This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
Kerala Tourism - a perfect blend of cultural & natural bliss. Travel though the relaxed and laid back atmosphere of the Kerala cities or indulge in some Eco friendly tourism activities on a leisurely pace at the beaches and tranquil backwaters. ALAPPUZHA Location: 64 Km North Of Kochi (Kerala) Also known As: Alleppey Main Attractions: Nehru Boat Race, Ambalapuzha Temple, and Mannarshala Temple Best Season: August to March THE VENICE OF THE EAST: Situated on the banks of Vembanad Lake, the town's commercial center lives in a maze of canals. Set in the labyrinth of Backwater channels, the town is one of the best gateways to explore the unspoilt countryside. A historic and romantic name from Kerala's past, Alappuzha was once one of the bestknown ports along the coast of Malabar. The center for Backwater Cruises in Kerala, the Backwaters of Alappuzha can be best experienced in a country boat. Alappuzha is a bustling, messy town of ramshackle wood and corrugalated roof houses, chiefly significant in the Coir industry. The large network of canals provides Alleppey its lifeline. It has a spectacular long sandy beach. At one end are the dense palm groves that are so characteristic of Kerala's landscape. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Ambalapuzha: 14 kms from Alappuzha, the Sreekrishna Temple here is worth seeing. The temple boasts of its classic temple architecture and its 'Palpayasam' (sweet milk porridge), offered to the deity. The temple's main festival occurs in March/April. It was in this temple that the 16th century poet Kunjan Nabbiar staged his first Ottam Thullal, a solo dance performance based on social themes. Chettikulangara Bhagwathy Temple: The Bhadrakali deity is said to have miraculous power. The temple is abuzz with activity in the months of February and March on the occasion of Bharani. Mannarshala Temple: 32 kms, near Harippad, the temple here is an important center of serpent worship in Kerala. On the day of Ayilyam, in the months of September and October, thousands assemble to worship the serpent god. Arthunkal: It is a famous pilgrim center, known for its St. Andrew's church set up by Portuguese missionaries. The church is popularly known as St. Sebastian's. The Portuguese missionaries built it in 1851 AD. Krishnapuram Palace: The palace is located at a distance of 47 kms, at Kayamkulam, on the way to Kollam. The double storeyed palace contains one of the greatest Mural panels in Kerala. The 18th century Krishnapuram Palace with its gabled roofs, dormer windows, and narrow corridors, built during the reign of the Travancore monarch, Marthanda Varma, is a typical example of Kerala Architecture. Called the Gajendra Moksham, it measures 14 feet by 11 feet and is at the western end of the ground floor, a short distance from the palace pool. Inside is also a museum of antique sculptures, paintings and bronzes.
Pathiramanal: It’s an island in Vembanad Lake. It’s an ideal place for fishing and bird watching. Alappuzha Beach is one of the most popular spots in the district of Alappuzha. The pier, which extends into the sea here, is around 140 years old. Punappra: A short distance from Alappuzha, this village has been rendered famous by the heroic struggles between the communists and Travancore State Police. Kuttanad: It is an expanse of waterlogged land, lying below sea level. It bears strong resemblance to Holland, geographically. HOW TO GET THERE Air: Nearest airport is at Kochi, 66 kms away. Rail: The place is well connected to Kochi, by rail. Road: The place is connected to all the south Indian towns, by a well-developed network of roads. There are frequent bus services to Alappuzha. Local transport: One can use buses, yellow-top and tourist taxis, autorickshaws, and cycle rickshaws. Ferries: The State Water Transport Department operates boat services connecting Alappuzha with some other places like Kottayam, Chenganassery, Nedamudy and Kavalam. NEARBY CITIES Kottayam 43 km Kochi 56 km Thrissur 130 km Thiruvananthapuram 160 km) GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 1414 Sq. Km. District Population: 1,909,603. Climate: Tropical Humid. Altitude: 0 feet Above Sea Level. Temperature: Summer: Max: 35°C, Min: 22.5°C Winter: Max: 32°C Min: 20°C Rainfall: 299 cm (annual). Clothing: Tropical.
Location: Kerala Also known As: Kochi, Cochin Main Attractions: Fort Cochin, Santa Cruz Cathedral Best Season: September to May THE COMMERCIAL CAPITAL OF KERALA; A prime tourist destination and also the commercial capital the district represent the modern facet of Kerala. The most cosmopolitan of the state's cities, Kochi has been long eulogized in tourist literature as the `Queen of the Arabian Sea'. The beauty of the place is stunningly different and has long-standing maritime importance. Kochi is Kerala's major port, which is strategically located on the East-West trade route. Boasting of one of the finest natural harbours in the world, the city forms the hub around which the city revolves. Most of the city's commercial centers and shops are located in the town called Ernakulam, which also lends its name to the district. The Backwaters extend east and south of the harbour and contain tiny islands formed naturally over a long time by alluvial deposits from the rivers that empty into them.
PRIME ATTRACTIONS Fort Cochin: The St. Francis Church is located in Fort Cochin, which was built in 1510 AD, by five Portuguese priests who arrived with Albuquerque. The church, the burial site for Vasco da Gama in 1524 AD is said to be the oldest European church built in India. Chottanikkara Temple Chottanikkara temple, located near Ernakulam enshrines Bhagawati - the mother Goddess, one of the most popular deities in Kerala. Enroute is the Poornatrayesa temple at Tripunitura. The Devi is worshipped along with Lord Vishnu. Together, they are known as Lakshmi-narayana. Santa Cruz Cathedral: Close to the St. Francis church, it is Roman Catholic Church, which was also built by Portuguese. It has a beautiful collection of paintings and a decorative ceiling, despite having suffered severe damage when the British fought with the Dutch to take control of Kochi. Dutch Palace: Originally built by the Portuguese in the mid-16th century, the Dutch Palace or Mattancherry Palace is located at Mattancherry. It was presented to the Kochi Maharaja in 1555 AD and later taken over by the Dutch who carried out repairs and extended it further. Jewish Synagogue: the oldest synagogue in India, the prosperous Jewish community whose links with Kerala began in Kodungalloor in northern Kerala built it in 1586 AD. It was partially destroyed in the war of 1662 and was rebuilt by the Dutch. In the mid18th century, the clock tower was added and the floor paved with exquisite hand-painted blue willow tiles from China. Wellington Islands: Named after Lord Wellington, one of the British Viceroys, Wellington Islands are Kochi's famous islands. Situated between Ernakulam and Mattancherry and separated from both by the Backwaters, it is a man-made island created by using the soil obtained while dredging the Kochi harbour to allow vessels with deeper draughts to dock. Koonankurissu: Located in Mattancherry, the place is famous for the oath taken in front of it by the Malankara Syrian Christians, which paved the path for the division of Christians in Kerala into Roman Catholics and Malankara Syrian Christians. Before the split, the Christians were united under the fold of the Catholic Bava of the East. Hill Palace Museum: (13 kms from Kochi) the museum At Tripunithura, displays the erstwhile wealth and prosperity of the Kochi royal family, including the King's throne and crown. Also on show are other trappings of royalty like majestic beds, paintings, carvings, and samples of epigraph. Tripunithura is also well known for the nearby Chottanikkara Temple and the Tripunithura temple. Museum Of Kerala History: (8 kms from Ernakulam) the museum of Kerala History And Its Makers, is the best place for a quick trip down the ancient lanes of Kerala's history. A statue of Parasuram, the mythological sage who's said to create Kerala by throwing his axe into the sea, greets the visitors outside the museum. Chennamangalam: 42 kms from Ernakulam. It was one of the chief’s Jewish centers in Kerala. There is an oriental Jewish synagogue in the old Jewish colony. In its vicinity, lie the ruins of the Vypeenkotta seminary built by the Portuguese and an ancient Syrian Catholic Church. Bastion Bungalow Built in the Indo-European style way back in 1667 AD, Bastion Bungalow get its name from its location on the site of the Stromberg Bastion of the old, Dutch fort. Thakur House Thakur House, the graceful building holds within itself a reflection of the colonial era. The Bungalow was built on the site of the Gelderland Bastion, one of the seven bastions of the Old Dutch fort. Pierce Leslie Bungalow Pierce Leslie Bungalow the charming Mansion was once the office of Pierce Leslie & Co., the famous coffee merchants. Founded in 1862 AD, this
building, a representative of Fort Cochin Colonial Bungalow reflects Portuguese, Dutch and local influences. Bishops House Built in 1506 as the residence of the Portuguese Governor, the Bishop's House stands on a little hillock near Parade Ground. The facade of the house is characterized by large Gothic Arches and has a circular garden path, winding upto the main entrance. Vasco House Believed to have been the residence of Vasco da Gama; this is one of the oldest Portuguese residences in Fort Cochin. Koder House Koder House, the magnificent building constructed by Samuel. S. Koder of the Cochin Electric Company in 1808 AD is a supreme example of transition from colonial to Indo-European architecture. Pallippuram Fort Situated on the northern fringe of the Vypeen Island, the Portuguese built Pallippuram Fort in 1507 AD. It is considered to be the first fort built in India by the Europeans. Fort Kochi Beach A leisurely walk through the lanes of the city is the best way to discover historic Fort Kochi. An obscure fishing village that became the first European Township in India, Kochi has an eventful and colourful history. Kodungalloor: (32 kms away) Formerly called Muziris, it was a famed sea-port on the west coast in ancient tomes, where St. Thomas is supposed to have landed in 52 AD. It was also the capital of Cheraman Perumal, a King of Kerala, whose famous palace Allal Perumkovilakam was situated near the great pagoda at Thiruvanchikulam. Bhoothathankettu: 63 kms from Kochi, it's a beautiful spot replete with a dam and boating facilities. Trekking through the forests here is an exhilarating experience. Kodanad: 45 kms from Kochi, it is one of the largest elephant capturing camps and training centers in India. It is on the southern banks of Periyar River amidst the beautiful high ranges near Perumbadoor. Even though elephant capture was banned in 1977, the training center continues to function. HOW TO GET THERE Air: Kochi is linked by direct air services. Rail: Ernakulam junction and Ernakulam town stations are connected by rail with many important cities. Road: Cochin is connected by road with several tourist centers and cities. GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 2807 sq. km. Population: 2,817,236. Temperature: Summer: Max: 35 °C, Min: 22.5°C Winter: Max: 32.3°C, Min: 20 °C Rainfall: 254 CMS. Clothing: Tropical.
Location: Southern Part of Kerala Main Attractions: Munnar, Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary Formed on: January 26, 1972 Best Season: August to March THE UNSPOILT NATURE: Located in the southern part of Kerala, Idukki is a landlocked district spread over an area of 5019 sq. kms. Blessed generously by Mother Nature, Idukki offers diverse attractions like wild life sanctuaries, hill stations, spice plantation centers and mountain treks.
