A glimpse of Kerala: God’s own country
Whenever I write or read about Kerala, I end up saying with amusement ‘Kerala, why are you so mesmerizing’. Located in the northwest of the country, Kerala is extremely abundant with natural beauty and greenery. Because of its breathtaking hill-stations, backwaters, tea plantations, rich vegetation, and distinctive culture & tradition, the state has been bestowed with the tag of ‘God’s own Country’. Unlike other tourist destinations of the country, Kerala is mainly known for the leisurely vacation in the lap of nature. Kerala is undoubtedly one such tourist destination that can rejuvenate your body, soul, mind, and life. The more Kerala is blessed with heavenly beauty, the more it is deep-rooted in art, culture, heritage, and history. Dotted with beautiful rivers, alluring backwaters, sandy beaches, lush greenery, appealing hills, and mighty mountain ranges, Kerala unfolds the entire vista of nature at its best. So, let’s get wrapped in the all-encompassing panoramic landscapes of the state and explore the places to visit in Kerala.
As the dawn enters, the allurement of Alleppy sparkles. Hugely known for its backwaters and pristine beaches, Alleppey is the most loved and popular tourist destination in Kerala. Fringed by the coastline of the Arabian Sea and scads of coconut groves, Alleppey steals the heart of visitors at the first sight itself. Lord Curzon, the former British governor, lauds Alleppey as ‘The Venice of East’. In Alleppy backwater, as long as your eyes would reach, you’ll see only and only water and lush trees. The Alleppey backwater is especially known for the houseboat cruises and other water-related activities. The ‘Snake Boat Race’ defines the majesty of Alleppey backwater because simply an ordinary place can’t host an event like this. A cruise on Alleppey houseboat capturing the sight of lavish paddy landscapes, small chapels, and flawless water all around will surely be the best boat ride in your entire lifetime. Other than Alleppey Backwaters, Krishnapuram Palace, Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Marari Beach, Punnamada Lake, and Shree Krishna Temple are other places in Alleppey that charm the pants off the visitors.
Located near Thiruvananthapuram, Kovalam is actually a town known for the best beach of Kerala named ‘Kovalam Beach’. If you’re looking for a soothing place amid the quaint surrounding of nature, you can’t find a better place than the most famous beaches of Kovalam. Lighthouse Beach, Hawah Beach, Samudra Beach, and Kovalam Beach can make anybody go banana over the spectacular view of surroundings. Aside from its pristine beaches, Kovalam also offers a wide array of Ayurveda treatments. The Karamana River that merges with the Arabian Sea in Kovalam adds an extra charm to the glamor of Kovalam. Apart from the beaches, Halcyon Castle, Akkulam Lake, Kovalam Jama Masjid, and Rock Cut Caves are the other loved destinations in Kovalam.
To describe the allure of Munnar, name it the hub of honeymooners and lovers. The most beautiful hill-station in God’s Own Country, Munnar paints an ineffable paint of crazy-driving beaches, swaying rows of dense forests, sweeping tea plantations, and majestic mountains interspersed with sheer greenery. Hugely known for its tea estates, Munnar is a paradise for nature lovers and beckons the visitors from far and wide. The abundant flora and fauna of Munnar don’t let the visitors take their eyes off even for a jiff. Being a hill-station, Munnar is also an absolute delight for the adventurous enthusiasts. A trekking in the gigantic mountains of Munnar catching the breathing beauty of nature would definitely be an experience for the lifetime. The city is divided into parts and both parts are the huge crowd pullers.
Yet another city from Kerala that pulls millions of visitors annually for its awe-inspiring beaches. Packed with astonishing picturesque beauty, and long unmatched seaside places, Varkala is unique in its own splendor. For an interesting fact, Varkala is the only province in Kerala where cliffs are contagious to the Arabian Sea. The most popular beaches of Varkala such as Varkala Beach and Papnasam Beach offer a lot of water activities including surfing, parasailing, jetting, and of course boat riding. If you really want to get full of Varkala beaches and lakes, visit either in the sunrise or the duck because, at this time, these lakes and beaches draw a mesmerizing canvas of nature painted with the utmost serenity. Except for its natural wonder, Varkala also boasts a prominent religious and historical significance. There are many grand temples and a few stately forts in the city. Vishnu Temple, Janardan Swami Temple, Sarkara Devi Temple, and Anjengo Fort are the ultimate exemplars of the paramount craftsmanship of South Indian architecture.
