Located in the western part of India, the Sahayadri hills continue to captivate the imagination of the users. Termed as a UNESCO world heritage site, the region is home to different types of flora and fauna. According to the scientists, it is called the Great Indian Escarpment. Region is known for its complex geography. The range extends from northern to southern direction all along the western part of the Deccan Plateau. It acts as a separator for the Konkan region which is a coastal plain with a narrow width. Thirty nine properties are determined by the UNESCO as world heritage sites of which twenty lie in the region of Kerala and 10 in the state of Karnataka. The range initiates from the border of Maharashtra and the Gujarat state and extends up to 1600 Km. It covers Goa, Tamil Nadu as well as Kerala. Sahayadri hills run right to Kanyakumari which is the southernmost tip of India.
Ranges span across 1, 60,000 sq Km and create a huge catchment area where the complex drainage system is located. It drains out more than 40% of the water of India. It is a well known fact that Western Ghats act as an impediment to the rainfall in the Deccan plateau. Total elevation is about 1200 m which reinstates the bio diversity of the place.
In the Western Ghat area, more than 5000 species of plants exist in their natural habitat. Apart from above 139 mammal species and more than 500 types of birds are located in the region. According to the scientists, there are many more species which are undiscovered and would captivate the imagination of the users. In addition to the conventional animals, 325 endangered species live in the Western Ghats.
Western Ghats are not considered to be the mountains in conventional sense but lie at the faulted edge of the Deccan plateau. They were formed when the giant continent of Gondwana broke up from the land mass about 150 million years ago. As per the theories propounded by the physicist Barron and Harrison, the Western Ghats were created 80 million years ago when they were separated from the Island of Madagascar. Basalt is one of the most common rocks found in the region and they exist at a depth of 3 Km. Western Ghats to some appear as a cliff with about 1300 m in height. There are different types of rocks found in the region apart from Basalt. Charnockites and khondalites co exist along with the crystalline limestone and the iron ore. Residual bauxites combined with laterite are also found in the area.
Western Ghats start from the Satpura range which is situated in the northern part of India. It extends into Maharashtra along with Goa. States of Karnataka, Kerala are also covered in the due process. The range culminates right into the state of Tamil Nadu. There are different gaps in the Maharashtra and Karnataka region. One of the most prominent is Goa Gap and the huge Palghat Gap in the state of Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The latter is situated between the huge Nilgiri Hills and Anamalai Hills.
One of the major mountain ranges initiated from the northern part of India is the Sahayadri. Along the ranges there are many hill stations which attract the people in hordes. Matheran and the Lonavala Khandala are some of the most popular destinations among the tourists. Besides, Mahabaleshwar and Panchagani are known for their cool climate. The range is termed as Sahayadri in Maharashtra, however in Kerala it is termed as Sahya Parvatam. Kodagu and Kudremukh are some of the most important hill stations that continue to captivate the imagination of the users.
Nilgiri malai is located in the north western part of Tamil Nadu. Ooty, the hill station is located in the region and captivates the imagination of the tourists. Billi giri Rangana Betta is a wonderful hill station which is situated in the eastern direction of the city of Mysore. One can find the Tirumala range in the eastern part of India that acts as a link to the western as well as Eastern ghats. The nilgiris extend to the state of Tamil Nadu.
In the south of the palghat Gaps the anaimalai hills are located. They extend into the western Tamil Nadu and the state of Kerala. Cardamom hills are situated in the South of India. The southern portion of the range includes the Anamudi peak which is about 2, 695 meters and considered to be the highest point in the region. Apart from above, chembara peak along with bansura and Vellarimala co exist in the region. Mullyanagiri is considered to be the highest peak in the region of Karnataka and captivates the imagination of the people by many notches. Western Ghats located in Kerala and Tamil Nadu encompasses many tea and coffee plantations.
The coastal plain that lies between the Western Ghats and the huge Arabian Sea is known as the region of Konkan. The central part of the coast is called the kanara and the southernmost region is known as the Malabar Coast. As the Ghat tapers down, the foot hills are known as Desh and the one which are located in the eastern parts are called malenadu. A huge city lies in the mountains and it is known as Pune. It is located in the eastern part of the coastal plain. One of the most popular hills called Billigiranjan is located near the western as well as the Eastern Ghats.
The mountains act as a catalyst for the westerly winds which bring in huge monsoon. There is a huge rainfall on the western part of the hills. Dense forests in the region lead to the increase in precipitation in the area. Orographic winds rise from the sea and bring in moisture leading to rainfall in the region.
Wild Life in Western Ghats
Vegetation in the Western Ghats is rich and would go a long way in capturing the interest of the users. The rain forests are found in region along with the grasslands and mountains. Forests could be divided in to moist deciduous vegetation located in the north and the south Western Ghats. The northern part of the Ghats is drier as compared to the southern portion. Teak wood trees are found in abundance. At an elevation of 1000 meters, one can find the lauraceous trees. Sparse grassland s could be found in the higher elevations of the Western Ghats.
Wayanad forest is the symbol of change from the northern to the Southern Ghats. At the lower elevations of the Western Ghats, the moist deciduous forests are quite prominent. Cullenia, teak, along with dipterocarps are found in region in abundance. Majority of flowering species are found in the South of the Western Ghats.
There are many animals living in the region that are termed as endangered species. Some of them are macaque which is a lion tailed monkey. Indian tigers and leopards along with elephants can be found in the region. Vampire and the painted bats can be found in the Western Ghats. They attract large number of tourists to the different national parks situated in the region. Snakes, insects and different varieties of frogs could be found here in hordes.
Amazing hornbill and the wonderful wood pigeon co exist in natural habitats in an impeccable manner. White bellied blue fly catcher can be seen by the visitors who throng the place in huge numbers. More than 500 species of birds could be found in the region. More than 16 endemic species live in the region.
Cities in Western Ghats
Calicut in Kerala
Dolphin point along with Mishkai Masjid and the beach are some of the most important attractions. There are many towns which are situated near to Calicut.
Munnar in Kerala
Marayoor along with the Lock heart gap and the Attukal are some of the places that continue to attract people. Power house waterfall is visited by many people from all over the world.
Kottayam in Kerala
Some of the most important places include the back waters and the shiva temple which is located in the vicinity of the city. Good shepherd church is quite famous among the people
Kochi in Kerala
Dutch palace and the Kochi beach are very popular among the tourists. Rajiv Gandhi Zoological Park has been a very popular destination among the users.
Best Time to Visit
According to the tourist department the ideal time to visit the place is from the month of May to September.
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