Are you planning a trip to Kerala for a week? If yes then you must go through this post in which i will guide you and take you through a virtual journey of the most popular tourist destination located in the southern most part of India.
We will start our journey from Cochin and then visit Munnar. After exploring Munnar we will move towards Thekkady and last but not the least, we will be spending a night at a beautiful houseboat in Alleppey.
Kerala is referred as God’s Own County mainly because of the Hindu mythology, in which it is believed that Kerala was created by Lord Parshuram who was an incarnation of Lord Vishnu and he created this divine land for his devotees by throwing his axe. He created this beautiful land so that his devotees can live here peacefully. I exactly don’t know about the truth behind this story as I haven’t been deep into it. But one thing is for sure, Kerala does live upto this status. This land actually feels like a paradise, blessed with superabundant natural surroundings, the lush green scenic terrain, the rich culture, the temples, churches & mosques, the festivals, the rejuvenating treatments of Ayurveda, Crystal Clear beaches, Spices & Tea plantations, wildlife etc. The beauty of this state, will simply leave you astonished.
Cochin (Kochi): We will start our journey from Cochin which is the gateway for most of the places in Kerala. Cochin is well known for its Colonial houses and streets, Synagogues, Churches and museums. Arriving Cochin is very easy as it is accessible from all the major cities of India. If you are travelling by train then you have to get down at Ernakulam Railway Station. If flying, then get ready to be welcomed by the World’s first Solar Airport which is fully powered by Solar Energy. You will find many transport options including tuk tuks, taxis, Ola/ Uber for your transfers to the hotel.
Places of Interest In Cochin:
You can start exploring Fort Cochin by visiting St. Francis Church, which is the first European church of India built in the year 1503. Then visit the Chinese Fishing Nets at Fort Cochin Beach to learn the insights of this unique way of catching fish. The Mattancherry Palace which is also known as Dutch palace depicting portraits and exhibits of the Royal Families. You can enjoy street shopping buying souvenirs and treat your taste buds with many exotic cafes at the Jews Street. You can spend your evening at the beautiful Cherai beach.
Next morning after having early breakfast we will depart for Munnar. The distance between Cochin to Munnar is about 130 kms and it will take around 4 – 5 hours to reach this serene hill station of Kerala. It is advisable to stay for at least 2 Nights in Munnar.
Munnar: It is the most popular hill station in Kerala, situated at the altitude of 1600 meters from the sea level. The cool and pleasant weather of Munnar attracts lots of tourists from the neighbouring cities especially on weekends and summers. Munnar is famous for its tea estates and gardens, spectacular waterfalls (monsoon season), various floras and faunas, Parks and gardens. It is also popular amongst adventure enthusiasts who come in large number for trekking and hiking experience. The View Points, National Park and Bird sanctuary makes it their favourite place for the photographers.
Places of Interest In Munnar:
Mattupettyy Dam is a famous tourist place located at a distance of 13 kms from Munnar town. The place is ideal to enjoy the scenic view and for birdwatching. You can also speedboat ride here.
Echo Point: It is a scenic place and a very nice picnic spot. The picturesque lake, the lush green trees surrounded by the hazy hills make this place look really very beautiful
Tea Factory & Museum: As soon as you enter the premises, you will visit the museum that showcases variety of antiquities and excavations from 2nd Century A.D. Then proceed to the factory area where you will be shown the process of tea making. You can buy tea and herbs of different flavours from the shops located within the premises.
Blossom Park: It is good place to visit with family, The beautiful flora & faunas and the charming atmosphere will fill your heart and mind with freshness. You can relax and enjoy the panoramic 360 degree view all around. There are also few adventure activities and play area of kids including a short Zipline.
Top Station: It is 32 kms from Munnar and this place is really a paradise. It is my favourite spot amongst of all the sightseeing points. The amazingly beautiful panoramic view of this place will leave unforgettable impression on your mind.
Eravikulam National Park: Located in the High Ranges of Kannan Devan Hills of the Southern Western Ghats in Idukki District. The sanctuary is famous for spotting the rare species Nilgiri Tahr. This sanctuary is closed during breeding season of Nilgiri Tahrs (February to March end).
