Colloquially called the ‘Kashmir of South India’, Munnar sees a lot of travellers from all parts of the country. If you are looking for places to visit in Munnar in 3 days, you will find yourself exploring national parks, waterfalls, tea estates, lakes and gardens.
When holidaying in this hill station in Kerala, do not expect only tea and coffee hills. You will be delighted by a healthy dose of culture, the fragrance of fresh flowers in botanical parks and the tranquil waters of several dams.
This three-day itinerary of Munnar capitalizes on the attractions you can see along the narrow mountain roads in each direction, without having to repeat the route or travel far and wide to get from one point of interest to another.
Day-one will give you the chance to see some viewpoints and lakes around Munnar and some architectural and cultural attractions in the town centre.
On your next day in Munnar, you should get a flavour of its famous tea estates and a few parks, waterfalls and dams. The mountain roads are winding, but this route follows a linear path, saving both time and fuel.
Save your third and final day to explore some national parks and venture furthest from Munnar. Waterfalls, viewpoints and mountain peaks are also in the offing.
Munnar Places to Visit in 3 days
Day 1 Munnar Places to Visit
- Top Station
- Kundala Dam
- Echo Point
- Mattupetty Reservoir
- Carmelagiri Elephant Park
- C.S.I Christ Church
- Kalari Kshethra
Day 2 Munnar Places to Visit
- Anayirangal Dam
- Periyakanal Tea Factory
- Chinnakanel Waterfalls
- Lockhart Gap
- Munnar Botanical Garden
- Kanan Devan Tea Museum
- The Blossom Hydel Park
Day 3 Munnar Places to Visit
- Anamudi Shola National Park
- Lakkom Waterfalls
- Rajamalai National Park
- Pothamedu Viewpoint
- Attukad Waterfalls
- Sengulam Dam
- Chokramudi Peak
1. Top Station
Begin your first day with a drive to the Top Station for panoramic views of tea plantations and the valleys of Munnar. This viewpoint is located 5,500 feet high and was once the highest railway station in town.
After you arrive at the Top Station, you can indulge in an easy hike through its forests and nearby grasslands. For the best photographs of the hills, arrive here before sunrise and watch the mist clear.
While camping may not be possible on a packed three-day trip to Munnar, the Top Station is the ideal place to set up your tent. If you arrive during the blooming season of the neelakurinji flowers, you will find the landscape dotted in purple and blue.
2. Kundala Dam
Built in 1946 as part of the Pallivasal Hydro Electric Project, Kundala Dam is 1,700 metres tall and the first arch dam in all of the continent! Also known as the Sethu Parvathi Dam, this dam forms the Kundala Lake by damming the waters of the Muthirapuzha River, which is a tributary to the Periyar River.
Surrounded by cherry orchards and eucalyptus trees, Kundala Lake offers rides on rowboats (INR 450 per boat) and shikaras (INR 200 per couple), allowing birdwatchers to see waterfowl. For a tour around the lake, you can also ride on an elephant or a horse.
3. Echo Point
Not far from Kundala Lake, Echo Point is a fun place to be if you wish to hear your voice echo back to you. This acoustic mechanism works because of the presence of three mountain ranges in the area – Kundala, Nallathanni and Mudrapuzha.
Echo Point is situated 600 feet above the sea level and is accessible via local buses and private cars. Coconut water sellers and snacks kiosks line the path to Echo Point which charges INR 30 for each adult and INR 15 for each child.
The regions around this point are preferred by campers. You can also spend your time away by following the forested trails.
In operation since 1953, Mattupetty Reservoir is essentially a storage dam with a 55.4 million cubic metre capacity. This concrete gravity dam stores water which is to be used for the production of hydroelectricity.
Also known as Mattupetty Lake, this reservoir offers tourists the chance to ride water scooters or explore the 323.75 hectare area in a speedboat (for INR 500 per boat) or a paddle boat (for INR 300 per boat). To look at the waters from a height, you must pay INR 10 to enter the road atop the Mattupetty Dam, which is open from 9 AM until 5 PM.
5. Carmelagiri Elephant Park
Open from 8 AM to 6 PM on all the days of the week, Carmelagiri Elephant Park will give you a chance to ride on the back of this mammoth animal. For a fee of INR 700, you will be able to explore a part of this park with a mahout guiding the elephant.
