The East of Kerala is bounded by the ridge of mountains called the "Western Ghats", which reach their dramatic climax at Anamudi ( 2695m), which is the penisula's highest mountain before rippling into the sea, just short of Kanyakumari.
Here are both hillside plantations and also jungle.
For visitors there are three areas of special interest: Munnar, Periyar and Wayanad.
Popular Kerala Hill Stations Include:
- Idukki : A cluster of colours. Some time wading, some time bursting. Some time dancing. The blue rivers, the green hills, the cream coloured mist, the soft-edged mountains - that is Idukki.
- Munnar : In Idukki district. South India’s most sought-after hill resort. The highest peak at 8841 ft altitude south of Himalaya. A tea-queen. Honeymooners’ paradise. Gentle eucalyptus plantations sway the breeze. Most of the time mist-clad. The air is filtered by tea-leaves.
- Nelliyampathy : In Palakkad district. 23 hair-pin bends. The gem of Sahyadri Range. Foothills lined with tea, coffee, orange plantations.. Ridges of varying heights.. Deep blue valleys.
- Ponmudi : In Thiruvananthapuram district. Winding roads upto the ghats. Each turn is breath-taking. Stunning scenery. Green-blue, beautiful vistas.
- Thekkady : In Idukki district. King of jungles. Cardamom hills surrounded. Greenish-blue watered lakes. Drumming calls of Nilgiri langur greets the visitors. Barking deers alert inmates. Herds of wildlife eagerly await to receive the visitors.
- Vagamon : Idukki district. A towering hill. Cool air. Thrusting placidity. Verdant spice plantations. A string of three hills with own identity. A trekkers’ paradise. Beautiful landscape.
- Vythiri : District Wayanad. Similar hills. Similar gorges. Similar ravines. Hill stations and waterfalls all around. Green blanketed mighty hills purify the mind, soul and body. Coffee, tea, spices, vanilla plantations all around.
- Peerumed: Located on way to Thekkady, and about 85 Km east to Kottayam. The place has some great scenery along the tea and coffee estates with ecological beauties. It was named after a Sufi saint Peer Mohammed, the place attracts tourist from across the world. Peerumedu is contained by means of rail and road to all major cities of Kerala and adjoining state.Along with the tea and coffee plantations here, few other Kerala specialties like pepper, cardamom, rubber and eucalyptus are found here. There are vast grass lands and plantation in and around the place.
Climate is one of the reason hill stations are so popular. The temperature is lower, the air is cleaner and moister and cool breezes blew during the day.
Nature in the Hills
The natural environment in the hills is very diverse, including tea and spice plantations as well as hill forest and tropical jungle.
Likewise the range is home to Tiger (very rare), Elephant, Deer and a whole host of smaller mammals and reptiles.
The wildlife is protected to a certain extent by the inaccessibility of the area to the outside world. Although the mountains are not especially high, they are at times very steep and difficult to navigate.