A 40 kilometre drive from Kumily, the road leading to the picturesque Gavi is blanketed by tea plantations. The two-hour jeep ride will take you past hills and valleys, tropical forests, sprawling grasslands, cascading waterfalls and cardamom plantations. With more than 260 species of birds, Gavi is a haven for birdwatchers. En route are the Pamba Reservoir and a large tract of reserve forests, so chances of wildlife encounters with endangered species like the Nilgiri tahr and lion tailed macaque are big. Developed into an exclusive ecotourism project, Gavi is listed as one of the must-see places in India. Active involvement of tribals makes Gavi one of its kind in the country.
Visitors to Gavi can indulge in trekking, bird and animal watching and boating or canoeing in the placid waters of the Reservoir. Trekking trails to Pullumedu Peak offers a panoramic view of the famed Sabarimala shrine. Visitors can also take along a local guide and an experienced 'elephant chaser' and then hike to Meenar, Chenthamara Kokka and Valley View that gives a spectacular view of a deep ravine and the forest below. Outdoor camping and night safaris are organised to Kullar, Gavi, Pullumedu, Kochu Pampa, Pachakanam or Anathodu. A unique feature of Gavi is night-camping in the forests, where it is possible to pitch a tent in the camping site - a rarity in many Indian forests. Gavi also has a treasure trove of birds for all those avian enthusiasts.
In and Around
A visit to Paradise Cove at Ninnumulli is a must for all nature lovers. Kullur, Kochu Pampa, Pullumedu and Pachakanam are some of the adjacent places that are worth going to. On the way to Gavi are many places of interest like Kuttikanam, Peermedu and Vandiperiyar from where the road deviates to Gavi. Visitors can also go to the nearby cardamom factory where one can leisurely walk through forests interspersed with spice gardens.
Besides the accommodation provided in 'Green Mansion', the scenic eco-lodge overlooking the Gavi Lake and the adjoining forests, one can pitch tents amidst the wilderness. Treetop houses where one can enjoy the avian life to the fullest are also available.
Location: The place is 40 km from Kumily and about 28 km from Vandiperiyar.
Air: Madurai Airport (Tamil Nadu) about 140 km away and Cochin International Airport, about 190 km away are the nearest airports.
Rail: Nearest railway station is Kottayam, about 114 km away.
Road: The nearest bus terminal is Vandiperiyar, 18 km from Thekkady.
For enquiries & bookings, contact:
Kerala Forest Development Corporation, Thiruvananthapuram, Ph: 0471-2320604, Kottayam, Ph: 0481-2581204 firstname.lastname@example.org
Eco-Tourism Project, Periyar, Ph: 0481- 2581204, 2582640
District Tourist Promotion Council Office, Pathanamthitta, Ph: 0468-2229952