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Kerala is called God’s Own Country, as nature is always at its finest here, be it any time of the year. There is wonder waiting to be unveiled in every corner of this Indian state, and greenery seems to characterize Kerala from miles away. The historical significance and the rich heritage of Kerala attract tourists and what makes it a perfect getaway for people leading busy lives. Its revitalizing climate and the gorgeous, breathtaking scenic magnificence melt the heart of every vagabond who can unite with nature better.
At a glance, the places covered in this tour include Cochin, Munnar, Periyar, Kumarakom, Alleppey, Kovalam, and Kanyakumari.
Arrival at Cochin
Cochin is the first in the list of destinations in your Kerala sojourn for a reason. The architectural marvels and the historical significance of the city draws tourists here from all over, and there are several things to do and places to visit once you hit the Cochin airport and leave for your hotel.
Having functioned as a colony for the Portuguese, Dutch, and Britain, Cochin’s past might appear a tumultuous one. Nonetheless, Cochin is proud of its past, and today, it runs as a commercial hub, a major military base, rich trade center, a great shipbuilding town, and a flamboyant cultural spot.
Once you’ve rested well and spent time on the hotel premises, visit the Cochin Cultural Center in the evening to enjoy Kerala’s iconic cultural presentation, i.e., Kathakali dance performance. Kathakali is partly a musical show and a narrative, and it usually presents anecdotes from the Mahabharata, Ramayana, or the Puranas.
Let’s explore the rest of Cochin by going on a long, but invigorating walking tour to get acquainted with the Old Towns of Fort Cochin and Mattancherry. On your way, you will chance upon elegant colonial buildings, large rain trees, beach areas, and Chinese fishing nets that are fixed on teak wood and bamboo poles.
To relax a bit, get set for the Sunset Harbor Cruise in the evening, the perfect way to watch how the fast-changing colors of the sky translate the appearance of the Chinese fishing nets, Marine Drive, and Bolgatty Island into scenic beauties. The glorious sea air will make you feel like a changed person, and if you are lucky, you might catch sight of a dolphin or two on your cruise! By the time the sun is ready to set, make sure you have reached the area where the Cochin lagoon is connected with the Arabia Sea to catch a striking view of the sunset.
Cochinâ€“ Munnar: By Road in 5 hr
Bid adieu to Cochin and get ready to proceed toward the next destination in the Kerala packages tour list. The evergreen Munnar is home to Anamudi, the highest peak in South India that is a perfect spot for trekking, tea plantations, serpentine lanes, picture book towns, and attractive recreational facilities.
A magical boat ride awaits you in the early afternoon across the lake that surrounds the Mattupetty Dam, offering picturesque views of the green valleys and hills of Munnar. The experience would calm your senses and the cool breeze will stimulate you, enough to inspire you to engage in water sport activities conducted in the region.
The fourth day of the Kerala packages tour is devoted to discovering and exploring the treasures of Munnar, such as Elephant Lake or Anayirangal, and the Tata Tea Museum. Carry your picnic hamper with you, for the Elephant Lake is an idyllic picnic spot, surrounded by breathtaking views of evergreen forests, tea plantations, hillocks, and rolling grasslands.
Since Munnar is popular for its tea gardens and estates, you can’t forgo a visit to the Tata Tea Museum, the second-largest global manufacturer and distributor of tea.
Munnar-Periyar: By Road in 4 hr
The next in the to-tour list of Kerala packages is Periyar. Get going southwards down rolling hills and coffee plantations until you reach the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. Considered as one of the significant wildlife reserves in India, the sanctuary houses Indian elephants, lion-tailed monkeys, wild boars, ibex, leopards, tigers, and sloth bears. On your boat cruise in the surrounding lake to view the wildlife, you might also catch sight of a few of the many birds such as great hornbills, darters, kites, herons, owls, egrets, and kingfishers that reside in the thick foliage of trees dotting the park.
Later, in the afternoon, go on another boat ride to enjoy the spectacular views forming the perimeter of Periyar Lake. On this ride, you get to explore the Periyar Tiger Reserve from a safe distance and also take pleasure in the beauty nature has to offer you. Since the lake is part of the reserve’s ecosystem and harbors aquatic, terrestrial, and subterranean life forms, it functions as a major source of water for animals in the reserve.
Explore the spice plantations of Periyar and try to locate the various spices, such as cardamom, cinnamon, and pepper that you add in your meals every day. Your guide will explain the significance of each spice, their medicinal value, and what flavor it’d produce when combined with other spices.
