15 Best Places To Visit In Kerala For An Unparalleled Experience
Discover the enchantment of India’s “God’s Own Country” with our carefully curated Kerala tour packages. Discover a world of serenity and natural grandeur nestled between the emerald Western Ghats and the azure Arabian Sea. You’ll find an impressive list of places to visit in Kerala, where each location tells a unique story of history, culture, and unparalleled beauty.
Kerala, often referred to as an earthly paradise, is brimming with diverse tourist attractions to suit every traveller’s preferences. Kerala tourist places include mystical hills, vibrant wildlife sanctuaries, tranquil backwaters, sunny beaches, and aromatic spice plantations. Whether you’re an adventurer at heart or looking for spiritual peace, the places to visit in Kerala will exceed your expectations, providing memories to last a lifetime.
So, pack your bags and prepare to embark on a journey where each day holds a new adventure, each dawn unveils a new sight, and each dusk whispers an enchanting story. Welcome to Kerala, where you will fall in love with every moment of your stay.
15 Best Places To Visit In Kerala
Often listed among the best places to visit in Kerala, Munnar, a pristine hill station, unfolds like a panoramic poem etched in shades of green. Draped in a verdant blanket of tea plantations, its allure is magnified by its misty valleys, aromatic flora, and rolling hills that create a symphony of natural charm.
Munnar is a haven for nature lovers and thrill seekers. Set out on an exhilarating trek to Anamudi Peak, the highest point in South India, and take in the breathtaking views. Amble around the tea estates and learn about the fascinating journey of tea leaves from plantations to your cup for a relaxing experience.
Munnar, one of the best places to visit in Kerala, is more than just tea. The Eravikulam National Park, which is home to the endangered Nilgiri Tahr, and the breathtaking Lakkam waterfalls are both natural retreats that offer unforgettable sights and experiences.
Munnar, endowed with nature’s bounty and steeped in history, weaves an irresistible spell, promising a spectacle of enchanting landscapes and lasting memories.
Best Time To Visit Munnar: September to May
Step into the world of Wayanad, one of Kerala’s crowning jewels, where enchanting landscapes and thrilling adventures combine to create an unforgettable travel experience. Wayanad is the epitome of Kerala’s natural beauty, with lush green hills, mesmerising waterfalls, mysterious caves, and exotic wildlife.
Begin your journey with a visit to the magnificent Edakkal Caves, which are home to fascinating Stone Age carvings. Explore the trails of the Banasura Sagar Dam, India’s largest earth dam, which offers spectacular views and peaceful boating options. Feel the rush of adrenaline as you embark on a wildlife safari in the Muthanga Wildlife Sanctuary, where you might spot wild elephants, deers, and even a tiger if you’re lucky!
For nature lovers, the charming Pookode Lake provides a delightful boating experience amid picturesque surroundings, while the Soochipara and Meenmutty waterfalls will captivate you with their cascading beauty.
Without a doubt, Wayanad is one of the most diverse Kerala tourist destinations, promising both adventure and tranquillity. Whether you are a history buff, a nature lover, or an adventure seeker, Wayanad beckons you with unforgettable experiences.
Best Time To Visit Wayanad: Throughout the year
Immerse yourself in the scenic splendor of Alleppey, a crown jewel among the places to visit in Kerala. Known as the ‘Venice of the East’, Alleppey is an enchanting labyrinth of lustrous waterways, brimming with lush palm groves and shimmering paddy fields. Here, the beauty of Kerala unfolds in its most captivating form, where life leisurely sails in harmony with nature.
A houseboat cruise is a must-do in Alleppey. It not only offers an intimate encounter with the serene backwaters but also provides a glimpse into the unique local life. As your traditional Kettuvallam gently glides across the tranquil waters, you can revel in the mesmerizing sunset hues painting the vast skies.
