Beaches and Backwaters of exotic kerala


This article is about the beaches and backwaters of Kerala which we had visited recently. Enjoy this article with the photographs taken by my camera.

Beaches and Backwaters of exotic kerala



The serene beauty of 'God's Own Country', and the southern most tip of Indian Peninsula quenched the thirst

and penchant for traveling. With a gang of 10 enthusiasts, thrilling compact tour of 8 wonderful days was a great

experience.




Day 1

Within two hours from Hyderabad as we were approaching Cochin airport, we had a wonderful aerial view of lush green

coconut plantations stretched across miles and miles giving us an introduction to Kerala. We decided to come back to Kerala

after visiting Kanyakumari which was 7 hours travel from Cochin.


The same evening as we reached, we visited, Kanyakumari Bagavathiamman Temple, situated at the seaside. Kanyakumari

derives its name from the Goddess Kanyakumari Amman, goddess Parvati as a virgin, the presiding deity of the area.



Day 2

At the crack of the dawn we reached the sunrise point to wath the sun popping up from behind the horizons, moving towards

the tip of Indian Peninsula, where all the three oceans : Arabian Sea, Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal met.




After sight seeing around we started to Vivekananda Rock Memorial and Thiruvalluvar Statue. The jetty service from the

ocean shore at Kanyakumari took us to the middle of the ocean. Our first stop was Vivekananda Rock Memorial, as the name

implies, it is a sacred monument, built by the Vivekananda Rock Memorial Committee to commemorate the visit of Swamy

Vivekananda to "Shripada Parai" during 24th, 25th and 26th December 1892 for deep meditation and enlightenment. From very

ancient times, the rock has been regarded as a sacred place. In Puranic tradition, it has been known as "Sripada Parai,

meaning the rock, that has been blessed by the touch of Shripada feet of the Goddess. On the rock, is a projection similar in

form to a human feet, according to legend, it was on this rock that Goddess Kanyakumari did Tapasya. The memorial also has a

Dhyana Mandapam – A Meditation Hall and Swamiji's statue stands at the centre of the hall.




Our next stop in the jetty was Thiruvalluvar Statue. Thiruvalluvar was an immortal poet of Tamil Nadu. The memorial statue

of Thiruvalluvar is of 133 feet high. The beauty of the 'Sangam' of the three oceans at the backdrop of the two memorials is

a spectacular view lodging peace all around us.



We soon reached Kovalam late and the afternoon, after a 3 hours drive from Kanykumari. As our hotel was by the beachside

we drenched and played in the beach till dusk. Dining under a full moon night amidst the densely surrounded coconut trees and

beside the vast sea welcoming us with open hands, was an experience to remember for lifetime.




Day 3

From beach to backwaters, we started to Allepey or Alappuzha, as it is popularly known. Our fully furnished houseboats

were waiting for us that afternoon we hopped into house like on a boat, complete with living room, dining room, bed room and

kitchen. The enchanting view of lush green paddy fields, lines of coconut trees, small and big houses along the sides of

backwater was the perfect way to experience the calm and unique ecology of the Kerala backwaters. Our houseboats took us

through the small canals and villages that still inhabit this road-less and car-less world. We organized a dance partying in

the houseboat at night and danced till we dropped.





Day 4

The next morning saw more backwater excursion and landed in dense jungle. Thekkady was our next destination. On our way to

Thekkady we stopped at Eden Spice Garden, where we could see plants of all the medicinal herbs and spices. We were on a ride

around the spice garden by an expert guide who briefed us with all the medicinal values and properties of the various plants

in the garden. Empowered with the knowledge, we moved ahead in our journey. We reached Thekkady in the evening and after

checking into hotel, we surrendered ourselves fully to the experienced masseurs in the massage parlor, rejuvenating us with a

special Kerala Ayurvedic curative and restorative package.





Day 5

We started early in the morning to a water cruise safari into the heart of the Periyar jungles. The Periyar Tiger Reserve,

Thekkady, is an example of nature's bounty, with great scenic charm and a rich bio diversity. Periyar is one of the 27 tiger

reserves in India, zealously guarded and efficiently managed. The tiger reserve is a repository of rare, endemic and

endangered flora and fauna and forms the major watershed of two important rivers of Kerala, the Periyar and Pamba. During our

water cruise safari we witnessed many wild animals resting along the water body with dense forest on both sides.




Our next destination was Munnar, the most popular of all destinations. From Thekkady it was a long drive of 7 hrs to

Munnar. On the way we crossed jungles, mountains, numerous water falls, rivulets and cascades crisscrossing the terrain,

adding more attraction to the valley.



Munnar hills is situated at an altitude of 5000 to 8000 Ft above sea level and is situated at the confluence of three

mountain streams - Mudrapuzha, Nallathani & Kundala. This beautiful hill station was once the summer resort of the erstwhile

British Government in South India. Sprawling Tea plantations, picture book towns, winding lanes, and holiday facilities make

this a popular resort town. The main cultivation crops in Munnar are Tea and Coffee. We reached Munnar late in the evening

and checked into a hotel.





Day 6

Our first spot in Munnar was Mattupetty Lake and Dam. Mattupetty is situated 1700 m above sea level providing a panoramic

view of the tea plantations and the lake. Boating facilities were available in the reservoir. We jerked our nerves with an

experience with Speed Boating, a thrilling adventure. Next stop was the Echo Point, where we soared our throats shouting at

the best of our efforts. Echo Point had a natural echo phenomenon and offered a great panoramic view. We also stopped at

elephant arrival point, and numerous other shooting points and photo points. Everywhere we stopped, the mists floated and

kissed us. Among the exotic flora found in the forests and grasslands, Munnar is also famous for Neelakurinji. This flower

blooms and bathes the hills in the blue every twelve years. It bloomed last in 2006 and will bloom next in 2018 AD.



Day 7

After soking ourselves fully in the mesmerizing beauty of Munnar, it was time to say good bye to hills and return to the

beaches. After a journey of 7 hrs we reached Cherai Beach Resorts in Cochin. It is a resort with a rare combination of beach

and backwaters offering ethnic ambience at the picturesque environs of swaying paddy fields along the backwaters. We were

allotted separate cottages each in the traditional Kerala style with thatched roofs, terracotta tiles and mud-plastered walls

adding to the rustic look but equipped with modern facilities. The cottages are built on individual islands and were designed

in a way to let the nippy breeze of the backwaters inside.



After checking into the resort we headed straight towards the beach, armed with volleyballs. We played beach volley ball

and enjoyed thoroughly each time the volleyballs went into the sea. Even the waves in the sea played with us, by returning

back the volley ball each time it went into the sea. After dusk tired of playing, we sat on the sand and made sand castles

and decorated them with sea shells.




In the night we arranged a bon fire and danced around it, as it was our last night together. We all shared our experiences

of the trip in front of the bonfire, and enjoyed the last night together watching the starlit sky and the pristine beauty of

the land.




Day 8

For once last we played in the morning in the beach and clicked photographs around the exotic resort. After that we headed

straight to cochin airport and boarded flight back to Hyderabad. At Hyderabad airport we all parted ways promising to

assemble very soon with another great expedition to another great destination.






Hope you will find a great time spending in kerala like us.


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