Kerala’s coastline

Posted on October 25, 2014

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I went to Kerala in 2009 and just found my notes (in 2014) so thought I’d pop them up in case of use. We did this trip on a bit of a budget and stayed in homestays – which gave us a much better flavour of the areas we were in. I’d highly recommend it.

Kerala 1 Kerala is one of the richer states in India. People can live off the land so there is less poverty. Literacy rates and life expectancy are also the highest in the country or were then!)

kerala 2 Fly to Cochin and take an airport taxi to Fort Cochin staying at The Greenwoods. We stayed a couple of nights and that felt about right. In the afternoons when the fisherman come in you can buy fresh fish and then take it up the road to be cooked – well worth it.

We then took a bus to Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. There were 8 buses per day, and the journey was 6 hours. There are a couple of different homestays that were recommended to us: Coffee Inn and Greenview. I absolutely loved the wildlife reserve although was a touch disappointed that the chances of seeing a tiger are beyond rare. One guide had been there over 20 years and never seen one! If it’s be raining beware of leeches!

From Periyar we travelled to Allepy to get a houseboat on the backwaters. All down the coastline there are multiple transport options, from ferries to trains to buses or lovely old white taxis (still pretty cheap).

 

kerala 4I was there off season so we just turned up and bargained a price based on what we’d heard was reasonable.  We opted to pay a bit more to have an upstairs balcony which was amazing for views. Most boats seem to come with a driver and a chef. Needless to say the food was amazing – fresh every day. The backwaters themselves are simply amazing. Village life there serene, but also pretty surreal.

If you can, spend a couple of nights on the backwaters – one isn’t quite enough as you don’t get a full day and night and three or four is too many once you have a good grip of the scenery and village life.

kerala festivalFrom the backwaters we travelled to the clifftop village of  Varkala. I remember it being a little like a tourist hippy commune – lots of beautiful fresh vegetarian food, and yoga on the beach. Not my usual bag but I loved it. When we were there a festival was on with long processions through the streets. In hindsight we should have done some research before we left as we could have got more out of it, but what we saw was incredible

For the last few days we decided on a  bit of luxury and stayed at Bathsaida for some ayurvedic treatments.

 

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Posted in: Asia, Destinations