In the afternoon, following a lunch at the plantation, walk toward Periyar National Park, where an opportunity of befriending elephants awaits you. Apart from making friends with them, you get to develop this special relationship by taking your elephant on a walk, feeding them, and bathing them.
Periyar Kumarakom: By Road in 4 hr
After Periyar, the following day in Kerala packages destination list is Kumarakom. Spread across Vembanad Lake, Kumarakom is a cluster of villages that is part of the Kuttanad region. The bird sanctuary in the area is considered an ornithologist’s piece of heaven, which includes darters, egrets, teal, herons, waterfowl, wild duck, cuckoo, and migratory birds such as the Siberian stork. Emerald green paddy fields, coconut groves, and mangrove forests add to the scenic beauty, and waterways and canals adorned by white lilies complete the picture of your paradise on earth.
Check into a houseboat to explore the backwaters, to witness the beauty of Kerala unfolding in the vicinity, and to feel the fresh countryside air that’d cool your spirit and calm your senses. You will be served breakfast, lunch, tea with snacks, and dinner in the houseboat. What’s better, you get to spend your night in the houseboat!
Alleppey Kovalam: By Road in 4 hrs
Continue cruising the next morning until you reach Alleppey, from where you can proceed to Kovalam. What was an obscure fishing village once, is today a bustling holiday spot teeming with tourists most of the year. During your trip, explore the fishing village and the three crescent-shaped beaches of Kovalam on a walking tour. The beauty of the beach combined with the simplicity of the locals will warm your heart.
Retire for the day by checking into one of the surrounding hotels and look forward to the next morning!
Exploring attractions in Trivandrum and Kanyakumari
It’s time to do a little bit of sightseeing. Here are some of the things to do on the ninth day of your Kerala packages tour.
Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple: To attain spiritual enlightenment, proceed to Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, dedicated to Lord Vishnu. It was the renovation work overseen by Marthanda Varma, a noted Travancore king, that contributed to the present-day structure of the temple, considered an architectural marvel.
Padmanabhapuram Palace: To learn about the traditional architecture of Kerala, there is no better place to visit in Trivandrum but the Padmanabhapuram Palace. Iravi Varma Kulasekhara Perumal built the grand palace and Marthanda Varma rebuilt it in 1750. Some of the attractions you will come across on your tour of the palace include Thai Kottaram, Natakashala, and the Thekke Kottaram.
Next, proceed to Kanyakumari, 90 kilometers east of Kovalam, at the southernmost tip of India, where the Bay of Bengal, the Arabian Sea, and the Indian Ocean converge. Originally named after Lord Krishna’s sister, Devi Kanya Kumari, the place is also known as Cape Comorin.
Some of the places you can visit in Kanyakumari are as follows.
Kanyakumari Beach/Cape Comorin Beach: For nature enthusiasts, the shimmering beach of Kanyakumari with multicolored sands is the perfect holiday spot that encapsulates scenic beauty. The beach provides spectacular views of sunrise and sunset, and you can enjoy a bird’s eye view of the area from the lighthouse.
Vivekananda Rock Memorial: Swami Vivekananda, who had visited Kanyakumari in 1892, meditated on this rock for two days, before leaving for the World Religious Conference in Chicago. Built to honor Swami, the memorial itself is an architectural marvel and the beauty of the surroundings complement it. Also, the rock features the footprint of Goddess Kanyakumari, making it a religious wonder for tourists.
Vattakottai Fort (Circular Fort): The Circular Fort is one of the last surviving coastal forts of Travancore Kingdom. Despite its name, the fort is rectangular, and it has weapon rooms and watchtowers that are worth exploring.
After the long tour, journey back to Kovalam for overnight stay.
|Days 10 - 11||
Kovalamâ€“Beach and relaxation
Kerala may have several beaches but the beauty of Kovalam beaches is unparalleled, thus attracting a large inflow of tourists throughout the year. This falcate-shaped beach is encircled by coconut trees that sway gently to the cool Kovalam sea breeze. For honeymooners, it is an idyllic romantic spot, and the silvery, white sands of the beach are perfect for walking hand-in-hand with your loved one. For those who like a good swim, the crystal-clear and clean waters of Kovalam are worth diving into and the ones who look for aesthetic pleasure, the beach promises blissful respite.
After relaxing a bit, you can try your hand at water sports such as parasailing, windsurfing, and water diving at Kovalam. There are various Ayurveda resorts, where you can sign up for a body massage, which is done the traditional way.
Enjoy your last day in Kerala to the fullest!
The day of departure is here, and so, you will be transferred to Trivandrum airport to fly back home.
Why look for God’s magic elsewhere, when there is God’s Own Country!