Agasthyarkoodam – Agasthyamala

Agasthyamala, also known as Agasthyakoodam, is a prominent peak in the southern part of the Western Ghats mountain range in India. It is located in the state of Kerala, near the border with Tamil Nadu. Agasthyamala is the second-highest peak in Kerala, standing at an elevation of approximately 1,868 meters (6,129 feet) above sea level. The mountain is named after the revered sage Agastya, who is a prominent figure in Hindu mythology and is believed to have meditated in this region.

Agastyarkoodam or Agastya Mala is the second highest peak in Kerala. This forested peak, an ideal trekking destination in the Western Ghats is 70km away from Trivandrum. It is accessed only on foot as tourists have to trek 24 km from Bonacaud, the base camp of Agastya Mala. The 1868 m peak is the abode of the Hindu sage Agastya, who is one among the  Saptarishis. Many Kerala as well as Tamilnadu rivers originate from the hill. Some of them are the Kallada River, Achankoil River,  Karamana River,  Neyyar River, Thamirabarani River, and Manimuthar River.

Agasthyamala Biosphere Reserve, which covers  23 sq km, is an important tourist attraction here. It is a repository of medicinal plants and rare herbs. A valuable and rare herb ‘Arogyapacha’ (plant of eternal health) is spotted here. Agastyarkoodam is being called a bio-diversity hotspot. The peak is home to many endangered mammals including the Lion-Tailed Macaques, Bengal Tiger, Nilgiri Marten,  Malabar Spiny Dormouse, Great Pied Hornbills,  and Sloth Bear.

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