Thursday, August 05, 2010

Places to visit in Kerala

Ambalamukal: A fast developing area lying about 16 kms. east of Ernakulam. Site of Oil Refineries and FACT Kochi Division.

Bolghatty Island: A beautiful island lying close to Ernakulam and Willingdon Island. The Bolghatty Palace was built by the Dutch in 1744 which later became the seat of British Resident. The palace is now converted into a hotel. There is also a well laid golf link.

Chennamangalam: Chennamangalam was one of the chief centres of the Jews in Kerala. Very old Black Jews Synagogue, remains of Vaipicotta Seminary etc, are still present, It was the seat of Palieth Achan, the Prime Minister of erstwhile State of Cochin.

Chowara: Former summer resort of cochin Royal family . Lies on the northern bank of Aluva river (Periyar), Site of water works supplying drinking water to Ernakulam city.

Cochin Harbour and Willingdon Island: Cochin, one of the finest natural harbours in the world, and the only all weather harbour on the west coast, south of Bombay, affords a safe anchorage to ships,
Willingdon Island is a man made one which was formed with materials dredged while deepening the Cochin Port and channel, It is the seat of the harbour and cochin Port Trust. The Southern Naval Command has its headquarters here. The seaport, naval airport and the railway terminus are all on this island.

Dutch Palace: Situated at Mattancherry, it is 8 kms, away from Ernakulam. Although called Dutch, it was built by the Portuguese and presented to the Maharaja of Cochin in 1555. It acquired the present name after1663 when the Dutch added some extension to the building and carried out some repairs. In the centre of the building is the coronation hall. 17th century murals depicting scenes from the Indian Epic, Ramayana can be seen here.

Ernakulam : situated on the banks of the Vembanad lake, Ernakulam is accessible by all routes-backwater, sea, road, rail and air.

Fort Cochin : Lies 10 kms away ,from Ernakulam . The architectural style of the buildings and lay-out of the town mark out Fort Cochin from other cities and towns of Kerala. The buildings show the influence of European architecture. The Chief attraction of Fort Cochin is the St. Francis Church built by the Portuguese It is believed to be the first church built by Europeans in India. The body of Vasco Da Gama was buried here. Close to St. Francis Church is Santa Cruz Church. some beautiful paintings can be seen in the Roman Catholic Church.

Jewish synagogue: The Jewish Synagogue at Mattanchery was built in 1568. The great Scrolls of the Old Testament, The copper plates containing the privileges granted by the cochin Ruler to the Jewish community and the exquisite Chinese hand-painted tiles at the Synagogue are of great interest.

Cherai Beach
It is located in Vypin Island accessible by ferry or by road from mainland, Kochi. This calm beach is ideal for swimming. It has sea on the western side and backwater on east, which gives this tourist destination, a unique surrounding. Thick coconut grooves and Chinese fishing nets on the waterfront give it an added attraction. Dolphins can also be seen here occasionally.

Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary
This sanctuary is 12 km from Kothamangalam, which is on the Kochi-Munnar route.

This is a forest elephant care centre. Here you can see baby elephants rescued from the forests being cared for. Elephants are also trained here. Kodanadu is 15 km from Perumbavoor which is on the Kochi-Munnar route (via Aluva).
Art Complex - Madhavan Nair Foundation, Edappally - Located at Edappally, 10 kms north of Ernakulam en route to Alwaye, the complex consists of two units: the Gallery of Paintings and Sculptures, which presents over 200 original paintings by contemporary Indian artists, some of them internationally acclaimed, and works of reputed Indian sculptures. The other unit, the Centre for Visual Arts is reserved for authentic reproductions of selected world masters from Leonardo da Vinci to those of the present century. The centre also exhibits certain larger-than-life mural reproductions of ancient Indian art.

Fort Kochi Beach: The Fort Kochi beach is a place ideal for an evening stroll, Bathing and swimming are not recommended here, The colourful carnival at New Years Eve is a feature of this beach.

Bolgatty Island: This long narrow palm-fringed island,easily accessible from the mainland, is where the Bolgatty Palace is situated amidst15acres of lush green lawns. Built by the Dutch in 1744, and later became the seat of the British Resident. In 1976 the palace was converted into a hotel under the Kerala Tourism development corporation. The palace has a golf course on its grounds.

Hill Palace Museum, Tripunithura- Set on top of a hillock, this prestigious palace-turned-museum displays 13 categories of exhibits, including paintings, carvings and other royal antiquities donated by the Cochin and Travancore royal families and the Paliam Devaswom. The Heritage Museum, located on the rear side of the palace buildings familiarizes you with the traditional lifestyles of ancient Kerala. As part of the establishment of a mini zoo, a deer park with spotted deer, sambar and peacocks is run by the Society for the Preservation of Hill Palace Premises. The museum premises has also been converted into a botanical garden with exotic tropical trees from central America to Australia. Located 11 Kms east of Ernakulam, en route to Chottanikkara.

