The Temple Falls
Ayyanar Falls are located in the Virudhunagar district of the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. They can be placed at a distance of 10 kilometers from Rajapalayam village. Ayyanar Falls are a part of the eastern slopes of the Western Ghats of the south. The source of water to these falls is the monsoon rains in the region. The water of the cascade is believed to be very pure and hence used by the nearby villages for drinking purpose. These waters are also used for irrigation in the surrounding areas, by the local farmers. The area near the Ayyanar falls is ideal for woodland mountain climbing for the tourists.
The nearest airport to the Ayyanar falls is at Madurai. Ayyanar falls are amongst many cascades that grace the southern part of the state of Tamil Nadu. Apart from the Ayyanar falls, other tourist destinations around the area are Ayyanar Kovil, a dam near the falls, Srivilliputtur, Ayyanar Koil Forest area, Sri Vallakattu Karuppasamy Kovil, Sanjeevi Hills and Shenbagathoppu Grizzled Squirrel Wildlife Sanctuary. Tourism is the main source of livelihood for the people residing in the neighboring villages of the Ayyanar falls. Some of the important tourist destinations have been elaborated below:
Ayyanar Koil Forest Area
The Ayyanar forest area is graced with many water bodies such as waterfalls, springs and streams, bringing greenery into the area. The famous Ayyanar temple is located within this forest. Hiking, trekking and mountaineering is undertaken by the locals and tourists visiting this forest area.
Shenbagathoppu Grizzled Squirrel Wildlife Sanctuary
This wildlife area was established in the year 1989. It covers an area of 480 square kilometers. Periyar Tiger Reserve and Megamalai forest reserve are the neighboring protected area of the sanctuary. The altitude of the region ranges from 100 meters to 2010 meters. The sanctuary is home to the Grizzled Squirrel after which the sanctuary has been named.
This town is located near Rajapalayam. The town is renowned for a 12 tier tower that is dedicated to the local God Vatapatrasayee. This tower is used by the Government of Tamil Nadu as their official symbolic representation.
Sri Vallakattu Karuppasamy Kovil
This temple is located near the Ayyanar temple, in the middle of the Ayyanar forest area. This temple is the most coveted in the region.
The Ayyanar falls derive their name from the Ayyanar temple, located near this cascade. Apart from the Ayyanar falls, there are many other cascades in the adjoining forests. Elephant and Indian Gaur sighting is common, on a visit to the Ayyanar falls. The Ayyanar Falls are a local picnic spot and a tourist attraction at the same time. A long trek of about 3 hours, along with some climbing, leads to the prestigious falls of Ayyanar. The Ayyanar falls are a natural flowing cascade. The height of these falls is 15 feet above sea level. The ideal time to visit the Ayyanar falls is in the months of September to January, after the monsoons subside.