When you’re in Kerala, you’ll find beaches, backwaters, and lush green paddocks in every single step. So, if you want something more than that, visit Bekal, a town actually. Though there are a few beaches and backwaters, the place is mainly known for the historical buffs. Constructed of exceptionally unique architectural style, Bekal Fort is the central charm of Bekal. Spreading in an area of 40 acres and girdled by the amazing beaches, Bekal Fort is the 300-year-old fort and boasts the honor of being the largest one in Kerala. From its top-roof, it offers such a breathtaking view that you would want to capture it in eyes forever. Nityanandashram Cave and Chandragiri Fort are the other historical spots that will certainly slake your lust for history buffs in Kerala. Also visit the Ananthpura Temple, Bekal Hole Aqua Park, Pallikere Beach, and Bekal Beach.
When we talk about tourism in Kerala, we actually talk about the utter allure of nature because the state is all about this only. And if in such a state, a city stands out for its natural splendor, what would you name it? Probably, ‘a nature’s abode’? Yes, this tag indeed justifies the allure of Wayanad. Bursting with abundant flora & fauna, bubbling waterfalls, paddy fields, rich culture & heritage, Wayanad is certainly one of most the most happening places in Kerala. Wayanad is the crowd puller in Kerala because it doesn’t offer only one or two things, rather the city has embraced the natural, cultural, traditional, historical and religious beauty within. From the serene atmosphere to the mind-blowing lifestyle of over 50 tribes, from extremely rich vegetation to tremendously diverse wildlife, and from peace giving temples to bewildering historical caves, Wayanad surprises its visitors on every turn. There are countless wonderful places to visit in the city but please don’t miss Wayanand Wildlife Sanctuary, Pookot Lake, Chembra Peak, Banasura Dam, and Edakkal Caves.
Best Time to Visit Kerala
This question hasn’t a predefined kind of answer because the tourism in Kerala in extremely varied. The city doesn’t offer much the historical and architectural sightseeing, so you can’t plan your trip just anytime and bang on. The tourism of Kerala actually split into categories that determine the best time to visit Kerala. If you’re going for family holiday, visit between the months of December to March because this is the peak tourist season of Kerala and most of the traditional festivals fall in between. If you have chosen Kerala as your honeymoon destination, visit just after the monsoon months. Means, from August to November! Because in those 2-3 months, the beaches, backwaters and entire Kerala remain in full swing. Wherever you see, you’ll find nature romancing with the beauty. And if you want an Ayurvedic treatment, visit Kerala between the end of summers to the early monsoon months. The mid-summer is advised to avoid in every case because during this time, Kerala remains drab.
How to reach Kerala
Kerala is a tourist’s hub India, so it is easily accessible by the road, rail, and airways. Thiruvananthapuram International Airport and Cochin International Airport are the two airports that connect the state to major international cities. Out of these two airports, Thiruvananthapuram Airport is most approachable because it is located in the capital city and has the regular flights to all major cities. Apart from international airport, the state also have some domestic airports which assure the possible-best connectivity by the airways.
The rail network of Kerala is also very good. In and out, the state is connected with a large number of railway stations. The direct trains to Kerala can be got anytime from the major cities of India. And if we talk about the road network in Kerala, it is probably superior to 50% that of the country. The roads of Kerala are known in India for the cleanliness and their good situation. So, what you can expect from such a highly developed transportation service? Yes, it is very well connected throughout the country. The national highways 17, 47, and 49 make it even more convenient.
From the deep-rooted culture & festivals to the modern-age vibrancy, and from striking beaches to Vedic era’s science of Ayurveda, Kerala is today one of the most loved and luxurious destinations of the country. that’s why the list of places to visit in Kerala goes endless. Draped in panoramic natural exquisiteness, the state creates a sense of nostalgia upon its every visit and calls the visitors back.