Marayur or Marayoor is a place in Kerala state, South India. 42 kilometers north of Munnar through the Udumalppetta route, Marayur is the only place in Kerala that has natural sandalwood forests. Ancient dolmens and rock paintings in Marayur date back to the Stone Age.
Marayur claims to be a part of a Stone Age civilization that is as old as 10,000 B.C.The land and its unique dolmens, caves, rock edicts and engravings declare its rich heritageAlso called Muniyaras, these dolmenoid cists belong to the Iron Age. These dolmenoids were burial chambers made of four stones placed on edge and covered by a fifth stone called the cap stone. Some of these Dolmenoids contain several burial chambers.
The one’s easiest to get to are on the rock face at St. Pious Nagar at Kovilkadavu which is about 5 min drive from Marayoor, a small town between Munnar and Chinnar on the Munnar – Udumalpet road. To see the Muniyaras of Kovilkadavu, you have to enter a public school compound and walk to the rock face at the back. The dolmens, 3 square shaped slabs of stone topped with another square slab; are strewn all over the rock face as far as the eye can see, and in the valley below. It is an overwhelming sight, ringed by mountains, especially when you realise that the Muniyaras go back millions of years to prehistoric times.
TIPS FOR TRAVELLERS
1)Travellers can buy authentic sandalwood oil priced at rs 3000 for 10 ml and heartwood sandalwood at rs 800 for 100 gms only from KFDC center run by the kerela government at MUNNAR FLORICULTURE CENTER ONLY AND NOT AT MARAYUR.
2)The Gur/Jaggery of Marayur is world famous and costs rs 45 for 1 kg (price ranges from rs 25-55 per kilogram )
3)The lemon grass oil costs rs 160 for 100 ml bottle at Marayur.
4)Other attractions are a visit to the Chinnar wildlife sanctuary and Annamalai Tiger Reserve.
5)You can have a decent fresh meal at Variath hotel.