Among the numerous places to visit in Kerala, Alleppey is also home to the renowned Alappuzha Beach, known for its charming lighthouse and the historic pier that stretches into the sea. If you find yourself there in August, don’t miss the electrifying Nehru Trophy Boat Race, a spectacle of speed and rhythm on the Punnamada Lake.
A visit to Alleppey isn’t just a journey, but a poetic soiree with nature, resonating with the rhythm of the backwaters, whispering tales of timeless beauty.
Best Time To Visit Alleppey: June to March
Kochi, the vibrant city known as the ‘Queen of the Arabian Sea,’ is a cultural melting pot and one of the must-see Kerala tourist destinations. Kochi, a charming blend of old and new, not only retains the scents and sounds of ancient India but also exudes the vigour of a thriving metropolis.
Explore the Fort Kochi area, which is home to the iconic Chinese Fishing Nets, which paint an idyllic picture against the setting sun. The region, a cultural melting pot, is home to the St. Francis Church, India’s oldest European church, and the Jewish Synagogue, which sparkles with Belgian chandeliers and Chinese tiles.
Modern visitors can stroll through the bustling lanes of Mattancherry, a spice trade centre since antiquity, or indulge in some retail therapy at Lulu Mall, one of India’s largest shopping destinations. The Kochi-Muziris Biennale, a contemporary art festival that transforms the city into an open-air gallery, will captivate art lovers.
Kochi, as a tourist destination in Kerala, stands out as a cultural treasure trove that promises to transport visitors into a captivating world of old-world charm and modern dynamism. This city will leave every visitor with a palette of unforgettable memories and a desire to return.
Best Time To Visit Kochi: July to April
Varkala, a majestic seaside town and one of the must-see places to visit in Kerala, gracefully adorns the state’s southwestern coastline. The allure of this town lies not only in its captivating beaches, but also in the many wonders it hides within its borders.
Varkala Beach, also known as Papanasham Beach, is the crown jewel of the town, with golden sand meeting the turquoise sea. A dip in these sacred waters, according to local belief, washes away sins, earning it the nickname “Beach of Redemption.” Spend the day soaking up the rays of the sun, watching the sky turn colours at sunset, and feeling the spiritual energy that abounds.
Away from the beach, Sivagiri Mutt calls for your attention. A pilgrimage center and the final resting place of the social reformer, Sri Narayana Guru, it paints a picture of tranquility and spirituality. Explore the Janardana Swami Temple, an ancient shrine with a history of over 2000 years, offering a deeper understanding of local customs and beliefs.
For the outdoor enthusiasts, Varkala Cliff serves as a perfect spot. It offers panoramic views of the Arabian Sea along with numerous activities like paragliding and surfing.
Best Time To Visit Varkala: Throughout the year
Nestled on the idyllic banks of Vembanad Lake, Kumarakom is a tranquil little hamlet that is undoubtedly among the must-visit places in Kerala. With its lush paddy fields, fragrant coconut groves, and soothing backwaters, this charming village encapsulates the heart and soul of the region.
A much-loved spot for nature enthusiasts, Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary is one of the top places to visit in Kerala. Here, you’ll encounter a wide variety of migratory birds that create a symphony at dawn and dusk, rendering an otherworldly charm to the sanctuary. If you are fortunate, you may also spot the elusive Siberian Crane, a special winter guest.
However, a visit to Kumarakom isn’t complete without experiencing its quintessential backwater life. Embark on a captivating journey on a houseboat, known as Kettuvallams, meandering through the serene waters while feasting on authentic Keralite cuisine.
Kumarakom also offers various Ayurvedic spas that promise a rejuvenating experience, weaving an intricate bond between you and nature. Engage with local life, watch artisans at work, or try your hand at fishing – the opportunities for exploration are endless in this charming village.
Best Time To Visit Kumarakom: September to March
Nestled in the southern tip of Kerala, Kovalam is an idyllic coastal town that captures hearts with its sprawling beaches and the lullaby of the lapping waves. This seaside haven, a gem among the places to visit in Kerala, holds the promise of unforgettable experiences for every traveler.
