Kuttralam is in the Tirunelveli district of South India. It is famous for its numerous waterfalls. You can literally find people running around and taking bath in waterfalls with towels on their shoulders. The waterfalls are fed by the monsoon, colloquially referred to as "Kuttralam Season". Due to its location and relative cheap expenses, it is often referred to as "Poor man's paradise".The best time to visit is mid-June to September and October-January.
Kuttralam is also mentioned in many classical tamil literary works.
Kuttralam is a famous location is Tamil Nadu, so getting in is not a problem.
Madurai is the nearest airport, which has flights connecting to Chennai. You can reach Kuttralam by bus, train or by hiring a taxi from Madurai. The journey takes about 3 hours. Another one is Thiruvananthapuram international airport (~100 km) and it takes 3 hours from there too. Thenmala eco-tourism centre, Palaruvi waterfalls and Kulathuppuzha Ayyappa temple are on the route from Thiruvananthapuram.
There is also an airport at Tuticorin(90km) which has infrequent flights.
Kuttralam is just 6km away from Thenkasi Railway Junction. Getting in is easy.
Kuttralam is situated about 200km from Madurai, 65 km from Tirunelveli and 5 km from Tenkasi. Tenkasi is a bustling town, which has decent bus services to many parts in south Tamil Nadu. Alternatively, special buses operated by the government ply directly to Kuttralam during the season.
Though there are numerous waterfalls, they are only from small streams. So, Kuttralam does not have a pier. The nearest seaport is at Tuticorin.
Auto Rickshaws (trishaw or Tuk-tuk) are available at every corner and near the waterfalls. They can be used to effectively see the various waterfalls within the place.
Hiring a cab is a common mode of transport. The common waterfalls have parking facilities with nominal charges, so it is advisable to hire a cab...
Wherever you turn, you will see people with towels moving about. There are numerous waterfalls in Kuttralam which offer beautiful and scenic moments to experience.
- 1 Five Falls. After the main falls, this is the most famous waterfalls and definitely the most enjoyable of all. It is located 6km from the main falls. The water here splits into five branches while falling, so it is called "Five falls"
- Karayar Dam & Falls, Papanasam (via Ambasamuthram). 1. Another wonderful spot little away from Kuttralam is the Karayar dam. Believe it you have a wonderful waterfall inside the dam which takes about 15 minutes of boat ride from the shore. This is an awesome place to feel the nature and take a shower.
- Kutraleeshwarar Temple. Close to the Main falls is the temple dedicated to Lord Kuttraleeshwarar. It is common for the locals to take bath in the falls and offer prayers here.
- 2 Main Falls. This waterfall is located close to the bus stand, and greets you as you enter Kuttralam. It is usually crowded during the season, and you can take bath here 24 hours a day. It is a beautiful waterfall of about 130 feet.
- Old Courtallam. This is not a historic place, but there is a waterfall here too! This waterfall is maintained by the PWD by controlling the waterflow.
- Shenbagadevi. This beautiful falls is located upstream and as part of the cascade that forms the Main falls. You can reach shenbagadevi only by trekking for about 30 minutes. Entry to this falls is restricted during peak season due to flash floods and unruly behaviour of the crowd.
- Sittraruvi. Sittraruvi or "Small Falls" is an offshoot of the Main falls located to its side. It is very small and completely safe to enjoy a shower here.
- Thenaruvi. Located even above Shenbagadevi is the serene Thenaruvi or "Honey Falls". This is the first cascade in a series of waterfalls, and considered the most pure. Ostinably, it is least crowded, as you have to trek for more the 2 hours to reach this falls. Entry to this falls is also restricted during peak season owing to flash floods.
- 3 Tiger Falls. This is located between Old Courtallam and Main falls. This falls is in a private property, which is charges people to take bath.
Kuttralam is located away from the city's bustle, so you can unwind and relax here. The town gets crowded during the season, as people pour in to experience for the "Kuttralam experience".
Obviously, the must thing to do in Kuttralam is take bath! Facilities are available at all the falls for safe bathing with separate facilities for women, and even police presence! This is required as a precaution as number of people come in during the season, and the crowd could get out of hand. Have an oil massage which is very pleasant before a bath in the falls.
During the peak season this place will be like a paradise, It is also called as poor mans ooty but now all the cost is getting increased due to the popularity
Local handicrafts and souvenirs are available.Fruits like Rambootan,Mangosteen, are available.
There are numerous hotels in the town, being a tourist spot. One of the famous hotel, Rahmed Porata stall situated in piranoor, that is in the bus route of Senkaottai to Tenkasi via Ilanji. There is very long queue during the season period, since it the good non-vegetarian hotel for over more than 15 years. The cuisine is traditionally South Indian with limited options for others. Its also famously known as the Bilal Border Parotta Shop
There are numerous tea-shops for a hot sip of tea or coffee.
Alcohol is served in bars and also by government run "TASMAC" shops. Please be aware that public comsumption is prohibited, and you could get into trouble.
There are resorts, hotels, lodges available both in Tenkasi and Kuttralam. They have differential rates during the peak season.