Located just 20 km away from the heart of Thiruvananthapuram is the Neyyar Dam. A place which most of the school's in the city chooses for a one day picnic, I too have memories of a school trip to this place during which time our interests were mostly in experiencing the boat ride, the statues at the park, the climb up the watch tower and above all a visit to Lion safari park. Many of the Trivandrumites must have a nostalgic relationship with this wonderful place.
As we grew our interests changed, our perspectives changed and the very purpose of the visit changed. Got a chance to visit this place again, this time as part of a local meeting of a popular automotive forum. The weather was perfect for photo shoots and I did not miss the oppurtunity either. This place is surely a picturesque one as is evident from the shots below.
Eventhough this place is close to the busy city, the terrain change is quite evident once we crosses Kattakkada town. The sky was giving the perfect back drop
Once nearing the Neyyar a small river flows by the side with the trees on the river side giving the roads a special attraction and the drive soon becomes quite an exciting one.
There is a ticket counter at the gate, where we have to take passes for the vehicle to be taken in.
Inside the main building there is good park with lots of life like statues, a crocodile park and a swimming pool.
After taking the ticket, did I come to know that my friends are waiting near the watch tower. The way to the watch tower is outside this entrance. So I proceeded to the watch tower.
The dam site began to appear in front of me.
Soon I had to cross a small bridge which was right in front of the dam. Managed to click from inside the vehicle amidst the terrible honking from one of the tourist vehicle behind me.
Passed the Dam site and proceeded uphill through the narrow road
The upward trail was interesting since it first passed through thick vegetation.
Soon the thick vegetation gave way to the vast dam site and who wouldn't love to have a drive through a road watching this scenery and breathing fresh air
The watch tower was soon in sight and I parked the vehicle there. Wonder how many times I have seen this place, but still I don't feel bored to be here.
The view from top of the watch tower is really amazing. But didn't bother to climb up as my friends were waiting in the nearby restaurant.
The view of the dam from this point is also superb.
A KTDC (Kerala Tourism Development Corporation) restaurant is nearby which happens to be the only hotel here. The restaurant location is good.
But the goodness ends there. Facilities inside are poor and food is average.
Still it proved enough for a meet of automobile enthusiasts and we had lunch there. We came out of the restaurant and soon a poll was taken to find out the activity to chose. The boat ride starting point was visible from here.
We could see a boat returning after a ride through this beautiful ambience.
The waves created by the boat on the still water was giving it a special attraction.Another was leaving with full load of passengers.
May be because of the beautiful real life stills which we witnessed from this point, most of the people opted for a boat ride over a visit to Lion safari park, where the number of lions has gone drastically down, if the locals are to be believed.
After taking tickets (less than Rs50 per person) we were waiting for our boat to arrive, when I spotted this beautiful building coming up in the other shore.
Our boat came and we started our ride soon.
The greatest attraction of this drive is that where ever we look we feel as if it is a 3D screen saver for real. It is impossible to clearly describe what we saw. Just have a look at this pic
As the boat kept on moving the screenshots also varied. The mountains in the back drop were a treat to watch.
We also went near the lion safari park, but could spot just one lion. After a complete visual treat for about 45 minutes we were nearing the shore.
Still the ambience was ideal for photography
More discussion followed mainly on automotive gyans. Went to main building where other's steeds were parked. We can get another view of the dam from here.
Last but not the least, the sight of all the steeds of the autoenthusiasts provided another occasion for a photo shoot.
Name of Place; Neyyar Dam
How to reach:
Catch any bus from Thiruvananthapuram central bus terminal (near Railway station) to Neyar dam
Entry fees: Less than 100
Activities: Crocodile Park, Dam site, lion safari park
Ideal for: One day picnic.
Where to stay: Better to stay in Thiruvananthapuram, at Kovalam or Poovar and make a day trip here as there are no good resorts/hotel near this place.