Kovalam is renowned for its trio of stunning beaches – Lighthouse Beach, Hawa Beach, and Samudra Beach. The crown jewel, Lighthouse Beach, draws visitors with its mesmerizing views of the Arabian Sea from the old Vizhinjam Lighthouse. A walk along the coastline during sunset, with the cooling sand beneath your feet, is a picture-perfect moment waiting to happen.
Adventurous souls can plunge into the thrill of water sports like surfing and parasailing. Yoga and Ayurvedic healing centers in Kovalam offer a gateway to wellness and rejuvenation, making it a haven for those seeking peace and restoration.
Art enthusiasts can visit the Kovalam Art Gallery, home to an array of traditional Indian art and artifacts. Let’s not forget the culinary journey that awaits you, from savouring fresh seafood to tasting the region’s local delights.
Best Time To Visit Kovalam: September to March
Vagamon, one of the must-visit places in Kerala, awaits you with its captivating beauty, offering an escape into the pristine lap of nature. Set at an altitude of 1100 meters above sea level, this enchanting hill station promises an experience steeped in tranquility and scenic splendor.
There are numerous places to visit and exciting things to do in Vagamon. Begin your adventure with a visit to the Vagamon Pine Forest, where the soothing whispers of the wind and the serene ambiance are guaranteed to steal your heart. A walk through these charming woods is nothing short of therapeutic.
The mystical Thangal Para, a revered pilgrimage site with panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes, should be next on your itinerary. Then, another of Kerala’s unique places to visit is the Kurisumala Ashram, which is known for its divine tranquilly and serves as a symbol of religious harmony.
Vagamon offers thrilling activities such as trekking, paragliding, and rock climbing for adventure seekers. A boat ride on Vagamon Lake, surrounded by lush green hills, also makes for a picture-perfect moment.
Best Time To Visit Vagamon: Throughout the year
9. Periyar National Park
The Periyar National Park is a haven for nature lovers and one of the most captivating places to visit in Kerala. This thriving wildlife sanctuary enthrals visitors with its rich biodiversity and enchanting landscapes spread across 925 square kilometres. Periyar National Park, known for its dense evergreen forests, tranquil lake, and exotic wildlife, is more than a destination; it’s an experience.
A boat cruise on Periyar Lake is one of the most popular things to do in Periyar. Keep an eye out for wild animals quenching their thirst on the lakeside as you glide across the waters. Elephants, wild boars, and even tigers are not uncommon to see in their natural habitat.
If you’re looking for an adventure, the park has guided jungle trekking and night patrolling programmes. Your senses come alive with the orchestra of nature in the dense woods, bringing you close to the true essence of wilderness.
Periyar National Park is without a doubt one of the most fascinating places to visit in Kerala, a paradise where nature and wildlife coexist harmoniously.
Best Time To Visit Periyar National Park: August to March
Experience the tranquil beauty of Poovar, a secluded coastal village nestled in Kerala’s southern tip, where nature cradles your senses and the harmonious symphony of waves beckons you to unwind. This undiscovered paradise, encased in the emerald embrace of lush greenery, golden sands, and cerulean waters, promises unrivalled serenity.
Enjoy a scenic boat ride through the tranquil backwaters, a unique blend of river, sea, and lagoon that is undeniably one of Poovar’s must-do activities. Witness the breathtaking sight of the Neyyar River meeting the Arabian Sea, a captivating phenomenon that distinguishes this village as an exceptional estuarine ecosystem.
The vibrant Thirparappu Falls, located a short distance from Poovar, offers a peaceful retreat amidst the soothing sounds of cascading waters. You can also visit nearby fishing villages to learn about local life, culture, and traditions.
Poovar offers a delectable assortment of experiences that will fill your soul with peace and your heart with joy. Nature sings the most beautiful lullaby to soothe your soul here.
