The Lord Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala, 80 kms. from the Pathanamthitta
district head quarters, is a National Pilgrim Centre. This famous
shrine of Lord Ayyappa is surrounded by hazardous hills like Karimala
and Neelimala. Devotees visit Sabarimala after undergoing 41 days
of Vritha i.e., self-imposed devotional penance. They, with irumudikettu
(bundle with offerings to Ayyappa) on their head, climb the mountain
ranges and cross the forest bare footed repeatedly chanting Saranam
Ayyappa which means we seek refuge in Ayyappa. This is probably
the only famous temple in Kerala, which does not restrict anybody
from visiting it for not being a Hindu.
Malayattoor Church, a Christian pilgrim centre situated 52 kms from
Kochi beside the Periyar River at the top of a hill. The pilgrims
can reach the place only by foot. This church which was established
in AD 900 is believed to have been blessed by St.Thomas, one of
the Apostles of Christ.
This famous Hindu pilgrim centre is situated at 48 kms north of
Thiruvananthapuram. It is noted for it's mineral springs.
Sivagiri and Aruvippuram
Aruvippuram of Thiruvananthapuram district is famous through the
consecration of the 'Siva Idol' by Sree Narayana Guru. Sivagiri
is a major pilgrim centre that attracts not only the local tourists
but also travellers from abroad.
A unique pilgrim centre in Kollam district known for its Advaita
Philosphy. Here there is no temple or idol for the presiding deity
'the Parabrahma'. The ritual performance 'Ochirakali', which is
usually held in June gathers a huge crowd.
Kerala is blessed with a 600-km long coastline that extends its
length to 11 of the 14
districts of Kerala. On Kerala's beaches, you can bathe in the glory
of the sun or bask in the splendour of the sunset and refresh yourself
with a sip of tender coconut milk.
The exotic, palm-fringed beaches of Kerala are considered the finest
and the most scenic beaches in the world. These beaches offer surf
and sand like no other coastal place in India. Among the facilities
you can enjoy at the beach sites of Kerala include boating, sunbathe,
swimming, water sports and Yoga. All beaches are as peaceful as
the rest of the land, washed by the pleasant tropical sun and as
pristine as ever.
Alappuzha Beach (Alleppey Beach)
Alappuzha beach also known as Alleppey beach is one of the most
popular spots of Alappuzha district. The pier, which extends into
the sea here, is around 140 years old. With the Arabian Sea on the
west and a vast network of lakes, lagoons and several freshwater
rivers criss-crossing it, Alappuzha is a district of immense natural
Referred to as the Venice of the East by travellers from across
the world, the town has always enjoyed a unique place in the maritime
history of Kerala. Alappuzha is also famous for its Boat races,
Houseboat Holidays, Beaches, Marine Products and Coir Industry.
There is also an old lighthouse nearby that is of immense interest
for the visitors.
On the coast along the Kerala shore line is a small village, called
Kovalam. This sleepy town suddenly came on the tourist map when
its fabulous beaches were discovered. Today beaches of Kovalam has
become one of the most popular beach hangouts in India. Kovalam
means a grove of coconut trees and truly the coconut trees along
the beaches gives it a ravishing look.
The palm-fringed bays in secluded coconut groves, promise a relaxed
stay. The boundless blue waters of the Arabian Sea and miles of
white sands washed away by the surf at the feet of the palms makes
Kovalam a beach paradise. This marvellous beach is a tourist's dream
A sheltered natural bay with cool soothing palms and gentle waves.
Where when you are tired of aquatics, swimming or sunbathing, you
can explore the handicrafts, jewellery and cloth shops spread along
the waterfront. Not to speak of the delightful sea-food fare including
lobsters available at the beachside restaurants.
The crescent-shaped beaches of Kovalam can be divided in three
parts. The southern most beach, and the most popular, is the Lighthouse
Beach. Further south on the beach one can have a spectacular view
of the Vizhinzam mosque. Photography is prohibited here.
The middle beach is called Hawah. Each morning this beach acts
as a base for the local fisherman. The northern most beach, Samudra,
is least affected of all by the changing times. It is dotted with
few rudimentary wooden fishing vessels.
The coast is at many places lined with beautiful patches of coral
reefs. Or you can crest the waves on logs of lashed woods on catamarans.
Varkala is a sea side resort, as well as an important Hindu centre
of pilgrimage. High cliffs with rich mineral springs rise majestically
from the coastline. The 2000 year old Janardana Swamy Temple and
the Nature Centre
are the two main attractions of Varkala Beach. High cliffs border
the excellent beach.
Varkala is a beautiful beach that has a more than 2000 years old
shrine of Lord Vishnu. This beach of Kerala is rich in mineral water
springs that are known for their medicinal value.
