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Top 15 Places to Visit in Palakkad

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What is the first thing comes to mind when we think about Kerala? Backwaters? Ayurveda Or Beaches? After all, this is what defines the state best, but Kerala has a refined numbers of hill stations as well. One such beautiful town associated with Kerala is Palakkad. This tinsel town boasts serene environment and timeless landscapes. Palakkad takes its name from the Pala trees, which once dominated the landscapes of this area. With natural diversity up for grab, your holiday to Palakkad during any season will excite you for sure. If you are looking for a holiday in Palakkad then have a look at the list of places for a breathtaking vacation.

15 Must Visit Palakkad Tourist Attractions during Your Trip to Kerala:

Palakkad Fort-Flashback to the Past

Palakkad Fort
This is the place for the people who want to connect with the history of Palakkad. Commonly known as Tipu’s Fort, the gigantic Palakkad Fort is located in the heart of the city. The glorious attraction of Kerala, Palakkad Fort woos tourists with its mesmerising architecture. Built by Haider Ali in 1766 AD, the fort campus houses Hanuman (Anjaneya) Temple, which will surely leave you spellbound with its unique interiors. Rising above a tiny hill, historians say that the colossal architecture was built as a purpose of improving communication between Palakkad and Coimbatore. Today this Fort is a protected monument under Archaeological Survey of India. The sober majesty of the Fort walls reminds one of the old tales of valour and courage. Presently, the fort is serene, filled with art and offers the spectacular view of the surrounding area.

How to Reach Palakkad Fort: Palakkad Fort is located in the heart of Palakkad City. Auto Rickshaws / Taxi’s/ City Buses are available from any part of Palakkad City / Palakkad Junction Railway Station to Palakkad Fort.

Timings: 08:00 AM to 06:00 PM, Open all days

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Malampuzha Dam & Gardens-Unexplored Beauty

Malampuzha Garden
Extending into a charming lake, Malampuzha Dam is the largest reservoir in Kerala. Standing 355 feet tall, the dam is built on Malampuzha River, a tributary of Bharathapuzha, Kerala’s second longest river. On the front side of the dam, there lies yet another tourist attraction called Malampuzha Garden. With almost every patch of the garden covered with grasses, the surrounding of the dam appears sound and serene all day long. The Japanese Park, Nandi Park, Malampuzha Yakshi, Krishna Park and music fountains are other spots that attract tourists.

How to Reach Malampuzha Garden: Malampuzha Dam & Garden is situated within a 10 km radius of the Palakkad City. Taxi’s/ City Buses are available from any part of Palakkad City.

Timings: 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM (Weekdays), 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM (Weekends)

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Kava View Point- Most Pristine Form of Pristine Kerala

Kava View Point
Just behind the Malampuzha Dam is yet another beautiful attraction called Kava Viewpoint. One of the least tapped places in Palakkad that is nestled amidst the rich Western Ghats. Kava Viewpoint is a quite getaway and it springs back to life during the month of the monsoon. From the Kava Viewpoint, visitors can cherish the view of the lush green neighboring mountains. The lush, picturesque scenery and desire to get beautiful selfie shots are two of the reasons to plan a trip here again and again. Locals call Kava ‘the womb of the raincloud’ as the first rain cloud forms here. The views from the top are beautiful – the green mountains stretch on forever in colours of emerald and jade.

How someone can get Kava View Point? The view point is 14 km from Palakkad town. Taxi and buses are easily available from the main city.

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Rock Garden: Beauty from the Rubbish Heap

Rock Garden
One of the most admired tourist attractions in Palakkad, Rock garden, inaugurated in the year 1996, is visited by more than 25,000 people in a year. Located within 800 m radius of the Malampuzha Dam, Rock Garden is always a pit spot on a journey to Palakkad. The garden houses impressive mosaics, sculptures, and artworks which are conceived and designed by the Late Nek Chand, the man behind the iconic creation of Rock Garden in Chandigarh. Waste like broken crockery, electrical fittings, glass bangles, bathroom tiles, wash basins and bicycle frames were used to make mosaic sculptures of men, women, animals and gods. Also, here one can see small rain shelters, huts, and caves for birds. Scenes depicted from Kathakali, Theyyam, Kalaripayattu, Thiruvathirakali, the Mahabali legend, a royal procession of kings in a palanquin, and a scene of a boat race are the major highlights of the park. Gigantic mountains in the backdrop of the park add to the beauty of the park.

