Kerala is a tropical paradise. It follows a much gentler pace than its northern counterparts. Coconut-studded coastlines, canal-like backwaters and undulating evergreen hills – the tropical beauty of this south-west swathe of India is unrivalled. It’s not only the region’s scenic splendour that will win your heart on a holiday in Kerala, but also its friendliness, spirituality and tasty cuisine.
It has a fascinating mix of influences, from the Phoenicians, Romans, Arabs and Chinese who came to trade spices and ivory, to the Dutch, Portuguese and British – all of whom have left their mark: the Chinese fishing nets in Cochin, the Dutch forts and palaces throughout the region, the tea plantations and the cricket pitches of the Raj occupation.
In addition to the long shoreline, there are tranquil backwaters to enjoy on your luxury holiday in Kerala, flanked by beautiful hill country where the slopes are blanketed with tea plantations and the cooling breezes provide respite in the searing summer months. In amongst the plantations and paddy fields, there are numerous historic and cultural monuments. The Keralan people, with their distinctive Malayalam language, are among the most charming and independent in India, famed for their delicious fish curries and a history of independent thinking. With its rolling hills of the Western Ghats, wildlife sanctuaries, spice plantations and tranquil backwaters, Kerala deserves its title ‘God’s Own Country’.
A Kerala vacation has so much more to offer than beaches, backwaters and massages. Our bespoke luxury holidays to India take in lovely small, owner-managed properties overflowing with warm hospitality and wonderful local cuisine; superbly guided individual birding and wildlife trips well off the beaten track, where you can camp out in the middle of elephant and tiger safari country; beautiful and remote plantation bungalows stylishly and imaginatively converted to accommodate our discerning clients for their luxury Kerala holidays.
The Western Ghats with its hill stations and tea plantations flanks the eastern side of Kerala. On the western side is the Arabian Sea. This is why Kerala is known for fabulous beaches, a laid-back culture, great food, and the waterways of the backwaters. It is also very popular for its stylish boutique hotels and private villas.
Quaint cottages, fragrant tea gardens and mist-draped mornings are all hallmarks of Munnar. This destination is home to the only sandalwood forest in Kerala and is also famous for its exotic flora and fauna.
Formed by the 40 odd rivers that flow down to the Arabian Sea from the Cardamom Hills, this network of canals, lakes and estuaries comprises one of India’s most enchanting areas - a rural, riverine expanse of verdant coconut groves and rice paddies. The scene is idyllic and the mood – romantic.
Kerala with its mountainous terrain and unparalleled biodiversity is becoming an integral part of travel plans for any nature lover. Gift wrapped in lush green spice plantations, it is no doubt the heartland of spices. In and around 50 sq km of the famous Periyar Tiger Reserve, the world famous spices such as cardamom, pepper, vanilla, nutmeg and clove are all grown.
Kerala boasts of some of the most pristine and stunning beaches anywhere in India. Spread along 370 miles of palm fringed coastline by the Arabian Sea, the topography along the coast is as distinctive as it is varied as one proceeds from North to the South. What remains consistent are the miles of soothing palms that make each of these beaches a haven for travellers.
Kerala’s cuisine is like its many enchanting geographical highlights - authentic, diverse and delightful. Kerala’s love affair with food has a long history - one that dates back to the early centuries when traders from across the world came to its shores enamored by stories about the region’s spices.