15 Offbeat Places In Kerala: Explore The Unexplored
Explore the undiscovered gems that are hidden in the heart of God’s Own Country with our specially curated Kerala trip package. This journey takes you far beyond the typical tourist trails, introducing you to the most exquisite offbeat places in Kerala that are rarely touched by the footprints of mainstream visitors.
Whether you are a solo traveller seeking solitude or a nature enthusiast looking for an adventurous escapade, these offbeat destinations promise an authentic experience, unveiling Kerala’s natural beauty and cultural diversity.
These Kerala offbeat places redefine the traditional essence of holidaying in this southern paradise. Surrender yourself to the enchanting allure of Kerala’s lesser-known destinations – from the serene backwaters of Kuttanad to the rustic beauty of Silent Valley, each stop has its unique charm.
Offbeat places in Kerala like Marayoor with its ancient dolmens or the tranquil Vagamon far away from the bustling cityscapes add another dimension to your travel diary. As you explore these Kerala offbeat places, immerse yourself in the tranquillity of untouched nature, the simplicity of rural life, and the rich tapestry of local culture.
Top 15 Offbeat Places In Kerala
1. Kumarakom Backwaters
Kumarakom Backwaters, nestled in the verdant landscapes of Kerala, serves as an epitome of serenity and natural beauty. As one of the offbeat places in Kerala, it offers stunning sights of lush paddy fields, mangrove forests, and coconut groves lining the waterways.
Vivid wildlife, including diverse bird species, further accentuates its charm. The floating houseboats offer unforgettable experiences, making Kumarakom one of the best Kerala offbeat places for tourists seeking a tranquil escape into the heart of nature’s bounty.
2. Silent Valley National Park, Palakkad
Silent Valley National Park in Palakkad is one of the most offbeat places in Kerala. It’s a nature lover’s paradise, with intimate encounters with exotic flora and fauna.
This untouched biodiversity hotspot retains its virgin beauty, making it one of Kerala’s best offbeat destinations. It attests to Kerala’s verdant allure, a realm where nature’s serenity echoes. If you’re looking for an escape from every day, this mystical location provides an immersive experience of nature’s splendour. So, pack your bags and venture into the unknown.
3. Ashtamudi Lake
Ashtamudi Lake, one of the offbeat places in Kerala, offers serene tranquillity for those seeking an escape from bustling city life. Its breathtaking landscape vividly depicts intertwining waterways, verdant palm groves, and vibrant local life.
This unique backwater ecosystem is perfect for languid houseboat cruises, which meander through eight intertwining channels. Filled with numerous aquatic species, the lake contributes significantly to the local economy.
Ashtamudi Lake is an unsung gem in Kerala, providing a tranquil setting that juxtaposes beautifully against the hum of the state’s more popular tourist destinations.
Nelliyampathy, one of the offbeat places in Kerala, is a charming hill station draped in tea and coffee plantations. Its untouched natural beauty provides an inviting escape for those seeking tranquillity.
Offering magnificent panoramic views of valleys, its ethereal charm makes it one of the offbeat places to visit in Kerala. With pleasant weather, rich biodiversity, and endless trekking trails, Nelliyampathy stands as an undiscovered gem, perfect for adventurers and nature enthusiasts alike.
So, if you wish to break away from typical tourist destinations, visit Nelliyampathy, a retreat where nature’s symphony awaits you.
5. Thiruvallam Backwaters
Thiruvallam Backwaters, often counted among the offbeat places in Kerala, promise a serene and enchanting experience unlike any other. Nestled between the sparkling Arabian Sea and the sprawling Karamana River the backwaters are a breathtaking confluence of two rivers, providing a unique ecological spectacle.
Boasting lush greenery, the area serves as an essential hub of biodiversity, sheltering a rich array of flora and fauna. From traditional houseboats to quaint country boats, the waterways bustle with activity, painting a picturesque tableau of local life and culture.
The quaint village of Thiruvallam provides an insight into the rustic charm of Kerala’s lifestyle. Exotic birds singing, fishermen casting their nets and the soothing lullaby of the rippling waters define the tranquillity of this paradise.
The Sree Parasurama Temple, a significant spiritual landmark on the backwater’s banks adds a sacred touch to the panoramic landscape. The temple more than 2000 years old, is a popular pilgrimage site where many rituals are performed especially for ancestors.
6. Muzhappilangad Beach
Muzhappilangad Beach, nestled along the Malabar Coast in Kerala, is a hidden gem that belongs to the list of offbeat places in Kerala. Surrounded by black rocks that protect it from strong ocean currents, this beach boasts an enigmatic charm with its pristine sand and azure waters.
As the longest drive-in beach in Asia, Muzhappilangad Beach provides an incredible opportunity for driving along its 4 km long shoreline. Visitors can thrill their senses as they manoeuvre their vehicles, leaving trails on the wet sandy terrain, an experience unique to this destination.