Apart from riding on an elephant, you can also watch them eat and feed them under supervision. You will be able to see a demonstration of elephants at work as well, usually pulling and transporting timber. There is much to learn about how these animals obey the instructions of the humans in charge.
Fondly called the ‘Taj Mahal of Munnar’, the C.S.I Christ Church was built in 1910 in memory of the wife of the manager of Finlay Tea Co. who died due to cholera at the age of 23. The churchyard is home to the tombs of Eleanor Isabel May and other British residents of the past century.
The watchtower and church flaunt Roman and Gothic architectural styles with rustic exposed-brick limestone walls, stained glass panels, granite interiors, brass plaques, chandeliers and sloped roofs. The altitude also acts as a vantage point to look at Old Munnar from a different angle.
7. Kalari Kshethra
The final stop on your first day in Munnar should be at Kalari Kshetra – a centre for performing arts, which holds daily cultural programs depicting the traditional dances of the state of Kerala. Shows are held from 5 PM to 7 PM.
You will first watch a Kathakali performance for an hour, which will tell a story from the Hindu mythology through enhanced expressions, hand gestures and dance. Kathakali particularly stands out for the eye expressions and painted faces of the performers, which distinguishes male from female and protagonists from antagonists.
The last piece will be a Kalaripayattu show, which is a demonstration of martial arts through pre-coordinated rhythmic movements – almost like a dance.
8. Anayirangal Dam
Anayirangal Dam holds the waters of the Panniyar River and the lake borders the Tata Tea Plantations and forests. 112 feet tall and 1,070 feet long, this dam is best viewed in the months of June and July when the water level is full.
The waters of this storage dam are used to produce electricity through the Panniyar Power House, home to a couple of turbines. It is also possible to sight elephants here who come down to quench their thirst. Pedal boating (INR 400 per 3-seater boat), speedboat rides (1,100 per 5-seater boat) and 20-seater boat rides (INR 2,000 per boat) are available at Anayirangal Dam for recreational purposes.
9. Periyakanal Tea Factory
Periyakanal Tea Factory is located in the eponymous village and one of the oldest tea factories in Munnar. The path takes you through lush green tea plantations amidst the rolling hills. Operating from the colonial times, you will find here how tea powder is made.
You will need to request the tea factory authorities for a tour, but it is worth the effort as you will get to know all about tea leaf picking, sorting, processing and finally, packaging. You might also have the chance to taste some locally produced tea.
10. Chinnakanel Waterfalls
Located on a private tea plantation area in the village of Devikulam near Munnar, Chinnakanel Waterfalls can be watched from the road. During the monsoon, the waterfalls are in full vigour and the sight is one to behold!
There is a roadside food truck that sells tea, vegetable fritters, Maggie noodles, bread-omelette and corn on the cob to feed your hunger while you feed your eyes with the view. Also known as Power House Waterfalls, you may not be able to bathe here, but you can watch the water rolling down from an altitude higher than 5,000 feet above the sea level.
11. Lockhart Gap
Alternatively spelt as Lock Heart Gap, this point is named due to the formation of a locked heart in the gap between two mountains visible from up here. Home to the Lockhart Tea Factory, Lockhart Gap is a viewpoint that offers expansive panoramas of Munnar’s landscape and tea gardens.
The entire stretch is misty and the fog offers a magical effect to the photos that you might take here. Apart from the tea factory, there is a museum with displays of archaic tea processing tools. The scenic beauty of Lockhart Gap can be enjoyed further by walking along the trails that begin here.
12. Munnar Botanical Garden
Open on all days from 9 AM until 7 PM, Munnar Botanical Garden sits in the Kannan Devan Hills. This garden hosts the annual Munnar Flower Show in the month of May, with a lavish display of decorative flowers.
You will have the opportunity to see tulips, Portia and various other flowering plants at this small botanical garden hidden in the mountains. If gardening is your hobby, pick up some saplings from the onsite store or grab a meal at the restaurant. It is also possible to buy Indian spices here.
Open from 10 AM to 4 PM from Tuesday to Sunday, Kanan Devan Tea Museum is owned by the Tata Group and often called the Tata Tea Museum. There are 6 rooms inside this museum and they showcase the techniques of local tea production.
Tickets are priced at INR 75 for adults and INR 35 for children. Find out how tea leaves are plucked, chosen, sorted, processed and packed for the customers. You will also watch an audio-visual demonstration and have the option to taste some of their teas. The adjoining store stocks spices and saffron, apart from various types of teas.
