Any guesses which state in India I am referring to? It is the land of coconuts, backwaters, elephants and the land of opulent cultures and traditions. It is one of the renowned places for tourists from across the globe who love the marvelous beaches along the Malabar Coast to the labyrinth of backwater canals traversing rice fields to the magnificent hillside tea plantations in the Western Ghats. It is called ‘Gods Own Country’.
Whether it is the awesome seashores to the backwater pathways in Alleppey and Kumarakom or fabulous tea gardens in Munnar, Kerala offers some of the best destinations for a family vacation, holiday or honeymoon.
Kochi– situated in Ernakulam district, which is in central Kerala is an important seaport in India. Kochi is the starting point of any tour package in Kerala. Some of the places of attractions here are the Jewish synagogue, Cherai Beach, Fort Kochi and Mattancherry Palace. Around 1568, a beautiful structure was built in Jew Town which is the Jewish synagogue. The synagogue has been decorated with splendid Chinese tiles and remarkable Belgian chandeliers.
Fort Cochin, a historic place has some beautiful imitations of the foreign heritage. Kochi has an interesting history behind it, becoming one of the best natural harbours in the world. Around 1341, a major flood created an estuary at Kochi until then it was a landlocked region. The Portuguese were the first European settlers in the 15th Century when it became a port for seafarers. Mattancherry place is an old Portuguese architecture with the influence of the Orient. It has unique historical and architectural perspective.
Munnar– You can hire a cab and reach Munnar which is a 3-hour journey from Cochin. Kerala’s most beautiful hill station has an alluring terrain. It has splendid views of mountain slopes covered with green tea farms, low-flying clouds, and misty valleys. Munnar has a cold and soothing climate with organic tea farms.
If you’re an adventure tourist then you can go hiking and see dazzling waterfalls. Places of attractions are Chinnar Wild Life Sanctuary, Tata Tea Museum, and Idukki Arch Dam.
- Chinnar Wild Life Sanctuary– This sanctuary is among the 12 Wildlife Sanctuaries in the Protected areas of Kerala. On the southern side, it is covered by the Eravikulam National Park and on its north is Indira Gandhi Wildlife Sanctuary. You can also check out the widespread sandalwood forest close to this sanctuary. The sanctuary has over 1000 species of flowering plants and over 225 bird species. Giant Grizzled Squirrel of India can also be found here, which is an endangered species. Mammals, like the elephant, tiger, leopard, sambar, spotted dear, etc. can be spotted here.
It is an ideal haunt for trekkers with deciduous forests and grasslands; river trekking, cultural site trekking, nature trail, Thoovanam falls trek, trekking and camping at Vasayappara organized by the Forest department, which is part of the eco-tourism activities of the sanctuary.
- Tata Tea museum– A museum for tea opened by Tata tea is dedicated to the legacy of the origins and evolution of tea plantations. It houses curios, photographs and machines which depict the growth and origin of tea plantations in Munnar. Here, you get to sample different kind of teas from mild, average and strong.
Food– A variety of Fish curry/seafood is a specialty in Kerala.
Other places are worth visiting:
Alappuzha– You can hire a Houseboat here and enjoy and relax in the backwaters.
Ayurveda Center- Kerala is renowned for Ayurveda treatment. The center is surrounded by many plants and trees. It has experienced professional doctors. You will enjoy the Ayurveda treatments.
Wayanad–If you love nature then this has scenic forest area. A drive to Wayanad is through the Bandipur Forest, which is quite a sight. Wayanad flourishes with scenic beauties of nature and one can smell the flavor of pepper floating through certain areas.
Truly, Kerala is God’s Own Country!
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