Palaruvi Falls

Aryankavu, Kerala, India

About Palaruvi Falls


Hiking Distance: 1km round trip
Suggested Time: 30 minutes

Date first visited: 2009-11-19
Date last visited: 2009-11-19

Waterfall Latitude: 8.94174
Waterfall Longitude: 77.16535

Palaruvi Falls was one of those waterfalls that apparently had ayurvedic healing properties.

We were told that such properties came about as a result of the stream meandering through some natural herbal groves further upstream.

Palaruvi_Falls_044_11192009 - Looking up towards the top of the Palaruvi Falls
Looking up towards the top of the Palaruvi Falls

To make it easier for visitors to get the benefit of these ayurvedic properties by bathing in the waterfall’s waters, Julie and I noticed there were changing rooms as well as designated gender-separated bathing areas in the stream itself.

Experiencing the Palaruvi Falls

As for photographing the Palaruvi Falls, I found out that it wasn’t easy as the most direct view of the falls was only available in the ladies only section so only the ladies could get it.

However, even that view wasn’t that great thanks to large boulders obstructing views of the bottommost sections of the tall waterfall.

The difficulty was exacerbated because the male-only side appeared to be off limits due to a rockfall (probably the same one that obstructed views from the ladies side) that apparently washed out a bridge.

Palaruvi_Falls_006_11192009 - Context of the Palaruvi Falls and the gender segregated paths each yielding a different viewing experience
Context of the Palaruvi Falls and the gender segregated paths each yielding a different viewing experience

So I had to rely on Julie to go to the female section to take the more frontal photographs of the waterfall.

Beyond the bathing area, the walking path ascended a set of stairs leading up to a sheltered overlook.

From that vantage point, it was difficult to capture the whole falls since it was too close to Palaruvi Falls, especially since the waterfall itself was too tall.

Proclamations about the Palaruvi Falls

It was said that this falls was around 300ft tall (other sources have claimed it to be 91m tall or 299ft).

Nonetheless, there were more cascades and rapids further downstream of the main falls perhaps adding to our perception that Palaruvi Falls was indeed tall and impressive.

Palaruvi_Falls_005_jx_11192009 - The most direct view of the Palaruvi Falls, which Julie managed to capture from the ladies only side
The most direct view of the Palaruvi Falls, which Julie managed to capture from the ladies only side

There was also a sign near the turnoff from the main road proclaiming that this was the most beautiful falls in Kerala.

Well, we thought that claim might be a bit boastful since we felt Athirappilly Falls was more scenic than this one.

Nonetheless, beauty is ultimately in the eye of the beholder so I’m sure someone else could easily think otherwise.

The Family of Ayurvedic Waterfalls

The Palaruvi Falls were actually considered to be a member of a cluster of other waterfalls apparently with ayurvedic healing properties.

This one was the only one in that cluster that I know of in Kerala while the others were across the nearby state border in the state of Tamil Nadu near the town of Courtallam (pronounced “kor-TALL-um”).

Palaruvi_Falls_022_11192009 - Looking down towards the bottom of the Palaruvi Falls near the closed men's only area, where I'd imagine some people would bathe in to get some of the Ayurvedic properties of the water
Looking down towards the bottom of the Palaruvi Falls near the closed men’s only area, where I’d imagine some people would bathe in to get some of the Ayurvedic properties of the water

I understand that the name Palaruvi meant “stream of milk” in the local dialect.

Like Dudhsagar Falls, I’m sure there was a bit of a religious Hindu tie-in with the milk reference.

Authorities

Palaruvi Falls resides near Kollam in the Kollam District of Kerala State, India. It is administered by the Kollam District Government. For information or inquiries about the area as well as current conditions, you can visit their website.

Palaruvi_Falls_008_jx_11192009 - Pretty boastful sign at the turnoff for Palaruvi Falls saying it was the most beautiful waterfalls in the state of Kerala
Palaruvi_Falls_001_11192009 - Finally made it to the car park for the Palaruvi Falls
Palaruvi_Falls_003_11192009 - Julie on the lush trail leading closer to Palaruvi Falls
Palaruvi_Falls_049_11192009 - Looking towards Athirappilly Falls from a different perspective closer to the general dining area at the Rainforest Resort
Palaruvi_Falls_008_11192009 - Looking to the right of the junction near the base of the Palaruvi Falls to get onto the ladies only side
Palaruvi_Falls_001_jx_11192009 - Closer look at a sign proclaiming Ladies and Kids only
Palaruvi_Falls_007_jx_11192009 - That sign led up to the dressing room area for the Ladies and Kids only at the Palaruvi Falls
Palaruvi_Falls_010_11192009 - View of Palaruvi Falls from near the closure spot due to damage from rock falls near the waterfall's base
Palaruvi_Falls_015_11192009 - The upper overlook for Palaruvi Falls
Palaruvi_Falls_027_11192009 - Looking up at Julie checking out Palaruvi Falls from the upper overlook
Palaruvi_Falls_038_11192009 - Looking across at the washed out bridge leading to the closed off men's only section of the Palaruvi Falls

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Palaruvi Falls is some 4km from the mountain pass and state border at Aryankavu (sometimes the falls is called Aryankavu Falls because of this geographic proximity).

It’s also 35km from Punalur, 75km from Kollam, and 152km from the state capital of Thiruvananthapuram (I just had to get that one in there 🙂 or you can just go by the British name of Trivandrum [pronounced “tree-VAN-drum”] for short).

It took us about two hours by car to get from Kollam to the car park for the falls.

We came here immediately after our overnight Kerala Backwaters tour was over.

Kollam was also about 3.5 hours drive (139km) south of Kochi (or Cochin).

Bottom up sweep of the falls as seen from the Ladies Only section


Bottom up sweep of the falls as seen from the upper overlook

Trip Planning Resources


Tagged with: kollam, kerala, ayurvedic, bathing, india, waterfall, tamil nadu, border, palaruvi, milk



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