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Top attractions in Kerala

 

Kerala is a state in Southern India which is known as the tropical paradise with wide sandy beaches. Kerala is also known as the Spice garden of India because of the variety of spices it grows in the entire year. The capital of Kerala is Thiruvananthapuram. Kerala stretches for about 580 km along the Malabar Coast, varying in width from roughly 30 to 120 km.

According to Hindu mythology, Kerala was created by Lord Parasurama, an incarnation of Lord Vishnu by throwing his axe across the sea to create new land for his devotees to live peacefully. So, Kereala is God's own creation, hence it is called God's own country! It is even named as one of the ten paradises of the world by National Geographic Traveller and millions of tourists make their visit to Kerala to experience the nostalgic beauty of this place. Kerala is mostly known and is famous especially for its ecotourism initiatives and backwaters.

The climate of Kerala varies a little from season to season. The daily temperatures usually rise from 27 to 32 °C throughout the year which makes it a warmer place during the summer. Kerala is perfect for anyone who loves the outdoors. Hiking, water sports, camping, safaris, and bird watching, you can find it all in Kerala.

Kerala comprises awesome hill stations, best beaches to relax, backwater safari, houseboat stay, exploring Wildlife Sanctuaries, Ayurvedic Spa and much more, which we can’t miss out on to experience fully. There are some of the best places in Kerala that you must visit once in your lifetime. 

Best time to Visit Kerala: The best time of year to visit Kerala is from October to April. The weather during this time of year is milder and it rains less. And this is also peak season, attracting the highest number of domestic and international travellers. December until February are generally the busiest months.

Airports: Cochin International Airport, Trivandrum International Airport

Railway Stations: Thiruvananthapuram Central, Ernakulam Junction (South)

Main Cities: Main Cities of Kerala are Cochin & Thiruvananthapuram.

(Note* - To start your journey one must need to start from Cochin or Thiruvananthapuram.)

 

  1. Atukkad Waterfalls
  2. Rose Garden Munnar
  3. Kundala Dam & Lake
  4. Jatayu Earth Center
  5. Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary
  6. Snake Boat Race
  7. Athirapally Falls

 

 

Atukkad Waterfalls

The ethereally beautiful hill station of Munnar in ‘God's own country’ Kerala is also where you will find some of the most vivacious waterfalls in the Western Ghats Mountains. Whether you are a free soul, nature photography enthusiast, birder, or just a vacationer in the Nilgiri side of Kerala, a visit to the iconic mountain springs around Munnar cannot be missed, one such being the Atukkad Falls. The Attukad Waterfall drops from a height of 100 feet.

It is located in the mountainous Idukki district on the way from Munnar to Pallivasal where the Attukad Falls cascading down roaringly is a thrilling spot to halt by. There’s abundant greenery as far as the vision goes, and resounding peacefulness found amidst untouched nature. The lush jungles are inviting for an adrenalin-thumping trek inside deep woods, but if you are only in the mood to relax, feel free to settle by the falls with a picnic basket and a good book! Unlike most mountain destinations, Attukad Falls in the Western Ghats is recommended for a visit during the monsoons as well as in the clearer seasons.

The road to the falls remains comparatively safe to travel during frequent showers, while the verdant surroundings turn brilliantly scenic after the rains. It’s a treat to the senses to walk the wet earth and listen to the rain falling through the foliage.The cool and deep, speedily running waters of the pool formed at the base of the falls is just right for an enjoyable swim. The mountain stream too turns wild and untamed during this season, thus doubling up the pleasure. There are also a number of top reviewed luxuriant resorts set in the woods near here.

Best Time to Visit Attukad Waterfalls: The monsoons, when the waterfall is at its most vigorous form, from mid-June to September is the best time to visit this site.

Entry Fee: There is no entry fee applicable to this site. You can enjoy the grandeur of the cascading flow standing on a bridge over the waters.

 

 

Rose Garden Munnar

The aromatic floating fumes of a plethora of plant species, fruits, flowers and crops in a 2acre stretch, brimming with varied colors on a 360-degree pan is a place that only lies in Munnar. One of the perfect Munnar tourist places which you just cannot afford to miss while you are in Munnar. These agricultural plantations exude mesmerising and wonderful aromas, which make your stay at the gardens a rewarding experience. Located in Munnar in Kerala, on the National Highway 49, just two kilometres away from the city centre; the place is set 3,500 feet above the sea level and is a breathtaking sight to behold. The heart-warming blossoms and colourful flowers make the place a mini-heaven on earth.

