KERALA INFO: Rivers of Kerala

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Rivers of Kerala

by by V.A.Ponmelil (All rights reserved by the author)  (Feedback)



Kerala is the land of Rivers and Backwaters. Its rivers criss-cross the state physique like blood veins. They fertilize the land, turn the waste into the wealth of the rich, black, alluvial soil. The Lowlands or the coastal area, made up of river deltas, backwaters and the Arabian coast, is essentially a land of coconuts and rice. These rivers which are small and monsoon fed, turnout to be rivulets in summer. Some of the important rivers of the state are  

Periyar River

It originates in the Sivagiri hills along the border of Kerala-Tamilnadu. It is the first largest river in Kerala.It flows into the Vembanattu Lake and to the Arabian Sea. The birth place of Shri.Sankaracharya, Kalady, and the famous church at Malayatur is in the banks of Periyar.

The famous festival Mahasivarathri is celebrated at the beds of this river. The Thattekadu Birds Sanctuary is situated in the banks of river. The famous Wildlife Sanctuary and Tourist place Thekkady is situated at the side of Mullaperiyar Dam. The largest Hydro Electric Project Idukki and the Arch Dam at Idukki are from this river. The Pallivasal, the Chenkulam, the Panniyar, the Neriyamangalam and the Lower Periyar are the other Hydro Electric Projects in Periyar.

The important dams of the river are the Mullaperiyar, the Bhuthathankettu, the Kundalam, the Mattupetty, the Munnar, the Idukki, the Cheruthoni, the Kulamavu, the Irattayar, the Lower Periyar, the Edamalayar, the Chenkulam, the Anayirangal and the Ponmudi.

Moggral

It originates from the black forests of Nathoorkarathka in the Kasargode district, flows through Yathir, Mathur, and Patla and merges in the Arabian Sea. 

Chittaripuzha

It is a combination of the small rivers from Cherambe, Thayakolam, and Pulloor in the Kasargode district and merges in the Arabian sea. 

Manjeshwarampuzha

It originates in the northern boundaries of Kerala in the Kasargode district. It flows through the villages of Pavoori and Badajay, then turns west and merges with the right bank of the Upplayar.  

Upplayar

It originates from Veerakamba hills in the Karnataka State, flows through the Kasargode Taluk and merges in the Arabian Sea.  

Shiriyar

It originates from the Government forests in Karnataka State and merges in Kumbala Lake in Arabian Sea. The tributary of the river is Kallajathode, Kannynathode, and Eramatti.  

Chandragiri

It is one of the most important rivers in Kasargode Taluk in Kerala. The important tributary river is Payaswani. It originates from Pattihatu forest in Karnataka State, flows through the west and combines with Machipuram and finally merges in the Arabian Sea.  

Neeleshwaram

It originates in the Hosdurg taluk of the Kasargode district and is the main source for the Kariyankode. On the south west of the Neelaeshwaram town, near Achanthuruthu, at a place called Kottapuram it meets the Kariyankode river. 

Kariyankode

It originates in the eastern ghats of Pathinalkadu hills in Karnataka State. Most of the tributary of the Kariyankode River flows through south west and merges in the Arabian Sea. 

Kuppam

It originates in the Padinalkadu forests of Kodagu District in Karnataka State, merges with Valapattanam river and then into the Arabian Sea. The tributary of the river are Pakkatupuzha, Alakutathode, Kuttilol Puzha, Mukkuttathodu and Chiriyathode.  

Kowvayipuzha

It originates in the Chemaeni village in Kannur district, flows through Alapadambu and Vadasseri and into the Kawvayi canal. 

Valapattanam

It originates in the Brahmagiri forests of Kodagu district in Karnataka State, flows through the west and combines with Kuppam River and finally merges in the Arabian Sea. The Tributary Rivers are Srikandapuram, Valiyapuzha, Bharapuzha, Venipuzha and Aralampuzha. The largest Irrigation Project, Pazhassi Project is situated in the bank of Valapattanam River.  

Thalasseri River

It originates in the western cliffs of government forests of Kunnoth in the Kannur district. It reaches the Arabian sea at the north in Mannayad. 

Peruvambayaru

It originates in the Western Ghats near Wayakkara village in Kannur district. It flows through the west of Peringgoni, Kuttur, Mathamangalam, and Kunchimangalam and reaches Ezhimala and divided into two-one into the Kowvayi canal and the other into the Arabian Sea.  

