Often named interchangeably (and somewhat confusingly), the neighbouring towns of Thekkady & Kumily, and the nearby Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, are a highlight of Kerala’s Western Ghats. Scenery here is as dramatic and inviting as other areas of the hills, but the main draw here is taking some time to enjoy some light adventure and intriguing wildlife activites. The Wildlife Sanctuary is an obvious place to start: although somewhat tame (access is on foot, much of which is on well-trodden sealed paths) the forest scenery is quite beautiful, and teeming with birdlife, small mammals, elephants, and the very, very, occasional tiger. The park can also be enjoyed on a pleasant cruise which winds down the Periyar River and around the expansive lake of the same name. Besides the park, the area is surrounded on all sides by a wealth of spice gardens and tea plantations, as well as a well-run elephant sanctuary.