Cochin, popularly known as the Queen of the Arabian Sea, is one of the supreme natural harbors in the world. Cochin is also referred to as the Gateway of South India and an entryway to the enchanting backwaters of Kerala. Kochi is one of the fastest growing cities in India and is the business capital of the state. The city is comprised of a group of islands scattered along the Lake of Vembanad. Kochi has a collection of vivid and varied colors, which attracts lots of tourist from far and wide to its shores. The ferry rides across the vast expanses of Kochi backwaters an important tourist attraction. The enchanting coconut palms and Chinese nets leaning against the backdrop of the setting sun, the backwaters make a breathtaking vision. The magnificent houseboats that glide across the water are yet another spectacular sight that not many cities in India can boast. Backwaters of Cochin indeed occupy a top slot in the tourist map of this beautiful city. Cochin is the ideal destination to explore the charm of the former era, savor the tempting seafood delicacies, to explore the culture heritage and art forms or just to break free from the daily grinds. There are many popular tourist attractions in and around the city attracting tremendous tourists every year.
Twenty-six km by road from Ernakulam, Cherai Seashore is an outstanding place that has prosperity of sun, sand and water. It has come into the limelight very recently. Cherai is a village on Vypeen Island which is part of Ernakulam. A thin island strip stretching over 40 km, Vypeen featuring backwaters to the east and Arabian Sea to the west. Cherai can be easily accessed both by waterway and road. The distance by road to Vypeen is considerably reduced with the construction of three bridges. Caressed by both the sea and the backwaters Cherai presents a unique environment. Cherai seashore that lines the village of Cherai along the Arabian Sea extends 8 km. Not exposed too much tourist influx till recently, Cherai is less exposed than Varkala or Kovalam. The development is primarily concentrated near the 400-metre causeway. There are a number of hotels and shops nearby and the seashore has a serene atmosphere. The golden sands and shallow water make it safe for the tourists. Dolphins are occasionally spotted over this water source. Land inward is all idyllic with coconut palms and paddy fields. The road leading to Cherai runs along the backwaters offering view of rows of Chinese nets.
Athirapally Waterfalls are two scenic waterfalls, 5 km apart, on the edge of the Sholayar forest range. This amazing destination is located in the Trissur district of Kerala. The Athirappalli Falls connects to the Chalakkudy River, dipping to 80 feet. Vazhachal is a fraction of Chalakkudy River. They provide scintillating sight while cascading down against the backdrop of thick forest terrain.
This beautiful hill station is noted for its cool climate and vast tea plantations. This little town boasts of many tea factories, wildlife sanctuaries, colonial bungalows and lakes. Literally meaning 3 rivers, Munnar is situated on the confluence of three rivers – Nallathanni,Mudrapuzha and Kundala. This hill station is 1600m above sea level and was once the summer resort of erstwhile British Government in South India. Among the exotic flora found in the forests and grasslands here is the Neelakurinji (scientifically known as Strobilantus kuntianus). This flower bathes the hills in blue every twelve years will bloom next in 2006 AD. Munnar also has the uppermost peak in South India, Anamudi hill, which towers over 2695 m. Accommodation amenities are outstanding. The altitude is 4000 feet.
Thekkady located at the Iddukki district of Kerala is the largest wildlife sanctuary of the country. The sanctuary covers an area of 777sqkm with an artificial lake surrounding it. A boat cruise along the lake gives a most panoramic and serene experience. It is the only Tiger reserve of the country. It is also known for its dense deciduous, evergreen forests and grasslands. It is the home for many types of flora and fauna. Elephants, tigers, Nilgiri Langurs, gaur and lion tailed Macaques are the commonly seen animals. The sanctuary can be accessed either through boat or jeep or by walk.
Vagamon is a charming hill station located 3000 feet above the sea level. The attractive gardens and meadows add to its panoramic view. Vagamon is known as ‘Scotland of Asia’ due to its cool climate and ideal plantation environment. The spot is ideally situated at the idukki-Kottayam border of Idukki district, Kerala. The scenic valleys, pine forests, waterfalls, tea estates and mists add to the greenery of the spot. Vagamon is the home for large varieties of flora. It also forms an ideal spot for trekking, rock climbing and mountaineering.
