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Courtallam or Kuttalam, Spa of South India, is a panchayat town situated at a mean elevation of 160 m (520 ft) on the Western Ghats in Tirunelveli District of Tamil Nadu, India. Many seasonal and few perennial rivers such as the Chittar River, the Manimuthar River, the Pachaiyar River and the Thamirabarani River originate in this region. The numerous waterfalls and cascades along with the ubiquitous health resorts in the area have earned it the title the Spa of South India.[1] The falls carry a good amount of water only when there is a rain on the hills. The season begins from June of every year till September. The South West Monsoon brings in the cold breeze with mild temperature. From October to December North East Monsoon sets over in Tamil Nadu and the climate is cold and the rains are very heavy sometimes. Sometimes the falls get flooded and people are not allowed to take bath during floods. The best time to visit kuttalam is between July and September.


Main waterfalls
Main waterfalls
Spa of South India
Courtallam is located in Tamil Nadu
Location in Tamil Nadu, India
Coordinates: 8°56′03″N 77°16′40″E / 8.9342°N 77.2778°E / 8.9342; 77.2778Coordinates: 8°56′03″N 77°16′40″E / 8.9342°N 77.2778°E / 8.9342; 77.2778
Country India
StateTamil Nadu
 • TypeSpecial Grade Town Panchayat Raj
 • BodyCourtallam Sirappu Nilai Peruratchi
167.64 m (550.00 ft)
 • Total2,368
 • OfficialTamil
Time zoneUTC+5:30 (IST)
Telephone code04633
Vehicle registrationTN 76
Sex ratio1:1 /



As of 2001 India census,[2] Courtallam had a population of 2368. Males constitute 41% of the population and females 59%. Courtallam has an average literacy rate of 75%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 78% and, female literacy is 74%. 7% of the population is under 6 years of age. Although very close to the Kerala border, the entire population of Courtallam is homogeneously Tamil.


Nestled in the Western Ghats, Courtallam has scenic surroundings. The hillocks which dominate the scenery disappear into the blue mist of Agasthiarmalai, the mountain bearing the name of a sage who made immense contributions to Tamil literature and is believed to have lived in the area.[3] The closest town to Courtallam is Tenkasi at 5 km (3.1 mi).The closest airport is Tuticorin Airport and Trivandrum international Airport. The nearest railway stations is at Tenkasi, 5 km (3.1 mi) away. The Waterfalls may experience its peak climate in the season period between July to September.There are many waterfalls in and around Coutrallam.


Climate data for Courtallam, Tamil Nadu
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 29.0
Average low °C (°F) 20.9
Average precipitation mm (inches) 41

Falls in CourtallamEdit

Upper portion of Old Falls cascade in Courtallam

Courtallam has nine waterfalls.

  • Peraruvi (main falls) the biggest falls in Courtallam, is about 60m high. The flow of water is interrupted by the Pongumakadal, a 19m deep crater and comes down with greatly reduced impact, making a bath safe.
  • In Chitraruvi (small falls), the flow is thin. Here naturally separate places for men and women are there to bathe.
  • At Shenbagadevi falls, the water flows through shenbaga (Michaelia champak) trees. There is also a temple there, dedicated to Shenbagadevi Amman. Shenbagadevi leads to Chitraruvi.
  • About 3 km from this is Thenaruvi (honey falls), 40m high and cascading between two large stones. In places where there is no water, one can see big honeycombs. Thenaruvi is very dangerous and it is restricted for public. But it is very common to see people visiting and bathing in Thenaruvi.
  • Aintharuvi (five falls) which has five separate cascades of water form this waterfalls.
  • From the orchard above flows Pazhathotta Aruvi, the 'VIP falls'. Only VIP's are allowed in Pazhathotta Aruvi.
  • The Pazhaya Courtalla Aruvi (Old Courtallam falls) used to fall into a valley from between two rocks. The valley was closed and the rocks were broken to change the course of water and make bathing easier. It was reopened later.
  • The artificial Puli Aruvi (Tiger Falls) has a moderate flow of water which collects in a lake and is diverted for irrigation, sometimes tigers visit this place for water.[5]
  • There is another small falls inside the Government Horticulture Park above Five Falls, but it is off limits to the public.

The three major waterfalls reachable by road are the Main Falls, Five Falls, and Old Courtallam Falls. Other waterfalls like Shenbaga Devi Falls and Honey Falls are reachable only by trekking on the mountain.

Places to visitEdit

  1. Therkumalai Estate can be reached from Honey falls in 1 hour, which is roughly at 2000 ft altitude.
  2. Boat Houses near the Five Falls and Old Courtallam Falls.
  3. Snake Park nears to the Main Falls.
  4. Aquarium near the Main Falls.
  5. Children's Park.
  6. Eco Park near Five falls.
  7. Gundar Dam near Shencottah

Nearby Tourist InterestsEdit

Tenkasi is a town located in the foothills of the Western Ghats near the Courtallam Waterfalls, close to the Tamil Nadu - Kerala border in Tirunelveli District. Tourists prefer staying in either courtallam or Shencottah or Tenkasi and the close proximity allows tourists to frequently travel between the two. The Palaruvi Falls is across the state border in Kerala.[6]

Thirukutraalanaadhar Temple.
Boat House.


