Kerala is bestowed with the title of “God’s Own Country” and the state embraces it with vigour. Kerala is a wonderful expanse of land filled with unbridled nature, beautiful backwaters, serene beaches, and lush green hills. The state thrives on the existence of various religions and cultures in harmony but also pays homage to its heritage of Dravidian culture. With the lockdown, we miss the constant presence of coconut trees everywhere and going out for porotta and beef with a swing of toddy. Moreover, casual nights spent outside in such fashion have been restricted for a good while. Given Kerala’s exemplary management of the coronavirus situation, we believe that it’s on its way to normalcy. Although luxurious activities are still waived off with caution under the fourth lockdown phase, here’s a list of offbeat activities that you can tick off post lockdown.
While you still continue to miss your daily favourites, we have listed some offbeat recommendations that are in your budget, crowd-free and unique.
BEST THINGS TO DO IN KERALA POST LOCKDOWN
The article features offbeat activities that locals and tourists can opt for to experience a different face of Kerala. You can take a weekend off or a day off for most of these activities. We have chosen them after careful consideration of factors such as budget and time. Explore the most of your place keeping in mind your health and safety!
Take A Ride Through Valiyaparamba Backwaters
One of Kerala’s trademarks that most people claim is its beautiful backwaters. An experience of Kerala without knowing its backwaters is not a true understanding of the state. There are various backwaters in Kerala to choose from but we recommend Valiyaparamba Backwaters located in Kasargod post lockdown. It is the perfect place for nature lovers who have a penchant for offbeat locations. The Valiyaparamba Backwaters is the axis point of the merging of four rivers and is settled at the coast island of Valiyaparamba.
Furthermore, the houseboat experience available at Valiyaparamba is one of a kind. You can witness the rich and diverse wildlife inhabiting the island while nestled inside a beautiful houseboat constructed with the wood of a jackfruit tree and coconut fibre. The island has migratory birds as well that you can see. Along with boat riding, you can do bird watching along the mangrove trail or even boat and hike. You can even check out the beautiful sunset down at Kasargod.
Go Fishing With Chinese Nets
One of the most awesome experiences that Kerala packs is the experience of watching the giant Chinese fish nets. But the experience does not just end there – you can even learn this unique method along with the local fishermen of Fort Kochi. This is the spectacular art of Chinese Fishing utilized by the local fishermen! The legends claim that these giant fish nets were brought to Kochi from the court of a Mongol emperor, Kublai Khan or an explorer, Zheng He.
Witnessing the giant Chinese nets in action is actually quite humbling and is a very enriching experience. With the help of the fishermen, you can learn how they equip these nets to catch the fish near Kochi Harbour. Moreover, the best part of it all is that you can give your catch to the shacks for cooking – so you can have a great meal afterwards. The pathway along the backwaters is dotted with fishermen selling their early morning catch. You can even buy them for a lovely seafood dinner at home post lockdown!
Have A Nature Trail Through The Silent Valley
The Silent Valley National Park is one of the hidden gems of Kerala that not many know of. The hilltop forest is as enigmatic as its name sounds. The lush green Valley is spread across the Nilgiri Hills of Palakkad. It is one of the best offbeat locations of Kerala you can see post lockdown and is even a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site. The tropical evergreen forests of The Silent Valley are home to a wide range of flora and fauna. The endangered lion-tailed macaque inhabits these very forests.
Further on, even the distinct cobra plant resembling the snake itself can be found here. The forest shelters 138 species of birds, 730 varieties of insects, 34 species of mammals, around 1000 species of flowers, 75 lichen, 200 algae and more. The forest is quite dense with a lot to offer to nature lovers along the trail.
Relish Kosher Cuisine Of Cochin Jews
The Jewish Culture thriving in Kerala’s Kochi is a great addition to the city’s cultural milieu. Known as the Malabar Jews, they hold a very rich heritage dating back to 1000 BCE. The Jewish settlement in Kochi opens a portal to a quaint yet ancient hamlet centred around a synagogue. Upon the destruction of the Second Temple, the Jewish Community migrated into Southern India and were welcomed with great hospitality. They were allowed to live freely, own property and preserve their culture that we witness today. And one of the most enlightening ways to experience their culture post lockdown is to try their Kosher Cuisine.
The Menorah Restaurant situated at Princess Street of Fort Kochi beautifully pays homage to the Jewish heritage. It offers authentic Jewish food with a flair of Kerala as a representation of the community itself. Moreover, the hotel is owned by an illustrious Jewish family – The Koders – and serves great Jewish dishes such as Koubba which is an Indo-Jewish stuffed chicken cooked in Jewish gravy, Plave which is rice cooked in coconut milk and Fish Sadambar which is fish cooked in coconut and mustard gravy. You can end your feast with a taste of the Jewish pudding for dessert.
Drive To Catch The Sunset At Muzhappilangad Beach
Muzhappilangad Beach located in Kannur has a unique charm that distinguishes it from any other beach in Kerala. It is the only drive-in beach located in Kerala and serves as a great destination for those who love to drive. People performing stunts in their cars and bikes is a usual sight here. Moreover, it adds a rare charm to this beach that is frequented by adventure enthusiasts. The beach in itself is a beautiful expanse of sand with waves lapping at its edge. It is the perfect place to go to with your friends for a fun adventure.
