Flying to Kochi with a friend of mine, Giorgia, we draw up the vague plan to visit Fort Kochi and the backwaters in Alleypey. Frankly, we were leaving without knowing where to go exactly and what Kerala would have to offer to us.
Reaching the touristic Fort Kochi, it strikes us to see such a different state: magnifiscient colourful houses, highly-warm and welcoming Indians, chinese nets as far as our eye could see and, of course, unlimited seafood!
Our journey starts therefore with a typical malayalam lunch. We directly bought fresh seafood to the fisherman as Aakash spontaneously came to us and offered to make us discover the Kerala cuisine. What a delicious lunch!
After a ten-minute ferry trip, we reach Vypin Island and jump into a rikshaw. Our aim is to reach a secret and untouristic place: Cherai Beach. Thirty kilometers northway from the ferry station of Vypin Island, this desertic and paradisiac white-sand beach spreads over the horizon. No need to describe there another amazing Indian sunset!
It is the Easter week and Indians in Kerala being particularly religious, hindu and catholic festivals are taking place every night in temples, streets and on the beach. In a second, we find ourselves involved at night in an elephants and endless people procession. The loud carnatic music, typical of South India, is notably made up with drums, mridangam, ghatam and kanjira, which immersed us in a mystic and spiritual mood.
We decide not to sleep on a houseboat as time was running too fast and spend the next day chilling on a small wooden boat called “shikara”. The boat cruise took us through the sinuous backwaters where we admired the villagers’lifestyle, fishing, swimming or washing the laundry and dishes. Apart from the coconuts we devoured that day, we had lunch, or should I say a whirlwind of flavours and colours served in a banana leaf, at an outstanding spot, in the middle of the backwaters.Stunning!
For our last day in Kerala, Najeeb, our sweet driver, drives us to Kodanad in a camp where elephants are raised to liven up the religious rituals. This morning, a mother-elephant and its baby are receiving from six men an invigorating massage, lying happily in the river. The mother is showering herself with her trunk and we can’t help feeling touched by this scene.
After this adorable moment, we just have time to discover the Pane Pirelli (litterally waterfalls in malayalam). Instead of waterfalls, we rather walk along the banks of the Periyar river, running through the Kerala jungle and mountains. We take this opportunity to dive in the river and stare at this gorgious nature. At this particular moment, I know that Giorgia and me are thinking the same: “let’s enjoy this lost paradise before flying back to Delhi”.
Let’s travel in Kerala with Shanti Travel !