Best Time To Visit Poovar: August to March
Kollam, one of the enchanting places to visit in Kerala, is a mesmerizing amalgamation of rich culture, historical marvels, and natural splendor. This vibrant port city, cocooned by the tranquil Ashtamudi Lake and the Arabian Sea, promises unforgettable moments for every visitor.
Start your journey with a peaceful boat ride on the Ashtamudi Lake. Known as the gateway to the serene backwaters of Kerala, this eight-armed lake offers an enchanting panoramic vista of lush palm groves and quaint rural life. Revel in the tranquility and if lucky, catch the golden spectacle of the sunset.
For history enthusiasts, Kollam is a treasure trove. The ancient Thangassery Lighthouse, standing tall since the British era, provides a fascinating glimpse into the past and a panoramic view of the city. Explore the remnants of the Portuguese and Dutch Forts, silent testimonies to Kollam’s colonial history.
Don’t miss out on the Palaruvi Waterfalls, one of the most picturesque places to visit in Kerala, located on the Kollam-Shencottah Road. Literally translating to ‘stream of milk’, the falls cascade from a height of 300 feet, creating a mesmerizing scene.
From placid backwaters to historical gems, Kollam is a hidden paradise in Kerala, waiting to be discovered by you.
Best Time To Visit Kollam: September to February
Idukki, located in the lush, green heart of Kerala, is a captivating destination that welcomes you with open arms into its tranquil lap. It’s a place where nature’s grandeur manifests itself in the form of majestic mountains, glistening rivers, and dense forests, providing an array of incredible experiences for all visitors.
Idukki, one of the top places to visit in Kerala, entices visitors with the captivating Idukki Arch Dam, one of the world’s largest arch dams and an engineering marvel. A boat ride on its reservoir is a relaxing experience that brings you closer to the natural beauty of the area. Munnar, a nearby hill station known for its sprawling tea gardens, is an ideal retreat for those seeking solitude in nature.
Wildlife enthusiasts should not pass up the opportunity to explore the Periyar National Park’s diverse biodiversity. While walking quietly through the wilderness, you may come across elephants, tigers, and a variety of bird species in their natural habitat. Without a doubt, Idukki is one of Kerala’s must-see destinations, offering a perfect blend of natural grandeur and thrilling adventures.
Every path in Idukki leads to a new discovery, every sunrise reveals a hidden secret, and every sunset offers the gift of tranquillity.
Best Time To Visit Idukki: Throughout the year
Thrissur, the cultural capital of Kerala, is an absolute delight for every traveller seeking to dive into the rich tapestry of tradition and vibrant festivals. An integral part of the treasure trove of places to visit in Kerala, Thrissur gracefully blends ancient history, religion, and modern urbanisation, offering a platter of experiences that cater to every soul.
The iconic Vadakkumnathan Temple, boasting Kerala’s architectural magnificence, invites history enthusiasts and spiritual seekers alike. Art aficionados should not miss the Kerala Kalamandalam, the cradle of Kerala’s traditional performing arts. For nature lovers, a visit to the Poomala Dam offers a tranquil retreat, while the Peechi-Vazhani Wildlife Sanctuary brings you closer to Kerala’s diverse flora and fauna.
In Thrissur, don’t just visit the places but also participate in activities. Delve into the heart of the city’s cuisine, sample the divine ‘Prasadam’ at the temple, or test your bargaining skills at the bustling local markets.
Thrissur doesn’t just offer you places to visit in Kerala; it offers you a peek into the vibrant life, culture, and heart of Kerala. This is not just a destination, it’s an experience; an emotion that will stay with you long after you’ve returned from your journey.
Best Time To Visit Thrissur: Throughout the year
Trivandrum, or Thiruvananthapuram, is an unmissable destination on the list of places to visit in Kerala, steeped in regal history and basking in the glow of modernity. The capital city seamlessly blends cultural heritage with natural beauty, offering an unforgettable journey into Kerala’s heart.
