Kerala's five most beautiful forest roads

Photo: Shutterstock/ Dreame Walker

A long drive enjoying the mesmerizing beauty of nature is a dream for any travel lover. Here are five amazing routes in Kerala that you could choose for such road trips.

Nilambur – Nadukani
The route from Nilambur to the boundary village Nadukani near Tamil Nadu is one of the most beautiful mountain passes in Kerala. Legends say that Nilambur came from the word Nilimbapuram which means the ‘festival of bamboos’. Both sides of the route are lined with thick bamboo woods. For the people of Nilambur, a drive through the mountain pass is the most relaxing activity. The journey begins at Vadapuram via Conolly’s plot which is the oldest teak plantation in Kerala. You could then slowly climb up through the Nilambur - Chandakunnu – Chungathara – Edakkara – Vazhikadavu route.


The rubberised roads are perfect for a car or a bike trip. If you are lucky, you can spot wild tuskers on the way. Besides, there are lots of viewpoints to enjoy the panoramic view of the valley. The mesmerizing beauty of the mist and lush greenery are sure to enchant you. Ooty, Gudallur, Devaeshola, Mysore and Bandipur are some of the nearest tourist destinations.

Chalakkudy – Vazhachal route
This is a favourite route for those who love long trips through dense forests. The majestic Athirappilly waterfalls are the main highlight of this route. However, it is the well-maintained forest path that attracts travel enthusiasts. There aren’t too many curves in this route. There is no need to switch on the air conditioning in the vehicle as you could enjoy the cool breeze of the serene forest by rolling down the windows. However, do not forget to roll them up if you stop the vehicle and get out to catch the view as monkeys may invite themselves into your cars.

Photo: Shutterstock/ Libin Kallada Photography

Munnar – Vattavada
A refreshing drive through this misty route is a dreamy ride. This forest path is through the Pambadum Shola, the smallest national park in Kerala. You could even spot wild bison, elephants and other animal animals on the sides. Meanwhile, the lush greenery, serene forest paths and tea plantations are going to relax your eyes and heart. From the top station, you could enjoy the spectacular views of the Munnar valley and the remnants of the ropeway built by the British. Vattavada is known for winter vegetable farming. You could purchase plump apples and other veggies and fruits directly from the orchards. Mattupetti and Kundala dams too are on this route.

Muttar – Kudayathur – Wagamon
Small roads ‘meander’ through the hills in the Muttar – Kanjar – Wagamon route. Even though it may be a bumpy ride due to potholes, it wouldn’t take away the fun. Sometimes the path and the verdant lawns get covered in mist. You could even catch the panoramic view of Illikkalkallu from here. Ilaveezha Poonchira, Wagamon and Idukki dam are the other tourist destinations on this route.

Photo: Shutterstock/Sharon Vijay

Pulpally – Bathery
This is a route that isn’t explored by many. It offers a fabulous combination of wilderness, beautiful nature and serene countryside. However, you have to be really careful while driving along this road as wild tuskers may cross the road unexpectedly. The forest department has installed warning boards on the roadside. In some places, the edges are guarded by barbed wires and electric walls. Compared to other forest paths, this would be a short trip. Muthanga, Kuruva Island, Edakkal Caves, Amabalavayal heritage museum and Sita temple are some of the places that you can visit on this route. 

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