Gods Own Country, Kerala, lies in the southern most part of India. It is one of the most sought-after tourist destination in India and National geographic magazine has earlier recommended Kerala as one of the ‘must see places’ in one’s life time. National Geographic’s Traveler magazine named Kerala as one of the “ten paradises of the world” and “50 must see destinations of a lifetime. Other than its beaches, backwaters, rivers, hill stations, wild life, flora and fauna etc. Kerala has much to offer to the tourist.
With its natural beauty, Kerala is ideal an a holiday destination. There are 44 rivers and large vasts of backwaters. Hill stations like Munnar and Wyanad makes Gods Own Country a tourist’s paradise.
Kerala’s beaches are known for its pristine beauty; be it Kovalam beach or Cherai beach, or for that matter any other beach in Gods Own Country.
Wildlife in Gods Own Country
Kerala’s Wildlife Sanctuaries are unique for its flora and fauna other than for its wild animals. Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary in Thekkady offers boating facilities inside the Periyar Lake to see the beasts of the jungle. Periyar Tiger reserve is part of the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. One can see hoards of Elephants playing in the lake waters. Also seen are Tigers, Sambars, Lion tailed macaques, Gaurs, etc, to name a few. The Lake Palace hotel, the summer retreat of the erstwhile Maharajas (Kings) of the princely state of Travancore, on an island inside the Periyar lake, offers the ultimate in luxury, romance and adventure for any tourist.
Eravikulam National Park, Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary, Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary,Silent Valley National Park, etc, are some of the other Kerala tourist places in Gods Own Country for nature and wildlife & lovers. Many an endangered species of animals including endangered species are found in Kerala’s Wildlife parks.
Bird watching and backwaters of Gods Own Country
Kumarakam Bird Sanctuary and surrounding areas offers the best of bird watching and backwater cruise. The backwaters of Kumarakam (The Venice of The East) are known for its beauty. Vembanad lake which lies in the Kottyam, Allapuzha and Ernakulam districts offers backwater tourism activities. One can hire a motor boat or a house boat. House boats offer night stay and food inside the boats. The cook in the boat catches fresh fish from the backwaters, and prepares an exotic fish curry or a fish fry, the taste of which will last all through your lifetime!. Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, a small bird sanctuary; one of the richest in terms of bird species in India; is situated within 60 kilometers of Kumarakom bird sanctuary. Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary is another famous Bird Sanctuary in god’s own country, at a distance of 19 kilometers from Kozhikode city.
Nature at its best in the Gods Own Country, Kerala
Aathirapally falls The Niagara of India and Vazachal falls in Trissur district are among the most beautiful falls in India. Forests in and around Gavi in Pathanamthitta district offers everything for an adventurous tourist. Munnar hills and Vagamon (Asia’s Scotland) are two of the best hill stations in the country. Wayanad offers the best of hills, caves, waterfalls, wildlife, etc.
Remains of an Ancient Civilization in Gods Own Country, Kerala
Marayur is known for the Stone Age Civilization and remains of which are still found there. Unique Dolmens and rock paintings dating back to 10000 B.C. are found in Marayur.
Martial arts of Gods Own Country, Kerala
Northern Kerala, especially Malabar region, is famous for one of the oldest fighting systems of Martial arts called Kalaripayattu. Kalaripayattu was practiced in olden days to defend the country from enemies. The place where this form of Martial arts is practiced is called “Kalari”. Some Kalaris in olden days had thousands of trainees. During the British rule, Kalaripayattu lost its predominance as firearms replaced martial arts and British banned Kalaripayattu.
Culture and Heritage of Gods Own Country at its best
Aranmula Snake Boat race and Allepy Nehru trophy boat race are a real treat to the eyes. These are conducted on the 5th day after Onam (in August or September) and in the second Saturday of August respectively.
Heralded by UNESCO as “The most spectacular festival event on the planet”, Thrissur Pooram Festival, conducted in the month of April / May every year, is the fusion of culture, heritage and temple rituals and of course, the mother of all Fireworks. Caparisoned elephants decorated with colorful accessories made of peacock feathers and yak tail and other accessories that go with it, and the way it is swayed rhythmically to the tune of the Kerala’s traditional instrumental music like Chendamelam, Panchavadyam and other forms of traditional music , makes Thrissur Pooram, truly the most spectacular festival event on this universe.
Religious tourism in Gods Own Country, Kerala
Sabarimala Sree DharmaSastha Temple, Thiruvananthapuram Sree Padmanabhaswamy temple, Guruvayoor Krishnan temple, Chotanikara temple, Kodungallor temple (and an array temples at Vaikom, Ettumanoor, Ochira, Attukal, Aranmula, Ambalapuzha, Pandalam, Kulathupuzha, etc.) , Malayattoor church, Jewish Synagogue at Fort Cochin, etc, makes Gods Own Country an ideal destination for your pilgrimage tour.
Health Resorts and Ayurveda Tourism in Gods Own Country
Kerala is well known for its Ayurveda institutes. Kottakkal Arya Vaidya Sala is the leading Ayurveda institute in Gods Own Country and in India. Kerala Ayurveda Ltd is another well known company, known for its products and treatment. There are a large number of other well known institutes also in Kerala state. Many of these institutes have their own Health resorts to treat patients.