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Lord Pennycuick

Set in the heart of the serene Cumbum Valley, Harvest Fresh Farms is flanked by mountains that kiss the clouds with streams gushing down its slopes and lush farmlands. A short 15 minute drive down the windward side of Kumily.

Amenities

Air Condition

24 hrs hot water

Generator back up

Rates are inclusive of Bed & Breakfast

TV, living room, kitchenette, dining room, fridge, board games, library shelf, magazine, doctor on call, housekeeping,


Check Best Availability Rate

Day Spring

Set in the heart of the serene Cumbum Valley, Harvest Fresh Farms is flanked by mountains that kiss the clouds with streams gushing down its slopes and lush farmlands. A short 15 minute drive down the windward side of Kumily.

Amenities

Air Condition

24 hrs hot water

Generator back up

Rates are inclusive of Bed & Breakfast

TV, living room, kitchenette, dining room, fridge, board games, library shelf, magazine, doctor on call, housekeeping,


Check Best Availability Rate

Farm View

Set in the heart of the serene Cumbum Valley, Harvest Fresh Farms is flanked by mountains that kiss the clouds with streams gushing down its slopes and lush farmlands. A short 15 minute drive down the windward side of Kumily.

Amenities

Air Condition

24 hrs hot water

Generator back up

Rates are inclusive of Bed & Breakfast

TV, living room, kitchenette, dining room, fridge, board games, library shelf, magazine, doctor on call, housekeeping,


Check Best Availability Rate

In& around

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Visitor Information

Language English, Malayalam, Tamil & Hindi
Currency Indian Rupee
Climate Warm summer (Feb to May), 30-36 ° C
Tropical monsoon (June to Sep), 26-32 ° C
Mild winter (Oct to Jan), 18-28 ° C
Clothing Light cottons in Summer
Light woollens in winter
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Activities On the farm

  • Take a walking tour of the farm with a guide or staff member
  • Take a tour of the herbal garden & learn about the special plants
  • Climb atop the Watch Tower 1 and enjoy commanding views of the valley
  • Trek to the farthest end of the farm to the Watch tower 1 carrying a picnic basket laden with goodies. Spend an hour or two taking in the 360˚ view of the mountains, the green valley and the cool breezes
  • Have a meal set for you privately on the top end of the farm, surrounded by pomegranate trees laden with fruit, with only the mountains as witness
  • Cycle around the valley or even up to Kumily town enjoying the adrenaline rush
  • Feed the ducks & hens in their pens
  • Visit the cows in their manger
  • Spend a lazy afternoon playing the board games available in house
  • Relax with a book from the farm’s well stocked library
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Near the farm

  • Farmers market at Cumbum – 15 mins - visit Cumbum market between 5:30am and 11 am. Watch farmers bring in their freshly harvested produce and sell them at government regulated prices
  • Suruli falls – ½ hour – trek up a steep but short climb to the Suruli falls, a stream that passes through 9 kms of herbal forest to cascade gently over rocks.
  • Valley drive – 45mins – take a drive around the Cumbum valley to see farms growing a variety of produce from vegetables, tomatoes and onions to pomegranates, grapes and mangoes.
  • Temple visit – There are a few temples in the area that are over a thousand years old and still operational. Some hewn out of rock and other built with carved rocks.
  • Wholesale farmers market – 15 mins – A market where loads of produce are loaded on trucks and sold off to markets across the state borders in Kerala & other neighbouring states. There is no goevernmental supervision and hectic bargaining activity can be seen
  • Lord Pennycuick Memorial – 10 mins – a memorial dedicated to Lord Pennycuick who was instrumental in providing water to irrigated the otherwise dry & barren lands of the Cumbum valley. He occupys the status of a hero in these parts. Read the story here
  • Periyar Tiger Reserve – 20 mins – visit the Periyar Tiger Reserve, one of the best maintained reserve forests in the world. Go on a boat cruise to the calm interiors of the dam catchment area, sight wildlife in their natural habitat, elephant herds, bison, foxes, wild dogs, hornbill and a variety of birds and animals.
  • Kumily Town – 20 mins- indulge in retail therapy at the quaint Kumily town, buy spices, essential oils, tea and other local produce.

