Nestled in South India along the historic Malabar Coast and mountainous region of the Western Ghats is the Indian state of Kerala. The origins of Kerala are steeped in Hindu legend and mythology involving incarnations of deities, an axe, and warrior sage. The state’s economy is based on spice exportation and the production of coffee, pepper, and tea. Kerala’s diverse landscape brimming with beaches, lagoons, and tropical sites attracts tourists from all over the world.
With its robust history, Kerala embraces and demonstrates its culture through religious festivals, art, and scrumptious food. One of the most prominent yearly celebrations at Kerala is Makaravilakku, a ritual where attendees gather at the shrine of Sabarimala and witness a sacred lamp lighting. On occasion, these holy festivals may also have grand firework displays and a decorated live elephant.
Cinema, dance, and music are major aspects of Kerala’s culture. In regard to performing arts and music, Keralan artists practice their craft through classical forms that are associated with the region’s temples. The film industry is more modern than its artistic counterparts as the films often reflect current and past social issues and themes.
Due to the area’s significant religious influence, Kerala’s culinary scene offers numerous vegetarian and pescetarian dishes. Breakfast foods are usually rice-based while lunch is more varied with different types of curry, stews, and soups. Although the cuisine is heavy with grain and vegetable dishes, there are also several meat options available such as chicken curry and a spicy beef fry.
Since Kerala is a sprawling state, there are an abundance of attractions that are worth embarking on a day trip to visit.
The Western Ghats located in the eastern part of Kerala have a mountainous terrain with many hill stations. Stunning forests, valleys, and gorges are not uncommon in this region. Notable areas at the Western Ghats include Vagamon, Thekkady, and Munnar.
In addition to awe-inspiring greenery, Kerala has plenty of waterfalls scattered throughout the area. Popular falls to visit are Lakkom Falls, Charpa Falls, and Soochipara Falls.
As for other natural wonders, Kerala is known for its gorgeous backwaters that are parallel to the coast of the Arabian Sea. Kerala also has a multitude of beaches including the shores at Varkala, Cherai, Gavi, Kovalam, and Muzhappilangad, a drive-in beach.
Moreover, the state is home to the Thattekad Bird Sanctuary, Periyar Tiger Reserve, and Silent Valley National Park.
Vacation rentals in Kerala range from lavish villas surrounded by hillsides to modest, family-friendly guest houses to beachfront bungalows. With thousands of lovely properties on and around the coastline, Kerala is a breathtaking destination where visitors can experience South India’s unique culture and scenery while staying in a cozy abode that also boasts a vibrant history.
The main modes of transport in Kerala are via roads and railways. The highway infrastructure in Kerala is narrow and the roads often become congested with traffic.
Indian Railways, a company owned by the state of India, offers the Southern Railway which connects major cities throughout the country. There are several railway stations available in Kerala such as Ernakulam Junction (South) (ERS), Thrissur Railway Station (TCR), and the state’s largest station Thiruvananthapuram Central (TVC).
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