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More on Kerala, India


For a complete listing of destinations, sites and wonders go to:


​For many travelers, Kerala is South India's most serenely beautiful state. This slender coastal strip is defined by its layered landscape: almost 373 miles (600km) of glorious Arabian Sea coast and beaches; a languid network of glistening backwaters; and the spice- and tea-covered hills of the Western Ghats, dotted with fiercely protected wildlife reserves and cool hill stations such as Munnar. Just setting foot on this swathe of soul-soothing, palm-shaded green will slow your subcontinental stride to a blissed-out amble. Kerala is a world away from the hectic action of the rest of India, its long, fascinating backstory illuminated by historically evocative cities like Kochi (Cochin) and Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum).


Here are just some of them

     Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary

      Wayanad's ethereal 345-sq-km sanctuary is accessible only by two-hour jeep safari (₹680),         on which you might spot langurs, chital deer, sambar, peacocks,…

  • Periyar Tiger Reserve

    Bison, sambar, wild boar, langur, around 2000 elephants and 35 to 40 tigers wander the lushly green hills of South India’s most popular wildlife reserve,…

  • Pardesi Synagogue

    Originally built in 1568, Mattancherry's synagogue was partially destroyed by the Portuguese in 1662, and rebuilt two years later when the Dutch took…

  • Mattancherry Palace

    Mattancherry Palace was a generous gift presented to the Raja of Kochi, Veera Kerala Varma (1537–65), as a gesture of goodwill by the Portuguese in 1555…

  • Museum of History & Heritage

    Occupying a handsome 120-year-old heritage building within the Kerala Tourism complex, this intelligently presented museum traces Kerala's history and…

  • Napier Museum

    Housed in an 1880 wooden building designed by Robert Chisholm (a British architect whose Fair Isle–style version of the Keralite vernacular shows his…

  • Matha Amrithanandamayi Mission

    The incongruously salmon-pink Matha Amrithanandamayi Mission, 30km northwest of Kollam, is the famous ashram of one of India’s few female gurus,…


    Chinese Fishing Nets

    The unofficial emblems of Kerala’s backwaters, and perhaps the most photographed, are the half-dozen giant cantilevered Chinese fishing nets on Fort…


    Kerala Folklore Museum

    Created in Kerala style from ancient temples and beautiful old houses collected by its owner, an antique dealer, the family-run folklore museum houses a…


    Thirunelly Temple

    Thought to be one of the oldest temples on the subcontinent, Thirunelly Temple huddles beneath the Brahmagiri Hills 15km southwest of Tholpetty. Non…


    Hill Palace Museum

    Around 13km east of Ernakulam, this impressive 49-building palace complex was formerly the residence of the Kochi royal family. It now houses the…


    Edakkal Caves

    These remote hilltop 'caves' – more accurately a small series of caverns – are celebrated for the ancient collection of petroglyphs in their top chamber,…


    Fort St Angelo

    One of the earliest Portuguese settlements in India (constructed with permission from Kannur's rulers), the 1505 St Angelo Fort looms tall on a promontory…


    Wayanad Heritage Museum

    In the village of Ambalavayal, 12km southwest from Sultanbatheri near the Edakkal Caves, this small but fascinating museum exhibits tools, weapons,…


    Indo-Portuguese Museum

    The heritage of one of India’s earliest Catholic communities – including vestments, silver processional crosses, altarpieces from the Kochi diocese and…


    Parambikulam Tiger Reserve

    Encompassing 644 sq km of glorious Western Ghats terrain and wildlife, nestled behind three dams in a valley at altitudes of 300m to 1440m, Parambikulam…


    Bekal Fort

    The huge laterite-brick Bekal Fort, built between 1645 and 1660, is the largest in Kerala and sits on Bekal’s rocky headland with fine views. It passed…


    Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary (Muthanga)

    The location of the eastern entry gate to Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, accessible by two-hour jeep safari only.