Blog

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A charming market- Cumbum Valley This blog is written by a Harvest Fresh Farms in house guest from Cochin Posted on 22/August/2014

It is a beautiful valley with luxurious green fields; you simply cannot miss the lush paddy, swaying coconut trees, vineyards bursting with green gems and the beautiful vegetables and spice plantation that are around year long. Abundant water from the Periyar River makes the Cumbum valley the most fertile valley in South India.

A major market place for cardamom, coffee, tea and black pepper, grapes has also managed to grow itself as the main produce of the district. The unique feature is that the grapes are harvested throughout the year.

When you have such beautiful produce that is available, then one should not miss the farmers’ market that is held between 5:30 am and 11 am daily. Join the locals as they shop for their daily necessities, take in the smell of fresh juicy vegetables and fruits that the farmers bring in to sell at government regulated prices. Garlic, Onion, Tomato, Okra, Beans, Carrot and Green chilies are the popular vegetables and you can see them all sitting in glorious sight to satiate the people from Kerala and Tamil Nadu who flock to buy their produce here both in wholesale and for domestic use. This is a short ride from Thekkady, Kumily and a visit well worth its time & effort for those staying in Thekkady or near the Periyar Tiger Reserve. The stalls vibrate with organised commitment and enthusiasm to sell the finest; what better way than to assemble, exchange notes, discuss friends and families and make some money on a fine morning.

For a meandering tourist like me who comes from the dusty grime filled city, this place was a burst of colours. Red tomatoes were so luscious that I wanted to bite into them then and there; the greens are really green and not withering and parched for water but tenderly plucked and waiting for the right buyer. Munching a golden gooseberry so divine I couldn’t resist chatting up with this lady sitting under this massive banyan tree with a portrait of Lord Shiva selling condiments and various odds and ends that you usually buy for a puja at home. Like so many bazaars I couldn’t give a miss to this quintessential chai wala and his bondas and vadas. The hot tea upped my adventure quotient for sure. How green is my valley you ask, it is as green as you make it I say.

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Harvest Fresh Farms This blog is written by a Harvest Fresh Farms in house guest from Cochin Posted on 25/August/2014

Water the elixir of life is essential to our existence. As fresh water resources are unevenly distributed, water is becoming a very valuable resource. Various initiatives are been undertaken by the governments to evenly distribute this natural resource to make lives simple. One such story that comes to mind is that of the hardship faced by the people of Cumbum valley. Situated near the Western Ghats, the valley lies in a rain shadow area and remains arid and dry for most part of the year. Peopleinitially were small and very small farmers – depending on the wells in their fields for cultivation. With the repeated failure of the monsoons, people were forced to seek alternate employment to earn their livelihood.

The waters of Mullaperiyar of Kerala were then diverted to irrigate the drought prone districts of Tamil Nadu during the legacy of the British based on the Periyar lease deed. This interstate project today serves as a source of water and hydel power to the entireTheni District of Tamil Nadu. Benefitted by the water supply,Cumbam valley is fast growing as a tourist destination for its unique spice gardens and many picnic spots. In order to keep the entire valley green the government has been implementing several schemes like the 18th canal scheme for the benefit of farmers and development of agriculture in and around the area. The Mullaiperiyar water passing through 18th canal is stored in 44 irrigation tanks and distributed for irrigation. Such measures will not only enhance groundwater table but recharge irrigation wells as well.

Today these tanks are filled to the brim thanks to the heavy rains in Kerala,thus fulfilling the long felt need of these villages.

Activities

Thekkady

Located in Idukki district of Kerala, at an altitude of 900-1800 m above sea level, Thekaddy is home to the richly bio-diverse PeriyarTiger Reserve. Lying on the border of Kerala and Tamil Nadu, it is closely related to India’s largest wildlife sanctuary and a dream destination for any tourist visiting India. Situated 190 kms from Cochin and it takes approximately 5 hours to reach there.

