Athirappally is located 63 km. from Thrissur and Vazhachal 68 km. from Thrissur. Athirappally and Vazhachal, the two scenic and popular waterfalls on the edge of the Sholayar forest ranges are just 5 km. apart.
The Athirappally Falls joins the Chalakkudy river, after plummeting down a drop of 80 feet. Vazhachal is part of the Chalakkudy river. Both the waterfalls, their cool, misty waters cascading down in the backdrop of thick green forest and rocky terrain, are a scintillating experience to visitors. Truly, Athirappally is worthy of being called the ‘Niagra of India’.
One will never forget the sight of the Athirappally falls. You realise that even the road down to the sight is breathtaking! Serpentine roads along the hills filled with an amazing range of flora and fauna - rubber trees, palm trees, coconut trees and small streams running amidst them, you realise that almost all roads in Kerala are scenic and make the drive even more interesting.
Approximately 80 feet high, the falls is a part of the Chalakudy River. The entrance to the falls is steep and is a 2 km. trek. As you walk higher and higher, the forest area is quiet and you can hear different types of birds singing and recognise each bird from its voice. During monsoon, the trek turns slippery and is filled with little frogs jumping here and there. Walk around 15 minutes and you can hear the gigantic voice of the falls and ho! as you climb up, you can see the river flowing past huge rocks and trees.
The falls are so huge that for a minute you may not believe your eyes! You also thank yourself that the trek has been worth it, as you again go down towards the falls. No wonder, the sight has been a favourite with film directors for their locations.
If one is on a holiday to Kerala, then a visit to the Athirapally falls should not be missed, as it is a favourite destination for all those who love the magnificence of immaculate natural beauty. The ideal time to visit the Falls is during the monsoon, when the rain water is falling on the river and fishermen are busy catching fish sitting by the river. Swimming here is not recommended during this time.
There are many treks around the hilly area to explore the falls. You wouldn’t want to leave the place and want to enjoy the falls and the sound even after the sun sets. But as you embark on the next journey, the falls and its beauty will linger on in your minds for long.
Athirapally and Vazhachal are the most famous waterfalls of Kerala which attract tourists in plenty.
A good motorable road takes you to Vazhachal and Athirapally from either Kochi or Thrissur town.
Nearest railway station is Chalakudy, about 30 km. away. Nearest airport is Cochin International Airport, about 58 km. from Thrissur.