Idukki district was formed on January 26, 1972 carving out Devikulam, Peerumedu and Udumbanchola taluks from the erstwhile Kottayam district and Thodupuzha taluk from the erstwhile Ernakulam district. The name 'Idukki' is supposed to be derived from the Malayalam word `idukku', which means a narrow gorge. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Munnar: The nature, absolutely untouched has led to the christening of this place as 'Virgin Munnar', in the tourism industry. Increasing fame and the growth of visitors may soon account to deletion of this description. Marayoor: Marayoor is 40 kilometers away from Munnar. It is the only place in Kerala having a natural growth of sandal wood trees. The relics of new Stone Age civilization have been unearthed here. Mattupetti: 13 kms form Munnar, at an altitude of 1700 m above sea level, this verdant landscape houses the Indo-Swiss Dairy Project. Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary: The sanctuary extends over the Thodupuzha and Udumpanchola taluka of Idukki district, spreading over 77 sq. km and is about 450-748 m above sea level. Extending to 33 sq. km, the Idukki Reservoir is formed by three dams, namely Cheruthoni, Idukki and Kulamavu. Thekkady: Lying at an altitude of 900-1800 m above sea level, in the Periyar forest of Thekkady is one of the finest wildlife reserves in India. Holding great opportunities for treks and mountain walks are picturesque plantations and hill towns that are spread across the entire district. Idukki Arch Dam: This dam, constructed across the Kuravan and Kurathi hills is the world's second and Asia's first arch dam. The dam lying close to the cheruthoni barrage is 550 ft high and 650 ft. wide. To its west is the Kulamavu Dam. The Idukki Wildlife Sanctuary is located close by. Observatory Hills: This is a beautiful hill located at Nedumkandam. It's a perfect location for people who are interested in watching the heavenly bodies, as the sky here are free from pollution. Kuthumkal Waterfalls: The misty waterfall provides a picturesque view of the water, cascading down from scintillating heights. The sheer beauty of the place allures thousands of visitors every year. Cheruthoni: 5kms from Painavu, it encompasses areas in and around Idukki Arch Dam and Cheruthoni Dam. Constructed across the Periyar River, between two granite hills, the picturesque Idukki Dam is the first arch dam in India. Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary is a unique thorny scrub forest with xerophyte species. Chinnar is the habitat of the endangered Giant Grizzled Squirrel of India. Eravikulam Wildlife Sanctuary is a sanctuary set up for the preservation of the endangered Nilgiri Tahr. The sanctuary stands out for the stark beauty of its rolling grasslands and shoals, spread over 97 sq. kms of unblemished natural splendor. Rajamala Wildlife Sanctuary Rajamala Wildlife Sanctuary, located 15 kms from Munnar is the natural habitat of Nilgiri Tahr. Half the world population of the rare mountain goat is concentrated in this region. Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary In the dense tropical evergreen and deciduous forests and grassland patches is located the Thatekkad Bird Sanctuary. Home to a microcosm of India's bird population with about 500 winged species, Dr. Salim Ali, the renowned ornithologist, designed the sanctuary. Devikulam Located 16 kms from Munnar, this gorgeous hill station symbolizes nature in her pristine glory. The crisp and cool mountain air heavily laden with the fragrance of wild flowers and rare herbs is any nature lover's paradise.
Top Station Top Station, the idyllic hill station is located 32 kms from Munnar, on the Munnar-Kodaikanal Road. Perched at an altitude of 1700 m above sea level, Top Station is the highest point on Munnar-Kodaikanal Road. Moolamatton: (40 kms from Idukki) the Idukki Hydroelectric Project's underground powerhouse is located here. A visit to Moolamatton provides the opportunity to view the working of a hydroelectric station. HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport is at Cochin 132 km away. Rail: The nearest railway station is at Kottayam, 133 km away. Road: mortable roads from most parts of Kerala can reach Idukki. NEARBY CITIES Thekkady 60 km Munnar 170 km Madurai 200 km Kochi 250 km GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 5019 sq.km. District Population: 1,079,369. Altitude: 2200 m above sea level. Temperature: Mean Min: 22.5°C Mean Max: 37.5°C. Rainfall: 270 cm (annual). Clothing: Tropical Cottons. Warm clothes and rain gear for places like Munnar and Thekkady.
Location: North Malabar Area (Kerala) Prime attractions: Fort St. Angelos, Arakkal Palace Also known As: Cannanore Best Season: August to March THE COASTAL TOWN: Kannur, the seacoast town in the northern Malabar area was for many centuries the capital of the Kolathiri Rajas, the rivals of the Zamorins of Kozhikode. Formerly a major port area, Kannur is now a city known for its handloom and beedi industries. Some of Kerala's finest weavers come from this district. Kannur is also the headquarters of the country's largest and best-run beedi cooperative. Marco Polo is supposed to have referred to Kannur as a great emporium of spices. In the 15th century, the Portuguese arrived in Kannur to establish one of their earliest settlements. A reminder of this is the St. Angelo's Fort built in 1505 AD by the first Portuguese Viceroy. Foreign invasions and the activities of colonial powers mark Kannur’s history. The Dutch captured the Portuguese factory built by Cabral in 1501 AD, in 1633. In 1708, the British built a fort at Thalasseri (Tellicherry), just outside Kannur. The French developed the nearby town of Mahe as a trading center in the 18th century. Around 1792, after the Mysore Wars, the British took over Kannur. PRIME ATTRACTIONS St. Angelo's Fort: Now, a protected monument under Archaeological Survey of India, the Fort St.Angelo's is in the west of Kannur town. The first Portuguese Viceroy, Don Francisco De Almeida built it in 1505, with the permission of the Kolathiris. It is still a landmark in Kannur. Though parts of the fort have collapsed, it is still in a fairly good state of preservation. A few ancient cannons are on display inside the fort.
Arakkal Palace: The palace, which is about 2 kms. From Kannur Town, was the palace of Beebi (Queen) of Arakkal? Having deep historic connotations, it belongs to Kerala's only Muslim Royal family that controlled parts of the coast and even Lakshadweep. Madayi Mosque: Originally built in 1124 AD by Malic Iben Dinar, a Muslim preacher, it is a beautiful ancient mosque. A block of white marble in the mosque is believed to have been brought from Mecca by its founder, who came to India to spread the word of the prophet. Near by is the dilapidated fort, which is supposedly built by Tipu Sultan - the ruler of Mysore. Ezhimala Beach: The Ezhimala Mountain and Beach lie at the northern boundary of Kannur. Rare medical herbs (Ramayana) with mythological significance grow on Ezhimala, the strange seven-peaked range. Around 50 Kms from here, is the Mount Deli Lighthouse, an old tower of great antiquity. It's maintained by the Navy and is a restricted area. The beach sand is of a different texture and the sea is bluer that in other areas. At the Ettikulam bay one could enjoy watching dolphins. Payyambalam Beach: 2kms from Kannur. Payyambalam, the long, lovely beach is a local picnic spot. Flat lateric cliffs jut into the sea at one end. Picturesque and incredibly beautiful, the beach is only walking distance from Fort St. Angelo. The Naura Cafeteria and well-laid out gardens greet the visitor to Payyambalam. Kizhunna Beach: 11 Kms from Kannur. This beautiful stretch of sand is one of the most secluded beaches in Kerala. Dharmadam Island: A Buddhist stronghold, Dharmadam Island is located beside the Muzhappilangad beach, 100 meters offshore surrounded by rivers and sea. A conjunction of beach & island, it was earlier known as Dharmapattanam. EXCURSIONS Pythal Mala: 65 kms north of Kannur, this hill is located on the Kerala-Karnataka border. Perched at an altitude of 1,372 meters above sea level, this place is ideal for trekking. A base reception center and a watchtower atop the cliff function should not be missed. Aaralam Wildlife Sanctuary: Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary is a tranquil little sanctuary on the slopes of the Western Ghats. The highest peak of Katti Betta, covered with tropical and semi- evergreen forests rises to a majestic height of 1145 m above sea level. Thalassery Fort: Thalaserry fort, located at a distance of 22 kms from Kannur constructed in 1708 AD was the military center of the British. Muzhappilangad Beach: Muzhappilangad Beach, one of the longest beaches in Kerala is located 15 kms south of Kannur. The Long Beach is the only drive-in beach in India. Pazhassi Gardens & Dam: 37 kms. East of Kannur near Mattannur, the Pazhassi dam & reservoir offer panoramic view of the place. The added attractions of the place are the gardens and amusement park that have been recently. The Buddha's mountain at Pazhassi and the sculpture of Pazhassi King are visual delights. Pappinisserry: 16 kms from Kannur town, the snake park here houses about 150 varieties of snakes including the Spectacled Cobra, King Cobra, Russel Viper, Krait and Pit Viper. There is also a large collection of non-poisonous snakes including Pythons. A research laboratory to extract venom from snakes is proposed to be set up here. The park is dedicated to the preservation and conservation of snakes, many species of which are getting extinct gradually. Moppila Bay: Moppila bay, the famous fishing harbour is situated near the St.Angelo's Fort. The beach is a natural and now a modernized fishing harbour built with assistance under the Indo Norwegian pact. Gundert Bungalow: Located 20 kms from Kannur, at Nettur, Gundert's Bungalow is on the out skirts of Thalaserry. It is a historically significant place for all lovers of Malayalam Language.
HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport is at Karipur, Kozhikode, about 93kms south. Rail: Kannur railway station is an important railhead of the Southern Railway and is well linked to major towns up country as well as within the State. Road: Kannur is accessible by road. NEARBY CITIES Kasargod 66 km Kozhikode 90 km Palakkad 209 km Kochi 278 km GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 2997 sq.km. Population: 2,251,727. Altitude: Sea level. Temperature: Mean Max: 32.6 °C. Mean Min: 21.4°C. Rainfall (annual): 344 cm. Clothing: Tropical cottons.
