Thenmala is an attractive tourist destination in the Kollam district of Kerala, at an altitude of 1,640 ft above sea level. This is the first planned ecotourism project in India, and has been divided into five major zones, namely, Culture, Adventure, Leisure, Deer Rehabilitation, and Boating Zones. Literally meaning ‘Honey Hill,’ this heavenly abode has gained immense popularity due to its unique bio-diversity. Apart from being a nature’s paradise, it also offers a plethora of adventure and cultural activities. Palaruvi Waterfall and the suspension bridge at Punalur are major tourist hotspots. The closest airport and railway station to Thenmala is situated in Trivandrum and Kollam, respectively. Regular bus services are also available from Trivandrum Central Bus Station to Thenmala.

Major Attractions:

● Thenmala Dam- Built across the Kallada river, enjoy a magnificent view from the top of the dam or enjoy a lazy boat ride across the river. But keep in mind that photography is prohibited in this location.

● Shendurney Wildlife Sanctuary- This evergreen, tropical sanctuary surrounds the Thenmala Dam, and is an ideal sightseeing and trekking spot. The forest areas serve as a habitat for many endangered trees. The lion tailed macaque can also be spotted here.

● Musical Dancing Fountain- This is one of the prime tourist spots in the cultural zone. The water of the fountain dances to the rhythm of the music, and is a captivating sight.

● Butterfly Park- A 3.5 hectare plot has been artificially constructed to house 125 species of butterflies. Special shrubs and artificial sprinklers are used to boost the breeding of larvae. You can also learn about the life cycle of some rare butterfly species.

● Deer Rehabilitation Centre- This centre was built to protect stray deers from nearby forest areas. You can get a closer look at the different kinds of deers from the treetop huts present here.

When To Visit:

Although Thenmala experiences pleasant weather all through the year, it is advisable to visit during the winter season, between November and February. You can enjoy outdoor sports and spot exotic birds during this time of year. However, the monsoon season from June to September, experiences incessant rainfall and can dampen your travel plans.