A dip in the holy waters of Varkala beach is believed to purge
the body and the soul of all the sins hence the name 'Papanashini'
for this shore. At the break of dawn following the new moon in the
Malayalam month of 'Karkidakam', thousands offer 'Vavu Bali', a
ritual believed to help the souls of ancestors rest in peace.
Unspoilt and miraculously unexplored, Poovar Beach is a rare Adam
and Eve find in Southern Kerala. Enveloped by the most serene backwaters,
and opening out to the sea and a dream golden sand beach. Poovar
is truly a window into paradise. Time stopped a few decades ago.
The tranquility is punctuated by the sound of waves and the birds.
The area is abundant in well-preserved local flora, with hundreds
of species of spices, exotic flowers, complete with banana and coconut
Poovar offers several possibilities. Cruise to a neighbouring fishing
village in 2 minutes. Alter course, and visit a centuries old martial
arts village. Kerala is the birthplace of a unique martial art form.
The traditional lifestyles here provide the experience of a natural
Poovar Beach is an approx. 45 minute drive south of Kovalam. The
beach separates the river from the sea and is quite breathtaking.
Because of the active fishing population the beach is not really
used as a sunbathing spot or for swimming as the currents are quite
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.
This is where Vasco da Gama had landed in 1498 AD. The legends woven
around its historic origins and traditions cast a mystical spell
on this beach. Kappad is also known for its Ayurvedic health holiday
Accessibility : 14 km (1/2 hour) from Kozhikode.
Black rocks protect this long, clean beach from the currents of
the deep, making its shallow water a swimmers paradise. Perhaps
this is Keralas only drive-in beach where you can drive down the
entire length of 4 km. Accessibility: 15 km (1/2 hour) from
Kannur and 8 km from Thalasseri.
Bekal Fort stands on a promontory between two long, classically
beautiful palm fringed beaches. This is the largest, best preserved
fort in Kerala. The fort has been under the control of various powers
including the Vijayanagar kingdom, Tipu Sultan and the British.
The forts commanding position offers breathtaking views across the
bays to the north and south. Accessibility: 160 km (4 hours) from
One of the most popular hill stations in India, is situated at the
confluence of three mountain streams - Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni and
Kundala. Located at 1600 Mts. 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. Munnar is essentially a tea town. The tea plantations
have now been taken over by the Tata Tea Company. The visitor is
greeted with miles and miles of unending tea plantations on entry
into Munnar. Among the exotic flora found in the forests and grasslands
here is the Neelakurinji a flower which bathes the hills in blue
colour once 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.
Mattupetty (13 km from Munnar)
Situated at a height of 1700 m Mattupetty is famous for its highly
specialised dairy farm, the Indo-swiss live stock project. The Mattupetty
lake and dam , just a short distance from the farm, is a very beautiful
picnic spot. The sprawling Kundala tea plantations and the Kundala
lake are other attractions in the vicinity.
Pothamedu (6 km from Munnar)
Pothamedu offers an excellent view of the tea, coffee and cardamom
plantations in Munnar. The rolling hills, the lush mountain and
the breathtaking scenery here is ideal for trekking and long mountain
Devikulam (7 km from Munnar)
This idyllic hill station with its velvet lawns, exotic flora and
fauna and the cool mountain air is a rare experience. The Sita Devi
Lake with its mineral waters and picturesque surroundings is a good
picnic spot. The lake is also ideal for trout fishing.
Rajamala (15 km from Munnar)
The natural habitat of the Niligiri tahr Rajamala is 2695 m above
sea level. Half the world's population of the rare mountain goat
or tahr which is fast becoming extinct, is now found here. The Niligiri
tahr in Rajamala are now to be found in small herds found in Eravikulam-Rajamala
region. The total number of Niligiri Tahrs in Rajamala is estimated
to be over 1300.
Echo Point (15 km from Munnar)
This scenic place gets its name from the natural echo phenominon
here. Echo point is on the way to Top Station from Munnar.
Eravikulam National Park (15 km from Munnar)
The 97 sq. km. park is situated in the Devikulam Taluk and is home
to the Nilgiri Tahr. The Anamudi peak (2695 m) is located in the
Southern region of the park.
Top Station (32 kms from Munnar)
1700m above sea level , this is the highest point on the Munnar-Kodiakanal
road. The rare Neelakurunji (strobilanthus) belongs to this region.
Top Station (a viewing point) also offers a panoramic view of neighbouring
state of Tamil Nadu.
