Amazing National Parks in Kerala

Wildlife & Nature

National Parks in Kerala

Home to India's largest tiger reserve, the national parks of Kerala are rich with the exotic biodiversity of the Western Ghats. The Periyar National Park stands out the most, an integral part of Proj (Read More)ect Tiger. Wayanad, part of the Nilgiris Biosphere, is a plethora of scenic beauty and varied wildlife. The Idukki region is a great tribute to the natural diversity of India.

Here is the list of 16 Amazing National Parks in Kerala

1. Anamudi Shola National Park, Idukki

Anamudi Shola National Park, Idukki

Anamudi Shola National Park in Kerala is located in the Idukki district along the western ghats and is a remarkable national reserve spread over 7.5 km square. You can plan a trek in the establishment to check out various attractions within the park such as Thoovanam waterfall, Chinnar River and the adjacent waterfall, and Pambar river to name a few.

Here, you can easily spot leopards, civet cats, wolves, Indian Bison, wild boars, elephants, tigers, Panther, sloth bears, flying squirrels, jungle cats, wild dogs, and more. It's not only about animals. In addition to that, you can also enjoy a wide range of rare birds (more than 76), over 200 species of moths, 100 species of butterflies, and even reptiles.

2. Kumarakom National Park, Kumarakom

Kumarakom National Park, Kumarakom
4.0 /5 View 18+ photos

Known For : Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary Kumarakom Backwaters Visit to Toddy Shops

Kumarakom is an exotic and enchanting national park in Kerala. It is located on the banks of Lake Vembanad, in the backwaters of the beautiful city of Kochi. It is abode of the maximum number of migratory birds in the country. These beautiful creatures on wings which are sure to charm you include spot larks, cuckoos, herons, owls, flycatcher and Siberian crane. Some of these birds migrate from Siberia and others form the gigantic Himalayas. It has an apt tropical climate, which is suitable for tourists as well as birds. It would indeed be the perfect start for exploration and is a paradise for an ornithologist.

Best Time: September to March

12 Kumarakom Attractions

3. Periyar National Park - India's Largest Tiger Reserve

Periyar National Park - India's Largest Tiger Reserve
4.0 /5 View 20+ photos

Known For : Periyar National Park Periyar Tiger Trail Bamboo Rafting

Periyar National Park in Kerala, famous for its tiger population, is also an elephant reserve. This park is located in the Western Ghats, immersed in luxuriant greenery, composed of Savannah grasslands and is reachable all year round. The place is also known as Thekkady. Here you would be enthralled to spot herds of elephants, tigers, a variety of birds, spotted deer, macaque and of course a number of reptiles. The high point of the tour is the boat ride. The flora includes teak, tamarind, rosewoods, fig, Kino Tree and Mangoes.

Best Time: Throughout the year

17 Thekkady Attractions

4. Silent Valley National Park, Palakkad

Silent Valley National Park, Palakkad
4.1 /5

The Silent Valley National Park, with its lush green rainforests, is located approximately 200 kilometres far from the district of Idukki. The park is known for its reservoirs of tigers and is the abode to the largest number of lion-tailed macaques, which is an endangered species of primates. Spread across an area of 89 square kilometres, the Silent Valley National Park is located in the Kundali Hills of the Western Ghats in Kerala in southern India.  The well-planned Safari and the beautiful stop-overs around the park only make a trip to this part of Kerala more worthwhile.

Though smaller in size when compared to the other national parks in India, what set the Silent Valley National Park apart from all other similar sites is the Sylvan environment that the region boasts of, along with its lofty and majestic peaks and the several rivers that run through its length.

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5. Eravikulam (Rajamalai) National Park

Eravikulam (Rajamalai) National Park
4.6 /5

The Eravikulam National Park in Kerala is approximately 15 kilometres from the city of Munnar. It is located in the Idukki district and is charming grassland environ. It is known for the endangered species of goat, Nilgiri Tahr. You can see it amidst the lush vegetation or strolling near a stream. January to April is the calving period for the Nilgiri Tahr hence during this period, the park is closed. There are about 26 species of mammals found here. The species of birds that frequent the park include Nilgiri Pipit, White Bellied Shortwing, Flycatcher, Laughing thrush etc. Another sight to behold is the blooming of the Neelakurinji Flowers that occurs every 12 years. The last bloom of Neelakurinji Flowers was in 2018.