  • InThekkady, enjoy the cruise rides where the boat will take you around the Wildlife Sanctuary through the Periyar Lake.
  • Take an elephant ride, give an elephant bath or even get an elephant shower which is quite thrilling.
  • Trekking is also arranged for a visit to the ancient Mangala Devi temple located inside the reserve.
  • Take the full day Gavi tour,an eco-tourist spotand a must visit place for all nature lovers.
  • Jungle walks with the help of a local guide are also fun for nature lovers.
  • While Bamboo raftingone gets a panoramic view of forest-clad hills reflected on the lake and one can spot animals like elephant, gaur and sambar close to the edges of the lake.
  • Get adventurous and join the Jungle Night Patrol at Periyar Tiger Reserve.
  • Border hiking is essentially a full-day trek that passes through altitudes of 3,000-4,300 ft, offering the tourist beautiful views of the zone.
  • Join the Periyar Tiger Trail, an adventurous trekking and camping programme.
  • Don’t miss the Tribal Heritage Programme where you can see a tribal hamlet and the Tribal Heritage Museum.
  • Visit the spice plantations at Thekkady or go for spice walk, boating, fishing etc.
  • You can even visit a Tea factory at Thekkady and purchase some fresh Tea powder.
  • For a wonderful cultural experience to see what can only be a gist of centuries of conception of varied human ideas and imaginations, visit theKadathanadanKalari Centre and Mudra Cultural centre.
  • Take the famous Ayurveda massages.
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The Periyar Tiger Reserve

Lying close to the plantations, in the rich jungles of Periyar in Thekkady is one of the world's most fascinating natural wildlife reserves - the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. Covering 777 sq. kilometres, of which 360 sq. kilometres is thick evergreen forest; the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary was declared a Tiger Reserve in 1978.Nature Walk, Border Hiking, Bamboo Rafting, Jungle Patrol, Tribal Heritage, Jungle Inn, The Bamboo Grove, Green Mansions and Bullock cart ride are the various eco-tourism programmes at the Reserve. Bookings done in Periyar Tiger Reserve- Eco Tourism Tel: 91-4869-222027 Entry timing: 0600 - 1800 hrs

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Boat Ride on Periyar Lake

Timings: 0700, 0930, 1130, 1400, 1600 hrs. The Forest Department (Ph:322028) and the Kerala Tourism Development Corporation Ltd. (Ph: 322023) conduct boating trips from Thekkady.

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Mangala Devi Temple

This ancient temple is hidden in the dense woods at the top of a peak 1,337 metres above sea level. Built in the traditional Kerala style of architecture, this place is open to the public only once in a year during the ChitraPoornima festival. The peak commands a panoramic view of the eastern slopes of the Ghats and some gorgeous hill villages of Tamil Nadu. Permission to visit the area can be obtained from the Wildlife Warden, Thekkady (Ph.0486-322027)

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Spice Plantations Tour

Inhale and exhale the lovely scents on this tour, as you visit the tea, coffee, cardamom, pepper and orange plantations, along with the stunning Anayirangal Dam.

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Trekking

Thekkady is a lovely place to indulge in trekking. Kurisumala, Pullumedu and Ottakathalamedu near Kumily and Grampi near Vandiperiyar are ideal trekking places. One can also take the Forest Department daily treks from the boat landing station at Thekkady to the Nellikkampetty area and Manakkavala.Booking can be made with the Wildlife Preservation Officer, Thekkady (Ph:0486-322027, 322028)

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Elephant Ride

One can take elephant rides through the jungle and really enjoy the beauty that is Thekkady. The Forest Department, Thekkady offers facilities for elephant rides through the jungle. Time: 1000 - 1700 hrs. Tickets are available from the Wildlife Information Counter. Ph:0486-322028

Gavi

An eco-tourist spot in Kerala and a must see place for its natural scenic beauty untainted by modernity.

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Trekking

Three hours of trekking programme along with an experience guide who will take the group to a slight trekking adventure across the hills and jungle of Gavi.

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Jeep Safari

Tourist visiting Gavi can enjoy the sight of wildlife in their natural habitat through Jeep safaris. Gavi is a home to over 260 species of birds including the great pied hornbill, woodpecker, and kingfishers.

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Boating

Go boating on the crystal clear Gavi reservoir and Kochupamba to take home memory of a lifetime that remains as clear as the Gavilake. Row boating facility is available at Gavi. Tourist wearing lifejackets is a must. Rowing along the emerald hued natural backdrop is a welcome change from everyday monotony. Get adventurous spirit at Gavi.

