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KERALA GUIDE

 
Welcome to Kerala, God's Own Country. You are surfing 'the place to visit' in India. Kerala is one of the ten 'Paradises Found' by the National Geographic Traveler, for its diverse geography and overwhelming greenery. With the Arabian Sea in the west, the Western Ghats towering 500-2700 m in the east and networked by forty four rivers, Kerala enjoys unique geographical features that have made it one of the most sought after tourist destinations in Asia.


Guide

Hotels

Attractions

 
 

  KERALA INFORMATION

 
Kerala state (2001 provisional pop. 31,838,619), 15,003 sq mi (38,858 sq km), SW India, on the Arabian Sea. Thiruvananthapuram is the capital. A wet tropical climate and coastal lowlands support cultivation of rice, coconuts, tapioca, and spices; the interior hills produce rubber, coffee, and tea. A densely populated state, Kerala was created in 1956 from the Malayalam-speaking former princely states of Cochin and Travancore and Malayalam-speaking areas formerly in Madras state (now Tamil Nadu). About 60% of the population is Hindu; Christians and Muslims each make up about 20% of the remaining inhabitants. Although Kerala has the highest literacy rate in India (1981 est. 70%), it suffers from economic underdevelopment and unemployment. In 1957, India's first Communist state administration was elected in Kerala, and a Communist coalition was again elected in 1967, 1970, and 1987. Maoist Naxalite groups were active in the state. Kerala takes its name from the ancient Tamil kingdom of Kerala (Chera), which traded with the Phoenicians, Greeks, and Romans. Some coastal areas of Kerala were hard-hit by the Dec., 2004, Indian Ocean tsunami. The state is governed by a chief minister responsible to an elected unicameral legislature and by a governor appointed by the president of India.
 
   

  KERALA FACTS AND FIGURES

 

Kerala at a Glance ...

 
 

Area:    

38,864 sq km

 

Capital:

Thriruvananthapuram (Trivandrum)

 
No of District:  
14
  Languages: Telgu,Hindi,English
 
Per Capita Income:
6,462
 
Religion:
Hindu,Muslim,Christian
 
Location:
South West India
 
Main Incame:
Tourism , Agriculture
 
Best Time to visit:
October to March
 
   

  KERALA HISTORY

 
The ancient history of Kerala is shrouded in the mists of tradition. The most popular legend would have it that the land crust that forms the State was raised from the depths of the ocean. Parasurama, the Brahmin avatar (incarnation) of Lord Vishnu, had waged an epic series of vengeful wars on the Kshatriyas. Came a moment when Parasurama was struck by remorse at the wanton annihilation he had wrought. He offered severe penance atop the mountain heights. In a mood of profound atonement, the sage heaved his mighty axes into the midst of the distant ocean. The waves foamed and frothed as a prawn-shaped land extending from Gokarnam to Kanyakumari surfaced from the depths of the sea to form the state and hence the sobriquet - "Gods own Country".
 
   

  KERALA TOURIST ATTRACTIONS

 
Thiruvananthapuram » Kochi » Kovalam Beach » Backwaters » Alappuyha » Kumarakom Resort » Aattakal Pangala » Kerala Back waters » Bekal fort Kerala » Nehru Trophy Boat » Onam Festival
 
   

  KERALA FAIRS AND FESTIVALS

 
The colorful mosaic of Kerala fairs and festivals is as diverse as the land, is an expression of the spirit of celebration, that is an essential part of the State. Observed with enthusiasm and gaiety, festivals are like gems, ornamenting the crown of Kerala tradition and culture. Round the year the fests keep Kerala life vibrant and interludes in the mundane affairs of life.Every season turns up new festivals, each a true celebration of the bounties of nature. The festivals exhibits an eternal harmony of spirit. Packed with fun and excitement, festivals are occasions to clean and decorate houses, to get together with friends and relatives and to exchange gifts.New attire, dance, music and ritual, all add to their joyful rhythm. It is a time for prayer, for pageantry and processions and time to rejoice. The important fairs and festivals in the state are: Onam Festival ,Thrissur Pooram ,Aranmula Uthrittathi ,Easter,Thiruvathira Festival ,Makaravillakku at Sabarimala ,Vishu
 
   

  HOW TO REACH

 
By Air : Thiruvananthapuram, the capital of the state, is very well connected to all major airports in India like Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi and Mumbai. Kochi and Calicut are other two airports connected from air to other cities in India.

