if you follow me on Instagram then you will know I have just got back from kerala in india. it was an incredible place that was full of beauty. I went with my grandma and we did a tour for 12 days then we had three days at the end to relax at the beach. we started our tour in the city of cochin then we went to alleppey and spent the night on a houseboat travelling up the backwaters which was incredible as we got to see how people lived beside the water. then we went to Thrissur and saw the Athirappilly waterfall, this was beautiful but I’m not going to lie It was a long way down to the bottom and in the heat, I struggled with the walk back up afterwards lol. then we went to munnar up in the hills where all the tea plantaions are, I loved it here it was amazing being up in the clouds to so pretty. from here we travelled to trekkady here we saw the spice plantations and I got to see how all the spices grow it was amazing. the smell of cardamom was drifting through the air. here and rode on a elephant, we stayed in a reserve at periyar lake and got to see four wild elephants. our tour ended in Trivandrum. then we stayed in kovalam for three nights. not only was the place beautiful but the people where too, I have never met such friendly people on holiday. the food was amazing too. a lot spicier than I was expecting but you got used to the heat after a day or two. I am obsessed with the dessert gulab jamun I am going to try and recreate it.
I didn’t get any photos in cochin but here we went to fort kochi to see the Chinese fishing nets and helped the fishermen pull up the net. we also went on our first tuc tuc ride through the streets it was really run, and very one was waving at us. and visited a few local churches and we went to st francis church which is the oldest Christian church in kerala, we went to see the Mattancherry Palace (Dutch Palace) – In the heart of Jew Town, Mattancherry Palace, is now a small museum. back at the hotel we had a Ayurveda massage this was quite an experience (imagine being topless is net pants. a bit embarrassing), but I have to admit I felt quite good the next day.
alleppey back waters
Kerala’s back waters are quite famous, the boats you see are the typical house boats made or teak and bamboo. we stayed on one with four bedrooms they are quite spacious. the crew prepared us a traditional Kerala lunch served on a banana leaf. I loved this part of the trip and found it really interesting to see how the local people lived on and next to the water. whether it was traveling across it by boat, washing their laundry in it or fishing. I love to see the culture it really interests me. the rice paddies are along side the water so the people that live here work in the fields or on the water.
thirssur Athirappilly water fall
this waterfall was pretty spectacular but because the monsoon season was not that great this year there was not as much water as usual. the walk down to the bottom of the waterfall but a bit tricky, I was the youngest in our group and I think I found it the most difficult especially the journey back up again in the heat. but I did it and I can look back now and smile. the next day we went to see traditional dance and we saw this kathikali dancer. kathikali is a major form of dance in Kerala. it was just as amazing to watch him getting ready as it was to see him dance. it takes them 3 hours to get their make up and costume on. its quite incredible to watch as this dance is not just with their bodies they use their eyes too.
munnar is a hill station high up in the hills is at approx. 1600m above sea level. you are literally up in the clouds. this part of kerala stole my heart, I could quite happily move here. the landscape was covered with tea plantations and there was greenery every where. the lake was next to the mattupetty dam, we travelled up to the Eravikulam National Park, which is where the Anamudi Peak (2,695 m) is the tallest mountain in South India. we got to see jungle bees nest and visit a tea museum where we got to learn all about the history of the plantations in munnar and we got to see how they make the leaves into drinkable tea.
thekkady in the cardamom hills is where you will find the spice plantations, rubber plantations and pineapple plantations and coffee. we visited one and saw how peppercorns, cardamom, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg, chilli, cocoa, turmeric and clove where grown it was interesting to see how the spices I use on a regular basis are grown. we also got to ride on an elephant through the plantation. the elephant we rode on was called maurty and she was 25 I was a bit scared and felt a bit bad that the pour animal had to carry me and granma on its back but afterwards she got a treat of three pineapples and she looked very happy about it. we then spent the night in periyar national park. in the morning we went on a boat ride on periyar lake and saw loads of amazing birds, monkeys, a dear and a mongoose and the cherry on the top was seeing a family of elephants. a male, two females and a baby. my grandma was a bit disappointed we didn’t see a tiger though.
we saw loads of king fishers (below)
down in the south of kerala is thivandrum. we went to see the horse palace which was pretty spectacular we couldn’t take photos inside but the ceilings where all carved out of wood and each one was different it was incredible, it is next to the swampy temple above. trivandrum is where you will find kerala’s beaches. we stayed at samudra beach and we went to kovalam beach on a tuc tuc one morning to go shopping. we loved watching the fishermen pulling in their nets and my grandma and a few others from the group helped them pull the nets in. they mainly caught small sardines but the nets where always full of jelly fish which put me off going swimming in the sea a bit. the skirts to see the men wearing are called dotis and that is what all the men in kerala wear. it was amazing to see at the waters edge and see fish eagles and other birds of prey flying over head.
I loved india so much that I am desperate to go back, it was really amazing and if you are wanting to travel to india but are looking for something a bit more laid back than deli then I highly recommend it here, I felt safe, and happily walked around town with out being hassled to buy stuff, apart from in kovalam but we didn’t mind it so much as the people are so friendly. we found a lot of people wanted to take photos with us as they don’t see a lot of British people which was quite funny.