Kuruva islands open to tourists from Saturday

Ticket counters to function at Pakkom and Palvelichom

Kuruva islands, a major eco-tourism destination in Wayanad district, will be opened to tourists on Saturday after an interval of six months.

Entry was barred for tourists to the site under the South Wayanad Forest Division by the end of April owing to the second wave of COVID-19 and rise of the water level in the Kabni river during the monsoon.

Kuruvadweep, a string of 64 islets spread over 1.47 sq km, is situated near Pakkom at the confluence of the Mananthavady river and the Panamaram river, the tributaries of the Kabani, and has a unique biodiversity-rich ecosystem with a collection of rare flora and fauna.

As the islets are a repository of unique plants and micro-organisms, the entry of visitors has been permitted to only 20 hectares of one of the islets, Chethalayath range forest officer K.P. Abdul samad told The Hindu.

The islets are a safe haven for thousands of migratory birds and butterflies.

River crossing on bamboo raft is another attraction of the destination, and two new bamboo rafts have been constructed for the purpose.

There are two ticket counters functioning at Pakkom and Palvelichom for tourists, and ferry services are available at both the counters. Permission to the islet is restricted to 1,150 visitors a day. At any given time, entry is restricted to 100 persons, and the visiting time is limited to two hours, Mr. Samad said.

The Pakkom counter is under the Forest Department, and the other is managed by the Kuruva Destination Management Committee of the Wayanad District Tourism Promotion Council.

The destination will be open from 9.30 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. An entry fee of ₹98 will be charged for adults and ₹59 for students, he said.

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