13 Best Trekking Places In South India

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Home to the splendid Western as well as the Eastern Ghats, the southern region of India is a haven for all types of travellers. Be it beach babies, be it devotional souls, be it hardcore romantics or be it trekking and hiking enthusiasts, the region has something for everybody. If you fall into the last category, of trekking fanatics, this blog is just for you. Boasting of some of the finest peaks, dense forests and pristine beaches to be conquered, here’s a list of 13 of the best trekking places in South India. Ready to explore the rugged terrains on foot?

Best Trekking Places In Tamil Nadu:

1. Nilgiris Green Lake Trek, Ooty:

Nilgiris Green Lake Trek

Surrounded by enchanting forests, rolling hills and charming meadows, the massive Green Lake in the Nilgiris is a sight to behold and possibly one of the best trekking places in Tamil Nadu. The trek involves walking through dense vegetation made up of pine, bamboo and eucalyptus trees, to reach the lake. And it does not end there; you also get to explore the circumference of the lake which gives you lovely panoramic views of the entire region. If you want to undertake forest trekking in south India, you should begin with this hike.

Difficulty Level: Easy

Approximate Duration: 6 to 8 hours

Best Time To Visit: September to March

2. Perumal Trek, Kodaikanal:

Perumal Trek

PC: Wikimedia Commons

Located at a distance of 11 kilometres from Kodaikanal, the Perumal Peak is one of the highest peaks in the Perumalmalai hills, a part of the Western Ghats. The trek begins at the Neutral Saddle, a spot close to the Perumal Mallai Village and you will be walking in the clouds by the time you reach the top. Kodaikanal is located at a distance of approximately 525 kilometres from the state capital. If you are searching for best trekking places near Chennai, you can consider heading over for the Perumal Trek over a long weekend.

Difficulty Level: Easy

Approximate Duration: 5 to 6 hours

Best Time To Visit: January to May

Best Trekking Places In Karnataka:

3. Tadiyandamol Trek, Coorg:

Tadiyandamol Trek

The third highest peak in Karnataka, Tadiyandamol is a delight for all trekkers- beginners as well as experts. With a maximum elevation of 1,748 metres, the hike involves walking through shola forests thus making it a good forest trekking destination in south India. Tadiyandamol offers enchanting views from the top and yet, the trek itself is not very demanding and hence it is a favourite with everyone visiting Coorg.

Difficulty Level: Easy

Approximate Duration: 4 to 6 hours

Best Time To Visit: October to March

4. Makalidurga Trek, Bangalore:

Makalidurga Trek

Located at a distance of approximately 59 kilometres from the city of Bangalore, Makalidurga is a popular trekking place near Bangalore. A hill fort, this is also a great night trekking destination in India. Photography enthusiasts love visiting this place as it offers views of some of the best sunrises and sunsets in the country.

Difficulty Level: Easy

Approximate Duration: 4 to 6 hours

Best Time To Visit: October to March

5. Narasimha Parvata Trek, Agumbe:

Narasimha Parvata Trek

One of the challenging treks in India, the Narasimha Parvata Trek needs to be undertaken under the leadership of an expert. Not only because of the technicality involved in hiking up but also because of the camouflaged King Cobras! Also, you don’t want to be lost in the wilderness do you?! Please sign up with a local tour/ trek operator and only then undertake this thrilling trek.

Difficulty Level: Difficult

Approximate Duration: 8 to 10 hours

Best Time To Visit: October to March

6. Nishani Betta, Coorg:

Nishani Betta

Also known as Nishani Motte, the Nishani Betta trek is where nature meets man! Surrounded by coffee plantations and lush green hills, the peak is relatively unknown as thus provides a tranquil trekking experience. It is situated in the Brahmagiri mountain range and is quite easy to be undertaken even by children. It is also a popular monsoon trekking destination in south India.

Difficulty Level: Easy

Approximate Duration: 3 to 4 hours

Best Time To Visit: July to March

Also Read: 15 Best Monsoon Treks in India

Best Trekking Places In Andhra Pradesh:

7. Talakona Waterfalls Trek, Tirupati:

Talakona Waterfalls Trek

At a distance of 64 kilometres from Tirupati, the incredible Talakona Falls are situated within the Sri Venkateswara National Park. Cascading from a height of 270 feet and falling into a deep valley, the waterfall is the highest one in the state of Andhra Pradesh. There are many approach routes that lead to the waterfall and you can choose one as per your trekking experience. Some of the routes are best left to experts while some can be undertaken even by kids.