  • Anjengo Fort

    Fringed by colourful fishers' houses, 12km southeast of Varkala, this laterite-and-concrete fort was built by the British East India Company in 1695…

  • Krishnapuram Palace Museum

    Two kilometres south of Kayamkulam (35km north of Kollam), this restored mid-18th-century palace is one of the finest remaining examples of royal Keralan


  • Janardhana Temple

  • Varkala is a temple town and the Janardhana Temple, dedicated to Vishnu, is the main event – with its roots dating back to the 13th century, this…


  • St Francis Church

  • Constructed in 1503 by Portuguese Franciscan friars, this is believed to be India’s oldest European-built church. The faded-yellow edifice that stands…


  • St Mary’s Syrian Knanaya Church

  • Perched on a low-lying riverside hill 2km northwest of central Kottayam, this bright-white church was founded in 1550 by Syrian Knanaya Christians (the…


  • Puthe Maliga Palace Museum

  • Overlooking the Shri Padmanabhaswamy Temple tank, the opulent 18th-century palace of the Travancore maharajas is a classically Keralan world of...

  • Thalasseri Fort

  • The coastal town of Thalasseri (formerly Tellicherry), 20km southeast of Kannur, was a major cardamom and pepper export hub under the British East India…


  • Kappil Beach

  • About 8km north of Varkala, this long, beautiful and (so far) undeveloped stretch of golden sand is also the beginning of a mini network of backwaters. A…


  • St Mary’s Orthodox Church

  • Built by the Portuguese, 2km northwest of central Kottayam, the elegant 1579 Cheriapally (Little Church) fuses European baroque architecture with Keralan…

  • David Hall

  • Opposite the parade ground, this beautiful restored bungalow is all that remains of three 17th-century Dutch-era houses built using materials from…


  • RKK Memorial Museum

  • In a grand building fronted by Greco-Roman columns, this intriguing museum houses a priceless, astonishing collection of crystal, porcelain, South Indian…


  • Ponnumthuruthu (Golden) Island

  • Around 10km south of Varkala, this acacia-filled island in the middle of a backwater lake conceals a Shiva-Parvati Hindu temple also known as the Golden…


  • Mahadeva Temple

  • The Shiva temple at Ettumanur, 12km north of Kottayam, has inscriptions dating from 1542, but parts of the building may be even older. It's noted for its…


  • Kashi Art Gallery

  • The pioneer of Fort Cochin’s art revival, Kashi displays changing exhibitions of local artists in a creatively restored Dutch heritage house, attached to…


  • Miskhal Masjid

  • Around 2km southwest of Mananchira Sq, this 650-year-old mosque is an attractive (mostly) wooden four-storey building supported by impressive wooden…


  • Lockhart Tea Factory

  • One of several working local tea factories open to the public, Lockhart dates from 1879 and sits 10km southeast of Munnar. Guided factory tours explain…


  • Arakkal Museum

  • Housed in part of the royal palace of the Arakkal family, a powerful Kannur dynasty with its roots dating to the 12th century, this harbourfront museum…


  • Rock-Cut Temple

  • Amid neatly tended, banyan-shaded grounds 500m north of Vizhinjam harbour, this small shrine is one of Kerala's most ancient rock-cut temples. A sculpture…


  • Archaeology Museum

  • The refurbished Archaeology Museum is housed in the wonderful 200-year-old Sakthan Thampuran Palace, built in Keralan-Dutch style. Its mix of artefacts…

  • Sivagiri Mutt

  • Just east of central Varkala, Sivagiri Mutt is the headquarters of the Shri Narayana Dharma Sanghom Trust, devoted to Shri Narayana Guru (1855–1928),…


  • Papanasham Beach

  • Ringed by rust-red cliffs, Varkala's main beach is a holy spot for Hindus, who for centuries have made offerings for passed loves ones and washed away…


  • Vizhinjam Lighthouse

  • Kovalam's most distinguishing feature is the working candy-striped lighthouse at the southern end of Lighthouse Beach. Climb the spiral staircase – or zip…

National Parks in Kerala

Silent Valley National Park

Eravikulam National Park

Wildlife Sanctuaries in Kerala

Top 18 Wildlife Sanctuaries in Kerala

Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary, Thekkady

Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary, Trivandrum

Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary

Chimmony Wildlife Sanctuary, Thrissur

Popular Attractions in Kerala

Pookode Lake

Chembra Peak

Idduki Dam

Banasura Sagar Dam

Mattupetty Dam

Wonderla Kochi

8 Etiquette Rules while in India


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