Malampuzha Dam - 10 Things to Know Before Visiting
Cable Car Stations
About Malampuzha Dam
Malampuzha Dam, set overlooking the scenic hills of Western Ghats is the largest reservoir in Kerala, located near Palakkad in Kerala state in Southern India. The dam is a straight gravity type, with a combination of a masonry dam of 1,849 meters in length and an earthen dam of 220 meters length.
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Things to Do at Malampuzha Dam
There are many attractions within the dam premises. The main attraction is the dam itself, you can climb to the top and enjoy the views of the garden in front and the massive Western Ghat Mountains behind. Once on top, it is difficult not to admire the massive volume of water stopped by man. The garden with the massive statue of Yakshi (mythical beings of Hindu mythology), cable car ride, fish-shaped Aquarium, Rock Garden, and boating are some of the additional attractions on the premises.
The Rock gardens at the Malampuzha Dam is made of unwanted and broken pieces of bangles, plastic cans, tins, and other waste materials. The garden was sculpted by Nek Chand Saini, the Indian artist who is famous for the Rock Garden he built in Chandigarh in Punjab State.
The gardens at the Malampuzha Dam are well landscaped and decorated with sculptures and fountains. The garden houses the large and famous statue of Yakshi. The unconventional statue was created by Kanai Kunhiraman, the renowned sculptor of Kerala. The garden is set towards the front side of the dam, on either side of the main canal. There are two suspension bridges that facilitate passage in between. There is also an artificial canal in the garden which offers pedal boat rides.
The passenger ropeway at the Malampuzha Dam is the first in Southern India. It has 64 two-seater chairs and operates at a height of 20 meters. A 20-minute ropeway ride comes with uninterrupted views of the Malampuzha Gardens and the entire reservoir site below. The ropeway has its own time and fee that is apart from that of the dam. The operating hours are from 10.00 AM to 12.30 PM and 2.00 PM to 6.30 PM. Adults are charged at 40 per head.
Located near the main entrance of the Malampuzha Gardens is the snake rescue and rehabilitation center run by the Kerala Forest Department. It was set up in 1984 and you can see a variety of snakes here such as Viper and Cobras including King Kobra, Forsten’s Cat Snake, the Brown Vine Snake, Krait, Indian Rock Python, Wolf Snake, Trinket Snake, and Water Snakes. The park also breeds a species of crocodile and American Green Iguana.
There is also a small Japanese Garden, a Children’s Park, a fish-shaped aquarium, a telescopic tower, and a swimming pool in the dam premises.
History of Malampuzha Dam
The dam is 38 meters high and is across the Malampuzha River, a tributary of Bharathapuzha, the largest river in Kerala. The total catchment area of the dam is 145 square kilometers with a capacity of 8,000 square meters of water. The dam provides drinking water to Palakkad and surrounding areas, and the canal systems irrigate 21,245 hectares of farmlands in summers. These canal systems are the first large-scale irrigation system attempted in Kerala state. Palakkad, otherwise a dry land became highly productive to be named the rice bowl of Kerala due to the supply of water from the Malampuzha Dam.
The dam acts as the reservoir for a small 2.5MW power station owned by Kerala State Electricity Board. The station utilizes the water released for irrigation through the left canal together with the spill. The station is usually operated only in the months of November to January as that is when the canals provide water to the farmlands.
The dam project started in 1949 and was completed in 1955. This was before the Kerala state was formed when Palakkad belonged to the Madras Presidency. The inauguration of the dam was done by K Kamaraj, the then Chief Minister of Madras. Soon after the inauguration of the dam, Kerala State was formed and Palakkad and the dam became a part of the newly formed Kerala. The Malampuzha Gardens in front of the dam was made by the Kerala state administration, and later various other attractions such as Rock Gardens, Aquarium, Snake Park, and Rope Way were added
In 2005, major renovation works were carried out in the dam and the surrounding attractions as part of the Golden Jubilee Celebrations. The entire garden was demolished and a new one was made, the dam was repainted and huge LED hoardings were placed on top of the dam. As a result of these improvements, the dam and the garden is illuminated at night on Weekends and on Public Holidays with colorful lights.
Best Time to Visit Malampuzha Dam
The best time to visit Malampuzha Dam is from September to December. During this period, the dam is filled with water, and the surrounding area is lush and green. The dam's spillway is also open during this time, and visitors can watch as water gushes over.
In any month of the year, it will be better to be at the Malampuzha Dam premises on weekends and public holiday evenings as it will be colorfully lighted.
Tips for Visiting Malampuzha Dam
- Plan your visit for the early morning or late afternoon to avoid the heat of the day.
- Plan to spend at least half a day at the dam, so you can explore all the different areas.
- Take more money than what you require for the entrance fee. Many of the activities inside the dam premises have their own independent entrance fee.
Interesting Facts and Trivias About Malampuzha Dam
- Malampuzha Dam is the largest reservoir in the state of Kerala
- The reservoir is fed by the Malampuzha River, which flows through the Western Ghats mountains and is a tributary of Bharathapuzha - the largest river in Kerala
How Much Time Did Visitors Spend at Malampuzha Dam
Most tourists spend between 1-2 hours exploring the area but this can change to half a day if you plan to do some of the numerous activities that are available at the dam premises.
How to Reach Malampuzha Dam
The dam is a well-known tourist spot in Kerala so it will not be difficult to find the place. There are buses available from Palakkad Town directly to the dam area, the town is roughly 10 km away. The nearest major railway station is in Palakkad, connected well to the rest of the parts of the country.
Entrance Fee of Malampuzha Dam
Adults' entrance fee is priced at INR 25 and for children below 12 years, it is INR 10. Children below 3 years of age has free entry.
Opening Hours of Malampuzha Dam
The dam is open daily throughout the year from 9 AM to 8 PM
Attractions Near Malampuzha Dam
7.14km from Malampuzha Dam
Dhoni Waterfalls is located on top of Dhoni Hills, 15 km from Palakkad town of Kerala state in Southern India. The fall is in the forest ranges of Nilgiri Biosphere in the Western Ghat mountains bordering Kerala and Tamilnadu, a 4 km trek through the lush green forest is required to explore it. The waterfall is surrounded by lush green forest and accessible only through a lengthy, mesmerising hike.
7.84km from Malampuzha Dam
The fort that has witnessed the bloody wars of Zamorin, Palakkad Achchan, Mysore Kings, and the British.
11.98km from Malampuzha Dam
Siruvani falls is a beautiful waterfall located in the Coimbatore district. There is also a dam associated with this river and waterfalls. this is a tourist-friendly location in Tamilnadu.
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Velliangiri mountains is a part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve is situated at the western ghats border of Coimbatore district.
112 Feet Adiyogi
17.11km from Malampuzha Dam
Adiyogu statue is the tallest Siva statue situated in the Coimbatore district of Tamilnadu which has been recognized by the Guinness world records as the largest bust sculpture in the world. This was designed by sadguru Jaggi Vasudev and is a part of the Isha foundation.
30.77km from Malampuzha Dam
Views of mountain ridges, plains with paddy fields, and of a mighty waterfall and a dam