This Kerala travel destination is a traveler’s delight. It has tigers, elephants, pristine rivers, jungles, and even an ancient martial dance.
Read this Kerala travel tip before planning your India travel itinerary.
We are talking about Thekkady.
What is the meaning of Thekkady?
In Malayalam, the word ‘Thekkady’ means ‘Lake’. No, we aren’t referring to the water bodies; in Malayalam, the word ‘Lake’ means ‘Sagon’, which is a tree. This Kerala travel destination is known for its Sagon trees hence the name.
Main features of Thekkady
This amazing travel destination in Kerala is known for its wildlife, dense jungles, amazing art and culture, food and much more. Let’s know about these features one by one.
Kalaripayattu – an amazing dance form
This dance form is actually a martial art. According to several experts, Kalaripayattu is the oldest martial art in the world. Yes, sir, it is older than even Kung Fu of China.
Your visit to Thekkady would be incomplete unless you attend a Kalaripayattu performance. Getting a ticket is difficult so it is better to book one before you arrive at this Kerala travel destination.
History of Kalaripayattu
It is said that this dance form/ martial art was developed by Sage Parashuram. He is considered to be an avatar of Lord Vishnu.
According to Hindu traditions, Sage Parashuram had conquered the Arabian Sea by throwing his ax into it. This weapon displaced water and all the land that appeared was claimed by the Sage.
Later, the sage taught this martial art to his disciples so that they could defend the newly acquired land. Watch this video and enjoy this ancient martial art. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hsUai4wt6Yk
Do you know Sage Prashuram is immortal and is all the time roaming the world?
This video is put together by Kerala Tourism.
How to book a Kalaripayattu ticket?
To book your ticket, please click here> http://periyartourism.org/aboutus/kalari
Tigers, and Elephants- Up, Close and Personal
Your Kerala travel would be incomplete if you did not see tigers, elephants, and other wild animals. We are talking about the Periyar Tiger Reserve.
This jungle is home to at least 40 Bengal tigers and numerous elephants. You can also find wild dogs, leopards, bears, snakes, and pythons in this amazing Kerala jungle. Periyar Tiger Reserve is just 2.5 kilometers from Thekkady.
Before our independence, this forest was the private hunting ground of the Rajas of Travancore. In 1979, the government of India took over this jungle for its conservation. Today, this jungle is counted among the best tiger reserves of India.
You can book your Periyar Tiger Safari here > http://forest.kerala.gov.in/index.php/take-a-walk-to-the-wild
This is a government-owned website and is 100 percent trustworthy.
You can also book a night-time safari and watch wild animals hunt their prey.
Night Safari- An incredible experience
Have you ever explored an Indian jungle in the night? Have you ever watched tigers and leopards hunt deer and other prey in the moonlight?
You can enjoy this spectacle in the Thekkady night safari. This fantastic tour is led by trained forest guides who know the tiger reserve like the back of their hand. You will also have armed guards for company.
Do you know that these guides were smugglers earlier? Today, these men have reformed themselves and are making a positive impact on the local Kerala economy.
Boating in the lake- Kerala travel destination
You can also watch wild animals while boating in the lake. The Kerala Tourism Development Corporation organizes 5 boating trips for travelers daily.
Book your boat ride here> www.ktdc.com
While boating, you can watch elephants, deer, and other wild animals come and drink water. Don’t worry, your boating trip is 100% safe.
Please note that plastic is not allowed inside the Periyar Tiger Reserve
Meeting the jungle people
During your Thekkady trip, you can also meet the jungle people. These people are the earliest residents of Kerala and have been living in the jungles for thousands of years.
You can plan a visit to the houses of the Muthuvans and Ezhavas ( tribals), and have lunch with them. Watch them how they go about collecting honey and other jungle products.
We need to learn from our tribals in protecting our environment.
Kerala food experiences
Thekkady is known for not just its jungles and wildlife, it is also famous for its ‘fried ice cream‘. I can’t describe this delicious food here, you will have to taste it yourselves.
Even though Kerala is known for its non-veg food, you needn’t worry if you are a vegetarian. You can enjoy a special dish called Idiyappam that is made of rice. Most people have this dish along with chutney in the mornings.
And of course, you can still finish off your lunch or breakfast with a steaming coffee.
If you are a North Indian, you will find several fast-food restaurants in and around Thekkady.
How to reach Thekkady
You can reach this amazing Kerala destination by booking a cab from Thiruvananthapuram. To reach this city, you can take a flight from Delhi/ Mumbai/ Bengaluru or book a seat in one of the trains.
The closest railway station is at Aluva while the nearest airport is at Kochi.
Best time to visit Thekkady
You can visit this beautiful Kerala destination any time during the year. However, the best time to visit Thekkady is just after the monsoons.
Round off your Kerala trip by doing this
You can buy some high-quality spices and honey from the Comila market in Thekkady. Kerala is known for its tea, coffee, spices, honey, and other natural products. All these products are inexpensive to buy.
The Delhi Spice Market gets its products from Kerala.