Location: Northern Most District Of Kerala Main Attraction: Bekal Fort Best Season: August to March Main Languages: Malayalam, English THE LAND OF COIR AND HANDLOOM: The northern-most district of Kerala, Kasargod is known for its Coir and handloom industries. Fishing is a prime source of livelihood. The district has water, forest, and mineral resources. The forest-covered Western Ghats in the east and the Arabian Sea in the west flank it. Demarcating the north and the south are two rivers - the Talapadi and the Trikaripur. Grey rocks and barren lands amidst dense vegetation as well as calm lagoons visible through the coconut palms along the coastal bet lend this district a rare and distinct beauty. Kasargode displays a variety of styles in temple architecture. The unique style of Madhur Mahaganapathy temple, the typical Kerala style of the historic Malik Deenar Great Juma Masjid and many other structures speak in silence of the rich cultural heritage of the region. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Bekal Fort: The fort with historical and archaeological significance affords a magnificent view of the sea from its tall observation towers, which were once huge cannon emplacements. The largest and best-preserved fort in Kerala, the Bekal Fort is perched atop a hill, thus giving a strategic view of the countryside. Fort at Chandragiri: The fort, a large squarish one by the side of a river, is at Chandragiri, southeast of Kasargode. Savanna Nayaka of Bedanore built it in the 17th century. It has a mosque nearby. The ancient Kizhur State temple is also located here, where during the annual festival, the deity is taken to Thrikkanaya Temple at Bekal. Kappil Beach: The Kappil Beach, remote and secluded is fast becoming a major tourist destination, offering an unmatched experience of wide beaches and calm waters. The Kodi Cliff nearby offers a panoramic view of the blue waters of the Arabic Sea. Pallikere Beach: This beautiful expanse of shallow waters and beach offers a spectacular view of the Bekal Fort. The public beach has ample space for recreation and
relaxation. With international standard facilities to be developed here, Pallikere will rank among the best beaches in the country. Kanwatheertha Beach: 3 kms from Manjeshwaram, the large swimming pool-like formation of the sea on the vast beach is the main attraction. Sri Mahalingeshwar: The Sree Mahalingeswara at Adoor is located in pretty surroundings on the banks of the river Payaswini. In the temple is a Sanskrit inscription in Kannada script, which is ascribed to the Western Chalukya king Kirthi Varma II, by the scholars. Ananthapura Lake Temple: Situated at a distance of 30kms from Bekal, it is the only lake temple in Kerala. It is regarded as the 'moolasthanam' (original seat) of Ananthapadmanabha, the deity of Sree Padmanabha Swami Temple, Thiruvananthapuram. Nileswaram: The cultural center of the district, this was the seat of the Nileswar Rajas. The Nileswaram palace today functions as the folklore center of the Department of Archaeology. The town is also famous for its numerous Kavus (Shrines), temple festivals and the Kavil Bhavan Yoga and Cultural Center, which offers rejuvenation therapy and naturopathy treatments, like mud baths and herbal baths. Manjeshwaram: At Manjeswaram, a quaint little cashew-rich town at the northern tip of the district, which is home to 15 mosques, is the memorial to Govinda Pai, the grand patriarch of Kannada literature. Near Kanjangad in Hosdurg, is the Madiyankulam dedicated to Bhadrakali. The ceremonious Bhutha dance is performed during the temple festival in May/June and December/January. Bekal Hole Aqua Park: North of the fort, off the highway is a unique 'Aqua Park', the only one of its kind in north Malabar. Here, Pedal boats and water cycles offer along hours of relaxation on the cool stretches of the Bekal Hole backwaters. Anandasram (15 km from Bekal): This internationally renowned spiritual center founded by Swami Ramdas in 1939, offers a quiet, peaceful ambience best suited for meditation and spiritual studies. A 40 minutes drive away, is the unique Valiyaparamba Backwater stretch. The most scenic Backwaters of Kerala, it is fed by four rivers and is dotted with numerous islands. Valiyaparamba is perhaps the most scenic Backwaters of Kerala. A cruise center offering exciting boat rides will soon be opened here. Ranipuram (55 km from Bekal): It offers ample opportunity for exciting treks along the wide vistas of nature. This land of cool weather, situated at a height of more than 750 m above sea level, is known for its varied vegetation. Veliyaparamba (30 km from Bekal): This is perhaps the most scenic Backwater Stretch in Kerala fed by four rivers and dotted with numerous little islands, Valiyaparamba is fast turning into a much favored Backwater Resort that offers enchanting boat cruises HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport is at Mangalore, 50 km away. Kochi airport is 420 kms south. Rail: Kasargod has a railway station, which is linked to several important towns. Road: Motorable roads connect Kasargod to towns in Kerala and neighboring Karnataka. NEARBY CITIES Kannur 66 km Kozhikode 156 km Malappuram 196 km Palakkad 275 km
Area: Population: Altitude: Temperature: Mean Max: Rainfall: Clothing:
GENERAL INFORMATION 1,961 sq.km. 1,070,629. Sea level. 36.5°C; Mean Min: 27.25° C 344cm (Annual). Tropical Cottons.
Location: Ernakulam, Kerala Also known As: Cochin Tourist Season: September to May Languages: Malayalam, English, and Hindi QUEEN OF THE Arabian Sea: Kochi, the commercial and industrial capital of Kerala, has one of the finest natural harbours in the world. Ancient mariners from Arabia, China, Holland, Britain and Portugal have all left their mark on this beautiful island city. One of the finest natural harbours on the Arabian Sea coast, Kochi, earlier known, as Cochin has been a port of call for foreign traders from early times. Its cosmopolitan character is reflected in the buildings and structures representing different regions of the world. A city of peninsulas and islands, today it is Kerala's commercial hub. Kerala's prime tourist destination, it spreads across islands and promontories in a stunning location between the Arabian Sea and Backwaters. Its main sections: modern Ernakulam in the east and the old districts of Mattancherry and Fort Cochin on a peninsula in the west are linked by a complex system of ferries. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Santa Cruz Basilica: This monumental church dates back to 1558 and has beautiful paintings on the ceiling. St. Francis Church: Built in 1503 by Portuguese Franciscan Friars, this is the India's oldest European church. It was restored in 1779 by the Protestant Dutch, converted to an Anglican Church by the British in 1795, and is presently used by the church of South India. Vasco da Gama's remains were buried here in 1524 and later moved to Lisbon, Portugal but his tombstone still remains. Mattancherry Palace (Dutch Palace): Built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to Raja Veera Kerala Varma of Kochi, the palace was renovated in 1663 by the Dutch. On display here are beautiful Murals depicting scenes from the epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata and some of the puranic Hindu legends. Them palace is open for public viewing from 10:00 am to 6:00 PM. all weekdays except Fridays. Jew Town: The area around the Synagogue is a center of spice trade and curio shops. Cherai Beach: This lovely beach bordering Vypeen Island is ideal for swimming. Dolphins are occasionally seen here. A typical Kerala village with paddy fields and coconut groves nearby is an added attraction of this beach. Hill Palace Museum, Thripunithra: 10 km from Kochi, Hill Palace, the official residence of the Kochi royal family, was built in 1865 AD. The palace complex consists of 49 buildings built in the Traditional Architectural Style of Kerala and is surrounded by 52 acres of terraced land with a Deer Park and facilities for horse riding. The palace museum is open all days except Mondays from 9:00 am to 12:30 PM and 2:00 PM to 4:30 PM. A full-fledged ethno-archaeological museum and Kerala's first every heritage museum are the main attractions. Displayed inside the thirteen galleries are oil paintings, 19th century paintings, Murals, sculpture in stone and plaster of Paris, manuscripts, inscriptions and coins belonging to the Kochi royal family.
Pareekshith Thampuran Museum: This sprawling, traditional Kerala style building previously called the Durbar Hall, houses 19th century oil paintings, a collection of old coins, sculptures and Mughal paintings. The museum remains open from 10:00 am to 12:30 PM and 2:00 PM to 4:30 PM. all weekdays except Mondays. Gundu Island: Here is the magnificent 16th century Pallipuram Fort that is open only on Thursdays. Bolghatty Palace: A Scenic island near the city of Ernakulam, Bolghatty is famous for the Bolghatty Palace built by the Dutch in 1744 AD. This palace, once the residence of the British resident of Kochi, is now a KTDC (Kerala Tourism Development Corporation) hotel. Chinese Fishing Nets: traders brought these huge cantilevered fishing nets here from the court of Kublai Khan. Wellington Island: Named after Lord Wellington, a British viceroy to India, this manmade island is surrounded by beautiful backwaters. The island is the site of the city's best hotels, customs and trading centers, the port trust and the headquarters of the Southern Naval Command. Jewish Synagogue: Constructed in 1568, this is the oldest synagogue in the commonwealth. Destroyed in a shelling during the Portuguese raid in 1662, it was rebuilt two years later by the Dutch. Known for mid 18th century hand printed, willow pattern floor tiles from Canton in China, a dock tower, Hebrew inscriptions on stone slabs, ancient scripts on copper plates etc., the Synagogue is open from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon and 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM. It is closed on Saturdays and Jewish holidays. Vypeen Island: There is a magnificent lighthouse at Ochanthuruth, which remains open from 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM daily. Alappuzha (70 km): Also known as the Venice of the East, Alappuzha is famous for its boat races, houseboat holidays, beaches, marine products and Coir industry. A singular characteristic of this land is the region called Kuttanad. The granary of Kerala, Kuttanad is one of the few places in the world where farming is done below sea level. Kalady: Located on the banks of the river Periyar, this is the birthplace of the 8th century Advaita philosopher, Sri Shankaracharya. The town is famous for its many temples. Aluva (20 km): Just north of Kochi, this town is situated on the banks of the river Periyar. In February- March, this town celebrates the famous Sivarathri festival, attended by thousands of devotees. Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, Thekkady (190 km): Rolling hills, tea and cardamom plantations welcome you to Thekkady. One of the largest wildlife reserves in India, the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is more popular as a tiger reserve. A boat ride on the splendid waters of the Periyar Lake provides the perfect recreation. Kumarakom (88 km): This unique backwater destination situated on the banks of the Vembanad Lake is considered the gateway to the backwaters of Kuttanad. The Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary is a favorite haunt of migratory birds from across the world, which makes it a renowned bird watching center. Kumarakom is also a center for houseboat cruises. Munnar (130 km): 1600 m above sea level, Munnar is a nature lover's paradise and was the summer resort of the British government in South India. Sprawling tea plantations, picture-book towns, winding lanes and holiday facilities make this a popular hill station. Among the exotic flora found in the forests and grasslands are the 'Neelakurinji'. This flower, which bathes the hills in blue once every twelve years, will bloom next in 2006 AD. Munnar also has the highest peak in South India, Anamudi, which towers over 2695 m. Anamudi is an ideal spot for trekking.