Ramapurampuzha

It originates in the Irringal village in the Western Ghats of Kannur district, flows through Pariyaram, Kolapaduvayal, Cheruthazam and Madayi into the Kowvayi canal. 

Mahe River

Also called the Maiyazhipuzha, It originates in the Wayanad Mountains in the Western Ghats and flows south-west into the Arabian Sea. 

Kuttiyadipuzha

Also called the Murad River, It originates in the Wayanad Mountains in the Western Ghats and flows through Caracara, Quilandy and Kozhikode into the Arabian sea at Kotakkal in the south west of Vadakara. Kuttyadi Hydro Electric Project is situated in this river and Kuttyadi irrigation project is also situated in this river. 

Peruvambayaru

It originates in the Western Ghats near Wayakkara village in Kannur district. It flows through the west of Peringgoni, Kuttur, Mathamangalam, and Kunchimangalam and reaches Ezhimala and divided into two-one into the Kowvayi canal and the other into the Arabian Sea.  

Ramapurampuzha

It originates in the Irringal village in the Western Ghats of Kannur district, flows through Pariyaram, Kolapaduvayal, Cheruthazam and Madayi into the Kowvayi canal. 

Kallayipuzha

It originates in the Cherukulathur village in Kozhikode and merges with the Arabian sea after flowing through Kovoor,Ollavanna, Manava and Kallayi. 

Chaliyar

The most important River in Kerala, It originates in the Elambalari hills of Neelagiri district in Tamil Nadu State. The tributary of the river are Cholapuzha, Cherupuzha, Chalipuzha, Punnapuzha, Pandiyar, Karimpuzha, Kanjirapuzha, Kurumbanpuzha, Vadapurampuzha, Irrinjipuzha and Iruthullipuzha.It flows through the Nilambur, Mumbad, Edavanna, Arikode, Vazhakadu and Farokke and finally merges in the Arabian Sea. It is also known as Beypur River.  

Kadalundipuzha

It is a large river flowing through the Malappuram district. It is the combination of the Ollipuzha and Veliyar rivers. It is also called the "Karimpuzha' or 'Oravanpuram Puzha' and reaches the Arabian Sea at Kadalundi. 

Keecheripuzha

This is called the Vadakancheri River. It is one of the smallest rivers of Kerala. It originates in the western cliffs of the Western ghats in Thalapalli Taluk and flows into the Arabian sea through the Keecheri and Koll canal at Madukarai. 

Puzhaikalaru

It has its origin in the combination of the rivers of Parathode and Pumalathode along with those of Naduthode and Katacheruthode. It terminates into the Arabian Sea at Trissivaperoor town. 

Thirurpuzha

It is a small river flowing in the Tirur taluk of the Malappuram district. it merges with Bharathapuzha at Ponnani town. 

Bhavanipuzha

It originates in the Silent Valley in Kerala and merges in the right bank of Kaveri. The important tributary of this river are Shiruvani, Varagar, Kuntha, Kunnur and Moyar.  

Bharathapuzha

It originates in the Anamalai of Tamilnadu, flows through the district of Coimbatore, Palghat, Malapuram, Thishivaperur and reaches the Arabian Sea at Ponani. It is the second largest rivers in Kerala. The important tributaries of the river are Gayathri River, Kannadi River, Kalpathi River and Thutha River. It is also known as Ponnaniyar. The irrigation projects of Bharathapuzha are the Mangalam Project, the Pothundi Project, the Gayathri Project, the Malampuzha Project, the Valayar Project, the Cheerakuzhi Project, the Chitoor Project and the Kanjirapuzha Project.  

Karuvannurpuzha

It originates in the western parts of the Western Ghats in Palghat, flows through Thrissur district and merges into the Arabian Sea. The rivers of manali and Kurumali are the key sources of this river. The Peechi Irrigation Project is situated in this river. The Chimmoni Dam is situated in this river. 

Chalakudy River

It originates in the Anamalai region of Tamilnadu and is actually the collection of the falls from Parambikulam, Kuriyarkutti, Sholayar, Karapara and Anakayam. The famous Waterfalls Athirapally and Vazhachal is situated in the banks of river. The famous Hydro Electric Projects in Chalakkudy River are the Sholayar Hydro Electric Project and the Peringalkuttu Hydro Electric Project. The Chalakkudy Dam is situated in this river. It merges with the Periyar River at the village of Puthanvelikkara in Ernakulam.  

