Both our family roots originate from a beautiful state in India called Kerala. Kerala is known as "God's own country", one of India's most scenic states with serene backwaters, golden beaches, mountain range, unique art forms and delicious cuisine. We hope you make this trip into a relaxing yet adventurous journey and experience the vibrant culture of India.
What to see in Kerala
Varkala, a calm and quiet hamlet, lies on the outskirts of Thiruvananthapuram district. It has several tourist attractions that include a beautiful beach, a 2000-year-old Vishnu Temple, and the Ashramam - Sivagiri Mutt a little distance from the beach. The Papanasam Beach (also called Varkala Beach), which is ten kilometers away from Varkala, is renowned for a natural spring. Which is considered to have medicinal and curative properties. A dip in the holy waters at this beach is believed to purge the body of impurities and the soul of all sins; hence the name 'Papanasam Beach'.
Kovalam is an internationally renowned beach with three adjacent crescent beaches. It has been a favorite haunt of tourists since the 1930s. A massive rocky promontory on the beach has created a beautiful bay of calm waters ideal for sea bathing.
Munnar rises as three mountain streams merge - Mudrapuzha, Nallathanni, and Kundala. 1,600 m above sea level, this hill station was once the summer resort of the erstwhile British Government in South India. Sprawling tea plantations, picturesque towns, winding lanes and holiday facilities make this a popular resort town. Among the exotic flora found in the forests and grasslands here is the Neelakurinji. This flower which bathes the hills in blue once in every twelve years will bloom next in 2018. Munnar also has the highest peak in South India, Anamudi, which towers over 2,695 m. Anamudi is an ideal spot for trekking.
The scenic backwaters of Kerala comprise serene stretches of lakes, canals, and lagoons located parallel to the coast of the Arabian Sea. The backwater regions of Kerala are one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. The tranquil backwater cruises are a once in a lifetime experience. Alappuzha, known as the 'Venice of the East', is especially popular for its houseboat cruises where you can soak in nature in its finest form.
Step foot into Fort Kochi and you will be instantly transported to a different time period. This place is steeped in the history and culture of all who have occupied it through the ages. Its roots and essence are unique in its diversity.
As you walk down the stone slabs that lead to the base of the Athirappalli waterfalls, a mysterious serenity overcomes you. It is Kerala's most famous and largest waterfall at over 80 ft high. The sight of the water crashing onto the ground leaves you with a sense of wonder at the sheer power and force of nature. Located around 63 km from Thrissur district, it is a perennial picnic spot for people in the area and from beyond. Its surrounding greenery is perfect for walks and picnics with loved ones. Lying at the entrance to the Sholayar ranges, it is a part of the Chalakudy River which calls the Western Ghats its home.
Other popular destinations can be found here: https://www.keralatourism.org/popular-destination/
What to see in other parts of India
(Air Travel might be required to visit those places)
India packs a lot into a massive space, and you'll never have time to see it all on one trip. Think about what interests you, what you like doing and how much time you have, and tailor your trip accordingly. Be realistic about how much you can fit in. Rather than trying to see the whole country, you may get more out of your trip if you concentrate on the south of the country, or on the north. However, internal flights are plentiful and inexpensive so you can hop from north to south if you want a taste of both worlds. The itineraries section at the front of Lonely Planet's guidebooks to India can be a great help.
No visit to India is complete without visiting the Taj Mahal in Agra. The most popular India tour is the all-time classic Golden Triangle. If time is short this is a fantastic introduction to three of India's top destinations, Delhi, Agra, and Jaipur, and you can squeeze it into a week if you don't mind moving every couple of days.
To get a sense of Indian spirituality you have to go to Varanasi, India’s holiest city.
Himalayas & Kashmir:
If things start heating up in the plains, it is time to make the trek to the Himalayas, to Ladakh with its Tibetan temples, Kashmir where you can laze away on a house-boat in Srinagar, or Darjeeling for a cuppa tea.
The palaces and forts of Rajasthan are a must if you have to pick three, Udaipur, Jodhpur, and Jaisalmer should be on top of that list.
Sri Harmandir Sahib, also known as Golden Temple and the 'Darbar Sahib, is the holiest Gurdwara and the most important pilgrimage site of Sikhism.
This pint-sized state is more than just beaches, booze, and trance parties. A kaleidoscopic blend of Indian and Portuguese cultures, sweetened with sun, sea, sand, seafood, and spirituality, there's nowhere in India quite like it. There is so much that is unique about Goa, with many visitors finding the laid-back pace of life in marked contrast to the frenetic pace of the north.