How to reach Rock Garden: Rock Graden is 11 km away from the Palakkad City. Auto Rickshaws / Taxi’s / Jeeps are available from any part of Palakkad City to Rock Garden.

Timing: 10:00 AM to 06:00 PM, Open all days

Entry Fees: Rs. 10 per adult and Rs. 3 per child (below 12 years)

Camera Fees: Rs. 20 for Still Camera and Rs. 50 for Video Camera

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Kalpathy Heritage Village & Temple Complex- Stepped in Spirituality

Kalpathy Heritage
Probably one of the most beautiful and greatest temples in Kerala, Kalpathy Heritage Village and Temple Complex is situated 3 km away from the Palakkad town, on the border of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. Commonly known as the Dakshin Kasi or the “Varanasi of the South”, the temple is gradually emerging as the heritage village site by the Government of Kerala and is also proposed as the UNESCO world heritage site. The temple is indeed a sight to behold during the famous Kalpathi Rathotsavam or temple chariot festival. Inside the temple complex, one can see the Viswanathaswamy temple, an architectural wonder dating back to 1425. Also to see here are many sub-temples like Vinayakar, Subramaniar, Kala Bhairavar. Other then the architecture distinction, the place holds a strong connect with the scholars, musicians and scientists. The residents of this village were well-known scholars of Vedas and Shastras and priests well-versed in their profession. On a visit to the temple, don’t forget to get hold of some pickle, murukku, spices and curry powders.

How to reach Kalpathy Heritage Village & Temple Complex? The temple is 3 km away from the main Palakkad City at Kalpath. One can either take a personal taxi or can hop in a private bus to reach the temple from the main city.

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Thiruvalathur Randu Moorthy Temple- An Intimate Heritage Experience

Ancient Thiruvalathur Randu Murthy Temple
If you are looking for a place for mental peace and blessings of the divine entity, plan a trip to Thiruvalathur Random Moorthy Temple. The temple is one of the grandest discoveries of Lord Parsurama and is amongst the 108 Durga temples that were consecrated by the deity. Historians even say that the temple was set-up in just 12 days by the servants of Parsurama. Presiding deities in the shrine are – Goddess Mahishasuramardhini and Goddess Annapurneshwari. Sprawling over an area of 2 hectares, temple is protected by the gigantic rocks on its all the sides. Best time to visit the Thiruvalathur Random Moorthy Temple is on Karthika day of Vrischika and that’s when the entire city comes back to life.

How to reach Thiruvalathur Temple: Thiruvalathur is around 7 km away from Palakkad City on the Chittoor Road and can be easily accessed by public or private transport. Tourists can take a direct bus to reach this spot.

Temple Timing: 5:30 AM to 9.30 AM and 5 PM to PM

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Nelliyampathy Hills, Palakkad – Close to Nature

Nelliyampathy Hills
People who are looking for a refreshing and rejuvenating getaway should have Nelliyampathy hills on the top of their itinerary. The hills are embellished with the multiple nature treasures that make it one of the favourite holiday destinations amongst the tourists. Nicknamed as the Second Ooty, if there is one word that best describes Nelliyampathy hills than it will be gorgeous. The entire landscape is thrilling and is filled with waterfalls, dense forest and various trekking trails; the hill station is surely a delight for the eyes. Legends say that centuries ago Nelliyampathy was a dense forest, the land was chosen by Lord Sri Rama and his wife Sita Devi as an abode during their 14 year period of exile. In Palakkad, one can see a glorious waterfall plunging down from 1000 m height. As per the mythological facts, Sita Devi used to take the bath under the waterfall during the exile period. Now, this waterfall is a well-known pilgrimage site and is visited by devotees in huge number to take a dip in holy water and feel enlightened. The breathtaking environment of waterfalls, hills and lush green jungles makes it a haven for naturalists.

How to reach Nelliyampathy Hills: Nelliyampathy Hills is situated within 2 km radius of the Palakkad City. Taxi and KSRTC Buses are available from the different stands of the Palakkad City to Nelliyampathy Hills.

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Silent Valley National Park- Feel the Pulse of Wildlife in Kerala

Silent Valley National Park
You are up for good times if you have decided to witness the beautiful jungle culture of Silent Valley National Park. Home to several animals, birds and plant species, Silent Valley National Park in the Western Ghats is perhaps the most thrilling getaway in Palakkad. Listed in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the national park boasts of its large avian species and animals. Lush green jungles, peaks surrounded by the clouds and clean environment offer a perfect ambience that nurtures flora and fauna in large number.

