Periyar in the Southern most state of Kerala , is one of the sixteen Project Tiger reserves in India, and one of the most picturesque and beautiful wildlife sanctuaries in the world. With its waterways, forests and grasslands, it provides a magnificent venue for both mammal and bird watching. Despite the destruction of much of the lowland forest within the reserve as a result of the construction of a dam across the Periyar River in 1895, its 777 square kilometres provide a haven for a wide range of mammals,including Tiger, Elephant, Gaur, Sloth bear, Leopard, Dhole, and Nilgiri Langur. Periyar National Park also has a rich and varied bird fauna and we will be hoping to see several of the species found only in southern India and Sri Lanka, such as Grey Junglefowl, Malabar Grey Hornbill, Malabar Parakeet, White-cheeked Barbet, Crimsonfronted Barbet, Black-headed Cuckoo-Shrike, Heart-Spotted Woodpecker, Rufous Babbler, White-bellied Blue Flycatcher, Rufous-tailed Flycatcher, Ruby-throated Bulbul and White-bellied Treepie.
Game viewing in Periyar National Park is done on Boats. The boat journeys provide unrivalled opportunities for observing mammals, particularly Elephants, at close range. Other mammals in abundance in Periyar National Park include Sambar, Nilgiri Langur, Malabar Giant Squirrel, Three-striped Palm Squirrel and Bonnet Macaque. Tiger sightings are relatively rare in Periyar, since game viewing is by boat and the big cats have sufficient cover to hide themselves. Another interesting activity in Periyar National Park is guided Jungle treks that are possible late night.
Located very close to the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, the Cardamom County, is a good value for money accommodation option in Periyar. This modern hotel has an outdoor swimming pool, ayurveda centre and yoga room along with a bar and restaurant serving Keralan, Indian and international dishes. Accommodation, is in beautifully landscaped cottages, each with a spacious bedroom and private verandah overlooking the resort.
The resort built on the periphery of a 777 sq. km. Wildlife Sanctuary called Periyar ,home to nomadic tribes of wild elephant, boar, deer, bear, the great Indian tiger and more. Set in the heart of the Cardamom Hills of Kerala, Spice Village is an unprecedented tourist destination, offering a rare opportunity to view and experience South India's wildlife and beauty. Spice Village is in Kumily, a small settlement three kilometers from Thekkady, the main entrance to the Periyar Tiger Reserve and a 10 minute drive from the gigantic man-made Periyar Lake. The design of each cottage was inspired by the native tribesmen of Periyar, the Oorali and Mannan, who lived in similar dwellings. (In fact, one of the cottages currently being used as an office is an original tribal hut, which has been modified.) A number of creature comforts have been added, however, to make your stay a luxurious one. Cottages with thatched roofs blend well with the surrounding greenery of the pepper vines. At the center of the village is a swimming pool, surrounded by tropical trees and lawns. The community hut houses a well-stocked bar and a unique restaurant that overlooks the pool. Spice Village has an exclusive Ayurvedic clinic, well equipped for treatments like Pizhichil, Njavarakizhy, Dhara and other natural therapies. At the Spice Village there's no lack of options on how you can get the best out of your holiday. Boat safaris, Jungle treks, Plantation visits… the possibilities are endless.