  • Courtallam is not just waterfalls; its temples too attract visitors. The most important among these is the Chitra Sabha, one of the five sabhas with Nataraja, Shiva in the dancing posture as the main deity. The paintings at the Chitra Sabha were renovated about 100 years ago. The others are the Rathna Sabha at Thiruvalangadu, the Kanaka Sabha at Chidambaram, and the Velli Sabha at Madurai and the Thamira Sabha at Tirunelveli). The temple at the foot of the hill is conch-shaped which has special significance in Hindu tradition.
  • The Tamil poet Thirukudarasappa Kavirayar sang about the beauty of this place in his "Kutraala Kuravanji" standing on its highest point at 1565m.
  • The temple at the foot of the hill is conch-shaped which has special significance in Hindu tradition.[3][7]

Nearby templesEdit

  • Thirukutraalanaadhar Kovil in Main falls. During the Thamizh month of Chithirai, a ten-day festival is arranged which ends in a special prayer on Pournami (Full Moon Day).
  • Thirumalai Kovil in Panpoli, 8 km from Courtallam.
  • Kumaran Kovil in Ilanji, 3 km from Courtallam.
  • Kasivishuwanathar Kovil in Tenkasi, 6 km East from Courtallam.
  • Dhakshinamoorthy Kovil in Puliyarai, 12 km West from Courtallam.
  • Papanasam Ulagaambihai & Sivan Kovil in Papanasam, 35 km Southeast from Courtallam.
  • Ariyankavu Iyappan Kovil in Kerala, 35 km Northwest from Courtallam.


There are numerous resorts, hotels and lodges in Courtallam. Most of the luxurious hotels are located near to the main falls and Old Courtallam.

External linksEdit

For information about Courtallam and Season, surrounding places visit

For information about the temple of Courtallam visit

For information about the season on Courtallam visit

Modes of TransportEdit


Courtallam is mainly connected by bus transport to the two main cities of Tenkasi and Shenkottai. Tirunelveli to Tenkasi buses are frequently available in Courtallam. Buses are frequently available only during the season time. In the remaining months most of the buses takes from Tenkasi via Ilanji to reach Shenkottai. Like buses to Old Courtallam are also available during the season time only.

Rail ConnectivityEdit

Courtallam doesn't have Railway station, the nearest railway station is at Tenkasi which can be accessed in just 20mins.

Tenkasi has Good Rail Connectivity with trains to Places like Chennai Egmore,Madurai,Tirunelveli, Manamadurai, Kollam,Kottayam, Ernakulam,Palakkad and Thrissur

List of Express - Super Fast Trains:-

  1. Pothigai Express (12661/ 12662)
  2. Chennai Egmore–Kollam Junction Express (16101/16102)
  3. Silambu Express (16181/16182)
  4. Palaruvi Express (16791/16792)

Apart from the listed trains, there are daily passnger trains to Madurai and Tirunelveli.

In popular cultureEdit

Owing to its scenic beauty, Courtallam has featured in many films.


  1. ^ "Tamilnadu Destinations Kutralam Waterfalls". 18 February 2013.
  2. ^ "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 16 June 2004. Retrieved 1 November 2008.
  3. ^ a b The cascades of Courtallam Frontline Magazine, pg 60, 15-28 September 1990
  4. ^ "CLIMATE: COURTALLAM, Tamil Nadu", Web: [1].
  5. ^ The cascades of Courtallam Frontline Magazine, pg 60, 15-28 September 1990
  6. ^ "Palaruvi Falls". World of Waterfalls. Retrieved 26 June 2010.
  7. ^ Thiru Courtallanathar Thirukovil Sri Courtralanathaswami Temple
  8. ^ "Aravaan had to be visually stunning". Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  9. ^ "Sameera injured during Vettai shoot". The Times of India. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  10. ^ "Prabhas's Mirchi shooting in Kutralam". Chitramala. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  11. ^ "Mirchi shooting at Kutralam". Supergoodmovies. Archived from the original on 9 November 2012. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  12. ^ "SVSC to shoot in Kutralam, TN, from Feb. 6". IndiaGlitz. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  13. ^ "SVSC in Kutralam". Maa Stars. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  14. ^ "Venkatesh, Mahesh's SVSC Kutralam schedule wrapped". Way2movies. Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  15. ^ "KR Vijaya and Monika escape unhurt". Retrieved 29 October 2013.
  16. ^ Sharanya CR (22 February 2014). "Reality check for Nandita". The Times of India. Retrieved 23 February 2014.