Kerala in South India is synonym with calm and serene beauty, and not just for its reputed soul cleansing ayurvedic treatments; the long strands of gorgeous coastline stretching over 600 kilometres, the sublime beaches on the Arabian Sea, the leisurely criss cross of peaceful backwaters, the palm-shaded Western Ghat hills fragrant with the cultures of tea and spices, will have unsuspecting visitors find themselves slowing down to a languorous pace to let the surrounding ambient feel of bliss invade their whole being.This narrow coastal strip is also home to towns and villages that come to life with time-old traditions like temple festivals, plays and snake-boat races; to fascinating wildlife such as exotic birds, wild elephants and the occasional tiger; to stylish houseboats and mouth watering cuisine. Indeed, Kerala deserves its name of “God’s own Country”
Kovalam is a small seaside town in the south Indian state of Kerala, south of Thiruvananthapuram.
A striped lighthouse with a viewing platform stands at the south tip of Lighthouse Beach. Palm trees line Hawa Beach and Samudra Beach. To the south, overlooking the bustling fishing harbour is Vizhinjam Juma Masjid mosque. Further inland is Sagarika Marine Research Aquarium, which exhibits technology used in pearl production.
Right at the heart of South Kerala tourist spots, Jatayu Earth’s Centre or Jatayu Nature Park features the world’s largest bird sculpture; 61 metres long, 56 metres wide and 21 metres high, covering a total surface of 1,400 square metres! It represents the great mythical bird Jatayu and symbolizes an era when all living creatures loved each other and shared the Earth in peace. The park was designed by Rajiv Anchal and is the first major BOT project in Kerala. This eco-friendly nature park is located at Chadayamangalam, about 38 km from Kollan and 46 km from the state capital, Thiruvananthapuram.
Konni’s primary attraction is the Aanakoodu, huge wooden cages built to house three to four elephants. There, experienced trainers use methodical training methods to tame baby elephants that are separated from their herd or are found wounded our roaming in the forest. Visitors have the opportunity to get a close look at the elephants and to learn about their behaviour. Baby elephants, lovable and mischievous, are a great hit with visitors.
Since ancient times, Konni has been famous for its elephant training centre, 11 km from Pathanamthitta. Elephants were captured from the dense forests of the western ghats/Sahyadri to be trained at Konni. Mahouts or trainers trained the wild elephants with the help of already tamed ones.
Periyar National Park and Wildlife Sanctuary, often called the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary or Thekkady is South India most popular wildlife sanctuary. Located in the mountainous area of the Cardamom and Pandalam Hills of the south Western Ghats, it spreads over the districts of Idukki, Kottayam and Pathanamthitta in Kerala. The park is now a famous elephant and tiger preserve as well as a sanctuary for rare and threatened flora and fauna. Two major rivers of Kerala, the Periyar and the Pamba originate in the forests of the park.
If you wander out of the pandemonium of Alappuzha (still commonly called Alleppey) city centre towards Kerala’s famed backwaters, you’ll be enthralled by the vast webwork of waterways meandering through picturesque villages and toddy shops, surrounded with luscious greenery and coconut-lined paddy fields. Contemplating the unending ballet of rice barges, punts, and a thousand houseboats floating down the cool, tranquil waters is a wonderfully relaxing and mesmerising experience.
India’s only Cliff-Top Beach Resort
Conveniently located 16 km from Tribandrum International Airport, the hotel is just a 9 minute walk from Hawa Beach.
The refined rooms that overlook the sea or the gardens offer free WiFi, flat-screen TVs and private patios or sun-decks; some are equipped with a minibar. Upgrade to a superior room or suite and enjoy a sitting area, DVD player, complimentary breakfast and evening tea, as well as the use of the gym and an ocean-view infinity pool.
Located beside the road connecting Kottayam and Thekkady, Kofiland resort lies at the bottom of a valley, between the slopes of two small hills planted with coffee bushes and pepper vines. At the end of a paved driveway, the open air lobby faces a small lake formed by a stream flowing beneath the lobby.
The cluster of cottages on stilts built on the banks of the stream are overlooked by the imposing silver oak trees growing up the hillside. There is a library and an indoor game area next to the cottages, along the winding path lined with pepper vines and young beech trees. Enjoy a wide choice of cuisine in the restaurant next to the lobby or take a refreshing dip in the large pool.
Organic village walk
Boutique de café et d’épices
A cruise so pleasantly spicy :-)
Walk in the village
Buy fish from the seller
Enjoy the scenic rooftop view