’ll certainly see signs of them underfoot - but though the park is part of Project Tiger it’s extremely unlikely you’ll see one. Leeches, on the other hand, seem quite curious. (Don't worry, we provide special socks).
It doesn’t matter how active you are, life in Kerala is all about the outdoors and it’s up to you how much walking you want to do. There are plenty of short leisurely walks that we can include in your tour but let us know if you fancy more of a challenge and we can arrange a multi-day camping trek to suit.
Find out more about our privately guided walking and trekking holidays, or get in touch to plan and book your trip.