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5 Reasons To Visit Kerala, India

Tea Plantation, Munnar (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

India has been on my bucket list for many years, primarily as a food destination. I watched Rick Stein and Gordon Ramsay travel around India in search of authentic Indian dishes. I was enchanted by the diversity of both the food and the landscape. I felt I would never get true Indian food anywhere except in India, no matter how many cookbooks I bought or restaurants I visited. I would have to go there myself.

It wasn’t until recently, though, when I heard about the Kerala Blogger Express (a two-week tour of Kerala especially for food, travel & photography bloggers), that I really began to think about where in India I would like to travel. India is huge country – about one third the size of the US and over 46 times the size of my native Ireland! This is not a country you can take on in one trip. You need to break it down into regions.

The more I look into what Kerala has to offer, the more eager I am to go there. Here are a few reasons I would love to partake in the Kerala Blogger Express:

1. Food

Well, of course. I’m a food girl, so naturally I’m drawn to Kerala’s food offerings. I was fascinated to discover that Kerala was the gateway to the original spice route and has been trading in spices since at least 3,000 BC. These days we take our spices for granted. Pepper is on tables in homes and restaurants the world over. As someone who grows much of my own food, I am excited to see how these spices are grown and prepared, and the amount of manual labour that goes into their preparation. Tea and rice are also grown across the region, creating an incredibly varied landscape. I want to wet my feet in Paddy fields, walk through tea plantations and visit markets brimming with fresh produce.

Fisherman with Fresh Catch, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Oh, look at that crab. So delicious!

Tea Plantation, Munnar (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Tea Plantation, Munnar

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Tea Plantation, Munnar (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Tea Plantation, Munnar

Collecting Tea, Kerala, India | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Collecting Tea

Planting Rice, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Planting Rice

Transplanting Rice, Kerala, India | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Transplanting Rice

Rice Paddy Field, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Rice Paddy Field

Sorting Pepper, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Sorting Pepper. Look at the amount of it!

Coconut Trees, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Coconut Trees. Coconut features prominently in Kerala cuisine.

Food Market in Chalai (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Food Market in Chalai

2. West Coast Sunsets

I am a sucker for a good sunset, but give me a sunset over water, especially if I’m on a boat, and I’m in heaven. The colours, the sound of lapping water, the serenity. Sign me up, please!

Sunset at Bolgatty Island, Kochi (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Sunset at Bolgatty Island, Kochi

Sunset Boat Ride, Kochi (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Sunset Boat Ride, Kochi

Sunset at Wagamon (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Sunset at Wagamon

3. Wildlife Reserves

Four our honeymoon, we went on safari in South Africa, where we got to see fabulous wildlife. I am very happy to find that Kerala has a number of animal reserves and sanctuaries to preserve and protect wildlife diversity. I have nothing against zoos (assuming they are well managed), but my preference is to see animals in their native, natural habitat.

Monkeys at Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Monkeys at Chinnar Wildlife Sanctuary

Elephants at Tholpetty Sanctuary (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Elephants at Tholpetty Sanctuary

Deer at Siruvani Reservoir, Palakkad | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Deer at Siruvani Reservoir, Palakkad

Deer at Parambikulam Tiger Reserve, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Deer at Parambikulam Tiger Reserve

4. Cattle Racing

What can I tell you, I’m a country girl at heart and this sport looks like fabulous fun!

Cattle Racing at Palakkad (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Cattle Racing at Palakkad

Cattle Racing at Palakkad (Kerala, India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Cattle Racing at Palakkad

5. Natural Ayurveda Medicine

I’m a qualified massage therapist and have practiced aromatherapy for many years. I fully believe in the power of touch as a healer of both body and mind, and will always try natural therapies before resorting to pharmaceuticals. India is the home of ayurveda and I would relish the opportunity to indulge in some revitalising therapies.

Ayurveda Medicines, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Ayurveda Medicines

Ayurveda Medicines, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

I feel more relaxed just looking at this!

Ayurveda Medicines, Kerala (India) | www.myfoododyssey.com via www.keralatourism.org

Selection of Herbs & Spices for Ayurveda Medicines

Video Version


I have created a short video version of this post, which you can find here:

All photos courtesy of Kerala Tourism, used with permission. For more photos from beautiful Kerala, please see my Kerala Pinterest Page.

