Thenmala, Kollam: A Nature Lover’s Paradise

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If you’re a nature lover seeking a serene and breathtaking environment in Kerala, Thenmala in Kollam is your perfect destination. Thenmala is the first planned eco-tourism destination in India, located in the foothills of the Western Ghats. This peaceful destination is a haven for adventure enthusiasts, nature lovers, and bird watchers. In this article, we’ll explore everything you need to know about Thenmala, from its history to the activities and attractions you can enjoy there.

History and Overview of Thenmala

Thenmala, a beautiful forest village in Kollam district of Kerala, is known for its natural splendor, refreshing ambiance, and stunning waterfalls. Thenmala is a combination of two Malayalam words “Then,” which means honey, and “Mala,” which means hill. The region got its name from the honey collected by the tribes from the forest. The eco-tourism project in Thenmala was initiated in 2000, making it the first eco-tourism destination in India. The region is rich in flora and fauna, with a unique ecosystem that attracts tourists worldwide.

How to Reach Thenmala

Thenmala is well connected to various parts of Kerala, Tamil Nadu, and Karnataka. The nearest airport is Thiruvananthapuram International Airport, approximately 72 km from Thenmala. The closest railway station is Kollam Junction, approximately 66 km away. From Kollam, you can take a bus or hire a taxi to reach Thenmala. You can also take a bus from the nearby cities of Trivandrum, Tirunelveli, and Bangalore.

Things to Do in Thenmala

Thenmala is a nature lover’s paradise, and there are a plethora of activities and attractions to enjoy in this serene destination. Here are some of the top things to do in Thenmala:

1. Trekking

Thenmala is surrounded by dense forests, and trekking is the best way to explore the region’s natural beauty. You can trek through the Palaruvi waterfalls, Shenduruney Wildlife Sanctuary, and Chenduruney Trekking Area.

2. Adventure Sports

Thenmala is also famous for adventure sports like rock climbing, river crossing, rappelling, and mountain biking. You can enjoy these thrilling activities under expert supervision.

3. Boating

You can also take a relaxing boat ride through the calm waters of the Thenmala reservoir, surrounded by lush green forests.

4. Deer Rehabilitation Center

Thenmala has a Deer Rehabilitation Center that houses a variety of deer species like the spotted deer, sambar deer, and barking deer.

5. Butterfly Safari

Thenmala is home to over 125 species of butterflies, and you can take a guided tour to witness their vibrant colors and patterns.

Attractions in Thenmala

Apart from the activities, there are several attractions in Thenmala that are a must-visit for tourists.

1. Palaruvi Waterfalls

Palaruvi, which means “stream of milk,” is a breathtaking waterfall located approximately 15 km from Thenmala. The waterfall cascades from a height of 300 feet and is a popular picnic spot.

2. Suspension Bridge

The Suspension Bridge in Thenmala is the longest pedestrian suspension bridge in India, with a length of 403 feet. The bridge offers a spectacular view of the Kallada river and the dense forests.

3. Musical Dancing Fountain

The Musical Dancing Fountain in Thenmala is a unique attraction where water dances to the beats of music, creating a mesmerizing spectacle. The fountain is designed with advanced technology that synchronizes the water jets and colorful lights to match the rhythm of the music, making it a fascinating experience.

4. Adventure Zone

The Adventure Zone in Thenmala is a popular attraction for thrill-seekers. It offers various adventure activities like zipline, rope bridge, Burma bridge, and archery, making it an exciting place for both adults and children.

5. Sculpture Garden

The Sculpture Garden in Thenmala is a unique attraction that showcases sculptures made of wood, stone, and metal, reflecting the art and culture of the region. The garden also has a collection of rare and exotic plants that add to its beauty.

Accommodation and Dining in Thenmala

Thenmala has a range of accommodation options that cater to different budgets and preferences. You can choose from eco-friendly cottages, tree houses, and resorts that offer stunning views of the surrounding forests. The dining options in Thenmala are also diverse, serving traditional Kerala cuisine, as well as continental and Chinese dishes.

Best Time to Visit Thenmala

The best time to visit Thenmala is from October to February when the weather is pleasant and ideal for outdoor activities. The monsoon season from June to September is also a good time to visit if you enjoy the lush greenery and waterfalls.


Thenmala in Kollam is a nature lover’s paradise, offering a perfect blend of adventure, serenity, and natural beauty. From trekking and adventure sports to stunning waterfalls and unique attractions, there’s something for everyone in Thenmala. So pack your bags and head to Thenmala for an unforgettable eco-tourism experience.


  1. What is Thenmala famous for? Thenmala is famous for its eco-tourism, adventure sports, stunning waterfalls, and unique attractions like the Suspension Bridge and Musical Dancing Fountain.
  2. Is Thenmala safe for solo travelers? Yes, Thenmala is a safe destination for solo travelers, with a peaceful and welcoming environment.
  3. Can we spot wildlife in Thenmala? Yes, Thenmala is home to a variety of flora and fauna, including deer, elephants, and butterflies.
  4. Are there any entry fees for visiting Thenmala? Yes, there are entry fees for visiting the attractions and activities in Thenmala, and the prices may vary depending on the season and the activity.
  5. What is the distance between Thenmala and Kollam? Thenmala is approximately 66 km away from Kollam, the nearest railway station.
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Upendra Yadav is a seasoned Data Analyst with a passion for exploring new places and immersing himself in different cultures. With a curious mind and an eye for detail, Upendra delves deep into the history, people, and cuisine of the places he visits, and brings his experiences to life through his writing.. His work has been featured in various travel blogs, where he shares his insights and recommendations for fellow explorers. Through his writing, Upendra aims to inspire others to venture beyond their comfort zones and discover the hidden gems of the world. When he's not analyzing data or traveling to new destinations, Upendra can be found indulging in his other hobbies, such as photography and trying out new recipes. He is currently working on his next travelogue, where he hopes to take his readers on a journey to even more exciting and lesser-known destinations.