Muvattupuzha River

It originates in Idukki district, flows through Ernakulam district to merge into Vembanattu Lake and to the Arabian Sea. It is the combination of Thodupuzha River, Kaliyar River and Kothamangalam River. There is a Dam constructed for Irrigation purpose and for small Hydro Electric Project at Malankara near Thodupuzha. The famous Thommankuthu Waterfall is in this river. 

Meenachilaru

It originates in the mountains of the Meenachil Taluk, flows around Kottayam into the Vembanattu Lake. The sources of this river are Kullathukadavaru, Thrikovillaru, Poonjarapuzha, Chittur and Payyaparathodu.  

Manimalayaru

It originates in the Tata hills of Idukki district and merges into the right of the Pamba River at Nerrettupuram. The Holly Place 'Erumeli' is in the banks of this river. 

Pamba River

The Holly Place 'Pamba' near Sabarimala shrine is on the banks of Pamba River. It is a combination of a number of rivers originating from the lands of Peeramedu. The tributaries of this river are the Kakkiyar, the Azhuthayar, the Kakkatar and the Kallar. It is the third largest river in Kerala. It flows through Ranni, Thiruvalla, Changanassery and Ambalapuzha Taluk. The Aranmula Boat Race celebrated here is very famous, and the Maraman Convention at Maraman near Kozhenchery is also held in this river. The famous waterfall 'Perunthenaruvi' is in this river. The important projects of this river are the Maniyar Irrigation Project and the Sabarigiri Hydro Electro Project. The two dams, the Pambayar dam and the Kakiyar dam are constructed on the banks of Pamba River. It divides into several tributaries and finally merges into the Vembanattu Lake. Pampa is treated as a 'Saint River'. 

Ithikara River

It originates in Ponmudi and flows through Pathanapuram, Kottarakkara and Kollam into Paravoor canal. 

Ayiroorpuzha

It originates in Navayikulam, flows through M.C.Road into the Edava-Nadayarakayal. 

Vamanapuram

It originates in Chemunjimotta hills and is also known as Attingal Aaru. The tributaries of the river are the Upper Chittar and the Manjaprayar.  

Mamampuzha

It originates in Panthalakuttu hills at Vembayam and reaches the Anjuthengukayal near Cherayankeezhu. 

Killiyar

It originates in Nedumangad Taluk in Trivandrum district, flows through Trivandrum city and merges with Karamanayar.  

Achankovilaru

It originates in the hills of Achankovil in the Patanamthitta and flows through Mavelikkara, Thiruvalla and Karthikapally Taluk into the left of river Pamba near the Vembanattu Lake. The famous place Pandalam, the native place of Lord Ayyappa is in the banks is this river. 

Pallichelaru

It originates in the southern cliffs of Kalaritharakunnu in Adoor and merges into the Kozhikode canal near Karunagapally. 

Kalladayar

It originates in Kulathupuzha Hills near Ponmudi, flows through Pathanapuram, Kunnathur, Kottarakkara and Kollam Taluk merges into the Ashtamudi Lake. The tributaries of the river are the Kulathupuzha, the Chenthurnipuzha and the Kalthuruthipuzha.  

Karamanayaru

It originates in the Chemunji Mottai-Agathiyakudam hills and reaches the Arabian Sea near Pachallur. The tributaries of the river are the Kaviyar, the Attayar, the Veyyapadiyar and the Thodyyar. There are two Dams are constructed in the river one at Peppara and another at Aruvikkara for the purpose of water supply to Trivandrum city and surrounding places. The capital city of Thiruvananthapuram is on the banks of this river. 

Neyyar

It originates in Agasthiyakudam Hills, flows through Neyyatinkara taluk into the Arabian sea near Poovar. The tributary rivers are the Kallar and the Karavaliyar. The small canals of Vandichirathode, Kulathoorvaliathode, Maruthurthode, Athiyanurthode, Thalayilthode, Kottukalthode and Venganurthode flow through the Neyyar. The Irrigation Project, Neyyar Irrigation Project constructed in 1973 at Kallikadu near Kattakada about 35 kms from Trivandrum is based on this river.

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