Going to Irpu Falls was one of the spur-of-the-moment decisions that occur far too often in our trips. As with most of them, this too turned out to be a good one. Wayanad has plenty of waterfalls, so we did not consider Irpu in Coorg, Karnataka (close to the border of Wayanad) as a to-do destination. But we had time to kill till the safari starts at Tholpetty Wildlife Sanctuary, and Irpu is just about 10 km from Tholpetty.
The road turns narrow and bumpy as we approached Irpu and contrary to our expectations, the parking lot was full. But we did not feel the crowd during the less-than-a-kilometre hike to the falls. At the falls, it was even difficult to get a clear view because of the number of people.
The hike through forest was interesting with several butterflies to keep company.
Taking bath right under the falls meant jostling against the crowd so we opted for a dip at a lower section of the river.
Later in our trip, we realised that we made a right choice by visiting Irpu because the major waterfalls in Wayanad – Soochipara, Meenmutty, and Chethalayam were closed for visitors.
Irpu Falls in Coorg, Karnataka, is located in the Brahmagiri range of Western Ghats. The falls is also known as the Lakshmana Tirtha Falls, named after the Lakshmana Tirtha River, a tributary of Cauvery that starts from these falls.
Irupu falls can be reached from Kutta which is a tiny town in Karnataka bordering Kerala. Kutta is about 25 kms from Manathavady in Wayanad. Kutta is also reachable from Madikkeri, though the distance is about 80 kms.