Ideal time : 2- 3 hours
Entry Fee : Indians: INR 20, Foreigners: INR 40, Still camera: INR 25, Cam recorders: INR 100 and INR 70 for a jeep of 8 people.
Timings : 9:30 AM - 4:30 PM
Famous for its exquisite rock and wall carvings, the pre-historic Edakkal Caves are two naturally occurring alcoves located in the Wayanad district of Kerala. The caves measure at a massive length and width of 96 and 22 feet respectively and lie 1200 metres above the sea level. Owing to its precarious location, one needs to trek for one and half hour (around 4000 ft) to hit the cave entrance, and another 45 minutes to reach the mouth of the cave. The Edakkal caves are of historical and archaeological significance as it has carvings that date back to the Neolithic era, the late Stone Age. The stonework in the interior of the cave is estimated to be as old as 5000 BC to 1000 BC.
Edikkal literally means 'a stone in between' and aptly describes its formation. A smaller rock has wedged in between 2 bigger ones to form a natural cave. In the truest sense of the word, it is not a cave but a natural fissure in the rock which has a heavy boulder on top. The cave thus has 2 levels. The first level of the cave can be explored through a small opening. Just opposite this is a passage that leads to another opening, this time in the roof. Here you come to the second level which is much bigger in size. To explore the caves visitors have to pass uneven boulders, an iron ladder and rock walls covered with fungi. The walls are covered with carvings of animal and human figures, some of which are hazy but are clear for the most part. The clarity of the carvings is even more surprising given the duration they have survived.