ANAMALAI HILLS, a range of mountains
in southern India, in the Coimbatore district of Madras,
lying between 10° 13' and 10° 31' N. lat., and between
76° 52' and 77° 23' E. long., forming a portion of the
Western Ghats, after this range has been broken by the Palghat
Pass, south of the Nilgiris. They really consist of a forest-clad
and grassy tableland, with summits rising about 8000 ft.; the
Anaimudi mountain, which is the highest in southern India,
having an altitude of 8850 ft. Their geological formation is metamorphic
gneiss, veined with felspar and quartz, and interspersed with
reddish porphyrite. The lower slopes yield valuable teak and other
timber; and some land has been taken up for coffee planting. The
only inhabitants are a few wild tribes who live by hunting and
collecting jungle produce.
Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary and National Park (also called Annamalai
Wildlife Sanctuary) is a full-fledged visitor's centre
at Top slip, This
sanctuary is situated at an altitude of 1,400 metres in the western
ghats near Pollachi. The area of the sanctuary is 958 Sq. Kms.
It has various kinds of exotic fauna like elephant, gaur, tiger,
panther, sloth bear, pangolin, black headed oriole, green pigeon
and civet cat. The Amaravathy reservoir in the Anamalais
has a large number of crocodiles. There are also many places of
scenic beauty such as Karain Shola, Anaikunthi shola, Grass hills,
waterfalls,groves ,teak forests,estates,dams and reservoirs.
TO GET THERE
Air: The nearest airport is at Coimbatore.
Rail: The nearest railway station is at Pollachi from where
there are trains to Coimbatore and Dindigul.
Road: There are regular buses from Coimbatore and Palani
to Pollachi, which is the nearest big town. To reach Topslip by
road tourists can catch a bus or hire a taxi from Pollachi. Divide
the text into air, rail and road.
WHERE TO STAY
There are many lodges and rest houses available at the lodges
in Topslip, which must be to be booked in advance at the Wildlife
Warden Office, 178 Meenkarai Road, in Pollachi. Ambuli Illam at
Top Slip, distance 2-km from the reception center, is the best
place to visit and stay and it also has a restaurant. There are
several other places to visit Pollachi also.