St. Mary's Cathedral Trivandrum : St. Mary's Cathedral is an old church at Pattom that has been recently renovated. I liked the atmosphere inside the church and the detailed architecture with its stained glass windows. The church also has a bell tower. The locals told us that Pope John Paul II had visited this cathedral when he visited India.
I am a young and an energetic student who loves to find thrill in anything that I do! Actually my friends have nicknamed me Columbus since I always love to explore new places! I also believe in partaking of the pleasures I enjoyed and therefore click snaps and show my friends some of the great unexplored vistas that I come across during my trekking.
Every year I make sure my vacation is spent in some exotic place, but well within my budget and also make sure to include a complete blast of adventure activities. I have visited many trekking regions and cherish every moment of the time I enjoyed in the arms of nature. This time I decided to plan a vacation to God’s own country that is Kerala.
My uncle resides near the Varkala Beach Kerala. He always spoke about the beauty of this wonderful place. It was in fact my dream destination and many times I had thought about visiting this marvelous beach. I grabbed this opportunity and also took some of my closest friends along with me for a visit to Kerala. We alighted on the railway station and we took a taxi to Varkala, which was a beautiful and secluded hamlet 51 kms north of the capital city Trivandrum. On the way we could see many beautiful resorts, old churches, historical monuments which looked very beautiful.
We stayed in my uncle’s house for a week and enjoyed every moment playing in the beach. I also came to know that this beach had cliffs and it provided me some leeway for trekking too! Evenings appeared magnificent with wonderful sea view from the balcony. The alluring bluish color of the sea and the golden sun setting down over the sea was a feast for my photographic skills. We also visited few churches nearby and enjoyed a night dance lighting a camp fire in the backyard here.
The Papanasam beach which is renowned for its natural spring and the medicinal and curative power of its holy waters is also at very short distance from Varkala beach. If you want to bring something for your friends and family back at home, the shopping bazaar offers you rich wooden handicrafts and hot banana chips which are truly delicious!
I have been to Trivandrum several times when I was a small kid. My grandfather who was in a transferable job, had been posted in Trivandrum for about 5 years. I was happy that I got the opportunity to sojourn in Trivandrum once again when my best friend from Trivandrum got engaged. I went along with her and stayed in the place for 2 weeks when we had great fun. The day we reached Trivandrum, my friend took me to her house which lay near the East Fort.The lane in which her house was situated, was a narrow one, with several adjoining residences. The best thing about staying in her house was- Sri Padhmanabhaswamy Temple was straight opposite her house. My friend told me that the house was one of the palatial guest houses and her grandfather had purchased it from the Travancore king way back in the 1920s.
I loved the night scene of the lovely pond adjoining the temple. The lane had some street shops with greatly attracted me. There were also people selling cute ornaments in moving carts. I purchased some beautiful earrings from the shop. The best things about the shops are that-they offer products at incredibly cheap rates. I bought a huge pile of earrings for just a hundred rupee. Had I done the same shopping in a mall, it would have cost me at least a thousand rupee. When I use the earrings, several people swarm up to me asking where I purchased it!
My friend took me to a theater nearby and we watched a Hindi movie together. Lying in the Western Ghats, Trivandrum had the most pleasant weather that I had ever experienced! Being a trekker, I wanted to know about some trekking locations in Trivandrum. I was surprised to learn that there were a couple of colleges built on hill tops. I went trekking to one such place. I wished I were a student of the college so that I could walk to the hill top every day. Overall, my experience in Trivandrum was simply superb! I look forward to visiting Trivandrum again in the near future, and staying there for a longer duration.
Kovalam Beach And Light House : Of the 3 main beaches in Kovalam, the Lighthouse beach is the most popular. There are many hotels, restaurants, and shops here - so quite commercialized area of Kovalam. You can take a trip to the towering lighthouse but remember to check the timings as it is open only for a short period.
I Ayushi Manroa was quite fortuitous enough to take up travelling as a student and I was keen on exploring the world before I selected a 9 – 5 job and got buried amidst the huge pack of files in a office cabin! Having started young, as a lucid traveler and a photographer, I am often ready to set off in search of impeccable shots that will leave a viewer yearning for more! Some of the experiences are my plunge into the Ganges, indulgence in Goa’s water sports, trekking in the Coorg and a step ride across the Western Ghats,. As travelling is my forte, I have penned down my experiences of these explorative tours in my blog that beautifully captures my travelogues. An avid beach lover I planned to take off far south to witness a beach popular as the paradise of south, Kovalum beach.
Kovalam Beach: Indulge In Fun–Packed Activities!
I was mesmerized by the inartificial beauty, ambrosial surrounding and the beautiful sand kissed shore that made Kovalam beach a heavenly paradise. Apart from the usual sunbathing, I indulged myself in day long aquatic adventures like Para-sailing, snowboarding, windsurfing and catamaran drive. Though I am not a shopping fanatic, I was attracted by the shops scattered near the lighthouse beach and convinced myself for some street –shopping, that ended in parting with some of my savings for a sarong, wooden carved box ,rug and some jewelries!
