Munnar is a beautiful hill station in Kerala, India. Throughout India Kerala is also referred to as ‘Gods Own Country’ because of its extreme beauty and scenery. Munnar was previously favoured as a summer resort home area for British rulers and because of this tea plantations were formed. Today, the whole sprawling area as far as the eye can see are tea and spice plantations in perfect rows.
When we finally arrived at our hotel we started looking into ways to hike around the area. We decided it was best to go with a group since we had little time to plan our own hike and properly prepare.
Although many tuk-tuk drivers offered their own version of tours we decided to book with our hotel and go with a small group. The hike was about $15 each. We left the hotel early in the morning, just after 6am. We headed up a nearby path and began our half day of hiking.
The morning started very misty as every day does in Munnar. Although Kerala is in the southern tip of India, Kerala can be fairly cold year round.
We hiked through tea plantations and our guide explained the types of tea and tea growing techniques. We heard a rustling in the bushes and our guide instructed us to quickly but quietly run to one side. All of a sudden we saw a large beautiful wild elephant emerge through the tea plantation bushes. It was amazing to see a wild elephant not in captivity thriving in the hills. This apparently is a rare sight in Munnar so we were very excited.
Our hike continued and we occasionally had to wait a few minutes for people to catch up. We took a short break for some breakfast at the top of one of the hills and began our descent.
The descent was a bit tedious and long but eventually we reached flat ground. It was another hour or so back to our hotel winding through small housing areas where tea plantation workers lived.
We almost lost Colin when he slid off a steep ledge on the side of the path for absolutely no reason but luckily he managed to grab some roots and pull himself back up. Phew!
Overall, the hike in munnar was a bit overpriced, especially for India, but the scenery was beautiful and it was interesting to learn about the tea plantation and history of the area!