Spread over an area of 90 sq. km., the park houses largest population of Lion-tailed Macaque, 34 species of mammals, 292 species of birds, 31 species of reptiles, 22 species of amphibians, and 13 species of fishes. Adding to its glory are the 107 species of orchids, 100 ferns, 200 liverworts, 75 lichens and about 200 algae that can be spotted in the National Park. Natural beauty and the wildlife species of the National Park never fails to impress the tourists. Blessed with the presence of picturesque landscapes and chattering Kunthi river which makes its way through the Nilgiri Hills are some of the attractions in the National Park. A large number of tourists from worldwide visit here every year and enjoy the beauty of Nature, Jungle Safari, and Tribal Villages.

How to Reach Silent Valley National Park: Taxis and jeeps are available from the Palakkad City for Silent Valley National Park. Personal vehicles inside the national park aren’t allowed. For jungle safari and other activities, tourists will have to take prior permission from the tourism department

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Parambikulam Wild Life Sanctuary- Call of the Wild

Parambikulam Wild Life
One of the most beautiful and least explored National Parks in Kerala, Parambikulam Wild Life Sanctuary attracts tourists with its scenic charm and nature’s bounty. Perched on a hilly area amidst the Nelliampathy and Anamalai ranges, the park is a rich amalgamation of lush green jungle and picturesque landscapes. The national park shelters 39 species of mammals, 16 species of amphibians, 268 species of birds, 61 species of reptiles, 47 species of fishes, 1049 species of insects and 124 species of butterflies. The highlight of the national park is the Kannimara teak tree, which is standing still for 350 years. In the year 1973, the park was awarded the tiger reserve title. Splendid view of the neighbouring mountains in the core area is the USP of the national park. Government organized jeep safari are the best way to explore the wilderness of the national park.

How to reach Parambikulam Wild Life: Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary is 95 km away from Palakkad & 100 km away from Coimbatore (Tamil Nadu). The sanctuary is easily approachable by government-owned buses, jeeps and taxis. Pollachi in Tamil Nadu is the closest railhead and has train connections from Coimbatore and Palakkad.

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Dhoni Forest Trekking- Beautiful is an Understatement

Dhoni Forest Trekking
Bestowed with towering peaks, Dhoni hills is one of the best places in Kerala to undertake forest trekking. A short walk from the main road, tourists can see tiny mountain streams, and forest area including animals like leopards, elephants, etc. Dhoni hills is a gateway to many trekking destinations in Kerala. Visitors who are interested in watching nature at close quarters are attracted to the Dhoni Waterfalls, particularly Sapal waterfalls at Parasuramkundu. Waterfalls are in full swing in the monsoon season, gushing down to Malampuzha dam side. Don’t forget to visit a government owned cattle and a goat farm here that is known for Swiss bred cattle.

How to reach Dhoni Forest: Dhoni is located about fifteen kilometres away from Palakkad. Several KSRTC or state government public transport buses, but are less frequent.

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Pothundi Dam and Reservoir-Mesmerizing Landmark of Palakkad

Pothundi Reservoir
Built during the British reign for irrigation purpose, Pothundi Dam is now the famous tourist attraction in Palakkad. USP of the dam is that it is built of jaggery and quick lime and is currently standing strong. The area around the Pothundi Dam is the best place to enjoy a picnic or for those who love to enjoy basking in the sun. The dam is one of the most visited tourists spots and is well known for its different fish species like murrel, catfish, tilapia, rohu (Labeo rohita), barbus, eel, common carp (Cyprinus carpio), mrigal, gourami, and catla.

How to reach Pothundi Dam: Travel time from Palakkad from is 47 minutes. Travelling through car or bus can be convenient as the roads are very smooth.

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Mangalam Dam- An Emerging Eco-Tourism Hotspot

Mangalam Dam
At a distance of 52 km from Palakkad city, Mangalam Dam is the most scenic and preferred tourist spot near Palakkad. Situated far away from the hustle-bustle of the city life, this dam offers solitude and scope to spend some tranquil movement with the loved ones. Cuddled by the lush green jungle, a short walk around the dam can give you ample of opportunities to spot animals and catch glimpses of colourful avian species. Boating will be the best part of your trip to Mangalam Dam. Once you reach far into the Mangalam dam reservoir, you can see colourful creatures and marine plants.