By Road : Road traveling in Kerala is much smoother because of the good condition of he roads. Also state is connected with other parts of South India by a number of National Highways. Major modes of road transport are buses, tourist taxis, cars, and local taxis and autos.

By Rail : With around 200 railway stations, it is another convenient mode of traveling in Kerala. Railways connect most of the places in the state to places in the other parts of the country and inside the state. Long-distance express trains connect to almost all places outside the state like Mumbai, New Delhi. The state of Kerala is a narrow strip located along Arabian Sea in the southernmost tip of Indian Peninsula. The natural backwaters have given birth to internal water , Chennai, and Kolkata.
 
   

  KERALA MAJOR CITIES

 
Cochin » Ernakulam » Kannur » Kortayam »Kasorgode » Kozhikode » Kollom » Palakkad
 
   

  KERALA WILDLIFE AND BIRDS

 
Kerala is bestowed with a rich repertoire of natural bounty - mountains & hills, rivers & lakes, backwaters & shoreline. It is natural for Kerala to be home to many national parks and sanctuaries. The enchanting green forest with its rich flora and fauna makes Kerala a much sought after wildlife destination in India. The numerous national parks and wildlife sanctuaries of Kerala will add that extra bit of excitement when you holiday in Kerala.Wynad Wildlife Sanctuary: The Wynad Wildlife Sanctuary is a must for tourists wishing to experience a bit of wilderness while on Kerala travel. A part of the Wynad Plateau, the Wynad National Park in Kerala is famous for its tigers and leopards along with the other wildlife that one can find during vacations in Wynad Wildlife Sanctuary.Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary: The most renowned destination is the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary at Thekkady, one of India's major sanctuary areas. The drive to Thekkady itself is enchanting as the road winds through tranquil countryside, rich plantations and thick jungles. Silent Valley National Park: The Silent Valley contains India's last substantial stretch of tropical evergreen rain forests and it is perhaps the only vestige of a near virgin forest in the whole of the Western Ghats. Elephants, tigers, wild dog, flying squirrel and lion-tailed macaque are found here.Thattekad Bird Sanctuary: This bird sanctuary is a peninsular land of 25 sq. km. Formed between the branches of River Periyar.
 
   

  KERALA ARTS AND CRAFTS

 
Painting in Kerala can be traced back to the 9th century, as evident from the murals in it's templesand the practice of Kalamezhuthu - the practice of drawing pictures of gods and goddesses on temple floors using five different types of colour powder.Kerala has a rich verity of folk dances. They are highly developed and reflected and the temperaments and moods of the localities in music and costume.An old time industrial art is bell metal casting. One famous product is the Aranmula polished metalmirror, made of an alloy of copper and tin. In woodcraft, apart from the temple art tradition, kathakali models and accessories, weaving of mats, baskets, coir matting figure among it's handicrafts. Since the ban on ivory trade, Kerala's ivory carvings, especially that of the snake boat are now made of buffalo horn.Kerala is also known for it's jewellery. Designs range from the elaborate and exquisite to the simple and functional.The Nagapadam or serpent-hood pendant was originally used by Nair women. Namboodiri women wore the cherutali necklace and Tamil Brahmin women, the oddiyanam waist-chain. Christian women wore the Mekka Mothiram. Though relegated to history, contemporary goldsmiths still draw inspiration from them for their designs. 
 
   

  KERALA SHOPPING

 
The items are of immense beauty for the simple reason that Keralities are gifted artisans. Among Kochi's best buy are metalware, camel-bone carvings, wood carvings, articles made of coconut shels, baboo cane, embroidered screwpine mats; grass mats; and several other types of handicrafts. Kochi also has several antique dealers. Jewellery, readymade garments, and ethnic hand-woven textiles follow closely. The major shopping centres are on M.G.Road which cuts across the heart of the city, and the Marine Drive including Broadway. Shops open at 10 a.m. and close around 8 p.m. Generally all shops remain close on Sundays.