With the Muthirapuzha River flowing inside the park, The Blossom Hydel Park welcomes visitors from 9 AM to 7 PM on all the days of the week. Tickets to this park cost INR 10 for adults and INR 2 for children.
The park has a nature trail and plenty of flowers and birds to be spotted. There are large statues of various animals for photo opportunities and hammocks to relax. Other activities are also available at the park such as fish spa, ziplining (for INR 300 per person) and a 12D show.
15. Anamudi Shola National Park
Part of the Western Ghats, Anamudi Shola National Park will be your first stop early at 8 in the morning. This protected area is home to various plants and animals such as flying squirrels, elephants, sloth bears, tigers, hanuman langurs, Nilgiri tahrs, grizzled giant squirrels, gaurs, sambar and deer.
Spread over 7.5 square kilometres, this national park consists of three types of shola forests – Pullardi shola, Mannavan shola and Idivara shola. You will also find a wide range of flowering plants during your safari here.
Along the road, you will come across Lakkom Waterfalls on the cliffs of Eravikulam Plateau. The entire region is heavily wooded and it is marvellous to watch these waterfalls flow from an altitude of 7,300 feet above the sea level. With an authorization from the Wildlife Division of Munnar, hiking is one of the most sought after activities here.
Tickets to view these falls cost INR 20 per person. It is possible to watch Lakkom Waterfalls only in the monsoon and winters and the summers dry up the waters. When the waterfall season is in full swing, you will also be able to try rappelling and rock climbing on the surrounding cliffs.
Rajamalai National Park or Eravikulam National Park is home to the highest peak in the Western Ghats – Anamudi Peak, which stands tall at the height of 2,695 metres. This national park spans 97 square kilometres and even has a plateau that is at an altitude of 2,000 metres.
One can find several species of fauna here, particularly the endangered Nilgiri tahr. It is also possible to see gaurs, deer, muntjacs and macaques in the forests. The national park is accessible from 7:30 AM to 4 PM and the entry costs INR 125 for Indian adults, INR 95 for Indian children and INR 420 for foreigners.
As you move southwards through Munnar, you will find a narrow bridge that leads to Pothamedu Viewpoint. It does not cost a penny to stand at this vantage point and take in the lush panoramas of the Kanan Devan Hills and various tea plantations.
Apart from tea, you will also be able to notice plantations of coffee, cardamom and other spices. It is also possible to explore the spice gardens that pepper the landscape of the Sahyadri Range of Mountains.
Along the same road, you will come across Attukad Waterfalls which are a set of cascading falls in the hills of Munnar. The best thing about this waterfall is that you can watch the flowing waters from below as well as above when you go up the terraced steps of the tea plantations surrounding the falls.
The waterfall is in its full glory in the monsoon months of July and August. However, a nice display is available in the winters of December to February as well. If you are looking to take a bath at Attukad Waterfalls, you may do so at the pool where all the water collects.
20. Sengulam Dam
Built as part of the Sengulam Hydroelectric Project, this dam offers unbeatable views of three mountain peaks, namely Adimaly Peak, Chokramudi Peak and Pettumudi Peak. Sengulam Dam is often referred to as the Dew Valley Boating Centre.
The lake formed by this dam is a great place to enjoy a few minutes of boating. Go for the circular coracle boats which are steered traditionally and made of natural materials. Alternatively, you can ride in a 20-seater modern boat for a fee of INR 1,950 per boat.
You can also hire a speedboat accommodating just 5 passengers for the price of INR 1,000. Sengulam Dam will also give you the chance to see the Letchmi Hills and the Vellathooval Valley.
21. Chokramudi Peak
Chokramudi Peak is ideal as the final point of attraction for the day and the trip to Munnar. Located close to Bison Valley, it is possible to do a 2-hour hike through cardamom plantations to the top of this mountain at an altitude of 7,200 feet.
The guided trek costs INR 400 for each Indian and INR 600 for foreigners. From the top, you will have amazing views of shola forests, tea plantations and various spice gardens. If you wish to spend the night here, you can even carry your own tent and camp overnight.
All of these places to visit in Munnar in 3 days will make you think your trip should be longer. The mountain town of Munnar surely deserves at least a week. If you ever plan a longer holiday in this part of Kerala though, remember to soak in the vibes and not rush through your itinerary. A balanced vacation will ensure you have a good mix of rest and sightseeing.