Tiger, Sambhar, Bison, Spotted Deer, Leopard, Malabar Flying Squirrel, Stripe-necked Mongoose and so on can also be spotted in the forest. Kumily, an important spice trade center, lies in the periphery of the sanctuary. Malayatoor Church: A famous Christian pilgrim center, this 9th century Catholic Church is situated on the 609 m high Malayatoor Hill. St. Thomas, the apostle, is believed to have prayed in this shrine. Cheeyappara Waterfalls: The Cheeyappara and Valara waterfalls are located between Neriamangalam and Adimali on the Kochi - Madurai highway. The Cheeyappara Falls cascades down in seven steps. Thommankuthu Waterfalls: Located 20 kms from Thodupuzha, Thommankuthu is a small and beautiful, wild waterfall. Thommankuthu attracts thousands of tourists every year. The wild beauty of the scenic waterfall will steal the heart of any traveler. Kanjiramattom Mosque: The mosque is situated at Kanjiramattom, 30 km from Kochi. It is believed that the mosque was erected over the mortal remains of a Muslim saint, Sheikh Parid. Another great Muslim saint, Baver is supposed to have prayed here and attained salvation. HOW TO GET THERE Air: Kochi is connected by excellent air network to all major cities in India. Rail: Kochi has three main railway stations, namely, Ernakulam Junction, Ernakulam Town and Harbour Terminus on Wellington Island. Road: a network of national and state highways very well services Kochi, an important commercial center of the South India, connecting it to all major centers of the area. Ferry: Ferry service is available for travel between the island towns. Local Transport: Taxis, city buses and autorickshaws. NEARBY CITIES Thrissur 74 km Kozhikode 181 km Coimbatore 193 km Madurai 270 km GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 83.52 sq. km Population: (1991 census) 5,64,038. Altitude: Sea Level. Latitude & longitude: 9.9 N & 76. 2 E. Climate: Tropical. Temperature range: 35 C to 22.5 C. Clothing: light cottons
Location: 72 Kms From Trivandrum (Kerala) Main Attractions: Thangaserry, Thirumullavaram Area: 2579 sq. kms. Best Season: August to March. THE CASHEW COUNTRY: An old seaport on the banks of Ashtamudi Lake, Quilon, and 72 km away from Thiruvananthapuram is also known as the gateway to Kerala. The district is fairly important for the State's trade and commerce and is the center of the country's cashew trading and processing industry. It is also an important hub for the State's marine products industry, with the port of Neendakara being the center for trawlers and ice plants. Throbbing with industrial activity, Quilon is a place where nature can be seen at its best. People from places as far as Persia, Arab, Rome and China traded here. The
Portuguese were the first Europeans to set up a trading center followed by the Dutch and British. A perfect blend of modernism and antiquity, the developed city of Quilon brings to the fore the memories of a bygone era. Quilon, which is a veritable Kerala in miniature is gifted with Kerala's very representative features - sea, lakes, plains, mountains, rivers, streams, backwaters, forest, vast green fields and tropical crop of every variety both food crop and cash crop. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Thangassery (5 km): A seaside village of historic importance, with the ruins of an Old Portuguese fort and a few 18th century churches strewn all over, Thangaserry is a city located 5 kms from Kollam. One of the main attractions of the place is the lighthouse at Thangaserry, which is 144 feet high. Mayyanad (10 km): The place is primarily noted for its shrines and temples, the most important of the nine temples being the Subramanya Temple at Umayanallor. Karunagappally: Karunagappally is situated 27 kms. North of Kollam. It is linked with Kollam by rail and road. An idol of Buddha, recovered from a local tank here, is now preserved in the Krishnapuram Palace, situated north of Ochira. The town has a temple dedicated to Lord Siva, two old mosques and a Mar Thoma Church. Kottarakkara: Kottarakkara, the place from where the famous Indian classical dance form originated is the headquarters of Kottarakkara Taluk. It was once the capital of Elayadathu Swarupam, a principality ruled by a branch of the Travancore Royal Family. Thirumullavaram Beach (6 km): An ideal picnic spot, it is a secluded beach, well connected by frequent bus services. Rameshwara Temple: The influence of the pandyas is manifest in its design having inscriptions in Tamil, dating from the 12th to the 16th centuries. The Vyala monster sculptures in this temple give one the impression that the creatures are animated and actually climbing up the stairs with their outstretched paws. Kottukal Rock Cut Cave Temple (11 km): It is a magnificent temple, situated on the Thiruvananthapuram - Kottayam MC Road. Picnic Village: Located at Ashram, along the backwater front, picnic village is the main center of recreational activities in Kollam. A 200-year old Government guesthouse and Adventure Park, a Tourist Boat Club, a Children's Traffic Park and a Yatri Nivas are all housed in this vast tourist complex. Jatayupara: A huge rock at Chadayamangalam, Jatayupara takes its name from the mythical bird Jatayu in the epic Ramayana, who is believed to have collapsed on the rock after failing in his attempts to thwart Ravana's kidnapping of Sita. The Crafts Festival is held annually during December-January, featuring the work of craftsmen from all over the country. Sasthamkotta Lake (29 km): The vast fresh water lake surrounded by hills on three sides, Sasthamkotta is the largest of its kind in Kerala. The ancient Sastha Temple is an important pilgrim center. Ashtamudi Lake The Scenic and Calm Ashtamudi Lake is located in the Kollam district of Kerala. One of the biggest Backwaters of Kerala, this lake boasts of a magnificent view. Oachira Temple (34 km): Located to the north of Kollam town, Oachira Temple is the unique pilgrim center, with no idol or deity. The famous Parabrahma Temple is dedicated to the Universal Consciousness. Kulathupuzha Temple (64 km): Renowned for the Sastha temple, Kulathupuzha is situated on a forest range on the Thiruvananthapuram - Shenkottai road.
Palaruvi waterfalls (75 km): The enchanting waterfalls, meaning the stream of milk, offer a splendid view of the water cascading from a height of 300 feet. The Palauruvi woods form a beautiful picnic spot. Shendurni Wildlife Sanctuary: Shendurni Wildlife Sanctuary located 70 kms from Kollam, on the Kollam-Shencotta Road, is a green valley of splendid forests, situated on the banks of the Shendurny River. Mannadi: Mannadi is located 13 kms from Adoor and 45 kms from Kollam. Veluthampi Dalawa, a diwan of the erstwhile state of Travancore, met his tragic death here. Thangassery Beach: Located 5 kms from Kollam town is the is a seaside village of historic importance. HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport, Thiruvananthapuram, is 72km away. Rail: Quilon is connected by rail with several important cities. Road: Quilon is connected by road with many tourist centers in India. Local Transport: For local transport, one can use private and KSRTC buses, yellow-top and tourist taxis, and autorickshaws. NEARBY CITIES Thiruvananthapuram 71 km Alappuzha 89 km Kottayam 105 km Kochi 145 km GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 2579 sq. km. Population: 2,398,285. Climate: Tropical. Rainfall: 270 cm. (Annual). Temperature: Mean Max: 36.0°C Mean Min: 22.4°C Clothing: Tropical.
Location: Southern Part of Kerala Attractions: Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Vaikom Best Season: August to March Language Known: Malayalam, Hindi, and English Kottayam, located in the southern part of Kerala is an important commercial center of India, producing a large chunk of cash crops. A beautiful town situated in the hills, most of India's natural rubber originates from the acres of well-kept plantations of Kottayam. The town is also home to the Rubber Board, one of the country's Primary Commodities Board. Situated in the 'Backwater' circuit, the populace of Kottayam is marked by the presence of the Syrian Christian community. Well known for its churches, Kottayam sandwiched between serene palm-fringed backwaters on the west and the Western Ghats on the east, provides some of Kerala's finest natural scenes. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Thirunakkara Mahadev Temple: The temple built in the indigenous style is situated in that heart of the town of Kottayam. It features several murals and is thronged by a large number of devotees during the annual festival held in the third week of March. Valiyapalli Church: Dedicated to St. Mary, the Valia Palli is a church built in 1550 for the Knanaya Orthodox Syrians situated in Thazhathangadi, 2 km from the center of the
town. It is famous for its 8th century Persian cross and the Pahalavi inscription on the cross. Cheryapalli: Located near the Valia Palli, the smaller church of Cheria Palli, also dedicated to St. Mary, built in 1579, has some Murals and paintings of Biblical and other themes. Ayyampara: 43 km from Kottayam, Ayyampara, a good base for trekking expeditions is a little-known scenic spot of rocky plains where a 100-acre area of flat rock makes a natural granite stadium to enjoy the sunset and the view of the town below. Bharananganam An important Christian pilgrimage center, the town of Bharananganam is known as the site of the internment of Sister Alphonsa (1916 - '46) in a chapel next to the St. Mary's Church. This millenium-old church features an attractive grotto of Virgin Mary. Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary: 12 km west of Kottayam town, on the banks of the Vembanad Lake, at Kumarakom is the Bird Sanctuary known for local varieties of Waterfowl, Cuckoo, and Water Ducks, as well as for the migratory Siberian Storks. Erumelli: 60 kms form Kottayam; it’s an important pilgrim center of both the Muslims and Hindus. An ancient temple dedicated to Lord Ayappa and a mosque of Vavar, his Muslim ally, are both located here. The pilgrims to the holy shrine at Sabarimala also pay obeisance to Vavar, an enduring custom, which brilliantly exemplifies the communal harmony of the land and its people. Vaikom: 40 km from Kottayam, in Vaikom is the Shiva Temple, which is believed to have been built by Parasurama, the mythical creator of Kerala. The 12-day Ashtami festival in the months of November and December is marked by elephant processions, religious discourses, and performances of dance and music. In contemporary history, Vaikom's prominence derives from the Satyagraha of 1925, started by Mahatma Gandhi and aimed at opening the temple for untouchables Ettumanoor Temple: 13 kms. Famous for its legendary 16th century Shiva Temple, Ettumanoor is a Hindu pilgrimage. The Shiva temple is a specimen of Kerala's indigenous style of temple architecture, incorporating clear-cut woodcarvings and murals, including an exceptionally striking one of Shiva as Nataraja, where he trampled underfoot the evil spirit represented by a demon. Every year in February and March, a 10- day long festival is held at the temple. Pundareekapuram Temple Pundareekapuram is a small temple atop a small hill called Midayikunnam near Thalayolapparambu, in Kottayam District. The temple is dedicated to the Lord Vishnu mounted on his vehicle Garuda.The temple at Pundareekapuram is famous for its Mural Collection. Vembanad Lake Vembanad Lake, one of the largest fresh water lakes in Asia, is 12km west from Kottayam. Kottayam is a vast network of rivers and canals, which empty into the great expanse of water called Vembanad Lake. Peerumedu is a small hill station, snuggled at an altitude of 914 m above sea level, on way to Thekkady. The famous plantation town takes its name from Peer Mohammed, a Sufi saint and close associate of the erstwhile royal family of Travancore. Grampi The picturesque hill station of Grampi, situated 5 kms from Peerumade is also known as the Parunthupara, meaning the eagle rock. Ilaveezhapoonchira Located at distance of 55 kms from Kottayam and 20 kms from Thodapuzha, this is another picnic spot located in the midst of the beautiful hillocks near Kanjar. Wagamon Located 64 kms from Kottayam and 65 kms from Idukki town, Wagamon is a hill station perched at an altitude of 1100 m above sea level. Mannanam: Housing the famous St. Joseph's Monastery, Mannanam is an important Syrian Christian center. The town is associated with the name of Father Kuriakose Elias of Chavara (1805 - 1871), one of the saintly figures of the Syrian Catholic Church of
Kerala. Established in 1844, St. Joseph's Press is one of the oldest printing presses in India, where one of the oldest of Kerala's newspapers was printed. HOW TO GET THERE Air: Nearest Airport is at Cochin, 76 kms away. The Thiruvananthapuam International Airport is 152 kms. Rail: Kottayam Railway Station 2 kms. Away from the Central Bus Station and is connected with major cities and tourist centers. Road: There are two bus stands, one run by state transport and the other private. The buses to major centers operate from the KSRTC bus station. Ferry: The Ferry Station is 3 kms, away from the railway station. Services to Alleppey, Mannar, Chempakulam, Mankombu and Ambalapuzha. NEARBY CITIES Alappuzha 43 km Kochi 66 km Thrissur 135 km Thiruvananthapuram 148 km GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 2579 sq.km. Population: 2,398,285. Climate: Tropical. Rainfall: 270 cm. (Annual). Temperature: Mean Max: 36.0°C Mean Min: 22.4°C Clothing: Tropical.
