Kathakali masks in Cochin

Places to Visit in Kerala:The Gates to God’s Own Country

2 Places to visit in Kerala

Places to visit Kerala: Greenery, tropical plants and waterways of Cochin

Beautiful waterways surround the area of Cochin. You can take a relaxing boat trip from Cochin

Picture Perfect 

The state of Kerala located in the southern western tip of India and is one of the richest in India. Some argue and rightly so that it is even one of the most beautiful and that is where it gets its name God’s Own Country.

Just picture a place where coconut trees cover the whole area, picturesque waterways, tropical fruit, rolling hills and small, quaint fishing villages. This is Kerala and it really is magical.

As you move around this state you really feel the history of the place as a melting pot of Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Jews, Arab traders, Dutch and Portuguese missionaries and the tracks of a glorious spice trade center.

Most Developed State in India

Of all the states in India, Kerala is the most developed. Many attribute this to the regional communist government elected to power in 1957 until 2000. A social policy of equality quickly brought about the cancelling of the Indian caste system, the development of the health and education systems.

Here are two places to visit in Kerala. You will probably begin your journey in one of the two main cities as they are the gates to the rest of God’s Own Country. So here is a quick review of the 2 cities that will be the starting point for your trip in this magical state:

Trivandrum

Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Trivandrum. Thanks to Trekearth

Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple in Trivandrum. Thanks to Trekearth

The capital city of Kerala is Trivandrum, or also known by its new name Thiruvananthapuram. It is a relatively clean and laidback city and is very close to the south edge of the southern border with the state of Tamil Nadu. As in a capital city there are many magnificent public buildings, hospitals, and green leafy streets. The city holds less attraction for tourists but if you happen to spend some time there here are some sites that you can visit: The zoological gardens, the Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple, the Puthe Maliga Palace Museum and Connemara Market.  Trivandrum is an ideal place to study traditional south Indian arts including yoga (Sivananda Ashram is just out of town), Kathakali (traditional performance arts) and Kalaripayattu (Keralan martial arts)

Cochin

Fishermen, nets and boats in Cochin

Fishermen use Chinese nets in Cochin. Their boats line the water front of the Peninsula of the historical Fort of cochin

Cochin also known as Kochi on the Keralan coast sits in the center of the state. It a very beautiful and interesting place to stay and explore. Mattancherry Peninsula is the historical part of the peninsula where picturesque allies, fishermen’s Chinese nets and the magnificent Fort Cochin and neighborhood Jewtown with its ancient synagogue and old street attract tourists from all over the world.  Fort Cochin also has wonderful architecture, sophisticated guesthouses and hotels and restaurants that line the sea front. There a lot to do and see in Cochin. You can visit The Dutch Palace Museum, watch a kathakali performance (traditional Keralan theatre with dance, mime, music, and costumes symbolising the stories of Indian mythology), or simply stroll around the old town. A great place to take a walk is  Manchari, on the sea front, to see the Chinese fishing nets used by fishermen in Kerala. If you arrive in the morning you can see the fishermen returning with fish and bring it to the docks. Also it well worth it to take a

St Francis Church, Old Fort Cochin

visit to St Francis Church, the oldest church in India, were the explorer Vasco da Gama, who passed away in Cochin in 1524 is buried. Throughout the Peninsula you can admire Portuguese style architecture.

Walking around Jew town, the city of the Jews is another great way to spend the day . It was once a lively Jewish neighbourhood although today most of the Jewish community who lived here in the past no longer live there but there are still around five families from the original community that reside there. The Synagogue at the end of the street is has an impressive Spanish-style courtyard and many old tombstones written in Hebrew. Today the area feels a bit like a market place with lots of antiques and spice shops.

The beautiful synagogue of Cochin

Inside the courtyard of the synagogue of jewtown, Cochin lies this slab. The synagogue was built in 1344

 So before jumping into the water of the beautiful beaches of Kerala or climbing the cool mountains of the Western Ghats there is much to see and do in the two  Keralan cities.

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Places to visit In Kerala : Map

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  1. […] in southern India. South India refers mostly to 4 Indian states – Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Kerala, and Andhra Pradesh.). In fact, this style of temple building gains such popularity and reputation, […]

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