People were forced to remain indoors for months due to pandemic-related lockdowns. However, with the arrival of the Onam holidays and the restrictions being eased, there is an opportunity for an outing. Even though long journeys are ruled out, residents of Idukki and nearby places can plan a one-day trip to some picturesque locations, keeping all social-distancing norms in place.
Boating in Idukki Dam
After a break, boating has resumed in the reservoir of the Idukki Dam. Visitors have started arriving to experience the pleasant trip in an 18-seater boat arranged by the Forest Department. But in view of the COVID-19 guidelines, only 10 passengers are allowed at present.
The authorities will conduct the service if there are more than two passengers. During the 30-minute trip, the boat would take visitors to 400 m near the Idukki and Cheruthoni dams. The fare is Rs 145 per person for adults and Rs 85 for children between 10 and 12 years.
Nilgiri tahrs at Eravikulam
The Eravikulam National Park also has reopened after the lockdown and visitors can once again enjoy the majestic sight of Nilgiri tahrs lining up at Rajamala in the park.
The park was closed to visitors on January 20 this year considering the breeding season of the tahrs and was scheduled to open during early April. However, this was delayed owing to the COVID-19 protocols.
A week ago, the park was opened again, based on an order of the Chief Wildlife Warden. However, pandemic-related restrictions are in place and new ticket rates have come into effect.
While the new entry hours are from 8 am to 2 pm, the ticket rate is Rs 250. Moreover, the entry has been banned for children below 10 years and senior citizens above 65 years.
An ideal spot to spend an evening, Vagamon is easily accessible in your own vehicle. Enchanting sights created by the mist await travellers at Vagamon, especially when there is a drizzle. The authorities have banned tourism-related activities, but a drive through Vagamon itself offers a heavenly experience.