Kundala (20 km from Munnar)
Kundala is a picturesque town on the way to Top Station. The Golf
Course which belongs to Tata Tea Ltd. is located here. The Kundala
artificial dam is another attraction. Aruvikkad Waterfall is also
Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary (60 km from
Situated on the Tamil Nadu border, the Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary
is spread across 90.44 sq km.
Location : About 61 km from Thiruvananthapuram
915m above sea level. Located within a short driving distance of
Thiruvananthapuram, Ponmudi is an enchanting hill resort with narrow
winding pathways and cool, green environs. 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 fast developing hill
resort with cottages and dormitory accommodation facilities.
Situated 915m above sea level, Peermede is on the way to the Periyar
Wildlife Sanctuary. This pleasant hill station was once the summer
retreat of the Maharajas of Travancore. Here you will find sprawling
tea, coffee, cardamom, rubber and eucalyptus plantations side by
side with natural grasslands and pine forests. Accessibility:
75 km (2 1/2 hours) from Kottayam.
Tucked away at the north eastern tip of Kerala, this quaint little
hill station about 1300 m above sea level is renowned for its coffee,
tea, cardamom, pepper and rubber plantations. Mist capped mountains
and breathtaking scenery dominate other tourist attractions here.
Accessibility: 100 km (5 hours)
Built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to Raja Veera Kerala
Kochi, the Palace was renovated in 1663 by the Dutch. The palace
with a Bhagavathi temple in the central courtyard is built like
the typical Kerala style mansion - the Nalukettu - the home of the
aristocracy, nobility and upper classes, with four separate wings
opening out to a central courtyard.
The double storeyed palace building which stands by the panoramic
Kochi back waters has an exquisite collection of murals collectively
covering over 300 sqft of its walls. The themes of these murals
have been borrowed from the great Indian epics - the Ramayana and
the Mahabharatha, and mythology and legends about the Hindu gods
especially Guruvayurappan. Some murals depict scenes from Kumarasambhavam
and other works of the great Sanskrit poet Kalidasa.Also on display
are royal paraphernalia like weapons, swings and furniture which
offer a glimpse of the lifestyle of the royal family.
A unique thorny scrub forest with xerophyte species, Chinnar is
the habitat for the endangered Giant Grizzled Squirrel of India.
The last world count of these squirrels was less than 200. Located
in the rain shadow area of the Western Ghats, unlike other sanctuaries
in Kerala, Chinnar gets only 48 days of rain every year. Rich in
wildlife, the mixed deciduous forests here are ideal for trekking.
An extensive Sandalwood forest nearby is an added attraction. This
is also an ideal place to watch herds of Bisons march past. Dry
deciduous forests, high sholas and wet grasslands add to the diversity
of the sanctuary. As one travels from Karimuthi to Chinnar, Elephants,
Spotted Deer, Sambar, Hanuman monkey and even Peacocks can be spotted
on either sides of the road.
Kerala Kalamandalam, Cheruthuruthy
One of the most revered places for the traditional art forms of
Kerala, the Kalamandalam is the cradle of Kathakali training in
India. This temple of arts has preserved and propagated Kathakali
- the classical dance-drama of Kerala - for the past 78 years. Many
of the internationally renowned artistes of Kerala and India have
been trained here.
The Kalamandalam and its surroundings reflect the simple, pure
and ethnic atmosphere in which these arts have survived for centuries.
The Koothambalam - the traditional dance theatre - at Kalamandalam
is the only one in the State which is built outside a temple complex.
Constructed according to vikrushtra madhya, one of the three natya
grihas (theatres) specified in sage Bharatha's Natyasasthra - a
treatise on art compiled in the 2nd century B.C, the theatre is
14.62 m long and 7.31m wide and has four wooden pillars supporting
it. It has three main parts - the aniyara (green room), the rangam
(stage) - the space on front and side of it meant for the audience,
and the mridanga-patha (where the drum is kept).
The Kerala Kalamandalam was established by Vallathol Narayana Menon,
the renowned Malayalam poet. Over the years this unique institution
has imparted training for Kathakali, Mohiniyattom, Kootiyattam,
Panchavadyam, Thullal etc - following the ancient gurukula system
Palaruvi which means milky stream' makes its way down the rocks,
from a height of 300 ft. The Palaruvi -
woods is a beautiful picnic spot. The PWD Inspection Bungalow and
the KTDC Motel offer comfortable accommodation.
Accessibility: 73 km from Kollam
At the entrance to the Sholayar ranges, this 80 foot waterfall is
a popular picnic spot. Accessibility:
78 km (2 hours) from Kochi.
Just a short drive from Athirapally, this picturesque spot is adjacent
to dense green forest land and is a part of the Chalakudy river.
Accessibility: 90 km (2 V2 hours)
Information on Tours & Travel excursion of Kerala - india