Location: Northern Part of Kerala Main Attractions: Dolphin's Point Formed on: Calicut Best Season: September to May THE HISTORICAL TOWN OF PROMINENCE: The busy coastal city of Kozhikode, located to the north of Kerala and 225 kms from Kochi holds an important position in the legend and history of Kerala. The place is historically famous as the Portuguese led by Vasco da Gama first landed in India, at Kappad near Kozhikode in 1498 AD. He was the first European to reach India via the sea route, around the southern cape of Africa. Later the Dutch, French and British came to its shores. Thus, began a period of conflict of foreign powers for domination of trade in Malabar. Kozhikode was the capital of the powerful Zamorins. This age-old town still maintains its commercial traditions. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Pazhassi Raja Museum: Located at East Hill, the Pazhassiraja Museum, run by the State Archaeological Department, displays ancient murals, antique bronzes and old coins, as well as models of temples, megalithic monuments like dolminoid cysts and umbrella stones. Timings are 10 am to 5 PM. (Closed on Mondays) Situated next to the Pazhassiraja Museum; the Art Gallery contains paintings of Raja Ravi Varma and Raja Varma. Krishnan Menon Museum: The Krishna Menon Museum has a section in honour of the great Indian leader V.K. Krishna Menon, whose personal belongings and souvenirs
gifted by world leaders are exhibited here. Timings are 10 am to 5 PM. (Closed on Mondays and Wednesday forenoons). Dolphin's Point: Just 15 minutes from the city center is a place called Dolphin's Point, where one can see dolphins playing in the sea of an early morning. The long tree-lined beach, about 2 km away, is popular with the local people because of the Lions Club Park, the lighthouse, and two piers - and of course, the opportunity to soak in the evening breeze. Mananchira: Mananchira is the heart of the city and sites important institutions like the Town Hall and the Public Library. One of Kozhikode's oldest institutions, the Commonwealth Trust's office is located here. The large pond and park are well-known landmarks. Kallai: Six kms away is Kallai, once the bustling nerve center of Kozhikode's timber trade, said to have been the largest such trading center in Asia. Today, though some business does take place, hard times have fallen on the timber trade and Kallai is just a shadow of its busy past. Beypore Beach: Beypore 11 km from Kozhikode is a small coastal town famous for centuries as a shipbuilding center and still is known today for its country crafts called `Uru' built by traditional shipbuilders known as `khalasis'. Beypore is still a favored destination for Arabs shopping for large boats. A commercial center also famous for the ancient Kerala style of martial arts, 'Kalaripayattu' is also the birthplace of Tacholi Othenan, whose heroic deeds have been immortalized in the ballads of North Malabar. Kappad Beach: Kappad, the historic beach. It is the beach where Vasco da Gama landed on the 27th of May 1498 with 170 men in three vessels, thus discovering a sea route to India. Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary: Kalalundi bird sanctuary, 19 kms from Kozhikode is home to more than a hundred varieties of native birds and over 60 species of migratory birds flock here in large numbers. Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary: Established in 1973, the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary is contiguous to the protected area network of Nagarhole and Bandipore of Karnataka and Mudumalai of Tamil-Nadu. Lokanarkavu Temple: The Lokanarkavu Bhagavathi Temple is a temple frequently alluded to in the Northern Ballads or the Vadakkanpattu of Kerala. The main deity is Goddess Durga, with two adjacent shrines dedicated to Vishnu and Siva. Thali Temple: Thali temple, located downtown is an important temple of the erstwhile Zamorin Kingdom of Kozhikode. The temple is famous for the 'Revathi Pattathanam', an annual competition of pedagogic skills. Mananthavadi: The panoramic Mananthavadi is situated 32 kms from north east of Kalpetta. Perched on the Western Ghats at an altitude of around 500m above sea level. Lakkidi: Lakkidi, the gateway of Wayanad, is situated 700 m above mean sea level, at the crest of the Thamaraserri ghat pass. Lofty peaks, gurgling streams and luxuriant forests add magic to the journey up the winding roads to this hill station Peruvannamuzhi Dam: 60 kms from Kozhikode, it is picturesque dam with a crocodile farm, bird sanctuary and boating facilities. The dam is a famous picnic spot. Thikkoti Lighthouse: The lighthouse, which overlooks Velliyamkallu - the rock much dreaded by mariners - off Moodadi coast, was built after a shipwreck, the remains of which can still be seen here. The region around the Velliyamkallu rock is the transit home of migratory birds. Thusharagiri Waterfalls: Snuggled cosily in the Western Ghats, are the gurgling waterfalls of Thusharagiri. Meaning the snow capped mountains; Thushargiri exhibits a unique kinship between the land and water.
HOW TO GET THERE Air: Kozhikode has an airport at Karipur. Rail: Kozhikode is served by a handful of coastal expresses and several passenger trains. Road: A well-built network of roads connects Kozhikode to the other parts of the state. Local Transport: Auto Rickshaws, Deluxe Buses. NEARBY CITIES Thrissur 102 km Kochi 181 km Coimbatore 186 km Mysore 216 km GENERAL INFORMATION District Area: 2,345 sq.km. City Area: 30.61 sq.km. District Population: 2,612,897. City Population: 419,531. Altitude: Sea level. Temperature: Mean Max: 32.0 °C; Mean Min: 22.5°C Climate: Tropical. Rainfall: 254 cm (Annual). Clothing: Tropical Cottons.
Location: 50 Kms Southeast Of Kozhikode (Kerala) Area: 3550 sq. Kms. Main Attractions: Thirunavaya, Thali Temple Season: September to March CITY ATOP THE HILLS: Situated 50 kms southeast of Kozhikode and bounded by the Nilgiri hills on the east, the district of Malappuram, which literally means a terraced place atop hills, was carved out of the districts of Calicut and Palakkad in 1969. Malappuram has a rich and eventful history. It was the military headquarters of the Zamorins of Kozhikode since ancient times. The district was the venue for many Mappila revolts between the years 1792 AD and 1921 AD. The hill country has also contributed much to the cultural heritage of Kerala. The temples and mosques of this region are well known for their spectacular festivals. Along with historical monuments and diverse natural attractions, a range of cultural and ritual art forms adds to the value of this place as a tourist destination. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Thirunavaya Temple: Situated on the banks of Bharatpuzha, this is a place of great historical importance. The Mamangam, a grand assembly of the rulers of Kerala, was held here once every 12 years in the past. The extravagant festival was conducted for the last time in 1755 AD. Now, it is the venue for the annual Sarvodaya Mela. The Thirunavaya Navamukunda Temple is also a famous pilgrim center. Thirumandhamkunnu temple: Dedicated to goddess Durga, this is an important pilgrim center in Mallapuram. The annual pooram festival celebrated in the months of March and April attracts large numbers of devotees. The Jamaat Mosque: This is an important pilgrim center of the Muslims of the state. The 4 day long annual festival at the mosque is celebrated in April. Adjoining the mosque is the mausoleum of the Mallapuram shaheeds (martyrs) whose brave exploits have been immortalized in the Mappila Ballads.
Nilambur: This is the original home of the Cholainaickans, the oldest aboriginal tribe of Kerala. The extensively forested land is well known for Canoli's Plot. It is named after H.V.Conolly, the then Malabar District Collector. The oldest teak tree in the plot is a rare attraction. On the Nilambur-Gudallur Road are the world's first teak museum and a subcenter of the Kerala Forest Research Institute. Angadippuram: An important religious center for both Hindus and Muslims, Angadippuram has the Thirumandhankunnu dedicated to Goddess Durga as well as the Puthanangadi Mosque, which has Arabic inscriptions on its walls. Kotakkal: Further away is the small town of Kottakal, 12 km southwest of Malappuram and 168 km from Kochi, site of the famed Kottakal Arya Vaidyasala, pioneering center for Ayurveda, Kerala's traditional system of health and medicine. Among the best-run Ayurveda centers in the state, this institution has a research center, a nursing home, and a hospital. Founded in 1902 by Vaidyaratnam P.S. Varier, it has branches all over the state as well as in Delhi and Madras. The treatment it offers for various ailments attracts a large number of patients. Appointments with the chief physician have to be booked well in advance. Tanur Beach: Further back in time, the small coastal fishing town of Tanur was one of the earliest settlements of the Portuguese. It is believed that St. Francis Xavier visited the place in 1546 and converted the local chieftain to Christianity. About 3 km south of Tanur is Keraladesapuram Temple, dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is said to be one of Kerala's oldest temples. Vallikunnu Beach: A beach resort set in the middle of a coconut grove is the main attraction here. The Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary is just a short distance away. Padinharekara Beach: At the end of the Tipu Sultan road near Ponnani, the beach offers a breathtaking view of the confluence of the Bharatha Puzha, the Tirur Puzha and the Arabian Sea. Tirur: The birthplace of Thunchath Ezhuthachan, now called Thunchan Parambu is in Tirur. Sand is taken from these hallowed grounds and used to initiate Malayali children into the wonders of writing. They are made to trace letters of the Malayalam alphabet in platters of this sand. Tirunavai: On the banks of the river Bharathapuzha, 8 km south of Tirur, is Tirunavai, a place of historical and religious significance. In olden days, the Mamamkam festival here was a grand assembly of the rulers of Kerala, held once in 12 years. Believed to have been started by Cheraman Perumal, it was last held in 1755. Today, the Sarvodaya Mela is held in the Nava Mukunda Temple, every January. This temple is said to be founded by the nine great saints and is also called the Benares of the South. Kondotti: On the way to Malappuram, 18 km west of Manjeri is Kondotti, a prominent pilgrimage location for Muslims. The Valia Nercha festival at the 500-year-old Pazhayangadi Mosque is celebrated for three days in February-March, drawing huge crowds. HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport is at Calicut, 36 kms away. Rail: The main railway station is at Calicut. Road: Motorable roads to several towns in Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu link Malappuram. NEARBY CITIES Kozhikode 35 km Palakkad 80 km Thrissur 95 km Kochi 150 km
District Area: Population: Altitude: Lowland: Highland: Climate: season in the interior. Temperature: Mean Max: Mean Min: Rainfall: Clothing:
GENERAL INFORMATION 3,550 sq.km. 3,096,000. sea level. 477m to 2340 m. above sea level. Humid on the coast, tropical with oppressive hot 32-37°C 22 °C 290 cm. Tropical
Location: Kerala Main Locations: Palakkad Fort, Kalpathy Temple Main Languages: Malayalam, English Best Season: September to February THE GRANARY OF INDIA: Palakkad, the land, which is one of the most fertile and thickly forested districts of Kerala is supposed to have derived its name from the 'Pala' tree and 'Kadu' meaning forest. The whole area is said to have been covered by 'Pala' trees, in the past. The district of Palakkad, which lies at the foot of the colossal Western Ghats, has only midland and highland areas. Much of the area is made up of plains, scattered with a few hillocks. The plains are so fertile and productive that the district is considered the "Granary of Kerala". Along with Idukki, Palghat is the other district in Kerala, which has the rare distinguishing characteristic of not having a seacoast. Kerala's longest river Bharathapuzha flows through the district. During the hot season, its wide sandy bed is dry except for some miles from its origin. Being too shallow and rocky for water transport, the Bharathapuzha has little commercial significance but holds a special place in the cultural psyche of the State. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Palakkad Fort: One of the best-preserved forts in Kerala, it was built by Mysore's Haider Ali. In 1790, The Fort was taken over and renovated by the British. Kalpathi temple: The most important of all the temples, Kalpathi Temple is dedicated to Shiva. The car festival or the Rathotsavam is held here in November. Dhoni: (15 km from Palakkad) it is a 3 hour trek from the base of the Dhoni Hills to this reserve forest area with its small, beautiful waterfall. Malampuzha: It is a picnic spot in the lower hills of the Western Ghats, 12 kms from Palakkad with a dam and a garden. Malampuzha Garden is a famous picnic spot, which comprises a dam and beautifully landscaped gardens, is situated on the lower hills of the Western Ghats. There are frequent buses to the garden from Palakkad. Kottayi: (15 km via Poodar from Palakkad) this village is the native place of the late Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagavathar, the doyen of Carnatic music. Thrithala: 75 kms from Palakkad along the banks of Bharathapuzha river, Thrithala is famed for its Shiva temple. Kattilmadom temple on the Pattambi-Guruvayoor road has archaeological importance.the small granite structure, a testimony of Buddhist influence, built probably during the 9th or 10th century.
