One fine morning, scrolling down my Instagram feed, I came across some really enthralling pictures of Alappuzha and that made me crave like a baby to go & visit the “God’s own country”. And it was exactly after 4 months I woke up in one of the largest ports of India, Kochi.
Kerala’s every nook and corner is ethereal. In my unforgettable 12 days trip, I surrounded myself with exotic beaches, absolutely enticing backwaters, dramatic curves of the western ghats and then diving right into the womb of mother nature in Periyar National Park.
Here, I’m gonna take you through all these fascinating places where my heart and soul still lies.
On 27 Dec, I arrived in Kochi; though it was December but feels like some hot summer day; Kochi was widely ruled by the Portuguese, the Dutch and the French people and hence the place is filled with a plethora of beautiful churches and some alluding chilled-out vibe and Fort Kochi is one such place.
I was shipped to Fort Kochi from the Ernakulam Boat Jetty, approximately taking 30 mins to reach, witnessing huge oil mining ships and even cruise along the way and when I was about to reach, the 10m high Chinese fishing nets grabbed my attention. These nets are exclusive and iconic to Kochi. This has been in use for over 500 years now. Isn’t fascinating?
The city is so compact therefore making it walk friendly. Like I literally walked around the whole place visiting churches, museums, art galleries, the famous Dutch cemetery, hopping on to different cafes, shopping on Princess Street with intervals of some coconut water refreshment in-between.
TIP: you can rent a bicycle if you aren’t a fan of walking.
Bid Adieu Kochi, I move forward to the lush green and graceful western ghats (a mountain range in Kerala). I always believed that the journey is more beautiful than the destination and the journey to Munnar didn’t false my belief. The 4 hours of eye soothing landscape with Illahi playing on a loop, feels like coming to an end with a blink of an eye.
Anyway, it was completely dark and cold when I reached & also I was physically tired because of the journey so I went straight to the bed after checking in. Next day, the sweet ray of sunshine woke me up and I hurried to the balcony to see the view and OH MY GOD!!! It was something beyond my capability of explaining. I wish my camera could capture the aura.
After having my breakfast, I went for some local sightseeing which took me to Eravikulam National park. The best thing about this place is that it gives some intimidating panoramic views of the mounds and hills. I trekked to the top of the hill for a much better view and I was fortunate enough to come along the Nilgiri Tahr for which the place is famous.
TIP: in order to reach the national park entrance point you have to take a ticket of Rs 65 (for foreigner Rs 245), a mini-government bus takes you on 30 min ride up the hills along with a scenic view. No private vehicles are allowed up. So, you need to go early otherwise it gets really crowded and can take up to a few hours of the waiting line.
The next spot I went to was Mattupetty dam, dodging the awesome tea estates along the ride. Mountains were acting like a fence to the dam. Everything was so green that it literally made me feel fresh despite being tired. I just sat there for a while, sipping some organic coffee and filling up myself with all things nature.
There were other things to do in Munnar but I was quite short on time so I decided to just walk around the local market, made some conversation with the natives and had some authentic Kerala cuisine for dinner. This brings an end to the Munnar expedition of my Kerala tour and end of part 1 Kerala blog.
Stay tuned to know where it took me next.