Text copyright of June Molloy Vladička and My Food Odyssey, 2017. All rights reserved. Text may not be replicated on other sites within prior permission from the author.

Update: Note that the voting for this year’s Kerala Blog Express has now closed.

Like what you see? Then please subscribe to My Food Odyssey. For updates on my daily life you can follow me on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

34 Comments Post a comment
  1. Hayagreev #

    Sep to feb are best days to visit ..

    Liked by 1 person

    February 21, 2017
  2. Crazy amazing pics! I wish I had gone to the south when i visited India. My experience was quite different :O

    Liked by 1 person

    February 20, 2017
  3. You’ve made me want to visit! Good job!

    Liked by 1 person

    February 19, 2017
  4. It’s on my bucket list already! God’s own country.

    Liked by 2 people

    February 15, 2017
  5. Most lovely! Congratulations on acquiring a new surname with the letter ‘č’ in it. 😀 Now you’ll see the trouble with it in online fonts, or maybe you know all about it already. 😉 I’ve had it since birth.

    Liked by 2 people

    January 30, 2017
    • Thanks Manja! The name is not new, really – I’ve had it for nearly 10 years now. It can be a bit problematic online, alright, and can be limiting when creating graphics with fancy fonts. I usually just end up manually adding a little “v” on top of the “c” !!!

      Liked by 1 person

      January 30, 2017
  6. Very well written 👍👍

    Liked by 1 person

    January 28, 2017
  7. Wow! Beautiful. There are more to explore in Kerala

    Liked by 2 people

    January 24, 2017
    • Thank you! Yes, I know this is only the tip of what Kerala has to offer. I can’t wait to explore it for myself some day!

      Like

      January 24, 2017
  8. Unfortunately I don’t have enough time to visit Kerala during my time in India, but I would LOVE to! Mainly for the food as well!

    Liked by 2 people

    January 20, 2017
    • That’s a pity, but I’m sure you’ll have a fabulous trip anyway. And there’s always next time! 🙂

      Like

      January 20, 2017
  9. Headed to India tomorrow! Kerala is on the itinerary and I absolutely cannot wait, thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 2 people

    January 18, 2017
  10. done …. voted 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    January 18, 2017
    • Thank you – very much appreciated! 🙂

      Like

      January 18, 2017
  11. vowwww..nice blog…
    thanks for sharing…

    Liked by 1 person

    January 18, 2017
  12. Well written post and nice pictures.

    Liked by 2 people

    January 15, 2017
  13. First, thank you for dropping by my blog.
    India has fascinated and scared me in equal measure for years.. I hope to visit it soon so it was interesting to see the photos and read of your reasons for choosing that area to start your India exploration. But, as an animal advocate reason #4 sticks in my craw. I don’t think that is so much fun for the animals.
    But your other reasons rock and I will remember them when I start my trip.

    Liked by 2 people

    January 15, 2017
    • Hi Donnae. Thanks a million for your comment. Yes, I see your point about the cattle racing. I am also a huge animal advocate and would not like to see any animal mistreated. I don’t know enough about this sport or how the animals that participate are treated and would reserve judgement until I know more. Suffice it to say that if I discover, either by research or by visiting, that the cattle are mistreated, I will take this item out of my list. Happy travels! June.

      Liked by 1 person

      January 15, 2017
  14. This is really nice! I am so happy after reading this.
    I hope you will write more about Kerala.
    And,
    Hope you will check my blog too.

    Liked by 2 people

    January 12, 2017
  15. Ann #

    Pls try out tour packages to Kerala and rest of India…very reasonable quotes and good services too !

    Liked by 2 people

    January 6, 2017
  16. Nice post 🙂 Good luck 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    January 5, 2017
  17. Sreeharsh Rajan #

    Hello June, Your reasons to visit Kerala found really awesome for me. I would say you can expect more than these from our state. You can enjoy the traditional festivals, cultural artfoms and many ancient buildings -much like forts, castle’s,temples etc are also there to visit. Anyway I’m going to vote for you. All the best. 😁

    Liked by 2 people

    January 5, 2017
    • Thank you! I know that I have only scratched the surface with regard to what Kerala has to offer. I look forward to exploring in much more detail! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      January 5, 2017
      • Sreeharsh Rajan #

        😊 All the best.

        Like

        January 6, 2017

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