The Nilgiris plateau of the Western Ghats of India is one of the richest in bio-diversity making it an important area for national parks. The area offers rolling hills, wide forest cover and favourable weather, plus there seems to be relatively better conservation proclivity amongst the people of the region. Mukurthi National Park is a protected area located in the south-eastern corner of the Nilgiris Plateau.
About Mukurthi National Park
The Mukurthi area was declared as a wildlife sanctuary in August 1982 and later upgraded as a National Park in October 1990 to protect the Nilgiri Tahr, a stocky goat which is the state animal of Tamil Nadu. Mukurthi National Park, is under consideration by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee for selection as a World Heritage Site. The Mukurthi peak at above 8000 feet above sea level provides great fascination with its odd shape of a sharp acute angle and is a grand imposing edifice to the region around.
Exploring Mukurthi National Park
The easiest way to get to Mukurthi is by road both from bigger cities like Bangalore and Chennai. The best way to explore this haven of natural resources is by foot. Ooty being the nodal point, it is the starting place for some fascinating treks into the reserve – though this can be done only with prior permission. Ooty is a good place to base yourself, homestay hosts in the area can give you handy tips for the treks and advise you on some special trails too.
Wildlife of Mukurthi National Park
Initially set up for the conservation activities around the Nilgiris Tahr, it is home to many other species of animals, namely leopards, deer, otters, small Indian civets, wild dogs, jackals, black nape hare and a plethora of avian diversity. It’s a treat for wildlife and bird watching enthusiasts.
Things to do in Mukurthi National Park
There are a number of trekking routes which are listed on the Tamil Nadu Forest Department website.
The Mukurthi peak is a trekker’s delight, don’t miss Parson’s peak, Pykara falls and extensions into Devabetta Silent Valley and Mudumalai National Park. After roughing it out in the wild, give yourself a rest in Ooty to enjoy beautiful gardens, visit a tea factory and relax with a picnic in the numerous green spaces.
When to go to Mukurthi National Park
Avoid the monsoons if you are not enthusiastic about leeches. For those who do not get flustered with weather, the rains are unbelievably beautiful to watch. The favourable season to visit Mukurthi is between February and May and then again in September to November. This is when you will see clear skies, the best of weather to trek in and robust waterfalls along the way.
If you are interested in visiting this national park then get in touch with our reservations team who can help you plan a fantastic itinerary.