In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away!

29th Jul 2015
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 1/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 2/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 3/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 4/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 5/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 6/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 7/15 by Ritu Dua
Soaring high!
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 8/15 by Ritu Dua
Love at first sight!
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 9/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 10/15 by Ritu Dua
Ponmudi... unimaginable beauty
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 11/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 12/15 by Ritu Dua
Light house...Kurumkal Hill
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 13/15 by Ritu Dua
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 14/15 by Ritu Dua
Gastronomical Delight...a glimpse!
Photo of In Kerela... all you need is.... to be swept away! 15/15 by Ritu Dua
Padmanabhan Temple!

Kerala is so rightly called ‘God’s Own Country’. The unmatchable beauty, the divine serenity, the picturesque backwaters, the lush green hill stations, the fascinating beaches, the rich culture and amazing history contained within 400 kilometers is what makes Kerala a must see place for those who love to travel.

A tapestry of natural beauty, Kerala is an artist's muse for nature's grand offerings and thus I was totally swept away!!

Some of the most attractive places that are a must visit include:


Founded in 1762 by Raja Keshawadasan, Diwan of Travanacore… Alappuzha/Alleppey, is popularly known as the ‘Venice of East’. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Kerala. Canals, lagoons and lakes serve as the lifeline of Alleppey. Tall, beautiful and swaying coconut trees and pristine backwaters adorn the place. The climate is pleasant, and so if you are looking for a relaxing vacation, Alleppey should find a place on your priority list.


Amazingly beautiful hill station of South India, Munnar once used to be the summer resort of the erstwhile British Government. The lush green tea and coffee plantations, the valleys and the hills, the mist, the exotic species of flora and fauna, aroma of spice scented cool breeze… Yes! Munnar has all these and much more. For a shopaholic like me, it is a heaven. Besides tea you can collect various spices from here like ginger, cardamom, pepper, cinnamon, coffee, clove, nutmeg etc. The homemade chocolates are a total bliss. Enjoy the white, dark, liqueur filled and chocolates with nuts. It’s a place you can make memories to treasure for forever!


Kumarakom is a beautiful paradise like place characterized with mangrove forests, emerald green paddy fields and coconut trees, water ways and canals adorned with white lilies just enough to enchant a tourist from world over. It offers wide variety of flora, exotic sightseeing, boating and fishing experience.

The National Geographic Magazine has listed Kumarakom as one of the must-see places in a lifetime. It is famous for hand craft and the best part is that each exquisite piece is still made in a traditional way.

Do make a visit to the bird sanctuary, which spreads across 14 acres. This sanctuary is a safe home for many migratory birds like Siberian stork, wild duck etc.

Houseboats are one of the unique feature of Kumarakom tourism. Majority of the tourists visiting Kumarakom ask for a trip in these houseboats, enjoying the beautiful backwater and the cool air around.

Kumarakom will be giving you a romantic experience, one of the best place to spend time with your loved one.


Thattekkad is situated in Ernakulam district and is one of the two bird sanctuaries in Keralathi If I say it ts a feast to the eyes and music to the ears it will not be an exaggeration. Several species of birds found in South India are seen here. The famous ornithologist, Dr. Salim Ali, was the architect of this sanctuary. He reported 167 birds during the Travancore-Cochin Bird Survey. The Bombay Natural History Society had identified 253 species of birds.

And now I take you to the journey I made and the places I visited!

Thiruvananthapuram… Day 1

I landed in Thiruvananthapuram which is the capital city of Kerala. I had been told that it offers splendid palaces like Padmanabhapuram Palace and Kanakakunnu Palace, beaches like Kovalam, Varkala, Shankumukham and Azhimala, hill stations like Ponmudi and other attractions like Poovar at a stone’s throw. And so here I was with my family…absolutely looking forward to my stay here.

Once a calm fishing village clustered around its crescent beaches, Kovalam is known as the Paradise of the South and is just 16 kms away from Trivandrum. We had already made our bookings in a resort situated here in Kovalam. True to its name Kovalam presents an endless sight of tall and graceful coconut trees. We enjoyed the views on our way.

We were given a warm welcome in an absolute tranquil, beautiful, calm, pure lobby with soft incense fragrance flowing in the air! It could not have been better!

It was an absolutely green place with small traditionally built cottages nestled among the tall and handsome coconut trees. The best part being that it is situated just on the long shoreline with a serene beach, clean and accessible only to the guests. It also is a destination for Ayurvedic health holidays and we were blessed to have an in-resort spa with such blissful facilities.

The art-lover in me was completely enchanted with the artistically done restaurant. Bright paintings adorned the walls. Fresh flowers on each table were very welcoming and the best was the soothing Sanskrit mantras that played in the background making the atmosphere totally pristine.

