Kerala’s charms lie in its lofty mountains and backwater stretches; and travellers are drawn to the many Ayurvedic resorts along its coast. The Western Ghats, a mountain range that seperates Kerala from Tamil Nadu, is very much why Kerala is extremely lush. The collision of monsoon winds with the range produce much rainfall, making the lands fertile and rich with life. Kerala’s hill stations with their mountain paths winding through tea plantations and spice gardens are great for cycling and hiking; while forested valleys and wayside brooks make for delightful picnic spots. Kerala’s culture of music, dance, drama and martial arts can be experienced in live performances, while its festivals showcase ancient traditions and rituals.
The Path to Kerala begins in the city of Cochin, one of the most dynamic, vibrant and energetic cities in South India; and endures as a vestige to its multicultural past—Chinese fishing nets mingle with Dutch palaces, Sephardic synagogues and Portuguese forts. Apart from those sites, Cochin is where we can learn more about the Kathakali dance forms and meet the artists who perform it.
The journey continues inland to ascend the Western Ghats into Munnar. Nestled within acres of sprawling tea estates and verdant forests, you will stay on a plantation with hikes planned around the area. From here, the journey continues along the Western Ghats to Periyar— a wetland and wildlife refuge. While Periyar is a tiger reserve, it is home to a myriad of wildlife species, birds and aquatic animals.
The journey continues as we descend towards the backwaters of Kerala for your experience on a houseboat. After which, the journey concludes along the stunning beaches of the Malabar Coast.
These are a selection of lodges that we feel combine well for this journey. However we do also have a range of options to consider in each region, and can tailor them to you preference.
Like the cultures they celebrate and display, Brunton Boatyard is a five star hotel whose interiors reflect an eclectic but tasteful blend of English, Portuguese and Dutch influences as seen in its high ceilings and hanging fans.
Sitting on Observatory Hill, Windermere Estate is located on a hilltop, surrounded by a cardamom estate that includes 55 acres of undulating rises and dips covered with cardamom & coffee. Though it lacks a swimming pool, salon or spa, there is enough and more of what you need: nature, comfort and personalised service.
Built the way you would a village—with local materials, native artisans, mountain spirit and traditional wisdom. Though traditional in its conception, Spice Village offers all the comforts of a city but is in perfect harmony with its natural surroundings.
Through some imaginative tweaks to vessels called Kettuvalloms, the old boats have become floating homes to cruise the placid waters of the vast and captivating Vembanad Lake. Made from natural materials and powered by solar energy and vegetable oils, the house boats try to reduce their impact upon the lake. The crew comprises of fisherfolk, who know these waters from their early years but do more than pilot these behemoths as they alternate between navigating the waterways and preparing meals for the guests onboard.
Inspired by the fisherfolk of Mararikulam, Marari beach echoes the simplicity, beauty and harmony that underlie Malabar’s coastal cultures. Nature and wellness are omnipresent at Marari and oversee all your experiences.