Even as Kerala simmers under the scorching summer sun, a getaway—though brief—to cooler climes will be a heavenly respite. Taking note of the tourism potential of its hydel project areas, the state electricity board has now opened up nine such spots that would help recharge yourself. The interesting part is that a visit to these spots won’t burn a hole in your pocket, unlike a visit to cooler heights up north in the country.
Besides chilling out in pristine natural settings, such visits also offer an opportunity to see first-hand the processes of hydel power generation. The Board garners a monthly revenue of about Rs 1.5 crore from these hydel tourism spots, though the fee for a visit is almost negligible. Though the Board had hit upon the idea of hydel tourism 16 years ago, the move to open up its properties became popular only in the recent times.
Cool even at noon, Munnar—with its different shades of green—needs no introduction. The Board’s several hydel projects are located in and around Munnar. The Mattupetty dam is one such tourism spot, which charges you Rs 20 per entry. The major attractions here are the boating facility, jointly floated by the electricity board and DTPC, and a 14-acre park.
Adding to them is the adventure park, which will open its doors for the first time on April 1. Swimming pool, food court and a designated area for children are also included in the park.
Towards the tail end of the reservoir is the Echo Point, a picturesque spot blanketed in silence. The spot, with an entry fee of Rs 5, also offers boating facility.
Also read Hydel tourism in Munnar
Anayirankal is in close proximity to Munnar. The Board charges Rs 20 a person for entering the project area, which has boating facility and a food court. Chenkulam dam, too, offers boating in its reservoir. Entry fee is Rs 5. The two spots offer irresistible cool clime and serenity unknown to city folks. A visit to the 16-acre Children’s Park adjacent to Ramaswamy Iyer Headworks in Munnar will cost you Rs 20 per person.
Feel like rowing a shikara boat outside Kashmir? Welcome to Kundala Dam, which has the sobriquet, southern Kashmir. Located in Munnar, entry to Kundala is free. Besides Shikaras, pedal boats are also available.
Boating is allowed here only during the festive Onam and Christmas seasons. The arch dam, however, is open to the members of the public on weekends and public holidays. A ride on a battery-operated buggy car on the imposing dam will cost Rs 50. Entry fee is Rs 20.
5)Adyanpara in Nilambur
Adyanpara offers infotainment for just Rs 50. The Board has arranged conducted tours to its mini hydel project, where one have a ringside view of power generation.
A visit to the Banasura Sagar dam in Wayanad is an experience by itself. The spot offers a picturesque view of the reservoir set in tranquility. Entry fee is Rs 20. Boat rides in the reservoir is a must to any visitor here. Buggy cars are also available for Rs 50 per person.
Situated in Kozhikode is open free of cost. Boating facility is available at Kakkayam
Situated about 13kms from Athirappilly waterfalls, the Peringalkuthu dam is built on the Chalakkudi river. The water levels have dropped now and boating has been suspended for the time being. But a drive through the forests will relax you.
The situation at Lower Meenmutty in Thiruvananthapuram is something else. Opened in 2000, this hydel tourism spot’s reservoir has dense forest bordering it on one side. Even though there is enough water, the board has suspended boating. The reason: instances of visitors leaving the boats in the forested area.