The mystical beauty of Panchalimedu in Idukki is as intriguing as the legends associated with it. The place derived its name from Panchali, the devoted wife of the Pandavas from Mahabharata. The lush greenery, clean air and the valleys covered in blankets of mist draw hundreds of tourists from all over the world to Panchalimedu every year.
Panchalimedu, which is situated almost 2,500 ft above the sea level, has a rich history intertwined with the legends of the past. The nearby places of this misty haven have many rock mountains and cascading waterfalls which meander through these rocks. The lush green meadows on the hillocks at Thekkemala is in fact one of the popular tourist destinations in the district. The legend says that the Pandava Brothers had stayed here along with their wife Panchali when they were in exile. It is believed that the tribal people had offered help to the Pandavas during their stay here.
According to the legends, the Panchalikulam (pond) was dug by Bhim for his wife Panchali to take her baths. The pond which was once filled with pristine waters is now dry and filled with silt.
Also read: Panchalimedu: an idyllic spot less trodden
Panchalimedu is a perfect place for trekking in the state. The beautiful hills and valleys attract hundreds of trekking enthusiasts to enjoy the mesmerising beauty of the nature.
The presence of the Holy cross and the Bhuvaneswari temple in the same premises is an amazing instance of the religious harmony. It is believed that the main idol in this temple which is built in the ancient architectural style was gifted by the Pandavas. One can even witness the pious Makaravilakku at Sabarimala from these hills. Hundreds of devotees throng Kurisumala to offer prayers at the Holy cross and conduct pooja at the temple.
Panchalimedu is 60 km from Kottayam. Murinjapuzha, which lies beyond Mundakayam, is the entrance to Panchalimedu. Trip jeeps too are available from Murinjapuzha for tourists to reach Panchalimedu.
Panchalimedu is the first halt on the Thekkady–Ramakkalmedu– Munnar route. Accommodation facilities are not available here. The visitors have to find suitable lodgings at Mundakkayam or Kuttikanam.