Kattappana is a quaint hilly town in Idukki District
and is on the Ernakulam-Thekkady road. It lies in the high ranges of the Western Ghats
, at an altitude of 810 m above the sea level. Kattappana is just 32 km from Kumily
and is around 290 km to the north of the state capital, Thiruvananthapuram
Kattappana derives its name after the Malayalam word ‘Koottappana’ meaning ‘a group of palms’- a band of daring farmers who migrated over to the forests for cultivation in the early 1950s discovered this fertile tract rich in palms and aptly named it as ‘Koottappana’.
Kattappana is mainly an agricultural town renowned for its spices; hence the town is some times referred to as the ‘spice city’ of Kerala. The emergence of Kattappana from an underdeveloped village to the second largest town in Idukki District owes a lot to its spice trade – still its economy fluctuates with the variations occurring in the spice market.
Kattappana, in itself, is a tourist spot in Idukki District. It assumes prominence as being located between two world famous tourist centers, Idukki Reservoir and Thekkady, which is instrumental in drawing scores of tourists into this serene locale. The famous pilgrimage center, Kalvari Mount is nearby. Eravikulam National Park, Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, Thommankuthu waterfalls and Munnar Hill Station are other major tourist spots around.
Nearest airport is at Kochi. Ernakulam is 154 km to the north-west. Kottayam Railway Station is the closest rail-head. A private and public bus station at Kattappana operates services through out the state and to some towns in the neighboring Tamil Nadu.