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KERALA
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. An equable climate. A long shoreline with serene beaches. Tranquil streches of emerald backwaters. Lush hill stations and exotic wildlife. Waterfalls. Sprawling plantations and paddy fields. Ayurvedic health holidays. Enchanting art forms. Magical festivals. Historic and cultural monuments. An exotic cuisine... All of which offer you a unique experience. And what's more, every one of these charming destinations is only a two hour drive from the other. A singular advantage no other destination offers.

Kerala, India's most advanced society : A hundred percent literate people. World-class health care systems. India's lowest infant mortality and highest life expectancy rates. The highest physical quality of life in India. Peaceful and pristine, Kerala is also India's cleanest State.

For administrative purpose, the state of Kerala is divided into fourteen districts. Most of these districts offer all the tourism products typical of the State.
 
   
 
ALLEPPEY

Alleppey is one of the most important tourist centres in the state, with a large network of inland canals earning it the sobriquet "Venice of the east". These large network of canals provide Alleppey its lifeline. Alleppey was one of the busiest centres of trade in the past with one of the best known ports along the Malabar coast. Even today it retains its charm as the centre for Coir carpet industries and prawn farming. Alleppey the ideal headquarters for backwater tourism as well as for visits to the lovely church filled town of Kottayam, and the town of Aranmula, famous for its historic Aranmula Snake Boat Race which is an annual event.

Alleppey is also known for its spectacular snake - boat races held on the second Saturday of August, every year. This competition - the Nehru boat race takes its name from India's first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru, who inaugurated in 1952. It is excitement all around as snake - boats, each manned by over a hundred oarsmen, cut through the waters like wind. The event is a tremendous success with tourists and the local population alike. The boat cruise along the backwaters of Alleppey give one first hand experience of the life style; toddy tapping, fishing for small fry, Coir-making, prawn farming etc., which remains more or less unchanged over the years.

Kuttanad or Kuttanadu is an area of Alappuzha District, densely covered with waterways. Kuttanad is famous because of its paddy fields and farmers dedicated to the growth of paddy. It was once called the "Keralathinte Nellara", which means "Rice bowl of Kerala". Many factors such as expense, labour shortage etc. seriously affected the agriculture in this region. Many former rice fields are now used for other crops which require much lesser investment. Kuttanadu is the birth place of literary legend Thakazhi Sivasankara Pillai.

 
   


Kuttanad
:
 It's called the rice bowl of Kerala because of her wealth of paddy crops, is at the very heart of the backwaters. The scenic countryside of Kuttanad with its shimmering waterways also has a rich crop of Banana, Cassava and Yam. This is perhaps the only region in the world where farming is done 1.5 to 2 mtr below sea level. Inland waterways which flow above land lever are an amazing feature of this region.

Alappuzha (Alleppey) beach:
This is one of the most popular picnic spots in Alappuzha (Alleppey). The pier, which extends into the sea here, is over 137 years old. Entertainment facilities at the Vijaya beach park add to the attractions of the beach. There is also an old lighthouse, which is greatly fascinating to visitors.

Pathiramanal:  According the mythology a Young Brahmin dived into the Vembanad lake to perform his evening ablutions and the water made way for land to rise from below, thus creating the enchanting Island pf Pathiramanal (sands of midnight). This little island on the backwaters is a favourite haunt of hundreds of rare migratory birds from different parts of the world. This island lies between Thaneermukkom and Kumarakom, and is accessible only by boat.

Champakulam church:
  One of the oldest churches in Kerala, the St. Mary's Church is believed to be one of the seven established by St. Thomas. The annual feast at this church falls on the 3rd Sunday of October every year.

Ambalappuzha Sree Krishna Temple:
  Built in the typical Kerala architectural style, this temple is famous all over India for the Palpayasam, the daily offering of deliciously sweet milk porridge. It is also in this temple that Pallipana is performed by Velans (sorcerers) once every twelve years.

   


How to Reach

By Air:
Nearest International Airports : Kochi (Nedumbassery - 85 km), Thiruvananthapuram (150 kms).

By Rail: Well connected to Major Cities.

By Road: An excellent road network links the district to all major towns and cities in India.

By Water: Linked by boat service through the backwaters to Kollam (8 Hrs), Changanacherry (3 hrs), Kumarakom (3 hr), Cochin (4 hrs), Kumarakom (2 hrs), Chengannor, etc.

 

Altitude

Sea level

Area

1414.00 sq. km

Population

2,105,349

Density

1,492/km²

Temperature Average

25°C

Rainfall

Annual 299 cms.

Clothing

Tropical cottons

Languages

Malayalam, Tamil, Hindi and English

Boundaries

Arabian Sea on the West