A stay at the Whispering Waters is never complete without experiencing the ‘Paniely Poru’. Our staff will escort you along the river to the Paniely Poru where you can visually experience the strong water currents and the cave like round gullies in the rock. We can help you make a picnic out of this interesting adventure.
Thattekad Bird Sanctuary
This is the first bird sanctuary in Kerala described by Dr. Salim Ali, the accomplished ornithologist as the ‘richest bird habitat of peninsular India’. It is a low land evergreen forest covering an area of 25 km square, located between the tributaries of the Periyar River.
The Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is home to a wide variety of birds. The following are some of the birds found here:
- Oriental Darter
- Whiskered Terns
- Collared Scopes Owl
- Ceylon Frogmouth
- Pompadour Green Pigeon
- Yellow-browed Bulbuls
- Indian Cuckoo
- Jerdon’s Nightjar
- Large-billed Leaf-warbler
- Orange-headed Thrush
- Indian Pitta
- Drongo Cuckoo
- Indian Hawk Cuckoo
- Large Hawk Cuckoo
- Malabar Trogon
- Paradise Fly catcher
- Frog mouthed owl
Kodanad Elephant Sanctuary
Before the government ban on the capture of wild elephants, many elephants were captured from the Malayatoor forests (the forests in the East and North of Kodanad). What started as a training/taming centre for captured wild elephants has now been transformed into a safe haven for elephants.
Occasionally the forest rangers come across orphans, wounded or sick elephants in the forest. Such elephants are brought to Kodanad elephant training centre and cared for. They make this their permanent home. Since it is practically difficult for them to adapt back to the wild, they are kept here in the safety of this sanctuary. The famous Malayatoor church is also near Kodanad.
Kodanad Elephant Bathing Ceremony
This can be a rare and exciting experience. In the morning the elephants are walked to the Periyar River from the sanctuary for their daily bath. Visitors are allowed to walk with the elephants to the river. Then the mahout gently guides them into the river one by one. It is so thrilling to watch them respond accurately to the mahout’s commands like obedient children. The mahouts give them a nice scrub, and they seem to thoroughly enjoy their bath. If you are brave enough, the mahouts will let you join them in bathing the elephants. This is bound be one of the rarest experiences you will ever have. Have someone click away some of these amazing frames of you sitting on an elephant half submerged in the river, and you scrubbing its body with natural coconut fiber. Yes, you can do it at Kodanad!
Athirappally Water Falls
Athirappally Falls is the largest waterfall in Kerala, embellishing the ‘Chalakudy’ River along its surge through the picturesque ‘Vazhachal’ Forest Division and the ‘Sholayar’ mountain ranges. The river originates in the Anamudi Mountains of the Western Ghats, which are some of the highest in Kerala. It continues through the Vazhachal Forest cluster towards the Arabian Sea, covering a total distance of 145 kilometers. Here at Athirappally the river drops to 80 feet to form this marvelous perennial waterfall. The river bifurcates before it reaches this area to form a secondary waterfall called Vazhachal Falls which is not too far from the main fall. Initially the river runs smoothly, but becomes rather turbulent as it nears Athirappally. Water heaving around huge and characteristic rock formations provides excellent possibilities for composing some amazing nature photographs.
This is also an area rich with wildlife like the Asiatic elephant, tiger, leopard, bison, sambar and the lion-tailed macaque. The tall trees in the lush riparian forest of the Athirappally/Vazhachal area provide the ideal habitat for all four South Indian species of Hornbills. This is the only place where the Great Hornbill (the state bird of Kerala), Malabar Pied Hornbill, Malabar Grey Hornbill and the Indian Grey Hornbill are all found existing together. Due to its extensive bio-diversity, many environmentalists claim that both Athirappally and the Vazhachal forest division have one of the rarest and richest riparian ecosystems in Kerala. According to the International Bird Association, this entire milieu is a ‘vital bird area’.
Besides, the river is the habitat for over 85 species of fresh water fishes; some of which are quite rare. We highly recommend that you set aside some time to visit this area during your stay at Whispering Waters. Your experience will be special!
Malayattoor St. Thomas Shrine
St. Thomas Shrine at Malayattoor is one of the most popular pilgrim centers in Kerala, India. It has been attracting devotees from not just Kerala, but from all across India. Lately much interest is shown by guest tourists from overseas.