6. Mathikettan Shola National Park, Idukki

Mathikettan Shola National Park, Idukki

Located in the Idukki district, Mathikettan Shola National Park is located between Eravikulam National Park and Pampadam Shola National Park. Established initially to encourage cardamom plantation, it was declared as a national park in Kerala in 2003 to protect the environment, and it's ecology, flora and wildlife. It now stands as a conservatory for wildlife and flora alike.

The vast forest plays a vital role in the environment serving as a biodiversity hot spot. The tall forests transform into a natural sanctuary where it also is an excellent spot for bird-watching. Tourists may even spot animals such as elephants, tigers, panthers, rat snakes, flying squirrels, giant grizzled squirrels, king cobra, crocodiles, Nilgiri tahr, spotted deer among others.

7. Pampadum Shola National Park, Idukki

Pampadum Shola National Park, Idukki

Located in Kerala, Pampadum Shola National Park is the smallest national park of Kerala with an area of 11.75 km square. The park is managed and maintained by Kerala Department of Forests and Wildlife. Owing to the spectacular biodiversity of flora and fauna, this park, along with the Westerns Ghats, and few other parks are being observed by UNESCO World Heritage Committee to consider them as a World Heritage Site nominee. Cloudy weather prevails throughout the year in the park, perfect for trekking and picnics.

8. Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary (Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary)

Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary (Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary)
3.9 /5 View 12+ photos

Known to be the second-largest wildlife sanctuary in Wayanad, the area is home to a large variety of wild animals. This sanctuary is a part of the Nilgiri Bioreserve along with the Nagarhole and Bandipur area of Karnataka. Promising an endearing view with plenty of experiences, the sanctuary has been declared a Project Elephant site. Being a dense forest situated amidst the hills of western ghats, the kind of animals you can spot here would include Indian Bison, tigers, elephants, deer, Panthers, jungle cats, civet cats, monkeys, wild dogs and bears. With the natural landscape and the wildlife it harbours, the sanctuary attracts photographers and wildlife enthusiasts.

Best Time: October to May

9. Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Munnar

Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Munnar
4.3 /5 View 13+ photos

Another wildlife sanctuary in Kerala, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary is located close to Munnar. Here, there is ample availability of good hotels, resorts and accommodations. This place has a rainy season that extends to at least two months because it is located in the rain shadow region of the enchanting Western Ghats. Those of you who enjoy trekking would love this deciduous forest. And you will also be able to witness the endangered species of squirrel called Giant Grizzled Squirrel along with other flora and fauna.

10. Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, Palakkad

Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, Palakkad
4.1 /5 View 12+ photos

Kerala's Palakkad district gives you a chance to venture right into the laps of the wild with its Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary. Best known for its constant efforts to preserve the dwindling tiger population, this destination is a popular tourist spot as well. This wildlife sanctuary in Kerala is also home to four different indigenous tribes- Kadar, Malasar, Muduvar and Mala Malasar. The surrounding beauty of the gently rolling hills and lazily flowing rivers make it the perfect place for the flourishing of its priceless flora and fauna population. Jungle treks and safari here are quite unique and eye-opening experiences.

11. Neyyar Dam & Wildlife Sanctuary, Trivandrum

Neyyar Dam & Wildlife Sanctuary, Trivandrum
3.4 /5

Famous for its Lion and Deer Safari, Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary is a treat for nature enthusiasts. The wildlife sanctuary in Kerala houses a crocodile farm and elephant rehabilitation centre. Ask for a guided tour of the sanctuary which is quite informative.

12. Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary, Ponmudi

Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary, Ponmudi
3.5 /5

Open all year round, Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary in Kerala is located along the catchment area of the Peppara Dam on the Karamana River. The sanctuary rich in flora and fauna offers a natural habitat to around 43 species of mammals, 233 species of birds, 46 species of reptiles, 13 species of amphibians and 27 species of fishes.

13. Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Kumarakom

Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Kumarakom
4.2 /5 View 6+ photos

The Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, also popularly known as the Vembanad Bird Sanctuary, is a breathtaking and beautiful bird sanctuary that is located at Kumarakom in the Kottayam district in the Indian state of Kerala. Situated on the banks of the Vembanad Lake in the Kerala Backwaters, this bird sanctuary in Kerala is a favourite destination for many native as well as migratory birds, which makes the place a dreamland full of ecstasy and delight for bird watchers and nature lovers. The houseboats and motor boats that are available on rent to watch birds further enhance this enrichening experience. A trip to the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary is thus a must while in Kerala, to explore and unravel the hidden treasures and gifts of the Earth.

14. Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary, Kannur

Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary, Kannur

Being the northernmost wildlife reserve in the whole of Kerala and the only wildlife sanctuary in Kannur, the Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary is quite a big deal. Amidst these sky-touching trees and mesmerising greenery, many exotic wildlife species have marked their territory. Taking a safari through the thick verdure and venturing deeper into the forests, you will encounter many striking and remarkably extraordinary species of animals as well as birds that will leave you stumped and in awe of nature's wondrous creations.

15. Mangalavanam Bird Sanctuary, Kochi

Mangalavanam Bird Sanctuary, Kochi
3.2 /5

The Mangalavanam Bird Sanctuary sprawling over 2.74 hectares is situated in the heart of the lively city of Kochi. Comprising of 18-acres of Mangroves which are filled with a densely populated species of trees and plants, the sanctuary remains at a cool temperature. One of the major attractions is the beautiful watch tower which overlooks the sanctuary thereby giving a superb view to the tourists. The Kerala Forest and Wildlife Department also conducts a free nature camp at the sanctuary which is attended by tourists from different parts of the world.

16. Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, Kerala

Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, Kerala
4.3 /5 View 13+ photos

Known For : Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary Bhoothathankettu Dam

Located near Kothamangalam in Ernakulam on the northern bank of Periyar River, Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is famous for its rich and varied birdlife. It is the first Bird Sanctuary in Kerala that was surveyed by Dr Salim Ali (the birdman of India), who also called it the richest habitat he has ever seen. This sanctuary came to light in the year 1983 on basis of recommendations made by this famous ornithologist. 

Spread over 25 sq. km, it shelters over 500 species of birds and rare birds such as Wayanad laughing thrush, rufous babbler, and white-bellied blue flycatcher. While you traverse the dense forests containing tropical semi-evergreen, deciduous and tropical evergreen plants, do not miss out on the boat cruise along the backwaters.

Best Time: Throughout the year

2 Thattekad Attractions

Kerala is home to the stunning Western Ghats which give rise to multiple national parks in Kerala. So which national park in Kerala are you going to visit next? Let us know in the comments below!

This post was published by Gracy Chawla

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FAQs on Amazing National Parks in Kerala

How many national parks are there in kerala?

There are 6 most popular national parks - Anamudi Shola National Park, Kumarakom National Park, Periyar National Park, Silent Valley National park, Eravikulam National Park, Mathikettan Shola National park, Pampadum Shola National park.

how many wildlife sanctuaries are there in kerala?

There are 10 wildlife sanctuaries - Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary, Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary, Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary, Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary, Mangalavanam Bird Sanctuary, Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary

Which is the biggest national park in kerala?

Eravikulam National Park

Which is the smallest national park in Kerala?

Pampadum Shola National Park

Which is the first national park in kerala?

Eravikulam National Park

Which is the second largest national park in Kerala?

Silent Valley National Park

How many tiger reserves are there in Kerala?

two tiger reserves

Which is the latest wildlife santuary in kerala?

Bhavani wildlife sanctuary

Which district has most forest in kerala?

idukki

Which sanctuary in kerala is known for its elephants?

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary

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