Painavu is a popular tourist hot spot in Idukki and a large commercial center. It's located inside the Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary, at 3,900 feet. As well as the Civil Station and Government Engineering College, Idukki, it's home to several State Government institutions.
The place is known for its pleasant ambience and picturesque location. The place is a stopover for people who are traveling to Idukki Arch Dam, Cheruthoni Dam, and Kulamavu. You can take a boat between Cheruthoni and Kulamavu from here. During winter and the rainy seasons, elephants can be spotted on the roads. Painavu is surrounded by pristine forests and green hills. You can trek through forests, plantations and to other small towns in Painavu, and it's a worthwhile experience.