Attappady: Attapaddy situated on the northeastern side of the district of Palakkad and spread over an area of 827 sq. kms has the largest tribal settlement. Silent Valley National Park: A virgin forest, it is 2 hours drive form Palakkad. Nelliampathy: 75 kms from Palghat. The ranges here consist of a chain of ridges cut of from one another by valleys. The highest peak is Nellikota. The forest contains teak of extraordinary height and girth. Estates of tea, coffee, orange and cardamom dot the ranges. Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary: It is situated 97 kms from Palakkad. Chittur Garumadam: Located on the banks of the river Sokanasini (the destroyer of sorrows), this is a memorial to Thunchath Ezhuthachan, the author of Adhyatma Ramayana, who spent his last days here. An srichakra, some of the idols worshipped by him, a stylus, wooden slippers and a few old manuscripts are exhibited here. Kanjirapuzha: 24 kms from Palakkad, this catchment lake of the dam lies in a single stretch. An evergreen forest, the 'Vettilachola', provides the backdrop to a lake surrounded by hillocks. During the rains, the mist-draped mountains create a picturesque landscape. Mangalam Dam: The Mangalam Dam is constructed on the river Cherukunnapuzha, a tributary of the river Mangalam. A popular picnic site, the dam is located 48 kms south of Palakkad town. HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport is Coimbatore, 55 kms. Away. To the south is Cochin Airport, 16Okms. Away. Rail: There are two railway stations, the main; Palakkad Junction is 5 kms from the city. Road: good motor able roads to all the major towns of Kerala and the neighboring state of Tamil Nadu connect Palakkad. NEARBY CITIES Kozhikode 119 km Kochi 135 km Alappuzha 185 km Munnar 221 km GENERAL INFORMATION District Area: 4480 sq.km. District Population: 2,376,160. Climate: Tropical, hot season from March to May, plenty of rainfall during monsoons in the months of June-September and December -February. Altitude: Midland 7.62m. To 76.2m.above sea level. Temperature: Mean Max: 38.68 deg. C Mean Min: 21.15 deg. C Rainfall: 240cm. (Annual average). Main Festivals: Kalpathi Rathotsavam, Manappulli Kavu Mela.
Location: Kerala Main attractions: Sabarimala, Aranmula Best Season: August to March Languages: Malayalam, Hindi, and English THE GREAT PILGRIMAGE: Situated near the Western Ghats and bordered by the hills, Pathanamthitta district is a treat to eyes with its vast unending stretches of forests, rivers and rural landscapes. Blessed by nature, the district is famous for its scenic beauty, fairs and festivals.
Pathanamthiita is a true tropical diversity adorned with fertile agricultural land, plantations and forest, Paddy, tapioca, varieties of vegetables and spices like cardamom, pepper etc. are extensively cultivated. The district also abounds in extensive rubber plantations. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Chandanakudam Festival: The Chandanakudam Festival of the Patthanamthitta Muslim Jamaat Mosque held in February, every year attracts thousands of devotees. The Chandanakudam festival of Kattoor Mosque in Cherukole Panchayath and Kalamala Mosque near Adoor are also famous. Charalkunnu: Charalkunnu is a picturesque hill station from where one can have a panoramic view of the low-lying areas including that of the sinuous river, Pumpa. There is a comfortable camp house, which has both rooms and dormitories. Krishna Puram Palace: 47 kms, at Kanya Kulam, on the way to Kollam, the double storeyed palace contains one of the largest Mural panels in Kerala. Aranmula: On the Pamba River, 10 kms from Chenganur on the ThiruvananthapuramKottayam route, the Krishna Temple is an important pilgrim center. The annual commemoration of the installation of the deity falls on the last day of the Onam festival. It is as part of this celebration that the Aranmula Boat Race is held on this day. Kadammanitta: Kadammanitta, a village only 8 kms away from Pathanamthitta is famous Padayani, which is an important ritual art performed in the premises of the Kadammanitta Devi Temple. This art from is an offering for the mother goddess. It is celebrated every year from the first day of Medam according to the Malayalam era to the 10th day (Pathmudayam). Kalloppara: St.Mary's Church at Kalloopra stands in close proximity to the Bhagavathi temple, which is an admirable example of communal harmony. There are two granite slabs inside the church with some inscriptions in Pali language. Kaviyoor: The Kaviyoor Mahadeva temple, which was constructed in the early years of the 10th century, is one of the oldest of the Mahadeva temples in Kerala. References are there in the Kaviyoor Shasanas of 950 AD about the gifts that were offered to this temple. But it is believed that the 'Darusilpas' seen around the temple belong to the 17th century. Thekekudi Cave Temple in Kaviyoor Panchayat is one of the rare cave temples of Kara. It is assumed that this temple is constructed in the Pallava architectural style and was built in the 8th century. Apart from Ganapathi, Maharshi and Dwarapalaka idols in the Sreekovil, which are inside the cave, there is also a Sivalinga, which is about three feet in height. Omallur: The Rakhtakanta Swami Temple and the annual cattle fair held in the Malayalam month of 'meenam' are the main attractions of Omallur. People from both within and outside participates in the fair. Sabarimala: The famous pilgrim center is 191 kms away north of Thiruvananthapuram and 210 kms from Kochi. The Lord Ayappa Temple is 914 kms above the level amidst forests in the rugged terrain of the Western Ghats. Perhaps the best-known pilgrimage destination in Kerala, Sabarimala is high up in the Sahyadri Mountains. The holy shrine dedicated to Lord Ayyappa Dharma Sastha, is thronged by thousands of pilgrims from all over, especially from other parts of South India. The main pilgrimage season is from November to January. The shrine is located 914 m above sea level amidst dense forests. Vehicular traffic cannot go beyond Pamba and the last five kms to the shrine can be reached only by trekking. Note that tourists and foreigners, as well as women between the approximate ages of puberty and menopause, are not allowed entry.
Neendakara: 8 kms north of Kollam on the Kollam-Alappuzha route, it is a major fishing harbour and the headquarters of the Indo-Norwegian Fisheries Project set up inn 1953 AD. This collaborative venture pioneered modern fishing methods in Kerala. Cherukolpuzha: An important religious convention of the Hindus is held at Cherukole on the riverbed of Pampa usually in February every year. Kakki: Kakki reservoir, set in sylvan background, is a 'tourists' delight. The splendid artificial lake offers exhilarating boating experience. The surrounding forest abounds in tigers, elephants, deers and monkey. Kodumon Chilanthiyambalam: Chilanthiyambalam is situated in Kodumon Panchayat about 15 kms. From Pathanmathitta town. It is believed that this temple was built during the reign of the last king of the Sakthibhadra Kingdom. All people, irrespective of caste and creed worship the idol of Mahalakshmi in this temple. The water of the Chilaanthikinar in the premises of the temple is regarded as panacea for skin diseases. Thiruvalla Temple Thiruvalla temple is one of the largest temples of Kerala and a fine specimen of its traditional style of temple architecture. The temple has many shrines though it is mainly dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Konni: Konni is an important junction in Kottayam-Punalur route. It is about 11 kms. From the district headquarters. It is an important center for cash crops like rubber, pepper, and coffee and ginger, which forms the backbone of the agricultural economy of the state. Till recently it had importance as a place of training elephants. But elephant hatching by crude old method being forbidden by the central government, no wild elephant are brought here for training. But the big wooden cages used to put newly coughed wild elephant for training are still an attraction for people from far and near. Malayalappuzha: The Bhagavathy temple here is believed to help people realise their dreams. People bring offerings in different forms during the festival. There are also beautiful wall paintings and artistic stone works. Thenmala: Nearly 66 kms east of Kollam, it's a scenic spot at the intersection of the Kollam-Shencotta and Thiruvananthapuram-Shencotta roads. A number of rubber and tea plantations lend a touch of civilization to the otherwise virgin landscape. Large consignments of timber are exported from Thenmala. The dam site here is an added tourist attraction. Niranam: 7 kms from Thiruvalla. It is famous for the church, believed to be among one of the seven and a half churches originally established by St. Thomas in Kerala. This church displays a marked influence of ancient temple architecture. Niranam is also famous as the birthplace of a band of 14th century poets known as the Niranam Kavikal or Kannassa Panikkaranmar. They were renowned for their many translations from Sanskrit to Malayalam, the most illustrious being 'Kannassaramayanam', a translation of the epic Ramayana. Manjinikkara: The holly Patriarch of Anthioch, while on his visit to India, died at this place in 1932. His mortal remains are kept in this church. Later this place was developed into a place of pilgrimage, even today, pilgrims, Indians as well as foreigners, visit this place frequently. The important festival is in February every year when devotees flock in thousands. Mannadi: Veluthampi Dalawa, the great patriot, fought, against British imperialism and became a martyr on March 29, 1809 at Mannadi. The monument of his martyrdom at Mannadi in Adoor Taluk is of great historical importance. HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport is at Cochin, 152 km away. Rail: Rail link at Tiruvalla, 30 kms. Away.
Road: Motorable roads to other towns in Kerala link Pathanamthitta. Click here for Travel Agents & Tour Operators in India NEARBY CITIES Chenganur 26 km Kottayam 61 km Alappuzha 74 km Thiruvananthapuram 104 km GENERAL INFORMATION District Area: 2731sq.km. District Population: 1,186,628. Temperature: Mean Max: 37.0 deg. C Mean Min: 22.0 deg. C Climate: Tropical Monsoons. Clothing: Tropical Cottons. Altitude: 500-1000 Mt. above sea level.
Location: Idukki District (Kerala) Main Attractions: Thekkady Wildlife Sanctuary Tourist Season: September to May Languages: Malayalam, Tamil, Hindi, and English AN ENCHANTING PLANTATION TOWN: Thekkady, located in central Kerala, is a popular hill station and a wildlife center. This town, which is an important plantation center, conjures up images of elephants, unending chains of hills and spice scented plantations. In the Periyar Forest of Thekkady is one of the finest wildlife reserves of India and spread across the entire district are picturesque plantations and hill towns that hold immense opportunities for treks and mountain walks. The Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary offers a fairly good chance of seeing the great Indian tiger in its natural habitat. PRIME ATTRACTIONS The Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary: Lying close to the plantations, in the rich jungles of Periyar in Thekkady is one of the worlds most fascinating natural wildlife reserves - the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. Spread across 777 sq. km, of which 360 sq. km is thick evergreen forest, the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary was declared a Tiger Reserve in 1978. Noted for its geo-morphological diversity of wildlife and scenic beauty, the Reserve attracts visitors from all over the world. The splendid artificial lake formed by the Mullaperiyar Dam across the Periyar River adds to the charm of the park. This is the only sanctuary in India where you can have the unique experience of viewing wildlife at close quarters from the safety of a boat on the lake. The greatest attraction of Periyar remains the large herds of wild elephants that come down to the lake's edge. Sanctuary Watchtowers: There are three watchtowers for observing wild life - at Edappalayam and Manakkavala and Thannikudi. Reservations can be made at the Forest Information Counter, Thekkady. Kumily: (4 km from Thekkady) this plantation town, closely associated with Thekkady, is situated on the outskirts of the Periyar Sanctuary. It is an important shopping center and spice trade center, the main bus station and most of the medium range accommodation in the Periyar region is in Kumily. Murikkady: (5 km from Thekkady) Washed in fresh spice scented air; Murikkady is a panorama of cardamom, coffee and pepper plantations.