How to reach Mangalam Dam: Taxis / Jeeps are available from any part of Palakkad City / Palakkad Junction Railway Station to Mangalam Dam. Some Private Buses plies from Palakkad to Mangalam Dam on regular intervals.

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Siruvani Reservoir- Retreat in the Hills

Siruvani Reservoir
Perched on hilly and lush green terrains, Siruvani Reservoir is one of the majestic attractions of Palakkad. The dam was built by Kerala government with a purpose to meet the drinking water requirement of the neighboring town, Coimbatore. If you walk along the bank, you’ll reach a small tribe settlement and locals will happily volunteer as guides. Gateways across the dam are impressive and are made in typical Kerala and Tamil Nadu architectural style.

How to reach Siruvani Reservoir: Located 48 km from Palakkad, there are many taxis and jeeps available from any port of Palakkad city to Siruvani. If travelling through personal vehicles, tourists can go up to the Down Valley. From Down Valley, tourists can hire jeep or mini-buses run by the forest department to reach the dam.

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Kanjirapuzha Reservoir- Dam Spruced-up for Tourism

Kanjirapuzha Reservoir
A calm reservoir hidden in the middle of verdant hills, Kanjirapuzha Reservoir is couples of hours away from Palakkad. Stone throw away from the Kanjirapuzha Reservoir is the evergreen forest, Vettilachola. Monsoon is the season that brings the region back to life, surrounding the lake emits the hues of green and water in the dam fills to the brim. The dam is a favourite picnic spot amongst the locals and there are ample opportunities to go trekking, bird-watching or taking attractive photos.

How to reach Kanjirapuzha Reservoir: Kanjirapuzha is located around 40 KM away from Palakkad City. Taxis / Jeeps are available from any part of Palakkad City / Palakkad Junction Railway Station to Kanjirapuzha. Private Buses also ply in between Mannarkkad and Kanjirapuzha.

Mayiladumpara Peacock Sanctuary- See the Breathtaking Dance of the Peacock

Peacock Sanctuary Palakkad
If bird watching intrigues you, then Mayiladumpara Peacock Sanctuary is the perfect place to be at; there are more than 300 peacocks and many species of birds that one can spot here. Spread over 500 hectares, Mayiladumpara Peacock Sanctuary are wonderfully scenic and peaceful, making bird watching here an even better experience. Other than the peacock there are several other types of bird species. Best hour to visit the national park is during the dawn or dusk. Don’t be shocked if you see a flock of peacocks dancing together under the grey sky.

How to reach Mayiladumpara Peacock Sanctuary: Mayiladumpara Peacock Sanctuary in Nedungathpara, located with 25 km radius of Palakkad city, can be easily approachable through buses, taxis and jeeps.

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See below for the ways through which you can reach Palakkad:

By Airways: Nearest airport is Peelamedu Airport in Coimbatore. Coimbatore Airport is well connected to the places in India and abroad such as99 Bhubaneswar, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Bangalore, Cochin, Pune, Sharjah, Bangkok, Singapore and Ahm9edabad.

By Railways: Palakkad Junction (PGT) and Palakkad Town (PGTN) is the railways station is the nearest railways station that is well connected to other major cities of the country via regular trains.

By Roadways: Karnataka is well connected through Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC) and some private travel services. See below for the distance chart:

Distance Chart

PlaceDistance (Approx)Duration (Approx)
Coimbatore to Palakkad1:30 Hours54Km
Thrissur to Palakkad2:00 Hours69 Km
Dindigul to Palakkad3:15 Hours170Km
Pollachi to Palakkad1:00 Hour46Km
Ernakulam to Palakkad3:00 Hours145Km
Ooty to Palakkad4:00 Hours138Km
Palani to Palakkad2:15 Hours116Km
Masinagudi to Palakkad4:00 Hours175Km
Nelliyampathy to Palakkad1:15 Hours54.Km
Mudumalai Tn to Palakkad3:30 Hours158Km

A close look at the place, you would see that Palakkad is a hidden hamlet that is not yet touched by modernity and beams gloriously when its golden paddy fields are bathed in sunlight. A holiday vacation in this palm fringed land will satiate your senses. So, what you all are waiting for? Book for your Palakkad holiday now…..

Photo Courtesy: Biju Warrier from Happy Valley Tours

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From New Delhi, Latika is a travel writer who loves to share her expedition experiences with other travel junkies. She devote her time in exploring beaches and trekking to off beat destinations. Her leisure time would include reading a book at any given beautiful sea or river side. She is one of those who do what they love and love what they do.

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