The Western Ghats, a vital ecosystem for our country, boasts enchanting beauty and abundant biodiversity. Its lush hills, deep valleys, and resplendent waterfalls, particularly during the monsoon season, make it an idyllic destination for a memorable road trip. As we traverse these magnificent hills, we discover a paradise for nature lovers and adventure seekers alike.
Here are seven exceptional stops to include in your Western Ghats road trip
1. Mahabaleshwar, Maharashtra
Nestled in Maharashtra, this hill station is renowned for its majestic peaks, gushing waterfalls, meandering rivers, and succulent strawberries, earning it the moniker The Land of Strawberries. Mahabaleshwar also holds sacred significance as the origin of the river Krishna, making it a significant pilgrimage site. With its exquisite natural landscapes, this town serves as the perfect starting point for your Western Ghats adventure.
2. Kaas Plateau, Maharashtra
Located in Satara, Maharashtra, Kaas Plateau is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a mesmerizing landscape of meadows, flowers, and serene lakes, transporting visitors to a fairyland. This biodiversity hotspot hosts a diverse array of flora and fauna, attracting nature enthusiasts. The plateau dazzles from August to October when an array of flowers bloom, accentuating its ethereal charm.
3. Dudhsagar Falls, Goa
Counted among India's tallest waterfalls, Dudhsagar Falls earns its name from the milky white appearance of the cascading water, especially during the monsoon. The sight of these powerful falls against the lush green backdrop leaves visitors awestruck. This popular tourist spot allows for frolicking in the waters and offers various trekking trails for the adventurous.
4. Gokarna, Karnataka
Known as the tranquil cousin of Goa, Gokarna in Karnataka lures visitors with its serene beaches, azure sea, and swaying palm trees, providing a perfect escape from the hustle and bustle. This offbeat destination offers a peaceful retreat and the chance to visit the nearby Murudeshwar temple, home to the world's second-largest statue of Lord Shiva.
5. Jog Falls, Karnataka
As we traverse the Western Ghats, we encounter Jog Falls in Karnataka, the second-highest waterfall in India. During the monsoon months, Jog Falls unveils its full splendour, captivating visitors with its raw power and beauty. The falls split into four streams, aptly named Raja, Roarer, Rocket, and Rani, providing an entertaining spectacle to nature lovers.
6. Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu
Known as the Land of Forests, Kodaikanal entices with its picturesque hills, lush forests, serene lakes, and valleys that exude a fairytale charm. The pleasant climate and mesmerizing waterfalls add to the allure of this hill station, making it an ideal retreat for nature enthusiasts. A visit to Kodaikanal guarantees a rejuvenating experience amidst the captivating greenery.
7. Munnar, Kerala
The final gem of your Western Ghats road trip, Munnar in Kerala, enchants visitors with its captivating hills, verdant tea plantations, and stunning valleys. The occasional mist that envelops the landscape adds an ethereal touch to this famous tourist attraction. Nature lovers are treated to unique spectacles like the Neelakurinji flower, blooming once every twelve years, and the Nilgiri Tahr, found among the hills' rich biodiversity.