Kerala, popularly known as the God’s own country tops the list of destinations sought after by the Global Travelers. This pristine and serene state which lies in the South – Eastern part of India is much favoured due to its exotic wildlife, herbs, emerald green hill stations and the crystal clear Arabian Sea along its coast. Being fond of Kerala and with my frequent visits, I have tried to put a break on the monotony about the stories on Kerala and projected some lesser known facts about the nature’s paradise. Primarily known for its backwaters and coconuts, here are few facts that may kindle your interests further to pack your bags and proceed to this serene land.
Nat Geo Recommends the Land of Coconuts
In a photographic tour of must-travel destinations, Kakkathuruthu isle of Alleppey has been chosen in the Nat Geo magazine. The tired fishermen with their nets, bats hunting moths, local women in skiffs, and complete hue of the island in twilight had made Nat Geo cast their vote for Kerala.
More than 10 million tourists visit Kerala annually, to experience the viestas of backwaters, lagoons, etc. This is a huge milestone and tourism in Kerala is expected to grow in the upcoming days. The state was declared “one of the ten paradises of the world” by National Geographic.
Lonely Planet Must See Places in Asia – 3rd Position
Beaches like Kannur, Thottada and Bekal in the Northern Kerala and the surrounding green shade have made the Lonely Planet crew to pick Kerala. Previously, Kerala was in the top 10 family holidays list too.
The Ayurveda Paradise
Ayurveda, an organic healing system of India has been in existence since 3 thousand BC. Kerala is one of the best Ayurveda tourism destinations in India where Ayurveda is still a mainstream medicine. Kativasti, Janu Vasti, and other lesser-known massaging techniques create a rejuvenating atmosphere for the receiver. Abhyanga is for a stress-free body, Swedana improves flexibility and congestion, Shirodhara is simply a CNS rebooting forehead massage. Kati Vasti cures your back pain and sciatica while Janu Vasti strengthens the joints. Before going to your doctor, reach Kerala for a natural cure.
The Oldest Teak Plantations – Conolly’s Plot
Just 2 km away from Nilambur Town, Vadapuram has a 1500 acre Timber plantation which was started between 1844 and 1855. It is believed to be the oldest on the planet. Kurinji Puzha with its purest water surrounds the oldest teak, “Kannimari” which joins with Chaliyar at the corner of the Conolly’s Plot.
First State to have Rainfall in the Country
The Southwest monsoon contributing to the country’s development begins in Kerala. In the month of June, the ravishing rainfall helps in the production of Kharif crops or Autumn crops. More than 70% of India’s rainfall is received through this monsoon. The Western Ghats is the saviour for Kerala which prevents the dry winds from the North.
Secret Vaults and Tales – A Mysterious Temple
It is believed that billions of Dollars or Euros or Rupees or whatever of inestimable treasures are hidden inside the secret vaults of the Shri Padmanabhaswamy Temple. Cellars underneath the temple protect the invaluable jewels in Travancore. Maharajas are believed to have donated tonnes of gold on each birthday of a Prince weighing equal in amount to their body weight. Three different doors offer a stunning sight of the 18 feet main idol which is one among the 108 Vishnu Shrines. Non-Hindus are not allowed but loitering outside the premises and catching up with locals in your pursuit to learn about the secrets of the richest temple in India is unavoidable.
The Unconditional Liking Toward Paper
Heaps of literary festivals, the growing number of book lovers and newspaper readers, the high literacy rate, makes Kerala knowledgeable than most other states. Almost all the tea stalls flaunting a Che Guevara background serves news and tea for a perfect morning. Most of the homes in Kerala have small libraries of their own. Foreigners can glide along with the public easily and this is important to know while choosing a travel destination.
The Love for Liquor – A Hedonist’s Dreamland
From the local Toddy to exquisite bars that serve wine, Kerala replaces coffee and books with wine and books. Earlier the consumption of Toddy lesser the intoxication or divine bliss (locals might accept!). The Toddy becomes a baddie by the evening and a traveler’ conscious body will set to the natural rhythm of Kerala. Questions like “Why is it called Kerala?” could arise. “Keram” means Coconut tree in Malayalam. As Kerala is overflowing with coconut trees, it came to be known as “Keralam” which means “Land of Coconuts”!!
First Mosque and Church in India
Cheraman Juma Masjid is the oldest Mosque in Kodungallur municipality of India. Malik Bin Dinar had built this in 629 CE. One should check the eternal burning lamp in this holy place which has been glowing ever since the construction.
St Thomas Church of Palayoor built in 52 CE is the first church in India. Thomas Didaemas, one among the twelve apostles is believed to have erected this precious structure.
The Town of Twins – Weird yet Beautiful
Kodinhi of Malappuram district in Kerala has the largest number of twins population in the country. A whopping number of twins confuse their parents and friends as a daily routine. Pose for a selfie near the welcome board that reads, “To The God’s Own Twins Village, Kodinhi.” A tiny survey by Sameera and Femeena (twin school kids) for their school project has marked the invention of an unbelievable town. They found 24 pairs in their school but now the 2000 plus families have more than 400 twin pairs. Cell Biology labs have tested everything but scientifically could prove nothing. It might be in the wind or water but no one knows the truth.
The Chess Town in Thrissur
Marottichal is a small hamlet where 70% of the residents play chess (6000 people) and it is an Asian record. From alcohol addiction to chess addiction, youngsters have checkmated domestic violence and liquor using the black and white squares. If you are wishing to see your kids as the next Bobby or Magnus or Viswanathan Anand , India presents you the chess village to learn chess in a quick and exciting way.
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