Apart from elephant rides, cruises on the lake and treks to the ruined Mangaladevi temple – a beautiful old stone temple situated in the heart of the Thekkady forest, this sanctuary offers opportunity to watch and photograph wild elephants from close range.
The park is being adorned with a picturesque lake at the heart of the sanctuary which is an artificial 100 years old lake at Thekkady and is basically known for its wild elephants and thickly established Western Ghats forests. Many of the intense valleys of Periyar contain tropical evergreen forest with extremely thick tree cover with hardly any sun-rays to get penetrated. These trees are fully grown at the amazing heights of up to 130-140 feet. Some of the areas in the park contain marshy grasslands near the edges of the lake and other water bodies. Spread out across the park are also patches of semi-evergreen forest used as important cover by many of the animal species.
Lake Palace and Aranya Nivas are options for stay set in the sylvan lakeside. The Lake Palace, a former summer retreat of the Maharaja of Travancore, is built on a small island accessible only by boat. Aranya Nivas(Jungle Retreat) a stone lodge with rubble masonry built in colonial style at the head of the lake is a premium property of the Kerala Tourism Development Corporation.