Pandikuzhi (5 km from Kumily): This picturesque place is cradled between Chellarkovil and the Tamil Nadu State border is a popular picnic spot. Pandikuzhi offers great opportunities for trekking and is a photographer's delight. Pullumedu (43 km from Thekkady, 26 km from Periyar): The winding journey to this hill town, along the Periyar River, offers a stunning view of the rolling hills draped in lush greenery. Velvet lawns, rare flora and fauna add to the beauty of Pullumedu, which can be accessed from a jeep. The famous Sree Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala and the Makara Joythi illuminations at the shrine are visible from here. Since it is part of the restricted forest zone, special permission to visit Pullumedu has to be obtained from the Wildlife Preservation Officer, Thekkady or The Range Officer, Vallakkadavu. Mangala Devi Temple (15 km from Thekkady): This ancient temple is hidden in the dense woods at the top of a peak 1337 m above sea level. The temple is built in the traditional Kerala Style of Architecture. Visitors are allowed here only on the Chithra Pournami festival day. The peak commands a panoramic view of the other side of the Ghats and the vast plains of Tamil Nadu. Permission to visit the area can be obtained from the Wildlife Warden at Thekkady. Vandiperiyar (18 km from Thekkady): the River Periyar flowing through the center of this town nourishes its vast tea, coffee and pepper plantations. A major trade center, Vandiperiyar is also home to a number of tea factories. The Government Agriculture Farm and Flower Gardens have a delightful array of rose plants, orchids and anthurium. Chellarkovil (15 km from Kumily): This sleepy little village with its spectacular view of the plains and cascading waterfalls during the monsoons is a feast to the eyes. The village slopes down to the famous coconut groves of Kumbam in neighboring Tamil Nadu. Vandanmedu (25 km from Kumily): This is one of the world's largest auction centers for Cardamom. A walk through the sprawling cardamom plantations of Vandanmedu is a pleasant experience. Munnar: One of the most popular hill stations in India, Munnar is situated at the confluence of three mountain streams - Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala. Located at 1600 m above sea level, this was once the summer resort of the erstwhile British Government in South India. Sprawling tea plantations, picture book towns, winding lanes, trekking and holiday facilities make Munnar a unique experience. Among the exotic flora found in the forests and grasslands here is the Neelakurinji, a flower, which bathes the hills in blue colour once in every twelve years. The Neelakurinji will bloom next in 2006 AD. Munnar also has the highest peak in South India - Anamudi - which towers over 2695 m and is an ideal spot for campers who like to do some trekking. Peerumedu: Peerumedu, the famous plantation town, takes its name from Peer Mohammed, a Sufi saint and close associate of the erstwhile royal family of Travancore. Wide vistas of tea, cardamom, rubber and coffee plantations interspersed with silver cascades, sculptural rocks, meadows and mist-cloaked hilltops make Peermede an unforgettable experience. The most delightful trekking trails complement the panoramic landscape. Monuments like the Summer Palace and Summer Residence of the royal family add to the splendour of the land. The Summer Residence, now converted into a government guesthouse under the Department of Tourism, offers comfortable accommodation.
HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearby airports are at Madurai and Kochi. Rail: Teni, Kottayam, Madurai and Changanaserry are the convenient railheads from Thekkady. Road: There are frequent buses from Kumily (4 km away) to various tourist centers. Local transport: Tourist Cars, Taxi Jeeps, Mini Buses and Auto Rickshaws. NEARBY CITIES Idukki 60 km Madurai 140 km Kochi 190 km Thiruvananthapuram 265 km GENERAL INFORMATION Latitude: 9°15' and 9°40' North. Longitude: 76°55' and 77°25' East. Altitude: 900-1800 m Above Sea Level. Climate: Tropical. Temperature: 15°C-30°C. Rainfall: 2500 mm. Clothing: Woolen and Cotton.
Location: Southern Coast of India (Kerala) Former Name: Trivandrum Main attraction: Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple Best Season: September to May CITY OF HOLY SERPENT: Thiruvananthapuram, formerly known, as Trivandrum is gateway to one of the most beautiful Indian states, Kerala. Stretching along the southern coast of the country, with the Backwaters reaching deep into the verdant countryside, Kerala affords a fascinating experience. The city of the Thousand - headed Anatha, the holy serpent on which Lord Vishnu reclines. Thiruvananthapuram is one of the most beautiful cities of India. Perched on undulating terrain of low coastal hills near the southern edge of the Indian mainland, clean and green Thiruvananthapuram, which was previously called Trivandrum, is an ancient city with trading tradition dateing back to 1000 BC. The city once formed a part of the capital of Travancore, which had its capital at Padmanabhapuram, now in Tamilnadu.The city is also a welcome departure from other large cities of India in its spacious layout and regulated life. It is also an excellent base to explore the interiors of Kerala, the southernmost region of India, and from Kochi, the Lakshadweep Islands. The city offers all modern facilities needed by a visitor and is a center for cultural activities. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Sri Ananthapadmanabhaswamy Temple: The ancient temple is the most dominating feature of Thiruvananthapuram. Overlooking the Padma Theertham Tank. The temple is devoted to Lord Vishnu who is depicted reclining on Sri Anantha, the hooded snake from which the city derives its name. Exquisite stone carvings and pavilions are worth admiring. The temple is open only to Hindus and dress regulations are strictly enforced. Vettukad Church: (7 kms from Thiruvananthapuram) The 'Madre De Deus' Church popularly known as the Vettukad Church attracts thousands of devotees from all religions. The annual celebration here is called the 'Feast of Christ, The King'. Sankhumugham Beach: The long stretch of clean sand is located near the airport. The water there, however, is suitable for bathing.
Kovalam Beach: Kovalam beach is only 16 km. away from the city. This unique and uncluttered beach of silvery sands fringed with rows of tall palms, a sheltered bay provides a wide choice of water sports. Veli Tourist Village: A large recreational center located near the airport along a sheltered lagoon offers landscaped gardens and water-sports facilities. It is a popular picnic spot. Accommodation facilities are available in the youth hostel. Aruvikkara: 16 km. It is both a pilgrim center and a picnic spot, with a waterfall nearby. On the banks of the Karamana River, the spot houses a temple, where a rock cut shrine is dedicated to Goddess Bhagvathy, the divine embodiment of female power. A stream with fishes, which come up to be fed by visitors, is another attraction. Beema Palli: (5 kms south of Thiruvananthapuram) an important Muslim pilgrim centers, it is dedicated to Beema Beevi, a pious Muslim lady believed to have possessed divine powers. Devotees of all faiths visit the mosque. Vizhinjam: Near Kovalam, it's a fishing port, which is also important for an ongoing pioneer project to generate electricity from wave energy. Public Park: Truly a representative of the clean and verdant aspect of the city, the Public Park houses many important institutions, like the Zoo and the Botanical Gardens. The observatory on the Observatory hill is also located in the Public Park. Anchuthengu Fort: Located 36 kms from Thiruvananthapuram. The historic remains of the fort built by the British East India Company in the 17th century and an adjoining cemetery are the noteworthy relics of this first major British trading station on the Malabar Coast. Padmanabhapuram Palace (Tamil Nadu): 54 kms. A place of elaborate woodwork, it was the ancient seat of the Travancore rulers. It contains relics of historical and artistic value. Koyikkal Palace Koyikkal Palace, the ancient palace, located 18 km from Thiruvananthapuram on the way to Ponmudi hillstation and the Kuttalam waterfalls, dates back to the 15th century. Kaudiar Palace This palace, home of the late Maharaja Sree Chitra Thirunal Bala Rama Varma and his family is off limits to the public. Ponmudi: 61 kms. It is a beautiful hill station away from the city. The natural scenery, salubrious climate and the scope of hiking in high trails make the visit an exhilarating experience. Kanyakumari (Tamil Nadu): 87 kms. It is located at a junction at the southernmost tip of India where the three water bodies, namely, Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea and the Indian Ocean meet. From here, one can see the sun rise from the Bay of Bengal and set in the Arabian Sea. It is a holy place for Hindus because of the Kanyakumari Temple. The Gandhi Smarak Mandir and Vivekananda Rock Memorial are additional tourist attractions Sucheendram (Tamil Nadu): 74 kms. The temple contains beautiful carvings and sculptures. There is an impressive statue of Hanuman and navagrahas carved on the ceiling-imitating universe. Aaranmula Parthasarathy Temple Parthasarthy temple, dedicated to Parthasarathi or Lord Krishna is said to date back to the days of the Mahabharata. The Vaishnavite Alwar Saints have sung its glory. Kulathupuzha Temple Kulathupuzha Temple is situated on a forest range on the Thiruvananthapuram - Shenkotta road, Kulathupuzha is known for the Sastha temple. Sivagiri Temple the 'Sivagiri Mutt' is andAshram’ founded by the great Hindu reformer and philosopher, Sree Naravana Guru. Even decades after the Guru breathed his last here in 1928 AD, his 'Samadhi' (restling place) continues to be thronged by thousands every year.
Napier Museum: The museum contains a fine collection of Kerala's bronzes, ornaments and contumes, and a model of "Tharawad' the traditional Nair family home. Kuthiramalika Palace Museum Kuthiramalika Palace Museum, a classic specimen of Kerala Architecture is situated in 'Kuthiramalika'. The palace, with its excellent carvings and amazing architectural designs, is by itself a slice of heritage. The museum has a wide range of exhibits representing the erstwhile state of Travancore. Science & Technology Museum The Science and Technology Museum, situated in Thiruvananthapuram was established with the prime objective of setting up of galleries with working or animated and participatory type of exhibits, on all disciplines of Science and Technology. Varkala Beach Varkala is a seaside resort, as well as an important Hindu center of pilgrimage. High cliffs with rich mineral springs rise majestically from the coastline. The 2000-year-old Janardana Swami Temple and the Nature Center are the two main attractions here. High cliffs border the excellent beach. NEARBY CITIES Kollam 71 km Kanyakumari 88 km Alappuzha 160 km Kochi 216 km
Location: Kerala Main Attractions: Vadakkumnathan Temple Best Season: September to March Main Languages: Malayalam, Hindi, and English THE CULTURAL CAPITAL OF KERALA: Thrissur, with its rich history, cultural heritage and archaeological wealth, is rich in cultural activities. From ancient times, this district has played a significant role in the political history of south India. Thrissur, the name derived from 'Tiru-Shiva-Perur' (the town with the name of Lord Shiva) is the cultural capital of Kerala. Its most prominent feature is the Vadakkumnathan Kshetram or temple, which has Shiva as its presiding deity. Many rulers and dynasties beginning with the Zamorins of Kozhikode, Tipu Sultan of Mysore and Europeans including the Dutch and the British have had a hand in moulding the destiny of this region. Raja Rama Varma, popularly known as Sakthan Thampuran was the architect of the present Thrissur town. Today, Thrissur is world famous for its Pooram Festival, which is one of the biggest festivals of Kerala. Built around a hillock top, Thrissur houses the Kerala Kala Mandalam, the Kerala Sahitya Academy and Kerala Nataka Academy. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Vadakkumnathan Temple: One of the oldest temples in the state, the Vadakkumnathan Temple is a classical example of the Kerala style of architecture and has many decorative murals and works of art. This is the venue of the world famous Pooram festival, celebrated annually in April- May. The fireworks at the Pooram are a spectacular sight. Non-Hindus are not allowed inside the temple. (Open: 04.00 - 10.30 am & 05.0008.30) Arattupuzha: The Pooram Festival at the village temple in March/April features a ceremonial pageant of over 60 tuskers carrying the images of the deities of 23 neighboring temples. Arattupuzha temple is open 05:00 - 09:30 am & 05:00 - 07:00 PM. Art Museum: Located in the zoo compound, the art museum displays collections of woodcarvings, metal sculptures and ancient jewelry. Open 10.00 am - 05.00 PM on all days except Mondays.