As I was on a tight budget this time so thought of going in for Suprabhatham an eatery that spelled its magic on me with its comfortable ambience, vegetarian dishes and authentic local cuisine all at a dirt-cheap price . I loved the place for its rustic setup amidst the palm grooves that further enhances an intimate ambience under a star-filled night. Just turned 23, quite happy being a free bird, I decided to enjoy and explore the night life and some discos nearby. My search landed me up at the Beatles, where I met one of my school friends. We had a lovely time eating some delicious Prawns in Banana Leaf, sipped on some punches and danced to the tunes from the 70s and 80s.On my last day I visited the Athulya Theatre and caught up with the most awaited movie Bhag Milkha Bhag amidst the local crowds. Truly it was a wonderful way of concluding the trip and taking back home some sweet memories!
I always had a fascination to travel extensively throughout India and explore the pristine assets of this gorgeous country. With my hard earned money through a part-time job, I wanted to spend summer holidays in some exotic location which could add some spice to my dreary life along with some good doses of adventure and thrill! This time, I planned a trip to the tranquil land filled with beauty sprawling across the Western Ghats which is none other than Kerala. I was excited and enthralled to visit the God’s own country and was waiting to explore its natural beauty at every smidgen.
Since I was a student and not into a regular job, the money I earned was not huge and I had to complete the whole trip in Kerala well under a tight budget. I started my journey to Thiruvananthapuram with my back-pack and my heart filled with joy about the adventure that am going to experience in this serene land. After a brief freshening up session at the hotel I boarded a local bus to Agastyarkoodam. Throughout my journey all I could see was lush greens, vibrant flowers and wavy trees.
After 25 minutes of walk, I reached the exact location from which I could begin my trekking. This is completely a forest area and I had to get a pass from the forest authority to continue my hiking. A very sweet tribal guide helped me navigate through this faultless place. Though, we didn’t understand each other’s language but our common interest towards this peak brought a special bond between us. I hauled at Athirmala and enjoyed the fresh food provided by them and a peaceful sleep. The next day I reached the peak after 12 Km trek. Though I was young, I couldn’t keep pace with my guide who must be in his late 60’s. The scenic views were so mesmerizing with mountains and Arabian Sea at either side making it a heaven. We came back to the entrance spot and I thanked my guide for his help throughout my journey. This trip made me realize no nightlife or disco can provide the thrill of nature!
I am a person who loves to trek and to have fun-filled adventures. I always find Kerala to be a place where I can experience the best of treks and have great fun. I have a special craze for 'Water Bodies'. I just love to take a dip in the lakes of Kerala. I love the place because of the plethora of lakes and lagoons that it houses. Blessed are the people of Kerala and no doubt that this is the reason why it is called 'God's Own Country'. When I had been to Kottayam during my previous trip to Kerala, I stayed in the Kumarakom Lake Resort.
I loved Kumarakom Lake Resort to the core! The main reason why I liked it was because it was situated beside a lake. I liked the manner in which the hotel was built. The resort was built in with delicate wood works, and symmetric plinths similar to palatial houses of Kerala. They reminded me of my stay in the palatial house of my friend in Trivandrum, with whom I had stayed for a while. I specifically liked the lush green surroundings of the resort. The lawns were very well-maintained and pruned. I was checked-in to my accommodation by the amiable staffs who were patient enough to reply to all the unintelligent questions that I posed to them!
When I asked a staff about the accommodation options available in the resort, she confronted me with a large array of rooms to choose from. Having a weak memory, I had to ask her to repeat it several times. I chose the Luxury Pavilion Rooms. As I had expected, the room was designed with top-notch facilities and luxurious amenities. After taking rest, I went for boating. It was great fun to go boating.
In the afternoon, I took a stroll across the resort. There were several restaurants in the resort. I chose the 'Ettukettu' restaurant first. This was a multi-cuisine restaurant, and I settled for some Chinese food. I loved the traditional recipe of 'Puttu' in one of the restaurants of the resort. It was a great dining experience and a delightful stay that gave me precious memories. I also went shopping and bought some beautiful souvenirs for my friends which they all loved to the core! It was great that though I had a tight budget, I could enjoy a beautiful stay in this resort and it was packed with precious memories too!
About HouseBoats In Kerala : Houseboats were the highlight of our Kerala trip and are the best way to navigate the serene backwaters. They are slow moving barges made of wooden planks held in place by ropes of coconut fiber. The roof is made of palm leaves and bamboo. A houseboat cruise is a must-do on your trip to Kerala!
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Hello, I am Ayushi Manroa. I love travelling and have also dabbled in photography. Being a student, I mostly end up back-packing! I started this blog to record my travelogues about the amazing places that I have been to. Be it frolicking in Goa, taking a dip in the Ganges, trekking in Coorg or hitching a ride up the Western Ghats, it is all listed here along with some of my best shots. Hope you like it. Happy reading!