Kali Kota, Tripunithura - As the name suggests, this beautiful, imposing building a legacy of the Dutch rule served as an entertainment auditorium to the erstwhile royal family featuring dance, drama, and plays. Today it functions largely as a marriage hall, Situated near the Poornathreyesa temple

Kerala Lalitha Kala Akademi Gallery of Contemporary Art, Ernakulam - It is situated at the Durbar Hall ground on D.H. Road. The hall had been the durbar of the raja of Cochin

Mangrove Forest, Ernakulam - This small protected area a haven for birds, is located on Dr. Salim Ali Road, adjacent to the High Court of Kerala, Winter migrants include species coming from Kashmir and even distant siberia. Best time to visit mid-January to early March.

Museum of Kerala History, Edappally - Located along with the Art Complex at Edappally, it is a Sound and light show presenting thirty five scenes from the political, social, and cultural history of Kerala. Commentaries in English and Malayalam.

Pallipuram Fort, Vypeen- It is situated at the far end of Vypin island. SMall and hexagonal, it was built in 1503, claiming to be the oldest European fort in India.

Santa Cruz Basilica, Fort Cochin- There are some beautiful paintings in this Roman Catholic church situated close to the St. francis Church.

Pilgrim centres

Aluva : Situated about 21 kms north of Ernakulam. It is known for the famous Sivarathri festival.

Ankamali: A place of historic importance to Syrian Christians. Lies 40 kms. North of Ernakulam.It is the seat of the first Portuguese Bishop.

Kaladi: Kaladi is the birth place of Sreesankaracharya , the great Indian Philosopher. It is 13 kms. away from Aluva. Kaladi has got Sringeri Madham, Ramakrishna Asramam and the Sreesankara stupa.

Kanjiramattom:- It is 18kms. south east of Ernakulam. The most important and beautiful mosque of the District is situated in this place

Chottanikkara Temple: Famous for the Devi temple, an important pilgrim centre of Hindus. Navarathri is celebrated on a grand scale. The temple is located 15kms from Cochin City. The presiding deity here is Durga Bhagavathy. It is also that this deity was brought from Mookambika Temple in Karnataka and therefore there is a presence of Mookambika Devi till 7 a.m. in the morning at this temple. There is also one more temple as a part of the complex where deity is Bhadra Kali Devi. THe major festival is Makam Thozhal. It falls during February-march every year for a period of 9 days Temple is open from 4 am to 12 Noon and 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Ernakulam Siva Temple
The Temple is situated in the heart of Kochi City with Siva as deity also known as Ernakulathappan. It was built during Maharaja rule and is presently under devaswom Board control . This is one of the rarest Siva Temples where deity is facing Sea towards west. The temple has Deity of siva & Parvathy in Kirathamurthy form which is claimed to be self originated (Swayambhoo)

Sree Poornathrayeesa Temple
Located at TrIpunithura, 10 km from Cochin city. The deity here is Maha Vishnu and is one among three Vishnu Temples in Kerala . Arjuna (one of the Pancha Pandavas ) is believed to have established this temple., The Major festival of this temple is held during November-December. The Other cultural festival, Athachamayam during harvest festival of Onam is also celebrated with procession of float, Tableau and dances like Pulikkali, This deity is Kula Daivam of Cochin Royal family.

St. Francis Church
St. Francis Church is the oldest European Church in India Built i in 1503 A.D. by the Portuguese at Fort Cochin. the Dutch later restored the church in 1779. Which was converted into an anglican Church by British in 1795. Vasco-da-gama, who discovered the sea route to India from Europe, was buried here in 1524 A.D. before his mortal remains were removed to Portugal, his tomb stone still remains.

ST.George Forane Church
This is an important pilgrim centre located approximately 6 km from Kochi city. This Roman CAtholic church was built way back in 594 AD in the land donated by Raja of Edapally, This church is considered to be one of the oldest churches in Kerala. A new church building was built in 1080. CHurch is well known for the nine-day feast in the month of May.

Vamanamoorthy Temple, Thrikkakara - Set in a land of great mythological significance, this ancient temple, dedicated to Vamana- the fifth avatara of Lord Vishnu is venerated by the Vaishnavates. The temple holds a large number of lithic records, some of great historical significance. The annual festival is held in the month of chingam (Aug- sept.)

Veega Land Pallikara - Located 12 kms from the city is this unique amusement park offering a world of non-stop fun and adventure. Sprawling over 18.5.acres, the main attractions include caterpillar trains, a 500- seater theatre with a Musical fountain, the exciting family Fun Pool, the Nest housing a variety of exotic birds, and an array of water rides.


nisha said...
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