Perched high above in the the Sholayar forest ranges on the fringes of Kerala's famed rain forests, the waterfalls provides a restful escape for those wanting to leave the hurried pace of city life behind. wild and beautiful, unspoilt by the passing of time.
Both this waterfalls are a part of the Chalakudy river and 5 km apart on the road to hill station (valparai) which has excellent tea estate and is one of India's highest elephant density habitats and is a crucial corridor between Parambikulam and Malayattur
The Athirapally waterfalls provides a restful escape for those wanting to leave the hurried pace of city life behind. The water plunges and joins to the Chalakudi River. The scenic attraction of Vazhachal, the other picnic spot is just a drive from Athirampally. These scintillating waterfalls in thick green forest are a part of the Chalakudy river stream.
The riparian forests of the Chalakudy River have revealed the existence of a thick riparian vegetation of more than 10 metres width for a distance of 10.5 km downstream from Peringalkuth, covering an area of 58.5 hectares. Out of this, 26.4 hectares lie within the Vazachal area, including three large islands densely covered by riparian forests.
The riparian forests of the area have been found to be characterised by the presence of typical riparian species of plants, in addition to evergreen and semi-evergreen species.Out of the 319 species of flowering plants identified from the study area, 24 are endemic species of the Western Ghats and 10 are rare and endangered.
Moreover, the Chalakudy River is known for its diversity, as it contains 85 species of fresh water fishes out of the 152 species known from Kerala. Among these, 35 are endemic species of the Western Ghats and nine are considered to be endangered.
In the midst of these two water theme parks is Thumpurmuzhi, an ideal stopover with its garden, scenic splendor and a classic waterfall. The park is ideally placed 55 km away from Thrissur. The park is situated on the banks of Chalakkudy river and you can also sight Thumpurmuzhi dam here. You can find here over 180 species of colourful butterflies. Some of them are lemon butterfly, southern birdwing, common rose, light blue tiger, dark blue tiger etc.
If you are able to reach here in the morning, you will be lucky enough to sight big and several species of butterflies. You can also see here various plants like pagoda flower, rattlepods, Mexican heather or Hawaiin heather, rubiaceae, flame lilly etc, feeding the butterflies. Children can very well enjoy here as there is a children's park inside this beautiful garden. You will get various facilities like DTPC restaurant, bathing ghat, snack bar, Chinese pavilion, washrooms and parking areas.
This destination is well connected by roads and railway. You will have to pay a nominal entry fee for visiting Thumburmuzhi and if you want to take good snaps, take your camera along with you by paying the camera fee.
To the east of Athirappilly is the enchanting but lesser known Charpa falls which plunges on to the road during monsoon. It is a sight to watch and enjoy. Located in the Athirapally Panchayat in Thrissur district, the Charpa falls lay in between the beautiful Athirapally and Vazhachal waterfalls, in the Chalakudy river.
When compared to other falls, the Charpa waterfall is from a low height, but often tourists are attracted towards to this spectacular fall. The waterfall is ideally located around 60 km away from Thrissur.
Oil palm plantation
Plantation Corporation of Kerala (PCK) is an independent company, which is purely based on plantation. The Company have 705 hectors of oil palm plantation in its Kalady Group of Estates. Ideally placed on the banks of Chalakudy river, this oil palm plantation is blessed with its panoramic view. The scenic beauty of this plantation is attracting tourists to Sholayar Valley and Athirapilly. Major part of the Plantations is installed with drip irrigation system. Presently, 422 hectors of the plantation is ready for yielding and another 283 hectors is expected to reach yield level very soon.