This is actually a maze of a number of pretty flowers like Dahlias, Rose, Chrysanthemums, and plants like pepper, cardamom, vanilla etc at a height of 3500 feet above the sea level. The name sounds a little misleading in that way because there are a variety of flowers which are following the contours and slopes and beautifying the place and not just Roses. However, this is one of the attractions in Munnar that leaves a mark on the visitors. The spices and other fruits which are planted in this garden along with other flowers release unique fragrances in the air which makes you feel very refreshed while you are enjoying the sheer bliss of watching the beauty around. The area is covered with crops such as vanilla and cardamom. It is also the dwelling spot of many spices and fruit trees such as Litchi, Strawberry, Rumbuta and Amla. An equally large variety of flowering plants can be located here. Seasonal tropical fruits grow here all year long, and fresh vegetables and fruits like cabbage, potato, cauliflowers, bananas and beans can be obtained from the plantations farm. You can also buy seeds of flowering plants from here to go back and grow as a memoir of this charming place.

Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit this place is between Feb to April.

Entry Fee: Rs. 20/ person

Timing: 10 AM to 5 PM

 

 

Kundala Dam & Lake

Boating tours in Munnar will give you memories that will stay etched in your heart forever. Munnar located in South India is one those places that have it all. Taking a boat ride and doing beach sports is something that everyone wants on a vacation. It helps you rejuvenate and feel refreshed and help you find peace that had otherwise been lost in the busy city life. Munnar offers some of the greatest boating tours that will help you explore Kerala in a much better way. From mountains to beaches, one can enjoy everything at one spot. It is a small town located in the state of Kerala in the Western Ghat Region. Munnar is blessed with beautiful placid lakes and long winding rivers, thus providing ample opportunities for leisurely boat rides. Enjoy the beauty and serenity of nature as you enjoy a boat ride on one of the many lakes and rivers in Munnar. Mattupetty Lake is one of the most picturesque places for an adventurous boating trip. Apart from this, you can visit Kundala Dam Lake for pedal boating. Full of high peak mountains, this place offers a scenic view and a serene environment that attracts people from all over the world. If you are a little low on budget but want to have a fun and adventurous trip with your adventure junkie friends then Munnar is the best place for you.

One can even go for trekking and camping on the mountains as the rugged terrain of the mountains makes trekking even more challenging and thrilling. The weather here is like any other hill station and never seems to be a problem for the tourists. At night the sky is so clear that the stars shine like small diamonds and the moonlit mountain ranges spread magic everywhere. The night camping tours are just like those in storybooks where you get to gaze and sleep under a blanket of stars with a soothing wind blowing gives a majestic feel to the place. After the mountains, the sea comes next. Munnar is located near some of the prettiest beaches and also some of the cleanest ones. The sunset at the beaches with the mountains in the background gives a painting like scenery which makes you feel you are dreaming. The beauty of this place will make you break free from the monotony of daily life and get lost in a world of calm and peace where nature is all one needs.

Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit this place is between November to April.

Entry Fee: Rs 100 for Pedal Boat for 3 persons, Rs. 150 for Row Boat for 4 persons, Rs. 200 for Shikara Boat for 2 persons, Rs. 200 for Video Camera

Timing: 9 AM to 5 PM

 

 

Jatayu Earth Center

You will certainly get mesmerised with Kollam’s latest tourist attraction, the Jatayu Earth’s Center that hosts the world’s largest bird sculpture. Spanning over 65 acres across four hills, this is the State’s first ever BOT (Build-Operate-Transfer) tourism. The monumental statue of Jatayu resting high up the hill catches your attention even from afar on your way to Chadayamangalam in Kollam district. Jatayu is a legendary bird from the Indian epic Ramayana. The recreation centre spreads more than 65 sections of land. The monster model of Jatayu merits visiting. The model is 200 feet long, 150 feet wide, 70 feet in stature and has a story region of 15,000 square feet.

You can reach the hilltop using a cable car. A multitude of experiences await the traveller in Jatayu Rock. One such is the museum and the 6D theatre inside the sculpture. You can even have a hele-taxi experience from here. All adventure junkies, this is your perfect weekend getaway! Engage in adventurous games in the backdrop of breathtaking views of nature. Whether it be Burma bridges, commando nets, log walk, vertical ladder, and chimney climbing or side joola, choose your pick and let the adrenaline rush through the body.

