Kumily

Kumily Waterfalls
FLICKR: @ Raj kumar

Kumily is a plantation town and also the largest Gram Panchayat in Kerala, India. It is situated in Cardamom Hills on the outskirts of Thekkady and Periyar Tiger Reserve, in the Idukki District of Kerala. Thekkady is a relaxed, pleasant region covered with greenery around, while Kumily represents as the spices capital of Kerala, the plantations and trading of spices and tea are on a broader scale here and attracts descent tourist visits.

The state of Tamil Nadu fences the town, as it lies in the NH 183 that links Kottayam through Mundakkayam and Kanjirappally. Kumily is well connected with Kottayam and Kochi, being the main bus station in the Periyar region, the town also facilitates economical and descent accommodation facilities to the visitors. Sabrimala, the famous pilgrim center is 150 km from Kumily.

Earlier to the 18th century, Kumily was also known as Kuzhumoor, the capital of the Thekkumkoor Kings, which was later invaded by Marthanda Varma of Travancore. The modern day southern Kerala, right from the district of Kanyakumari to the southern most parts of the neighbouring state of Tamil Nadu were ruled by the Kingdom of Travancore. After independence, the Travancore kings granted control of the region to the Lord of Poonjar (Poonjar Thamburan) who governed the region, till the 19th century. The British developed the forest lands to plantations of cardamom, tea, coffee, ginger, cinnamon and other spices, as a result the place emerged as a spice hub in present date.

Activities such as elephant rides, boat safari and trekking can be performed in Kumily. A visit to the Tribal Heritage Museum and the Tiger Reserve can be done through jungle trek. Kumily houses five ethnically distinct communities – the Paliyas, the Uralis, the Mannans, the Mala-arayas and the Malampandarams. The nearby attractions to the town are the places such as Vandiperiyar, Vandanmedu, Murikkady and Chellarkovil, while grapes cultivations, Megamalai, Suruli Theertham, Kumabakarai, Vaigai dam etc. can be seen in the district of Theni, Tamil Nadu close to Kumily.

Nearest railway station: Theni (TENI), about 63 km away.

Nearest airport: Cochin International Airport, about 137 km, Madurai International Airport, about 149 km away.

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