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Plantation tour

Gavi is a fertile land and the local’s mastery over the land has blessed the land with vegetation. A leisure visit to the nearby cardamom plantation, tea estate and the local factory is a sight to behold.

Gavi is 28 kms south west of Vandiperiyar, a town in N.H 220 the highway connecting Kollam and Madurai, which itself is 14 kms from Kumily,near Thekkady. Entry passes must be obtained from the Forest Check Post enroute at Vallakkadavu. Advance booking with the Kerala Forest Development Corporation Ltd. is highly appreciable wherein such formalities will be taken care of by the Company itself.

Vagamon

The charms of Vagamon hill station is peacefully nested in the border of Idukki-Kottayam district in Kerala at an altitude of 1100 meters from the sea level. Gentle breeze, rain drop, golden hue, dense virgin forest, meandering rivulets, cascading waterfalls and verdant greenery from pine trees and meadows are the astonishing colors of Vagamon.

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Kurisumala Ashram

It is a popular Christian pilgrim and community for spiritual seekers. Kurisumala is well known for pure honey and milk production.

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Vagamon Lake

Vagamon lake is amazingly surrounded by the mist covered mountains and lush greenery. Boat ride in this lake is most loved activity among tourists.

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Trekking

The picturesque surrounding beauty makes trekking routes more interesting . Paragliding is another adrenaline pumping activity to be enjoyed.

Chellarkovil

This sleepy little hamlet with its breathtaking view of the plains and cascading waterfalls is a veritable feast for the eyes. The village slopes down to the famous coconut groves of Cumbum in neighbouring Tamil Nadu. A must visit.

Pullumedu

The meandering journey to this hill town, along the Periyar River, offers a stunning view of the rolling hills draped in lush greenery. The famous SreeAyyappa Temple at Sabarimala and the MakaraJyothi illumination at the shrine are also visible from here. Since it is part of the restricted forest zone, special permission to visit Pullumedu has to be obtained from the Wildlife Preservation Officer, Thekkady Ph:0486-322027 or the Range Officer, Vallakkadavu Ph:0486-352515

For Cultural Shows like Kathakali and Kalarippayattu

-KadathanadanKalari Centre at Thekkady Road, Kumily, PH:9961740868/9447023755/04869-222988, kadathanadankalari@gmail.com
-Mudra Cultural CentreatLake Road, ThekkadyPhone: +91 4869222303 / +91 9446072901 / +91 9446082901, mudrakathakali@gmail.com

GETTING THERE

Harvest Fresh Farms is located at Lower Camp in the serene Cumbum Valley, a short 15 minute drive fromKumily,Thekkady, Kerala.Cumbum Valley is a beautiful valley with plush green agricultural fields, cultivated mostly of paddy, coconut, vineyards and other rotational crops. Thekkady is well connected by road from all the major towns of Kerala. The farm is strategically located close to the famous Periyar Tiger Reserve.

Harvest Fresh Farms can be accessed:

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By Air

Cochin International Airport: 190 Kms.
Thiruvananthapuram International Airport: 267 Kms.
Madurai: 140 Kms.
The airports are well-connected with all major cities in India and abroad. The best way to get to Thekkady from any airport is by hiring a cab.

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By Rail

Kottayam: 114 Kms.
Ernakulam: 190 Kms.
Madurai: 135 Kms.
The nearest railway station to Thekkady is Kottayam, located 114 kilometres away.You can hire a cab from Kottayam to get to Thekkady, or even board a government or private run bus.

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By Road

The most inexpensive way to get to Thekkady from nearby cities like Cochin, Trivandrum and Kottayam are the government or private run buses. Kerala State Road Transport Corporation buses are available at regular intervals from Kottayam, Cochin and Trivandrum to Thekkady. There are frequent buses available fromMunnar& Madurai.

Distance from Thekkady to Lower Camp – 12kms.
Distance from Thekkady to Munnar – 110kms.
Distance from Thekkady to Kumarakom – 138kms.
Distance from Thekkady to Kodaikkanal – 120kms.