Kerala is one of the most popular travel destinations in the country, drawing several thousand visitors from across the world, every year. Owing to its tropical climate, it welcomes visitors throughout the year. Popularly known as 'Godas Own Countrya, the southern state in India offers a vibrant mix of exotic locales, as well as rich culture. Blessed with pristine beaches, majestic hill stations, peaceful backwaters, eclectic flora and fauna, and a lot more, Kerala is a perfect place for a rejuvenating vacation. With this article, I am going to share with you ten things that make Kerala an ideal travel destination.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
A couple of Asian Elephants wandering around in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve
A couple of Asian Elephants wandering around in the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve

1. Wildlife -

Kerala is home to some of the most eclectic species of flora and fauna in its forests, sanctuaries, and national parks. Having preserved the dense jungles it was gifted with, Kerala boasts a rich variety of wild animals and birds in its Evergreen and Tropical Rain Forests. Asian Elephants, Royal Bengal Tigers, King Cobra, Lion Tailed Macaque, and Great Hornbill are some of the many species of fauna that can be found in Keralaas wildlife. Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve, Silent Valley National Park, Periyar Wildlife Sanctary and Periyar Tiger reserve are the largest and most popular wildlife locations in the state.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
The iconic Somatheeram Ayurveda Resort, located near Kovalam in Thiruvananthapuram district
The iconic Somatheeram Ayurveda Resort, located near Kovalam in Thiruvananthapuram district

2. Ayurved(a) -

Once the aScience of Lifea, Ayurved(a) has now become the aSlice of Lifea. It would not be wrong to call Kerala the Ayurvedic capital of the world. A number of resorts exist in the state, providing a wide range of exquisite ayurvedic therapies. People from all over the world (and not just from India) visit Kerela to get some kind of Ayurvedic treatments for the healing of mind and body. Organically grown herbs and oils are used for the treatments. Somatheeram Ayurveda Resort, established in 1985, is the very first resort in the world which provides Ayurvedic remedies, including Ayurvedic massage, to its guests. There are several more such resorts which clubs a vacation with Ayurvedic treatments. Some of the other well known Ayurvedic locations in Kerala are Kottakkal Arya Vaidya Shala, Malappuram District, Kalari Kovilakam, et cetera.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
A picture of the secluded and pristine Varkala Beach on a cloudy day taken from the top of a cliff
A picture of the secluded and pristine Varkala Beach on a cloudy day taken from the top of a cliff

3. Beaches -

Kerala has some of the most beautiful beaches one can find in India. Of all the beaches it has, Varkala and Kovalam are the most pristine ones. Varkala holds spectacular settings for watching sunrise and sunset. Known for its beautiful black sand and a majestic cliff in the backdrop, Varkala Beach, is the most happening beach in the state. Popular amongst backpackers and budget travellers, Varkala has a bevy of adventure sports in its arsenal to woo its guests (many of which have been mentioned in the ninth point in this article). Simply relax on the soft, golden sand beaches (or black sand, as in the case of Varkala Beach), with the sea on one side and rows of palm trees on the other.

4. Safety -

Kerala is one of the safest destinations in the world to visit. According to UNICEF and WHO, it is the first kid-friendly state in the whole wide world. If you are a woman and you want to experience solo travelling in India, Kerala is your best bet. According to many travel bloggers, Kerala is the most safe state in India to travel in. There are strict laws adhering to the safety of its visitors. The fact that the state has a literacy rate of almost 94 per cent, making it the most literate state in India, also encourages tourists to visit Indiaas only tropical paradise.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination

5. Culture -

Volumes can be written about Keralaas culture. Its unique and lively culture is something the state is proud of, and rightly so. Boasting a hybrid of Dravadian and Aryan culture,

Koodiyattom and Kathakali, listed by UNESCO as the Human Heritage Art, is Keralaas gift to India. And the same can be said about Kalarippayattu a a form of martial art. The Snake Boat Race in the months June and July is a one of a kind event that attracts a lot of visitors. Another event that is worthy enough to be attended is the Elephant March which takes place during the period between April and May. Their main festival of Onam brings the entire state to a life, uniting the entire population of the state, regardless of oneas religion.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
Backwaters of Alappuzha
Backwaters of Alappuzha

6. Backwaters -

Kerala is renowned all over the country for its enchanting backwaters. If you are seeking for a peaceful and quiet vacation, there are not many places in this part of the world that would make a better holiday destination than Keralaas backwaters. Whether it is for honeymoon, for weekend getaway, or for destination wedding, backwaters are ideal for all kinds of travellers. Get on board and enjoy coconut water whilst doing nothing at all. Comprising of a perfect system of lakes, waterways, channels, and inlets, experience sunset from the middle of nowhere whilst passing by rice fields.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
Exploring the enchanting Backwaters of Alappuzha
Exploring the enchanting Backwaters of Alappuzha

7. Houseboat -

A visit to Kerala would remain incomplete unless you explore the enchanting backwaters on a houseboat sailing on the placid water. The heavenly experience is too good, and not to be missed, especially if you are traveling with your better half. A houseboat is like a floating hotel, with all the basic amenities. In many cases, houseboats are owned by local families. Some of them provide scrumptious home cooked food to their guests. Spend at least one night on a houseboat, away from the hustling and bustling city life, to get the real essence of it.

8. Hill Stations -

A lot of people visiting Kerala are not aware that Kerala has a few gorgeous hill stations in its kitty. The lust green hills offer ample trekking, rock climbing, and camping opportunities to adventure junkies. Graced with tea plantations, lakes, gardens, peaks, sanctuaries, waterfalls et cetera, Kerala has arguably the most underrated hill stations in the country. The euphoric hill station of Munnar in the Idukki district of Kerala is the most popular one, but the one hill station that should be on the atop threea of your list comprising of the must visit places in Kerala has to be Wayanad. Sans the touristy crowd of Munnar, Wayanad is the most surreal hill station in the state.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
Around Anamudi
Around Anamudi

9. Water Sports -

If all the states in India were to be ranked on the basis of the best destinations for Water Sports, Kerala would find a place right at the top. Apart from the basic ones like Jet Skiing, Kayaking, and Parasailing, Kerala also offers Scuba Diving, Snorkelling, and Surfing. While it still has a long way to go before it can become a Scuba Diving hot spot in the Indian subcontinent, Surfing in Kerala is quite possibly the best one can experience in the country. Where Varkala is ideal for beginner Surfers and novice Surfers, Kovalam is good enough for semi-pro Surfers and pro Surfers.

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
Participants in a Surfing Championship held in Kovalam
Participants in a Surfing Championship held in Kovalam

10. Plantations -

One thing that many visitors to Kerala miss out on is its spice plantations, mainly because they were not aware of it at the time of travel. The state is a rich producer of paddy, coconuts, rubber, tea, and coffee. It also produces spices such as cardamom, pepper, ginger, cloves, cinnamon, et cetera. The natural air of Kerala is filled with aroma, thanks to its plantations. Visitors can explore some of the plantations on special requests. The most learning experience would be to visit a rubber plantation. So, do not forget to sign up for a visit to a plantation on your next visit to Godas Own Country.

Pic Credits: Vinodvv, Kerala Taxis, Fiveprime, Marji Lang, Chris Pople, hivemind, Dipin Das, Mckaysavage, Praveen Venugopal, hiveminer, Saif Arsh

Ten Things That Make Kerala an Ideal Travel Destination
Elephant ride in Munnar
Elephant ride in Munnar