Begin your exploration at the Padmanabhaswamy Temple, which exemplifies Kerala’s rich architectural splendour. With its intricate stone carvings and towering gopuram, this monumental temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu is an unforgettable sight. Then, head to the Thiruvananthapuram Zoo, which is home to a diverse array of species among the lush greenery of botanical gardens.
A trip to Trivandrum would be incomplete without a stop at Kovalam Beach. The golden sands, framed by vast azure waters and swaying palms, create an irresistible canvas of tranquillity. Enjoy the rhythm of the waves, breathtaking sunsets, or adrenaline-pumping water sports.
In addition, for a taste of local life, take a leisurely stroll through the bustling Chalai Bazaar, where the air is filled with the aroma of spices and the melody of bargaining.
Best Time To Visit Trivandrum: October to February
Nestled in the heart of ‘God’s Own Country’, Nilambur is a captivating treasure trove of scenic vistas and cultural charm. An integral part of the illustrious list of places to visit in Kerala, this quaint town rests in the lap of nature, famed for its rich forestry, including the world’s oldest teak plantations, the Conolly’s Plot. As you walk through these lush plantations, the fragrance of teak blossoms and the melodic chorus of birds create an otherworldly ambiance.
Another must-see spot among the myriad places to visit in Kerala is Nilambur’s captivating tribal settlements. Here, visitors can delve into the rustic beauty of local life, unraveling a tapestry of traditions woven with stories passed down through generations. A visit to the Teak Museum, a unique institution showcasing the historical, cultural, and aesthetic significance of teak, is an unforgettable experience.
For thrill-seekers, the Adyanpara Waterfalls offer a mesmerizing sight, where crystal-clear water cascades down rugged cliffs, forming a natural pool that invites for a rejuvenating dip. Don’t miss the majestic Vettekkorumakan Temple, symbolizing Kerala’s rich spiritual heritage.
Best Time To Visit Nilambur: October to March
In this magical journey through Kerala, we’ve discovered how the state truly lives up to its epithet, “God’s Own Country.” From tranquil backwaters to vibrant festivals, enchanting wildlife, and rich cultural tapestry, Kerala offers a symphony of unforgettable experiences.
So, as we end this exploration of the places to visit in Kerala, remember, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Kerala continues to unfold its myriad charms, waiting to enchant its visitors with its ageless beauty and timeless traditions. So, set your compass towards this southern paradise, and let your soul be captivated by Kerala’s irresistible allure.
Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit In Kerala
1. Which are some of the safest places to visit in Kerala for families with kids?
Kochi, with its family friendly attractions like Wonderla amusement park and Marine Drive is a safe choice for families with kids. The serene beaches of Kovalam and Varkala offer safe bathing spots and water activities. Trivandrum, with its museums and zoos and Munnar’s tea estates and parks, are also excellent, safe destinations.
2. Which are some of the must-visit places in Kerala for couples?
For romantic escapes, couples must visit the tranquil backwaters of Alleppey on a luxurious houseboat. The hill station of Munnar with its beautiful tea gardens, and the sun-kissed beaches of Kovalam provide perfect settings for romance. Wayanad’s picturesque landscapes and waterfalls, and Kumarakom’s bird sanctuary also offer serene, intimate experiences.
3. Is Kerala worth visiting?
Absolutely. Kerala offers a diverse range of experiences, from serene backwaters and beautiful beaches, to verdant hill stations and rich wildlife sanctuaries. The state’s vibrant culture and traditions, represented in its festivals, cuisine, and architecture, add to its charm. Whether you’re a nature lover, adventure seeker or culture enthusiast, Kerala has something for everyone.
4. How many days should you spend in Kerala?
The ideal duration for a trip to Kerala depends on the locations you wish to visit. However, a well-paced itinerary covering the main attractions such as Kochi, Munnar, Thekkady, Alleppey, and Trivandrum typically requires around 7 to 10 days. For a more leisurely and comprehensive exploration, consider extending your stay to two weeks.