Alappuzha is an admired leisure spot of the district. Alappuzha is a port town built according to plan by Divan Rajakeshavadas in 1785, was a busy centre of commerce in the 19th and the first half of 20th century. The port was eminent in the history and is naturally visited by many ships from different parts of the world. Reminding the past heyday still stands a pier which is about 140 years old. Gradual decline in marketable activity and final winding up the port operation had left the seashore in neglect for many years. However District Administration’s efforts gave it a facelift in 2004. Vijaya Seashore Park offers a variety of entertainment especially for children. This seashore has the first light house ever to be built on the western coast.
Kovalam, the seashore front has made into the international tourism map, is just 16 km from the capital of the state, Thiruvananthapuram. The Arabian Sea lines Kerala along its west all along turns into a meek and serene waterscape at Kovalam. The major attraction is the sandy seashore naturally separated by rocky mounds into three distinct curved seashores. Clear water with shallow bottom up to a hundred meters has made Kovalam a swimmers’ haven. Kovalam is recognized as lonely seashore and from the time of its early renovations, it witnessed plenty of tourists. Kovalam was the harbinger of the now thriving tourism industry in Kerala. Since then, Kovalam has been the single major attraction for tourists for many years until other places began to be travel around in terms of tourism potential. It is also listed first in Kerala to be featured on the International tourism map in a big way. Nowadays, tourism lore treats Kovalam seashore as made of three small seashores differently named. The seashore is divided into three sections by rocky headlands jutting out in to the sea at two places. They are named Light House Seashore, Hawah Seashore or (Eves Seashore) and Samudra Seashore. The first two seashores lying southwards are tourist spots. The curved shape of seashores makes them a sort of coves with shallow water extending up to a hundred meters. This naturally protects from strong waves and deceptive undercurrents make it safe for swimming. The clear water source resembles the blue sky. Both the Light House Seashore and the Hawah Seashore have a large number of resorts and hotels. This small seaside town sees much business aimed chiefly at foreign tourists. There are plenty of curio shops selling things from all parts of the country. The north of the seaside, known as Samudra Seashore in tourist idiom, lies quietly separated by a high headland from the busy locale. It is still under developed and the local fishermen continue to venture into the sea on the traditional sea faring device (catamaran) which is just a few logs of light wood tied together.
Trivandrum currently known as Thiruvananthapuram is a southern most district of Kerala holding a number of tourist spots. The state capital has a variety of destinations such as hill stations, beaches, lagoons, wild life sanctuaries and many more reflecting the beauty of the state. Tourists flock to Thiruvananthapuram mainly for Medical tourism with more than hundred recognized Ayurveda centers and resorts in and around the city. The popularity of Ayurveda rejuvenation treatment is the major driving factor of tourists towards the state capital. The city of Thiruvananthapuram built on seven hills, had grown into a most sedate and big cities of the State by retaining the past glory and charm. Thiruvananthapuram is blessed with a pleasant climate virtually throughout the year but it glorifies in the monsoon rain.
Kanyakumari is a very unique destination of India in the state of Tamil Nadu with the Arabian Sea in the west and the Bay of Bengal in the east mingle with the Indian Ocean. Cape comerin or Kanyakumari is located in the southernmost tip of the country, where the three seas get united. The spectacular sunrise and sunset of Kanyakumari made it a popular destination of India. The unique sunrise and sunset and the serene beauty of Kanyakumari attract lots of tourists round the year. Kanyakumari is one of the unique destinations of the world where both the sunrise and sunset can be observed from the same point. The sunset is visible only from October 15 to March 15 in a year; whereas the sunrise can be viewed from this southernmost tip throughout the year. Murugan Kundram is atop a hill atKanyakumari which gives a magnificent view of both sunrise and sunset throughout the year. This spot offers a great panoramic view of the entire Kanyakumari. On full moon days both the sunset and moonrise can be seen almost simultaneously from the same spot. This unique spectacle is witnessed at Kanyakumari.