Thoovanam waterfalls

Hidden amidst the lush landscapes of the Western Ghats, Thoovanam Waterfalls emerges as a pristine gem, inviting nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers to witness the untamed beauty of Kerala. Located in the serene wilderness of Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, these cascading falls are not just a visual spectacle but a harmonious blend of biodiversity and scenic grandeur. Join us on an immersive journey through this natural wonder, exploring the captivating Thoovanam Waterfalls and the enchanting surroundings that make it a must-visit destination.

Introduction to Thoovanam Waterfalls:

Thoovanam Waterfalls is a breathtaking cascade nestled within the Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary in the Idukki district of Kerala, India. It stands as a testament to the unspoiled beauty of Kerala’s Western Ghats, offering a mesmerizing retreat for those seeking a rendezvous with nature. The falls are fed by the pristine waters of the Pambar River as it descends through rocky terrain, creating a series of picturesque drops that define the allure of Thoovanam.

Key Features of Thoovanam Waterfalls:

  1. Sylvan Surroundings:
    • Thoovanam Waterfalls is situated in the heart of Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, surrounded by a rich tapestry of tropical forests, diverse flora, and vibrant wildlife. The journey to the falls itself is an exploration of the sanctuary’s natural wonders.
  2. Off-the-Beaten-Path:
    • Unlike some of the more commercialized waterfalls, Thoovanam retains its off-the-beaten-path charm. The journey involves trekking through the sanctuary, immersing visitors in a pristine and untouched environment.
  3. Wildlife Encounters:
    • Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary is home to a variety of wildlife, including elephants, langurs, spotted deer, and exotic bird species. Visitors might be treated to glimpses of these inhabitants during the trek to Thoovanam Waterfalls.
  4. Rocky Terrain:
    • The falls cascade down rocky terrain, creating a series of steps and pools. The natural topography adds an adventurous element to the trek and enhances the scenic beauty of the falls.

Trek to Thoovanam Waterfalls:

  1. Starting Point:
    • The trek to Thoovanam Waterfalls typically begins from the Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary entry point. Visitors are required to obtain necessary permits, and guided treks are often recommended to navigate the sanctuary responsibly.
  2. Trail Amidst Nature:
    • The trek takes you through a lush forest trail, winding amidst diverse vegetation and occasional sightings of wildlife. The trail is well-marked, but the guidance of experienced trek leaders ensures a safe and enjoyable journey.
  3. Pambar River Crossing:
    • The trek involves crossing the Pambar River at certain points. This adds an adventurous element as you navigate through the river’s rocky bed, with the refreshing flow of clear water providing a welcome respite.
  4. Scenic Views Along the Way:
    • As you ascend through the sanctuary, panoramic views of the Western Ghats unfold. The trek itself becomes an immersive experience, allowing you to appreciate the ecological diversity of the region.

Visiting Thoovanam Waterfalls:

  1. Best Time to Visit:
    • The ideal time to visit Thoovanam Waterfalls is during the post-monsoon and winter months (October to March) when the weather is pleasant, and the falls are in full glory. The monsoon season, while enhancing the water flow, may make the trek challenging due to slippery trails.
  2. Permits and Guides:
    • Permits are required to enter Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, and guided treks are advisable for safety and ecological awareness. These can be arranged through the sanctuary authorities or local tour operators.
  3. Physical Fitness:
    • The trek involves moderate to strenuous sections, and visitors should have a reasonable level of physical fitness. It’s essential to wear comfortable trekking shoes and carry sufficient water and snacks.
  4. Wildlife Etiquette:
    • While trekking, maintain a respectful distance from wildlife, and avoid any actions that could disturb the natural habitat. Responsible tourism is key to preserving the sanctuary’s ecological balance.
  5. Pack Light:
    • Given the nature of the trek, it’s advisable to pack light. Essential items include water, snacks, a first aid kit, a hat, sunscreen, and a camera to capture the scenic beauty.

Experiences at Thoovanam Waterfalls:

  1. Refreshing Dip:
    • The natural pools formed by the cascading falls offer a refreshing opportunity for a dip. The cool, crystal-clear water is a welcome reward after the trek.
  2. Photography Paradise:
    • Thoovanam Waterfalls provides photographers with a captivating canvas. From the lush greenery to the rocky terrain and the cascading falls, every angle presents a picturesque frame.
  3. Bird Watching:
    • The sanctuary is a haven for bird enthusiasts. Keep an eye out for vibrant bird species, and the melodious tunes of birdsong create a serene backdrop to the trek.
  4. Nature Meditation:
    • The tranquility of the sanctuary and the rhythmic sounds of the falls create an ideal environment for meditation. Find a peaceful spot to connect with nature and soak in the serenity.

Nearby Attractions:

  1. Marayoor Sandalwood Forest:
    • Explore the Marayoor Sandalwood Forest, located in close proximity to Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary. The forest is known for its sandalwood trees, ancient dolmens, and vibrant landscapes.
  2. Chinnar Watchtower:
    • The Chinnar Watchtower offers panoramic views of the sanctuary and the surrounding hills. It’s a great spot for wildlife enthusiasts and photographers.
  3. Anamudi Peak:
    • For those seeking a more challenging trek, Anamudi Peak, the highest peak in South India, is nearby. It offers stunning views of the Western Ghats.

Local Cuisine:

  1. Traditional Kerala Cuisine:
    • After the trek, indulge in traditional Kerala cuisine. Local eateries offer a variety of dishes, including appam with stew, puttu and kadala curry, and the famed Kerala sadhya.
  2. Chai Stops:
    • Along the journey, you might come across small chai shops. Enjoy a cup of chai while taking in the scenic views and interacting with locals.

Practical Information:

  1. Accessibility:
    • Thoovanam Waterfalls is accessible by road from various parts of Kerala. The nearest major town is Munnar, and the sanctuary entry point is well-connected by road.
  2. Accommodation:
    • While there may not be accommodations within the sanctuary, Munnar offers a range of stay options, including resorts, guesthouses, and homestays.
  3. Local Weather:
    • The weather in the Western Ghats can be unpredictable. It’s advisable to check weather conditions before planning your visit and to carry rain gear during the monsoon season.
  4. Responsible Tourism:
    • Follow responsible tourism practices to minimize your impact on the sanctuary’s ecosystem. Avoid littering, stick to designated trails, and respect the flora and fauna.


Thoovanam Waterfalls, tucked away in the heart of Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, is a testament to the untouched beauty that Kerala’s Western Ghats proudly preserves. The journey to the falls is not just a trek; it’s an expedition into a realm where nature reigns supreme, and every step reveals a new facet of the region’s ecological diversity. Whether you’re an avid trekker, a nature lover, or a photographer seeking the perfect shot, Thoovanam Waterfalls promises an unforgettable experience—a symphony of nature echoing through the pristine landscapes of Kerala.