Kerala – God’s Own Country – is recently included among the 50 top preferred destinations as ranked by National Geographic Traveler. Sandwiched between the turquoise blue Lakshadweep Sea and the state of Tamil Nadu, this green land of exotic beauty and charm has mesmerized tourists since time immemorial. Literally, ‘Kerala’ means – the land of ‘Kera’ (coconut). People believe that it was a gift of Lord Parasurama (an incarnation of Lord Vishnu).
Kerala tourism is best enjoyed with lush vegetation, serene backwaters, tranquil beaches, stunning mountains, picturesque hill stations and enchanting wildlife. Ancient forts and palaces, highly revered pilgrim centres, and colourful festivals add some extra beauty to the place. The best part about Kerala is that the naturalist branch of medicine – Ayurveda – is followed extensively here.
Forts & Palaces
The rich ancient heritage of Kerala is still preserved sophisticatedly in the beautiful forts & palaces here. Built in typical Dravidian architectural style, these monuments tell the stories of Kerala’s brave hearts. Bolghatty Palace, Chendamangalam Fort, Koyikkal Palace, Mattancherry Palace and Padmanabhapuram Palace are the most frequented of all.
When it comes to the most pleasing attraction, the serene backwaters of Kerala (formed by a huge network of 44 rivers, their tributaries, lakes, lagoons & canals) draw the maximum number of tourists. These are the most wonderful place to relax in God’s own country. Cities like Alleppey, Cochin, Trivandrum, Kottayam, Kollam and Kumarakom are blessed with most beautiful backwaters. They take you to a journey of picturesque countryside and enchanting wildlife sanctuaries. These also form the venue for the thrilling Snake boat races.
Stretched over 580 km, the beautiful coastline of Kerala offers some of the most exotic and mesmerizing beaches in India. Dotted with lush green coconut groves, these rejuvenating beaches are the key attractions of Kerala vacations. Alleppey, Bekal Fort, Beypore, Chithari, Kovalam, Thirumullavaram and Varkala are the prominent beaches in Kerala, which offer wonderful opportunities for water sports as well.
Wish to experience the true bliss? Visit the lush green hills of Kerala covered with misty clouds. Most of these are known for aromatic tea and spice plantations. The hill slopes here provide ample opportunity for adventure sports/activities like trekking, mountain climbing paragliding etc. Devikulam, Ponmudi, Vagamon, Idukki, Munnar, Thekkady and Wayanad are the favorite hill stations of the tourists.
Houseboats (traditional Kettuvalloms) in Kerala, measuring measuring up to 70 feet in length, are ideal to relax and rejuvenate your senses. These offer you a unique opportunity of living on waters. These are well equipped with all the modern amenities like bedrooms, attached bathrooms, carpeted flooring, kitchen, living area etc. They take you from one island to the other to let you explore the rich bio-diversity and lifestyle of the local people.
If this is not enough, you can visit the unique temples and museums of the state. Keralites are addicted to festivities and most of their fairs/festivals are organized in Hindu temples. Various art forms and dances are performed on these occasions as offerings to the Gods. This way, Kerala still retains its age old glory and rich heritage. A Kerala tour is simply like a trip to a fairyland.