However, the most beautiful sight offered by this beach is the sunset which is a must experience post lockdown. You can sit in your car or bike and watch the sun disappear as it washes the entire bay in its golden hue. Keep your cameras with you because the scene is quite picturesque and one that is unforgettable!
Go Bird Watching at Thattekad Bird Sanctuary
The Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is a haven for nature lovers and those who love bird watching especially. The sanctuary is located at the northern banks of the Periyar River and is the first-ever bird sanctuary in Kerala. The beauty of Thattekad Bird Sanctuary is undeniable as it is surrounded by lush green forests that the lake mirrors creating a green hue. This very green environment hosts around 250 species of birds, nocturnal animals along with sloths and leopards. The bird sanctuary even shelters migratory birds from Siberia during winter.
Furthermore, the green expanse of land is a mixture of tropical evergreen grasslands and deciduous forests. This place is a birdwatcher’s paradise and attracts only those aficionados. Therefore, it remains a lovely offbeat location to sink your teeth into post lockdown. Some of the birds you’ll have the luxury of seeing is the Sri Lankan frogmouth, drongo, shama, Malabar parakeet and the hornbill. So set out to Thattekad Bird Sanctuary with your binoculars!
Trek up to Chembra Peak for a Beautiful View
The lockdown has been marked with great inactivity. Even those engaged in routine exercise can admit the lack of thrill or excitement in it. So, we believe that the trek up to Chembra Peak is the perfect solution for a post-lockdown unwind. Trek lovers or nature lovers mustn’t miss out on Chembra Peak. The peak offers a beautiful view of the lush green rolling hills under the misty sky. The trek to Chembra Peak is quite thrilling especially with the refreshing weather conditions of the Wayanad district. All you’re left thinking is, “This place is so green!” And only those who see it themselves can justify the deep green scenery they witnessed.
The peak stands at 2100 m above the sea and is a great trekking expedition challenge for people. Furthermore, the trekking requires permission from the forest office of Meppady and does not allow camping. For beginners, the trek should take approximately 3 hours and we advise you to time your schedule accordingly. While descending, you will be able to see the heart-shaped lake called Hridaya Thadakam. So, boost your adrenaline and pack your bags for a fun day backpacking up the beautiful hill.
Visit India’s First Ecotourism Village
India’s first eco-friendly tourist village is Kumbalangi in Kerala’s Kochi. The village showcases the myriad beauty of nature and people know it for fishing. The village with its serene beauty faces the Kochi backwaters and also makes use of giant Chinese Fishing nets for its livelihood practices. It is a scenic beauty that is untouched by the modern ambitions of tourism today. One can nestle themselves into one of the quaint homestays available to witness how the people of Kumbalangi live post lockdown.
Moreover, the picturesque landscape of the sun rays falling over the pristine water and watching the local fisherman go about their day adds onto the charm of this little hamlet. As a tourist or even a local tourist, you can settle yourself quietly within the village and watch the practices of nature unfold. It is quite demure in nature in what it has to offer but in no way does it make the place inferior in the charms and beauty it possesses.
Witness the Historical Beauty of Kerala Folklore Museum
The architectural design of the Kerala Folklore Museum is enough to make your jaw drop. This fascinating building seeks to show its visitors the traditional heritage of Kerala. The museum is a conglomeration of three different styles of architecture hailing from the state itself. They’re reminiscent of the three regions that Kerala was divided into during the medieval period. The ground floor reflects the Malabar style, the first floor reflects the Kochi style and the second floor reflects the Travancore style. Moreover, the museum showcases around 4000 artefacts that were once part of South Indian temples and homes.
You’ll be able to find distinct Kathakali masks, traditional musical instruments, ornaments, and utensils that the museum has collected. One of the museum’s highlights is the traditional door lock Manichitratazhu. It is a great enterprise that will draw lovers of history to its location post lockdown. In its pursuit to educate, the museum also holds plays that help people understand the traditions of Kerala on a deeper scale.
Explore the Enchanting Ponmudi Hill Station
If you love long drives along winding paths to a breathtaking destination, then you must explore Ponmudi Hills post lockdown. You should include the hill station in your itinerary while exploring the capital of the state, Thiruvananthapuram city. The term Ponmudi translates to Golden Peak. The hill station is known for its natural beauty where the green hills are shrouded with mist. It stands at an elevation of 945 meters and offers an intimidating view of the valley below and the hills around it. The hill station is not highly ambitious in the experience it offers but it is an idyllic escape from the city bustle.
Further on, it is the perfect destination for a one day trip. The lack of crowd at Ponmudi helps you capture its beauty even more. The hill is carpeted with large grasslands and narrow pathways between it for you to explore. The cool atmosphere at the top adds to its perks. The Hill station even offers other tourist attractions such as Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary and Echo Point along with its mist-ladened golden valley.
On another note, Woovly requests the countrymen to stay inside their houses and follow the guidelines issued by the government. In these times of need, please help the needy and do whatever is under your capabilities to help the country.
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