Kerala has an exotic cuisine and although we are vegetarians we were completely spoilt for choice by the chef. Kerala is known as the "land of Spices". Even the Kerala cuisine is known for its spicy and hot foods. Traditionally, in Kerala food is served on a banana leaf. Almost every dish prepared in Kerala has coconut and local spices. The unusual cuisine of Kerala brings to the fore the culinary expertise of the people of Kerala.

After the gastronomical journey we set out for the lighthouse. The 35 m lighthouse at Kovalam is situated on top of the palm-covered Kurumkal Hill. Visitors can climb the spiraling staircase inside, to the top of the red and white tower and enjoy a spectacular view of the surroundings. The lighthouse offers an amazing view of the moon- shaped beach and the famous Vizhinjam mosque.

After a great evening at the beach we were back to our cottage in the resort.

At night the waves sang us lullabies and how I loved falling to sleep with that sound. In the morning they wished us good morning with a lot of energy and cheering.

An awesome breakfast awaited us to treat our taste buds to some of the finest dishes of Kerala. The hospitality exhibited by the staff touched my heart.

Ponmudi…Day 2

Located within a short driving distance of Thiruvananthapuram, Ponmudi is an enchanting hill resort. We decided to visit this amazingly beautiful place. As if the narrow winding pathways and cool, green surroundings were not enough, God sent clouds and rain showers to make my heart dance like a peacock. Along with a beautiful array of mountain flowers, exotic butterflies and small rivulets, Ponmudi offers excellent opportunities for trekking. With its tea estates and mist covered valleys Ponmudi is a must visit. And so our day was made!

The evening was spent at Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple located inside the East Fort in Thiruvananthapuram. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is a blend of the Kerala and Dravidian styles of architecture. The history of Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple dates back to 8th century. It is one of the 108 sacred Vishnu temples. The presiding deity of this temple is Lord Vishnu, reclining on Anantha, the hooded Serpent. The architecture stands out for its work in stone and bronze and the interiors are adorned by beautiful paintings and murals. Some of them are that of the life-size images of Lord Vishnu in the reclining posture, Narasimha Swamy (half-lion, half man incarnation of Lord Vishnu), Lord Ganapati and Gaja Lakshmi. The temple has a dhwaja stamba (flag post) that is about 80 ft high and is covered with gold plated copper sheets.

Poovar…Day 3

Poovar made it to the list over Marari, Cherai and other places because Poovar is a pristine, unexplored, not commercialized place enveloped by the calm backwaters and opening out to the sea to an island of almost indescribable beauty. So an ideal place if you wish to have some “me time” in solitude.

The area is abundant in well-preserved local flora, with hundreds of species of spices, exotic flowers, complete with banana and coconut groves. Cruising along the waters we could enjoy having a look at the floating resorts on one side and restaurants on the other. It was an absolutely breathtaking island, a place where the Neyyar river, Poovar Lake and Viraly lake joins the Arabian sea forming a beautiful estuary. The rustling leaves from the coconut groves, the singing birds and sight of rare birds made the experience unbelievable.

We enjoyed some incredibly sweet coconut water and banana chips on the beach!!

Padmanabhapuram Palace…Day 4

The next day was to pay a visit to the Padmanabhapuram Palace. A magnificent wooden palace of the 16th century, Padmanabhapuram Palace lies at the land's end of mainland India - Kanyakumari. This old palace of the Rajas of the erstwhile Travancore (1550 to 1750 AD) is a fine specimen of Kerala's indigenous style of architecture. The antique interiors are replete with intricate rosewood carvings and sculptured decor.

We were overwhelmed by the royal splendor of erstwhile Travancore. Though the palace is situated in Kanyakumari district of Tamilnadu State, it comes under the Government of Kerala's administration.

Our own resort…Day 5

We had saved the last day to enjoy the awesome facilities at our own resort.

Surrounded by lush greenery, by the Arabian Sea, there were 31 heritage cottages built like traditional Keralite heritage homes. They were an amazing blend of weathered wood with contemporary luxury thereby offering a perfect balance between old world charm and modern day comfort.

It rained the whole day. We sat in our verandah and watch the waves gently kiss the shore. Soon we were tempted to head down to the beach with our cups of tea and some hot fritters. Oh it was an experience totally unmatchable!

Kerala is famous for its Ayurvedic massages and so how could we miss that. Our resort had a spa infused with timeless therapeutic traditions from across the world: including Ayurveda. The session was totally relaxing and I was absolutely refreshed.

To top it all the chef had prepared a delicious Italian meal especially for us!

The vacations came to an end as is said that all good things must. We returned rejuvenated…body, mind and soul!!

What else could one wish for!!