It is documented that St. Thomas introduced Christianity to Kerala. While travelling through Malayattoor as part of his Christian Gospel mission, he was forced to flee for safety to the hilltop by the hostile natives. He remained there in prayer for long periods of time. There were many miracles witnessed by people through the power of his prayers. The small church constructed here on this hill top has been officially designated by the Vatican as one among the eight International Shrines with great historic relevance in the world.
Devotees flock to this hill shrine during the entire Good Friday and the Easter weeks.
Karanoor Siva Temple
This temple is located about 4 km from the resort. This is dedicated to the Lord Shiva. When you face the entrance of the temple, you can see the 3 designated centers for worship. On the left is the ‘Ganapathy’ consecration, ‘Shasthav’ in the middle and Bhadrakali on the right. It is so deep in the woods, offering peace and serenity.
Sree Dharma Shastra Temple
The entire 6 km drive to this temple is through the boundaries of the reserved forest. You can experience a rugged road with spectacular views of the forest on both sides. The location of the temple is at a remote place called ‘Kulakkunnel’. This temple has vast vacant surroundings ideal for picnic. The temple is constructed on a very high rock formation offering a panoramic view from the outside of its compound.
Thottuva Sree Dhanwanthari Moorthi Temple
Thottuva Dhanwanthari Temple is highly revered among the Dhanwanthari temples in South India. Here Lord Dhanwanthari is believed to be the savior of those who are victims of various diseases. Thousands of believers from all across India visit this temple hoping to receive cure for their ailments. Here the ‘Chathurbahu’ idol of Lord Dhanwanthari stands six feet tall. According to legend, Lord Parasurama consecrated the Dhanwanthari idol here.
Every year between mid November to the end of December is the ‘Mandalam’ period. During this period, maximum number of devotees visits the temple for receiving blessings to get relief from chronic ailments. They take a holy dip in the stream called ‘Thottuva Thodu’ which flows east, beside the temple and worship the Lord Dhanwanthari. Devotees believe that even incurable diseases are cured by worshiping Lord Dhanwanthari at Thottuva.
The historical relevance of this temple is clearly illustrated by the huge Banyan tree in front of the temple, which is now deteriorating with age. This Banyan tree’s age has been carbon dated to an amazing 5000 years.
Kalady Sri Sri Ravisankara Ashram
This is one among the Sri Sri Ravisankara group of Ashrams placed across India and abroad. It is a vast area with modern facilities. Sath Sangh is conducted here every Sunday at 6 pm.
Kalady Sankara Temple & Museum
Sankara’s Shrine at Kalady is run by the Sringeri Mutt. It is a large structure located on the bank of the river Periyar. There are 2 shrines in the temple. One is dedicated to Sri. Sankaracharya, and the other one to Goddess Saradamba. Saradamba is the main deity of Sringeri. The Samadhi of Aryamba, Sri. Sankara’s mother is also located here. Evening prayers and chanting is conducted here at the smaller shrine to Vinayaka or Ganapathi.
There is also a museum here that is highly informative.
Ramakrishna Advaita Ashram tour
The Ramakrishna Advaita Ashram is located beside the birth place of Sri.Shankara. The venue has a large prayer hall and a shrine. The Ashram also runs a school named Brahmanandodayan, a dispensary that is charitable and a library.
Kallil Bhagavathy Temple
Kallil cave temple is believed to be 1500 years old and is located about 2 km. from Odakkali, not too far from the Paniely Poru area. This temple is located on a vast 28 acre hillock. It is constructed by cutting into a huge rock. Climbing up through 120 steps takes you to the top of the rock where the temple is situated.
The temple is owned by the ancient family of Kallil Pisharody. Though Durgadevi is the main deity of the temple, an idol of Lord Brahma is also seen carved at the top of the rock. Siva and Vishnu are also worshipped along with Lord Brahma. After the morning Poojas, the temple is open only till noon. The big annual festival is conducted during November and December.
The Kallil Bhagavathy Temple is perceived by some as a Jain worship place as well. The reason is the presence of a statue of the Jain Seer Vardhamanamahavira which is carved on the rock covering the roof.
A female elephant carries the idol of the deity during the grand procession associated with the annual festival.