Besides all these exclusive experiences, the place also has provision for Ayurveda, camping, trekking, live kitchen and a lot more to make your trip splendid. The biggest highlight of the Jatayu Nature Park is the sculpture of Jatayu, the bird designed by prominent director, artist and sculptor Rajiv Anchal. This Bird sculpture when totally operational will have exhibits from Ramayana with 6D audio-visual effects. The Sculpture took almost 7 years to be finished.

Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit this place is between November to April.

Entry Fee: Rs. 450 to Rs. 2400 (Helicopter ride)

Timing: 9:30 AM to 5:30 PM

 

 

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary

For one of the most fascinating activities to do in Kerala and its forests, Thekkady should be on the topmost list of places you are visiting in Kerala. About 190 km from Kochi, Thekkady is famous for its diverse forest cover, fauna, mammals and aquatic life. The Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary and National Park is a protected area placed in the Idukki and Pathanamthitta districts of Kerala. The sanctuary which borders with Tamil Nadu is located in the Cardamom and Pandhalam hills in the Western Ghats. The wildlife sanctuary is also famous for its tiger reserve and elephant reserve. Out of the total protected area of 925 sq km, the 350 sq km was declared as a national park in 1982. Often this park is addressed as either Periyar wildlife sanctuary or Thekkady.

Entering deep into the forests, you will be able to sight around 35 species of mammals like Bengal tiger, Indian elephant, gaur, sambar, wild pig, Indian giant squirrel, jungle cat, Nilgiri tahr, lion-tailed macaque etc. The sanctuary is also unique with its bird population. Around 265 species of birds are present here. Common birds like Malabar grey hornbill, Nilgiri wood pigeon, Nilgiri flycatcher etc are seen here. If lucky you may be also able to watch rare species like black baza, Nilgiri thrush, little spiderhunter, brahminy kite, great hornbill etc.

Lots of activities are organized inside the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. You can enjoy the wildness with a trekking programme. The programme is arranged from morning 7 am to evening 3 pm. Other activities are jungle patrol, bamboo rafting, jungle inn, jungle camp, border hiking etc. The cost for a day’s trip is Rs 1800/person. If not a jeep, you can also explore the park via a ferry ride in the Periyar Lake, which is going to be just as delightful.

Entry fee: INR 1800 for a day’s trip

Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit this place is from November to April.

Timing: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM

 

 

Snake Boat Race

The Nehru Trophy Boat Race is amongst the premier snake boat races in Kerala. It is held on the second Saturday of August every year and draws in a massive crowd. People gather in large numbers to watch nearly 100 ft long boats compete against each other to the tune of old boat songs. Punnamada Lake is the location for the race where the contestants line up to battle it out.

The story behind this water regatta getting its name goes back to the visit of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru in 1952. He was so enchanted by the sight of the majestic snake boats that he leapt onto one of the snake boats himself, ignoring his security cover. Later on in the year, he would donate a silver trophy in the form of a snake boat as a gift for the memories of the time he spent there. Hence the race would later go on to be named the Nehru Trophy Boat Race.

During August season the area comes to life with ceremonial water processions and beautiful water floats. From the huge chundan valloms (snake boats) to small country rafts, the waters are under the control of the expert oarsmen who put on a show that one can never forget. It is an art form in itself.

Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit is in the month of August.

Location: Punnamada

Timing: May differ according to the festival

 

 

Athirapally Falls

Located 60 km from the Thrissur district of Kerala, Athirapally Falls is a marvellous cascade of frothy waters that makes its way from the Anamudi mountains of the Western Ghats. Also called Bahubali Waterfall, this 80 ft high and 330 ft wide marvel is the largest waterfall in Kerala. It is often referred to as the "Niagara Falls of India". From here, the Athirapally falls flows through the verdant greenery of Vazhachal Forest toward the Arabian Sea, creating a spectacular vista of scintillating water, emerald jungles and azure sky.

When you land in Athirapally, you are greeted with the sight of charming green Sholayar Peaks peering over the rushing gush of the falls. Standing against the backdrop of a rustling jungle foliage, this many films and music videos are shot here. Bird lovers cannot miss this place, for it is the only place in the Western Ghats where four endangered Hornbill species are seen. There is a pool above the falls where you can relax and unwind. To get a view of the waterfall, one needs to get down from the mountain for about 100 meters.

Another interesting fact to note is that the fall joins forces with the Chalakudy river before reaching its final destination into the sea. There are a couple of water theme parks on the way to Athirappilly called Silver Storm and Dream World and many resorts as well.

Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit this place is from November to April.

.Entry Fee: No fee

 

 

 

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