Ranipuram Hill Station is about 780 m above the sea level near the Bhagamandala forest range. It was called Madathumala until 1970, when the Catholic diocese of Kottayam took over the area and renamed it after the “Virgin Mother.”
The Ranipuram forest – comprising evergreen shola forests, monsoon forests and grasslands – is renowned for its bio-diversity that provides habitat to about 24 species of mammals, 200 species of birds and a variety of reptiles and insects. Elephants, wild bison, flying squirrels, Paradise flying catcher and Malabar grey horn bill are some of the rare species that can be spotted here.
September to March is the best season for eco-tourism in Ranipuram. It is best to avoid the monsoons as roads become slippery.
Ranipuram hills in Kasargod are popular for their trekking trails through the moist deciduous forests of the southern part of Western Ghats. There is a mild Ranipuram trek with well laid-out steps for an easier journey to the hilltop. Trekkers are advised to start early to return before dark. Trails pass through streams and rocks, and leeches are common in the forests. The grass-clad hilltop is called “Mani,” and provides a spectacular view of the hills stretching to the plains.
How to reach Ranipuram
Kanhangad has the nearest railway station at a distance of 48 km. Kasargod to Ranipuram distance is about 85 km. Distance from Kannur to Ranipuram is 120 km.
The nearest airport is Mangalore Airport at about 150 km. Kozhikode’s Karipur International Airport is farther away at 220 km.
Ranipuram can be accessed via the Kanhangad-Panathoor route on National Highways 17. Turning right at the 30 km point at Panathady takes you to the Ranipuram Hill Station. The destination is about 10 km from Panathady. There are bus services till Panathady. Jeep hires are mostly preferred.
Attractions near Ranipuram Hill Station
Apart from the hill station of Ranipuram, there are several other places to see in Kasargod. Bekal Fort, about 55 km from Ranipuram, is a much visited tourist destination because of its historical significance. Near the fort are beautiful beaches including the Bekal Beach that offers lots of holiday activities.
Kottancheri is also a renowned destination for trekking. It is about 30 km to the northeast of Kanhangad.
Cruise trips on the Valiyaparamba backwaters are not to be missed.
Ancient temples like the Madiyam Kovilakam temple, Palakkunnu Bhagavathy temple and Ananthapura Lake temple are worth visiting.
Anandashram and Nithyanandashram are popular spiritual centers near Kasargod.
Ranipuram Hotels, Resorts, Cottages
DTPC cottages form the main accommodation option. It is a great option for trekkers who wish to spend more time there. Hotels options are limited, but locals can arrange for your Ranipuram stay. Sams Cottage beside the Panathur Valley is a nice place to stay. Kasargod offers plenty of accommodation, including hotels, cottages and resorts near Ranipuram Hill Station.
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