Munnar to Thekkady: After spending 2 Nights in Munnar, its time to depart for Thekkady. Finish your breakfast early morning and depart for Thekkady latest by 8:30 am. Enjoy the scenic journey passing through various tea gardens, waterfalls and the lakes en-route. It will take approximately 4 hours to cover these snaky roads. We will be staying for 1 Night here, which is good enough to catch all the attractions in and out of this pretty little spicy town.
I advise following must- do activity for you while you are in Thekkady.
Elephant Ride : Your trip to Kerala is incomplete without this experience. Imagine yourself sitting on the back of an elephant and the elephant giving you a bath from its trunk showering water all over your body. Great feeing right? Yes! it’s too much fun.
Kathakali & Kalaripayatu Show: There are many centres exhibiting Kathakali & Kalaripayutu but Kadathanadan Kalari & Navarasa Kathakali centre is the place for you. The ticket price is approximately 200 Per Person for each show. You will simply fall in the love with the live performances depicting the rich and quality culture of Kerala.
Ayurvedic Body Massage: Right after the show in the evening, you can visit any of the Ayurvedic massage centres to have a rejuvenating experience. You can choose your pick from different forms of therapies with related benefits.
Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary: The best time to visit the sanctuary is early morning. Rise before sunrise and be ready at the departure point of the bus which will take you inside the forest and drop you near the Lakeside. You will have to purchase the boat tickets from the counter and then you will be sailing over one of the most beautiful and untouched lake you will ever come across. The wild animals including Tiger, Wild Elephants, are likely to come at the banks of the lake to drink water in the morning. Hence it is the best time to spot these animals. You need to be extremely lucky to spot a tiger but if you keep your expectations low, you will surely love the experience of boat safari at Periyar Lake.
Next we will move to Alleppey.
Thekkady to Alleppey: Depart for Alleppey once you are back from the safari. The travel time to reach Alleppey is about 5 hours. On arrival you can directly check-in at the Houseboat . If you don’t wish to stay in the houseboat and decide to stay in a hotel instead, there are few sightseeing places which you can visit. Also you can take houseboat / ferry ride for an hour or two and enjoy cruising at the beautiful canals of the backwaters of Alleppey.
Houseboat: The houseboat generally starts cruising by afternoon. You will be provided authentic kerala meals for Lunch. Enjoy sailing through the backwaters, villages and temples which are accessible only by the boats, pass through the green paddy fields. You will simply fall in love with this experience. Later as the sun goes down, the houseboat will be parked at the particular place for the entire night. You can walk down to the nearby shops if you need to purchase anything. Enjoy your dinner and overnight stay at the Houseboat.
Alleppey Beach: It is one of the best beaches you will ever come across. The evening here gets very beautiful and it is the perfect place to enjoy the sunset when you are in Alleppey. The beach is beautified by an old pier which extend to sea and is about 150 years old.
Next morning, get transferred to Cochin Airport ( 80 Kms) or Railway station (50 kms) to board your Flight or Train for home. Hence marking an end to this wonderful trip to Kerala.
Conclusion & Tips:
- Best time to visit Kerala: November to March (Winter season) is the best to explore Kerala. Summers (April & May) here are extremely hot and humid so avoid travelling that time of the year. You can visit Kerala in monsoon if you love rains but do check the weather forecast in advance before visiting.
- Start & end your trip ex- Cochin
- Book your stays as Cochin (1 Night) , Munnar (2 Nights )- Thekkady (1 Night) & Alleppey (1 Night )
- Book a private vehicle for the entire duration of the tour
- There is no nightlife culture in Kerala so be prepared to have a sound sleep every night
- Dress decently while you are in Kerala, especially women.
- Please follow the rules and regulations of the temples. Some of the temples have really amazing rituals.
- You are advised to wear comfortable, loose cotton casuals. Don’t forget to carry your caps and sunglasses.
- The weather in Munnar is cool and pleasant so you can carry light jacket or hoodie to keep yourself warm, especially at nights.
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Also please share the experience of your trip to Kerala.