With the introduction of about 25 trekking routes to various places, including the Nilgiris, Servarayan Hills and Yercaud, the eco-tourism wing of Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation (TTDC) is planning to offer trekkers a different kind of experience.
Though the TTDC conducted several trekking tours to Valparai, Top slip, Kolli Hills, Servarayan Hills, Amaravathi Dam, Amrithi forest and Trisulam Hills in Chennai during 2010, it was suspended abruptly last year. The tours are being revived after a gap of 15 months with the maiden expedition to Udhagamandalam, Kern Hill, Avalanche, Lakhdi Top and Kollaripet.
While the scenic Avalanche Valley is the best place for trout fishing, Kern Hills attracts bird watchers. Lakhdi Top is near the Kerala border, where one can enjoy watching wild animals.
Such trips can be undertaken only with the help of trained guides, says a local forest official.
According to sources, while there are several trekking routes, the proposed one is one of the shortest. The distance from Udhagamandalam to Kern Hills is about three km. Avalanche is about 26 km from there.
One has to travel another five to 10 km to reach Lakhdi top and Kollaripet.
As part of the two-day trip, trekkers will be taken to Kern Hills first, followed by Avalanche, Upper Bhavani, Parsn Valley, Lakhdi Top and Kollaripet.
The TTDC set up the eco-tourism wing to lay stress on the significance of conservation among youngsters, create awareness among communities and tourists and prevent the use of non-biodegradable products. It is also aimed at promoting mental and physical fitness among the urban youth.
Talking to The Hindu, a tourism official says: “Most of our trekking tours are an instant hit among youngsters and corporate.
The youngsters are seeking adventurous and exciting trips, whereas older people evince interest in pilgrimages. In some places, we offer a mix of both.
“There are several places in the State, where trekking tours can be conducted for a day or two. However, more people should come forward to take part in it and the TTDC will be happy to organise such tours.”