Unplanned trips, for me, have been the most happening and adventurous. There might be many who disagree. But for me, planning extensively for leisure trip have most of the time, has ended up in cancellation. Let me tell you about an unplanned trip I and my roommate made to Thenmala, the most prominent among the many eco-tourism destinations in southern Kerala.

I had seen the photos of Thenmala shared by my friends. Since then this destination has always been in my ‘must go’ list. Now that I am in Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam is not that far.  KSRTC buses that pass through Thenmala are available from Thiruvananthapuram. If you wake up early enough, you can board the Tenkasi bus that will take you to Thenmala.

The bus leaves from Thiruvananthapuram at around 6:30. You can reach Thenmala at around 9 am if you catch this bus; it takes you 2- 2: 30 hours to reach there.

What happened with us was that we got down at the wrong stop. We had to take an auto to go back to Thenmala Dam. The entry arch read Kallada Irrigation Project. The entry fee to the Thenmala Dam is Rs 20. It will take you at least one hour to explore the dam.

We might have taken more as we were lazy and hungry. Our breakfast for the day was bread and jam we packed for ourselves the previous night. From the entrance, you have to walk along tarred roads and then take a flight of steps to reach the top. Throughout the trail, you get to see nature holding her head high showing off her beautiful self.

From above the dam, on one side is a vast river, drumming the dam walls longing to free itself from there, and continuing its journey to the sea. Meanwhile, on the other side, is a river three or four times narrower than the one on the other side. To exit the dam site, you will need to walk a lot.

On one side there are trees and only trees, while on the other there a lots of bamboo plants. Monkeys were seen frolicking in the cool shades. By 11:30 am, we exited the dam site and started walking along the main road that took us to the counter where tickets (Rs 260 per person) for the adventure zone was being sold. We explored the surrounding regions before venturing into the adventure zone.

After lunch at a shack run by a granny, we went straight to the adventure zone. You need to walk a bit from the dam entrance to reach the adventure zone. Adventure activities including boating, zip line, shooting, trampoline, cycling and the like are offered here.

Another attraction is the walkway that will take you to the boating area. The raised walkway which stands amidst the trees gives you a visual treat of the green canopy above. Through the trees, you also get to see the boating area. There were various other adventure sports arranged there which both adults and kids can enjoy equally.

We had to ditch the leisure zone at Thenmala as we had to get back to Thiruvananthapuram.  Though we missed some spots, we were able to pull it off the trip without a lot of planning.

Pix: Clicked By the Author

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