Vagamon - An Idyllic Hideout
An idyllic hill station located in the outskirts of Kottayam – Idukki districts, Vagamon is the top pilgrimage hub famous among picnickers, trekkers and nature enthusiasts. The main scenic beauty of the place lies in the thick greenery, contiguous hillocks stretching a vast area and the serene lake amidst the blessed nature. If you ever think why the verdant land in the ever-green God’s Own Country is one of the sought after destination, we have more to get you a clear picture that Vagamon is not just a grassy landscape but offers lot more to mesmerise its guests.
Endowed with velvet lawns, grassy pastures, misty mountains, the destination blends with religious spiritualism and the European heritage. British found the location best for tea plantations followed by Christian Missionaries who built their monastery on top of the hill, Kurisumala (Mountain of the Cross). Once you reach Vagamon, get to know the nook and corner of the enchanting site and you would feel the mystic secrets of nature. Trekking trails to the three hills is exciting and adventurous, the solid roads cut out of treacherous rocks lined by huge pine trees – the Kurisumala is a famous pilgrimage spot for Christians and trek up to the church atop the hill is exhilarating. The Thangal hill is significant for Muslims and Murugan hill for Hindus. The Indo-Swiss Project Dairy Farms managed by monks is situated at Kurisumala, one of the attractions of the hill which shouldn’t be missed.
Lying on the borders of the Western Ghats, the hills to the bottom line of Vagamon reach the unspoilt and scenic Teekoy village, another tourist destination. The place has deep gorges and the spotless Meenachil River flows between. Travelling along the hill highway of Vagamon is thrilling, as you wind up the green bald hills, the splendid views of valleys and steep slopes comes thousands of feet below you, the charm is beyond mysterious and renders a heavenly touch.
The route to Vagamon from Erattupetta was constructed in 1950’s and one of the amazing state highways. It was built under the leadership of Acharya Francis, who established the popular pilgrimage centre, KurisumalaAshramam (Monastery). The road built on the uneven terrain was an achievement to marvel as many labourers sacrificed their lives for the tedious project. The 20 foot tall tower stands as a memorial to those workers, a famous attraction on the Teekoy town junction.
The ideal family picnic destination has a pleasant, cool climate throughout the year which has a major draw for tourists. Elevated at 1100m above sea level, during summer midday the temperature varies between 10 and 23 °C, while most regions of Kerala would be steaming. Does that sound captivating? During winter, the destination becomes explicitly glamorous, thick misty clouds caressing the hillocks, as the night falls, the mist grows very thick and you may not be able to see someone standing just 5feet away. The picturesque landscape dotted with pine trees covered with mist keeps you wondering that you are in some dream destination and the feel is baffling. It is a perfect hideout for newlyweds.
Undisturbed by the commercial influences, the verdant pastures, rolling meadows, mists, pine trees, fogs, winding roads, tea plantations, mesmerising waterfalls blanketed with the chill atmosphere looks daringly charming and exquisite. The spot also houses varieties of striking flowers and orchids.
Vagamon is a superb haunt for adventurers and fun-seekers; trekking, rock climbing, mountaineering, paragliding are interesting activities.
Rated by ‘National Geographic Traveler’ as one of the “50 most attractive places to visit in India,” Vagamon is adorned with immaculate natural beauty beyond comprehension, a destination you have always wanted to call and dreamt. Make your next Kerala trip special.
This article is authored by Ajith Thomas who is one of the authors of the blog GreatBackwaters, you can find him at Google+