Valaparai is a beautiful hill destination in Tamilnadu state of India. With not much tourist around and tourism is still in its very nascent stage, Valaparai provides independent travelers a really different feel.
Possibly, one of my first unplanned trips in India- Kerala is not a bad choice to start for sure. Though, we decided to traverse Kerala from North to South. A good reason to do this while saving on time we can enter through Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu and continue south towards Kerala.
There are two possible routes to reach Kerala from Coimbatore:
- From Coimbatore to Palakkad and then further traverse through Kerala, Munnar definitely is a “Must do place”.
- Coimbatore to Pollachi, then Valaparai and then enter Kerala with Kochi as the first point.
Somehow, we got more interested in routing our tour through second option; there’s no definite reason behind this choice. Only defendable point we can make here is “to visit not so touristic places, yet getting a similar feel what we might be missing by not visiting option one”.
Munnar with Pallakad is pretty much known for its beautiful valley points, tea estates, nearby falls and wild life. Valaparai offers almost everything, but with much serene/untouched environment.
Traversing from Coimbatore
We got bit late in leaving from Coimbatore. If not travelling by own vehicle, then the best and possibly only way to reach Valaparai from Coimbatore is by public buses. Though, there are few direct buses as well but we decided to come via Pollachi, considering the frequency of direct buses to Valaparai is much less.
Ukkadam bus station in Coimbatore, serves as the bus stand for Pollachi buses. The frequency of the bus is quite good (every 10 minute). From Pollachi, there is a direct bus to Valaparai, with a frequency of every half an hour.
Note – There is a new bus stand in Pollachi which serves for buses leaving for Valaparai, while buses from Coimbatore drop passengers at old bus station. Both stands are in front of each other. Do enquire if bus will go to Valaparai before grabbing the seat.
We were extremely lucky with buses and didn’t have to wait for a single minute for another connecting bus. As soon as we reached bus stand in Coimbatore as well as in Pollachi, buses were on the verge of leaving with or without us.
Though only 63 km from Pollachi, bus takes almost 2.5 hours to reach Valaparai. Reason? – the elevation gain, which is around 1000 m and results into 40 hairpin bends. But, of course, the way itself is beautiful.
Buses are quite comfortable for the price, (as on December 2016)
From Coimbatore to Pollachi bus ticket fare – Rs. 23,
From Pollachi to Valaparai bus ticket fare – Rs. 42
There are no frequent stops and buses are mostly point to point, with momentary stops over few of the tourist pick up/drop off points. The only major stop of 10 minutes was just before entering the Ghat/Hilly section on the way from Pollachi to Valaparai, which also offer Tourist to replenish themselves for the upcoming uphill section.
Stay options in Valapari
Leaving Coimbatore by 10:30 AM, we could reach Valaparai only by 2:30 PM. Bus rides usually leave us tired, and so were we in a dire need of some rest. There are a few of nice hotels as well as lots of home-stay options available in Valaparai, and with our luck we could find a really good home-stay in the very corner of the town “Misty Creek”.
A home-stay, living by its exact name, was located overlooking a creek flowing through beautiful valley.
Owner Franc is an amazing person. He is the perfect first person to meet when you enter any tourist place without any upfront plan. He gave us all the details on what to do in Valaparai, how to do them in the cheapest possible manner, provided us all required details of Auto and Taxi drivers, negotiated with drivers on our behalf and what not.
The above post was my experience on how to reach Valaparai using public transportation from Coimbatore. Though, there might be other points which you wish to follow as your starting point. Please Contact Me or drop a comment below and I will try my best to answer your queries.
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Thanks for reading and happy travelling…