There’s a reason why the people of Kerala, India’s southwestern state, call it “God’s Own Country.” Lofty palms sway in the tropical breeze, thatched-roof boats glide along tranquil rivers, and sari-clad women offer prayers in tranquil temples and churches. That’s not even mentioning the food, famously mouthwatering and spicy. Kerala has our attention and we think it should have yours too when you are planning a journey to incredible India.
Complete relaxation is the only item on the agenda aboard the luxurious houseboats that glide through Kerala’s backwaters. Fresh seafood pulled straight from coastal waters are given a spicy twist and are served on deck as you watch the life along the blissful banks go by. Jade-colored rice paddies and lines of palms will have you realizing why Malayalees (the state’s residents) think God has blessed this fertile land. Visit Kerala to find yourself a world away from the rest of India’s frenetic energy. The lull of the boat and the peaceful waterways will have you drifting into the perfect afternoon snooze.
Feeling a little blah? Need to unplug and just get away? Completely detach in Kerala at one of its many luxury spas. The Vivanta by Taj Bekal, focuses on mind-body healing during a heavenly aromatherapy massage. Stretch and unwind in a yoga session and feel the utter meditative calm of the land take over.
Wander around Cochin’s center of spice trade and inhale the scent of cardamom and cloves. Devour delicious dosas—incredibly large, thin, and often crispy ground rice pancakes—filled with curried potatoes tempered with mustard seeds and dipped into fragrant bowls of daals (lentil soups) and white coconut chutneys. Small dollops of curried vegetables, lentils, and chutneys are served on huge banana leaves. Your mouth will be singing with joy.
A land of many thriving cultures and religions, Kerala is packed with beautiful temples, churches, mosques, and synagogues. The Pardesi Synangogue in Cochin dates back to 1568 and is a glittering gem with shimmering chandeliers, an ornate golden pulpit, and hand-painted tiles. Over the centuries Kerala attracted many traders from Portugal and the Netherlands. The Mattancherry Palace was gifted to the Raja of Kochi in 1555 by the Portuguese. Admire the beautiful Hindu murals in a spectacular display of color. Church spires jut between thick bananas and palm forests, a reminder that this is a land believed to have been visited by Saint Thomas in the first century.
Festivals and lively dances are a way of life in India, and you can visit Kerala for some of the most beautiful. Watch a classical Kathakali performance with lavish costumes, elaborate masks, and painted faces telling the stories of Indian epics. Each eye movement and twirl of the fingers helps to tell the tale.
Wild elephants, exotic birds, tigers, and bears all feel quite at home in the lush wilderness of Kerala’s wildlife sanctuaries. Ker & Downey can arrange a guide to take you to see some of these majestic animals in one of India’s most bio-diverse states.
Fishermen pull in their shiny catch on huge Chinese nets along Kerala’s sparkling coast and small boats bob on the water. The blissful beaches aren’t just a place to frolic in the surf. This is where you will also get to see the people go about their daily lives.
Visit Kerala, God’s Own Country, with Ker & Downey by contacting your luxury travel consultant.