5 Waterfalls To Visit In The Monsoon
Not a fan of the rains? Fair enough. Not a fan of waterfalls? Fair… No, wait. Let’s try to convert you into one! Cause who’s to deny the seductive pull of gushing waters and power play between Man and Nature? The romance begins with these 5 places in India which boast of waterfalls waiting to wash you off your feet.
#1 Vazhachal & Charpa Falls, Kerala
Closest City: Thrissur
Perched above the Sholayar forest range on the Chalakudy river near Vazhachal forest division, Vazhachal Falls are characterised by the dense forest that they flow into. The famed rain forests of Kerala that surround this fall contain around 319 species of flora. The Chalakudy River is also known for its diversity as it’s home to almost 90 species of fish.
Next to the Vazhachal falls is the Charpa Falls; the site of quite a few Mani Ratnam movies, such as Iruvar and Guru. A comparatively lesser known waterfall, Charpa is usually a sedate cascade, which comes into its own during the monsoons. The water comes rippling onto the roads when there are torrential rains; thus making it a much-frequented destination in monsoons.
How To Get There: By road from Thrissur city; or take a train to Thrissur station or a flight to Cochin airport. Once you reach the city of Thrissur, both the falls are located close to the outskirts.
#2 Jog Waterfalls, Karnataka
Closest City: Shimoga
At a height of 958 feet, Jog falls, located on the Sharawati River in Karnataka in the Western Ghats, is India’s highest and Asia’s second highest waterfall. The falls have four tracks—Raja, Rani, Rocket and Roarer.
Generally, people love to get drenched in the falls when the waters are sedate, but the true beauty of the falls comes to fore from August to November. That’s when it rains the most, enveloping the area in a blanket of fog that makes the steep falls look even more enigmatic.
Other places of attraction near Jog Falls include the Linganmakki Dam, Honnemaradu which is an adventure-activity centre, and Mupane which is ideal for nature camps.
How To Get There: Take a train to Hubli or fly to Bangalore. From there, reach Shimoga by road. Two National Highways take you to Jog Falls. Private bus services are available, and Karnataka State Tourism Development Corporation (KSTDC) also conducts weekend tours to the spot.
#3 Nohkalakai Falls, Meghalaya
Closest City: Shillong
This waterfall gets its name from the heart-wrenching story of a woman called Ka Likai. Ka Likai’s envious second husband killed and cooked her only child and she too mistakenly ate the flesh. Ka Likai realised the horror of her actions only after she found her child’s little fingers tossed away by the husband. Blinded by fury and desperation, she rushed to the edge of a precipice and jumped off it. Noh means, ‘to jump’, and so the waterfall cascading from that spot is called Noh Ka Likai.
The water falls from a well-forested mountain top onto big boulders and finally end up in a serene blue pool at the bottom. Just be prepared for the fickle changes in weather, which can shroud the area in a cloak of fog.
How To Get There: The best option is to drive down from Shillong to Cherrapunjee. These are 53 kilometres of gorgeous countryside!
#4 Hogenakkal Falls, Tamil Nadu
Closest City: Bangalore or Salem
Hogenakkal Waterfalls are located in Krishnagiri and Dharmapuri districts of Tamil Nadu. The name comes from two Kannada words hoge and kal which mean smoke and rock. When the water of the Hogenakkal falls on the rocks below it appears as if hoge (smoke) is released from the top of the kal (rock) and so it is known as smoking rock or wall of smoke.
These horseshoe-shaped falls are described as the Niagara of India and are located 750 feet above sea-level amidst the Melagiri hills. The route to the falls is beauteous due to the mulberry fields and terracotta statues around. The falls have carbonite rocks and are famous for the hide-boat rides, as well as the medicinal properties of the water.
How To Get There: Close to Bangalore in Karnataka, you can hop onto one of the inter-town buses that take you right up to the falls in Hogenakkal village.
#5 Chitrakoot Falls, Chhattisgarh
Closest City: Jagdalpur
Located close to Jagdalpur in the Bastar district of Chhattisgarh on the Indrawati River, this 29 meter-high waterfall runs quite dry in summer. The arrival of the monsoons from July to October, swells the water level and fills the river with silt, resulting in the the broadest waterfall in India, shaped like a horse-shoe.
The waters of this fall are known to change colour pretty often, making it a point of curiosity for tourists. Located in the Vindhya mountain ranges, Chitrakoot is also a famous pilgrimage centre, which makes it easy from the accommodation point of view.
How To Get There: There are frequent and comfortable buses and taxis from Jagdalpur to Chitrakoot.
Okay, hold on. We lied. There are not just 5 waterfalls to seduce you. Here are 2 more!
#6 Dudhsagar Falls, Goa
Closest City: Panaji
Located at the Mandovi River on the border of Goa and Karnataka, this four-tiered waterfall is so named because the white cascade looks like a sheet of milk being poured down the mountains.
Listed as the 5th highest waterfall in India, legend has it that a Princess, bathing in the water saw a Prince watching her, hidden in the bushes. To stop his from seeing her, the bashful Princess ordered her entourage to pour jugs of milk from above, effectively shielding her modesty.
Ordinary in the dry season, come the monsoons, they transform into miraculous proportions, as they fall from a height of 310 meters! The falls are also a popular trekking destination.
How To Get There: Hire an SUV (keeping in mind the terrain) from Panaji in Goa, or come by train to Madgaon junction and take the road from there. To get here from Karnataka, come via Londa railway junction on the Hubli-Madgaon-Vasco da Gama route.
#7 Bhushi Dam, Maharashtra
Closest City: Pune
Technically not a waterfall, Bhushi Dam has nevertheless gained immense popularity thanks mostly to the ‘steps’, a much-coveted hotspot for picnickers.
Located in the serene hill-station of Lonavala, near Pune, Bhushi Dam attracts hordes of young revellers who keenly await the rains so they can make a beeline for the steps of the dam that start overflowing with torrential outpours. Surrounded by lush greenery and enveloped in mist, Bhushi Dam holds other attraction such as Rajmachi point, Karla Caves and Dukes Nose.
How To Get There: Take the Expressway from Mumbai or Pune. The drive is as scintillating as the actual destination. You can also take a train to Lonavla station from Mumbai or Pune.
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