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Approximate Duration: 6 to 8 hours

Best Time To Visit: September to February

8. Antarvedi to Karavaka, Antarvedi:

The Antarvedi to Karavaka trek is a unique one; instead of hiking up a mountain, you will be trekking along a beautiful coastal region. Undertaken over a period of two days, this trek also includes camping under thousands of stars. Now that’s one exhilarating trudge every trekking lover needs to be a part of. Note that during the trek, swimming in the waters is not allowed because the sea as well as the terrain near it is unpredictable.

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Approximate Duration: 2 days

Best Time To Visit: October to April

Best Trekking Places In Kerala:

9. Chokramudi Trek, Munnar:

Chokramudi TrekPC: Wikimedia Commons

Do make it a point to go on the Chokramudi Trek while in Munnar. It offers spectacular views of the entire Idukki district and makes for stunning photography opportunities. A good trekking spot in Kerala, the trek is a moderate one and it is advised that first timers don’t undertake it on their own as there are a few patches on the path that need experienced navigation.

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Approximate Duration: 3 to 5 hours

Best Time To Visit: August to February

10. Chembra Peak, Wayanad:

Chembra Peak

One of the best trekking places in south India, the Chembra Peak in Wayanad is a must for outdoor enthusiasts. Situated at 2,050 metres above sea level, the peak is the highest one in the district. Surrounded by tea estates, the summit offers mesmerising panoramic views of the expanse. Before taking up the trek, you will have to take permission from the Meppady Forest Office. Also, be aware that overnight camping is forbidden as there is a threat from wild animals.

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Approximate Duration: 5 to 6 hours

Best Time To Visit: October to April

11. Vavul Mala, Kozhikode:

Vavul Mala

Starting from Muthappanpuzha, the trek up the Vavul Mala is full of dense forests, steep climbs and wild animals. No wonder then that it is considered one of the most challenging treks in India. Definitely a tough trek in the south India, you will come across the gorgeous Olichuchattam Waterfall on this trek route. Trivia: Part of the Camel's Hump Mountains of the Western Ghats, Vavul Mala is the tallest peak in this mountain range.

Difficulty Level: Difficult

Approximate Duration: 2 days

Best Time To Visit: December to April

12. Dhoni Hills- Azhakampara Waterfall Trek, Palakkad:

Dhoni Hills- Azhakampara Waterfall Trek

A forest reserve, Dhoni Hills is a fantastic place where you get to explore nature at its magnificent best. Out of the many treks that one can undertake inside the reserve, you should explore the one to the cascading Azhakampara Waterfall. A steep uphill climb of approximately 4 kilometres brings you to the foot of the waterfall. Don’t forget to carry a change of clothes and some snacks for this trek route. It is advised to avoid swimming near the waterfall.

Difficulty Level: Moderate

Approximate Duration: 4 to 6 hours

Best Time To Visit: October to April

Best Trekking Places In Telangana

13. Elgandal Fort, Karimnagar

Less of a trek, more of a joyous picnic spot, the historical Elgandal Fort is worth a visit, especially if you are in town with your children. Situated on the banks of Manair River, the dam near the fort is a hub for water sports as well as land based adventure activities. Once you reach the fort on foot and catch your breath, you can take up rock climbing, rafting and other such cool sports.

Difficulty Level: Easy

Approximate Duration: 2 to 3 hours

Best Time To Visit: All year round!

Have you undertaken any of these treks? How was your experience? Do let us know by commenting below. Also let us know if we missed out on your favourite trek in South India, here's a quick recap of the top trekking places in South India:

  1. Nilgiris Green Lake Trek, Tamil Nadu
  2. Perumal Trek, Tamil Nadu
  3. Tadiyandamol Trek, Karnataka
  4. Makalidurga Trek, Karnataka
  5. Narasimha Parvata Trek, Karnataka
  6. Nishani Betta, Karnataka
  7. Talakona Waterfalls Trek, Andhra Pradesh
  8. Antarvedi to Karavaka, Andhra Pradesh
  9. Chokramudi Trek, Kerala
  10. Chembra Peak, Kerala
  11. Vavul Mala, Kerala
  12. Dhoni Hills- Azhakampara Waterfall Trek, Kerala
  13. Elgandal Fort, Telangana

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