Blessed with abundant natural vistas and rich bio-diversity, Thenmala offers plenty of opportunities to visitors for learning the importance and necessity of eco-tourism in India. This is India's first planned eco-tourism destination, which is popular due to its unique biological settings. Situated about 72 kms from Thiruvananthapuram, in the District of Kollam, this beautiful place is connected with the famous Shenduruney Wildlife Sanctuary at the foothills of the Western Ghats. The visitors who are already in love with the natural beauty of Kerela, will find this place irresistible.
The word Thenmala in Malayalam means 'Honey Hill,' where 'Then' means honey and 'Mala' means hill. It is believed that the honey collected from this area is of very good quality, all because of the fantastic biological settings in the area. At Thenmala Eco-tourism, the visitors get equal opportunities for fun, adventure, and leisure activities. The Promotional Society of Thenmala eco-tourism has divided the area into three major zones- Culture Zone, Leisure Zone, and Adventure Zone.
The cultural zone of this area offers restaurants, shopping complex, art galleries, and an open air musical dancing fountain. The visitors indulge in a variety of activities here like trying Kerela dishes, shopping memento, and grabbing information on Kerela's art and culture. The Leisure zone allows guests to try the boardwalk, which leads to the dam and to walk over a sway bridge, especially for children. For adventure enthusiast, the adventure zone offers an elevated walkway that winds through the canopy of trees. Mountain biking, rock climbing, and river crossing are other activities that can give your body muscles a real workout.
Other facilities offered at Thenmala Eco-Tourism are boat riding in the Shenduruney Wildlife Sanctuary, where one can have a look at a group of spotted deer, the sambar deer, barking deer, etc. The project area also has tree top huts, children's eco-park, riverside treks, battery powered vehicle rides, to take visitors through the exotic jungle. Thenmala project area also has high medicinal value because of the unique floristic composition of the forests. This unique place is easily accessible from Kollam through road and rail and be best visited in the months between September to March.