Archaeological Museum: Located on the Town Hall Road, the museum is open from 10 am to 5 PM on all days except Mondays and national holidays. Peechi Vazhani Wildlife Sanctuary: The Peechi-Vazhani Sanctuary comprising of the dense, moist deciduous and semi-evergreen forests is situated in the catchment area of the Peechi and Vazhani dams Zoo: Situated 2 kms from Thrissur town, it is open from 9.00am - 05.00 PM on all days except Mondays. Town Hall: Houses the picture gallery where mural paintings from all parts of Kerala are on display. Aquarium: Close to the Nehru Park. Open 03.00 - 08.00 PM. Peechi Dam: 20 km east of Thrissur, this picnic spot offers boating facilities. There are frequent private buses from Thrissur. Built across the Manali River, the dam is a vast catchment area of nearly 3200 acres with extensive botanical gardens and cascading fountains offer numerous inviting avenues for tourists. Vilangankunnu: (7 km from Thrissur) The Children's Park on this beautiful hillside picnic spot offers amusement rides. It remains open from 07:00 am uptil 07:00 PM. Christian Divine Retreat Centers: They are located at Muringoor and Potta near Chalakudi, on the Kochi - Thrissur route. Guruvayoor: 29 km northwest of Thrissur, Guruvayoor, where the famous Sree Krishna Temple is situated, is one of the most sacred and important pilgrim centers of Kerala. The historic temple is shrouded in mystery. According to belief, ‘Guru’-the preceptor of the gods and ‘Vayu’ created the temple- the god of winds. The eastern 'nada' is the main entrance to the shrine. In the Chuttambalam (outer enclosure) is a 33.5 m tall gold-plated 'Dwajastambham' (flagpost). There is also a 7-m high 'Deepastambham' (pillar of lamps), whose thirteen circular receptacles provide a truly brilliant spectacle when lit. The square 'Sreekovil' is the sacred sanctum sanctorum of the temple, housing the main deity. Within the temple, there are also the images of Sree Ganapathy, Sree Ayyappa and Edathedathy Kavil Bhagavathy. Only Hindus are allowed inside the temple. (Open 03:00 am - 01:00 PM & 04:30 PM08:30 PM) more... Punnathoorkotta: (2 km from Guruvayoor) this home of 50 temple elephants offers unusual spectacles of the gentle pachyderm. Brought as ritual offerings to the temple, these elephants are groomed at this fort. Visitors are allowed into this elephant hostel. Cheruthuruthy: (32 km north of Thrissur) Cheruthuruthy is the seat of the Kerala Kalamandalam, renowned the world over for its Kathakali Training Center. The famous poet, Vallathol Narayana Menon, founded this music and dance academy. Training in Kathakali, Mohiniyattom, Thullal and other traditional art forms is imparted here. Cultural programs are also arranged. Irinjalakuda Koodal Manikyam Temple: (21 km from Thrissur) Situated 10 km from Irinjalakuda Railway Station, this ancient temple is perhaps the only one in India dedicated to Bharatha, the brother of Sree Rama. The eleven-day Annual Festival featuring a pageant of thirteen caparisoned elephants (held in April/May) marks the end of the festival season in Kerala. It is open from 03:30 am - 11:30 am & 05:00 PM - 08:30 PM). Ariyannoor Temple, Kandanisserry: This temple has a carved entrance gable, which has been compared to the sculptures of American artist, Louise Nevelson. The Sree Krishna Temple at Thirukulashekharapuram as well as the Siva Temple at Thiruvanchikulam is believed to belong to the 9th century.
Thriprayar Temple: Thriprayar Temple, located south of Thrissur is one of the important temples dedicated to Lord Rama. The exquisite woodcarvings, sculptures and Mural Paintings are an interesting sight. Athirapally Waterfalls: (65 km from Thrissur) this 80-foot high waterfall at the threshold of the Sholayar ranges is a popular picnic spot. Vazhachal: (68 km from Thrissur) just a short drive from Athirapally, this picturesque waterfall is close to dense green forests and is a part of the Chalakudy river. Athirapally and Vazhachal are the most famous waterfalls of Kerala that attract tourists in plenty. Shakthan Thampuran Palace: Also known as Palace Thoppu, the campus covers an area of 6 acres. Here one can see three tombs (Shavakudeerams) including that of Shakthan Thampuran, the greatest ruler of the Cochin dynasty. Saint Thomas Memorial, Kodungalloor: St. Thomas, the apostle, is believed to have landed in Kodungalloor (formerly called Muziris) in 52 AD. The St. Thomas Church established by him houses ancient relics. Cheraman Juma Masjid, Kodungalloor: Located 2 km from Kodungalloor town, this mosque resembles a Hindu temple in appearance. Built in 629 AD, this is the first mosque in India and the second in the world where Juma prayers were started. Other places of interest nearby include Cheramanparambu, the ancient Thiruvanchidulam Temple, the Bhagavathi Temple and the Portuguese Fort. HOW TO GET THERE Air: Nearest international airport is at Nedumbassery, 58 kms away. Rail: Thrissur is an important railhead of the Southern Railways. Road: The place is well connected with almost all the major towns NEARBY CITIES Kochi 79 km Kozhikode 102 km Coimbatore 114 km Dindigul 237 km GENERAL INFORMATION Area: 3032 sq. km. Population (1993): 274,225. Altitude: Sea level. Temperature: Max: 35 deg. C Min: 22.5 deg. C Rainfall: 254 cm. Clothing: Tropical cottons.
Location: Northeastern Tip of Kerala Main Locations: Edakkal Caves, Pookot Lake Languages: Malayalam, Hindi, and English Best Season: August to May THE SYLVAN VALLEY: Wayanad, One of the fourteen districts in Kerala (India) is situated in an elevated picturesque mountainous plateau in Western Ghats. It lies between north latitude 11degree 26'28'' and 11degree 48'22'' and east longitude 75 degree 46'38'' and 76 degree 26'11''. Providing a panorama of undulating mist clad hills and dales, Wayanad are blessed with a unique geographical position. Luxuriant plantations of coffee, tea, cardamom, pepper and rubber are strewn all over the hills of Wayanad. Situated at a height of 700-2100 m above sea level, it is bound on the east by the Nilgiris and the Mysore districts of Tamilnadu and Karnataka respectively.
It shares the borders with Coorg district of Karnataka on the north, on the south with Malappuram district and on the west with Calicut and Cannanore districts. The natural scenic beauty of Wayanad and its rich natural resources offer several opportunities for adventure tourism. Located at the northeastern tip of Kerala, Wayanad was earlier a part of Kannur district. Panorama, Manathavady and Kabini, the fast flowing rivers lend a unique beauty to the whole region. PRIME ATTRACTIONS Edakkal Caves: The two rock caves at Ambukuthy Hills, 12 kms south of Sultan's Battery contain ancient carvings and pictorial writings of the new Stone Age, with human and animal figures in peculiar headdresses along with geometric forms and symbols. They speak of a highly civilized people at an early center of human habitation. These caves are world famous as one of the earliest centers of human habitation. Situated on the Ambukuthi Hills, the caves can be reached only after trekking 5 kms from Ambalavayal. Varambetta Moque: 15 kms south east of Kalpetta, this 300-year-old mosque is the oldest in Wayanad. Ambalavayal Heritage Museum: 12 kms south of Sulthan Bathery, it is one of the best heritage museums in Kerala. The exhibits here include rare 2nd century artefacts such as clay sculptures; ancient hunting equipment’s like bows and arrows, stone weapons and other curios. Pookot Lake: With its own dream-like serenity, this natural fresh water lake surrounded by meadows and trees on all sides is a haven for peace-loving travelers. It is located half way from Calicut half an hour ahead of Kalpetta. Kalpetta: This is where the headquarters of the Wayanad District are located. A stronghold of the Jains in the past, the famous Ananthanathaswamy Jain Temple is situated at Puliyarmala near Kalpetta. Mananthavadi: Historically important as the last resting-place of Pazhassi Raja who fought a guerilla war against the British. Chethalayam Waterfalls: 12 kms from Sulthan Bathery on the Pulpalli Main Road, is located this astounding waterfall. For a glimpse of this lovely waterfall, one has to trek a distance of around 4 kms from Chethalayam. Kanthanpara Waterfalls: 12 kms southeast of Kalpetta, it's a small yet scenic waterfall just about 30 m in height. Tusharagiri: Famous for its trekking tracks, Tusharagiri is located near Vythiri in Wayanad. Vythiri: Vythiri is a picturesque place located in the sylvan Northern High Ranges of Kerala in Wayanad District. Exclusive, comfortable, refreshing, pollution free and inspiring. Pakshipathalam: 7 kms north east of Thirunelli, this picturesque bird watching center is located at a formidable height of 1740 m above sea level. With its steep hills, virgin forests and rivulets, it is the habitat of a number of rare species of birds. It also offers challenging avenues for those interested in trekking. A cave believed to have been used by ancient saints for meditation is a hub of tourist interest. Sentinel Rockfall: Near Chooralmala, about 22 kms south of Kalpetta, it is a riveting waterfall tumbling down a height of 20 m from a hilltop. The spot is ideal for rock climbing. Meenmutty Waterfalls: 12 kms east of Meppadi, it is a bewitching waterfall cascading in three tiers, down a spectacular height of 500m.
Soochipara Waterfalls: Soochipara Waterfalls is located 22 kms from Hotel Green Gates. On alighting the vehicle, one can reach the waterfalls after a 2-km walk into the dense equatorial forest of Wayanad. Valliyoorkkavu Temple: 3 kms east of Mananthavadi, this temple, dedicated to Goddess Durga is very popular among the tribal communities of the district. The ten-day annual festival, which falls in April, is celebration time for the tribals. Thirunelli Temple: Located 30 kms north west of Mananthavadi in the Wayanad district, Thirunelli Temple is known as the "Kashi of South". Tucked away in the Brahmagiri Hills, Thirunelli Temple is encircled by the gurgling River Papanasini. Banasura Dam: 15 kms north west of Kalpetta, Banasura Dam is the largest earth dam in India. A vast expanse of crystal clear water bounded by blue hills on all sides, except one. It’s an ideal picnic spot. Kuruva Island: 17 kms east of Mananthavadi, it stretches over 950 acres of evergreen forests on the banks of Themkabani River. The island is a repository of rare species of birds, animals, orchids and herbs. Chembra Peak: Chembra peak, which is the highest peak in Wayanad, is located 14 kms west of Kalpetta. Located amidst panoramic surroundings, the peak is at an altitude of 2100 m above sea level. HOW TO GET THERE Air: The nearest airport is Calicut. Rail: The district is well connected by a railway network. Road: Wayanad's Headquarters, Kalpetta is linked by road to other towns in Kerala and there are frequent buses to Calicut. Kozhikode Mysore Ooty Area: Population: Altitude: Climate: and hot summer Temperature: Mean Min: Mean Max: Rainfall: Clothing: NEARBY CITIES 70 km 140 km 175 km GENERAL INFORMATION 2,132 sq.km. 671,195 700-2100 m above sea level Tropical monsoon, seasonally excessive rainfall 20°C 35°C 250 CMS (annual) Tropical cottons