Kottayam situated in South of Cochin is a cultural Center with beautiful Old churches. Though a busy commercial city, on its west, it has beautiful backwaters & on its eastern parts it is full of greenery. At Vembanad Lake in Kumarakam tourists can enjoy the beautiful backwater trips.
Bordered by the lofty Western Ghats on the east, the Vembanad lake on the west, Kottayam is the land of unique backwater stretches, lushy paddy fields, highlands, extensive rubber plantations, a totally literate people has given this district the little: "The Land Of Letters Latex and Lakes".
Kottayam occupied a pre-eminent position in the cultural life of the Travancore princely court, the main reason being the migration of Ramapurathu Warrier, the famous poet of Vadakkumkur, to Triruvananthapuram, following the annexation of Kottayam by Marthanda Varma. Kottayam has played its role in all the political agitation of modern times.The "Malayali Memorial" agitation may be said to have had its origin in Kottayam. Kottayam is the ideal take - off point for visits to Peermede, Munnar, Idukki, Thekkady, Ernakulam and the temple city of madurai.
|Temperature||:||(deg C) - Summer- Max 35 Min 22.5 Winter- Max 32 Min 22|
|Best Season||:||October to March|
Places of Interest
The resorts nearby offer comfortable accommodation and exclusive leisure options like an Ayurvedic massage, yoga, meditation, boating, fishing, angling and swimming.
Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary
Located on the banks of the Vembanad Lake an 16 km from Kottayam town, the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, an ornithologist's paradise, is a favourite haunt of migratory birds like the Siberian stork, egret, darter, heron and teal. Other common varieties like the woodpecker, skylark, crane, water hen and parrots can also be spotted here. A cruise along the Vembanad Lake is the best way to experience the sanctuary. Pathiramanal, an enchanting island on the lake, can be accessed by boat from here.
Reservoirs at Nattakom and Panachikad
Adding to the charm of these quiet villages are their scenic reservoirs escorted by vivid green all along. Migratory birds come seeking this verdant landscape every summer and frolic in the natural splendours till the end of the season. A boat ride from Kodoorar in Panachikad to Kumarakom is a great way to relax and enjoy nature's bounties. Facilities here cater to the recreation needs of tourists, from soothing Ayurvedic massages to boating, fishing and swimming.
The Vembanad Lake
Kottayam is a vast network of rivers and canals which empty into the great expanse of water called the Vembanad Lake. The lake, an enchanting picnic spot and a fast developing backwater tourism destination, provides boating, fishing and sightseeing experiences that are truly exhilarating. The Kumarakom Tourist Village offers houseboat cruises and holiday packages.
The serene lake comes alive during Onam with a spectacular water regatta - the snake boat races. It is indeed amazing to watch oarsmen, at least a hundred in one boat, slice their way through the waters to the fast rhythm of their own full throated singing.
Poonjar Palace at Poonjar on the Pala-Erattupetta route, Kottayam district, central Kerala. Royal collection of antiques, rock cut lamps, sculptures etc. The Poonjar Palace is a glorious testimony to the regal opulence of a bygone era. Within the palace walls is an extraordinary royal collection of antiques and exquisite furniture including a palanquin, a thoni carved out of a single piece of wood for Ayurvedic massages, huge chandeliers, palm leaf engravings, jewel boxes, varieties of lamps, sculptures of Nataraja (the dancing Siva), grain measures, statues and weapons.
A unique conch preserved here is taken out once a year for ritualistic purposes.Near the palace is an amazing replica of the Madurai Meenakshi Temple. The walls of this temple bear sculptures that narrate stories from the Puranas (the legends of ancient India). However, the most fascinating thing here is the Chuttuvilakku (row of lamps) carved out on the stonewalls of the Sastha Temple nearby. Such rocks cut lamps are rare in India.
The Kesari waterfalls, also known as Valanjamkanam falls, lies between Kuttikanam and Murinjapuzha on the Kottayam-Kumaly route. Valanjamkanam is a 3 hr. journey from Kottayam by any bus to Kumaly; trek to Kuttikanan offers additional adventurous spirit and closeness to nature.
This lies a few kms away from Eerattupetta. It is exactly 7 kms from Teekoy rubber estate. From here a private vehicle can take you further 2 kms after which the road is not motor able. To reach the falls one has to trek through the estate over the rocky path. The waterfall is about 60 metres in height, falling into a 12-meter deep pool and joins the River Teekoy way down.
18 km from Kottayam town, 2 km down a mud lane from Kumarakom is this beautiful picnic spot where streams tinkle as they make their way through the landscape and waters roar as they cascade down the mountains from a height of I00 ft. Tourists can also enjoy the shade of the rubber plantations here.
The Mosque at Thazhathangadi is one of the ancient mosques in India. It is believed that malik Dinar had built this mosque about 1000 years ago.
60 km north-east of Kottayam town, nestled in the lush green Western Ghats is this nature-rich village. This is also the entrance point to South India's most prominent pilgrim centres - the Sabarimala Temple. At Kanakapalam nearby, teak plantations dot the landscape. Vavarambalam, Erumeli : This mosque is dedicated to Vavar, a companion of the deity - Sree Ayyappa - of the Sabarimala temple. The mosque is unique in that Hindu pilgrims customarily worship here before their trek to Sabarimala. Festival Pettathullal (January).
An enchanting landscape formed by a chain of green hills at the Bharananganam panchayat. A shrine dedicated to the Pandava brothers of the epic Mahabharatha is found here. As in the famous temple at Sabarimala, only ghee is used to Iight the lamps here. Women are not permitted inside the temple.
St. Mary's Church, Bharananganam
The mortal remains of the Blessed Alphonsa are entombed at this church which is now a famous pilgrim centre. Thousands gather at this holy shrine during the annual festival: Feast of the Blessed Alphonsa (July).
Skirting the Kottayarn district are beautiful valleys of Ilaveezhapoonchira, spread over thousands of acres. The verdant landscape punctuated by four gigantic hills, each rising to around 3200 ft., is an ideal place to unwind. During the monsoons when the valley fills up to form a scenic lake, this place unveils yet another beautiful slice of nature. Ilaveezhapoonchira means valley where leaves don't fall and is named so because the place has no trees. This is also one of the best places in Kerala to enjoy both the sunrise and sunset. A DTPC rest house nearby offers comfortable accommodation.
As the name suggests, the valley of this rocky mountain reflects the morning sun with a mirror like perfection. This is also the highest point in Ilaveezhapoonchira. 3 km from here is the Pazhakakanam Plateau nourished by the Kadapuzha River Bamboo groves, meadows and wild flowers make this place exotic. An added attraction here is the Kazhukankulimali WaterFalls that playfully cascade down the mountain and greet the river below with a magnificent splash. On the eastern side of Kannadipara is a natural fort set amidst steep rocks.
How to reach Kottayam?
|Air||:||Nearest Airport is Cochin- 76 kms.|
The railway station is situated 2 km from the central bus station and is connected to the major cities of India.
|Road||:||Cochin-76 kms, Madurai- 248 kms, Kanyakumari- 267 kms, Thekkady- 114 kms, Trivandrum- 180 kms|
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