What truly distinguishes Muzhappilangad Beach is its tranquil atmosphere, devoid of the typical tourist crowd. It thus offers an unspoilt and authentic coastal experience, with coconut groves swaying in the wind and the picturesque view of Dharmadam Island, situated just offshore.
As an offbeat place in Kerala, Muzhappilangad Beach extends beyond its serene beauty, offering a cultural immersion. One can relish local delicacies sold by small vendors, indulge in bird-watching or simply enjoy the sight of local fishermen hauling in their day’s catch. This beach unquestionably stands as an epitome of Kerala’s untouched beauty, waiting to be explored by intrepid travellers.
7. Marine Drive, Kochi
Marine Drive, Kochi a picturesque promenade with a breathtaking view of the backwaters and the Kochi Harbor is undoubtedly one of the offbeat places in Kerala. The lively aura, combined with the natural beauty that unfolds here, makes it a refreshing escape from bustling city life.
This charming location is more than just a scenic spot; it is a hub of shopping, eating, and cultural experiences. In the daytime, one can find the area buzzing with vendors and tourists exploring the local attractions or indulging in a traditional Kerala meal at one of the eateries. As night falls, the place turns into a serene haven with a mesmerizing view of the moonlit backwaters and twinkling city lights.
Being one of the offbeat places in Kerala Marine Drive is less frequented compared to other tourist destinations in the state, offering a peaceful getaway for travellers. Whether you prefer to take a relaxing walk along the water or want to explore the local culture and cuisine, Marine Drive, Kochi offers a unique blend of experiences that make it a must-visit place in Kerala.
8. Banasura Dam
Banasura Dam, nestled amidst the picturesque Western Ghats in Kerala, is a place of captivating beauty and an example of engineering prowess. It stands as one of the offbeat places in Kerala, being the largest earth dam in India and the second-largest in Asia. This extraordinary feat of construction owes its name to Banasura, a mythical character from the Mahabharata, adding a dash of intriguing mythology to its charm.
Banasura Dam’s location is a blessing for nature enthusiasts, offering a diverse range of activities, from trekking to speed boating. The verdant greenery, misty hills, and expansive reservoir create a magical aura that enchants every traveller. Visiting the dam during monsoon paints an even more ethereal picture with the overflowing reservoir and surrounding greenery at their peak.
One of the many jewels that make Kerala ‘God’s own country’, the Banasura Dam underlines why these offbeat places in Kerala are must-visit locations for those seeking tranquillity away from bustling city life.
It showcases a harmonious blend of nature’s grandeur, human ingenuity, and cultural mythology, embodying the quintessence of Kerala’s natural beauty and serenity.
Its charm remains untouched by excessive commercialization, offering an authentic experience to its visitors.
9. Cherai Beach
Cherai Beach, nestled along Kerala’s sun-kissed coast, is an enchanting blend of sea and backwaters, one of the offbeat places in Kerala that promises an unforgettable experience. It is a tranquil, golden-sand beach that stretches for 15 kilometers and is framed by lush green coconut groves and paddy fields.
Visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the Arabian Sea on one side and a tranquil backwater on the other thanks to the beach’s unique geographic location at the northern end of Vypin Island. Every morning, the coast is alive with the cries of fishermen, their nets laden with fresh catch.
Cherai Beach is a haven for those seeking peace and rejuvenation away from the hustle and bustle of the city. It’s also a birdwatcher’s paradise, as it attracts a wide range of migratory birds throughout the year. Furthermore, the clear waters of Cherai Beach provide ideal conditions for swimming and sunbathing. The bioluminescent planktons cause the sea waves to sparkle in a surreal, phosphorescent blue at night, creating a mesmerising sight.
Ponmudi, nestled in the scenic Western Ghats, stands as one of the most stunning offbeat places in Kerala. The verdant hillsides and winding pathways offer an enchanting retreat from the hustle and bustle of city life. Its name translates to “Golden Crown” in Malayalam fitting for its regal beauty.
Ponmudi’s captivating vistas entice visitors to explore its untouched landscapes. Wandering through the region’s tea gardens will reveal a plethora of endemic flora and fauna. It embodies the lush abundance of the Ghats, with rivulets, tropical forests, and an abundance of spice plantations.
Visit the Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary to learn about local folklore, or climb the 22 hairpin curves to the hilltop, where each turn reveals a new panoramic view. The tranquil scenery is enhanced by the cooler climate, especially in the mornings.
Ponmudi will delight birdwatchers, as it is home to hundreds of avian species, making it an ornithologist’s dream. Their symphonies will echo through the hills, an aural testament to the region’s natural wealth.
11. Thommankuthu Falls
Thommankuthu Falls is a hidden gem among offbeat places to visit in Kerala, a tranquil haven tucked away in the verdant bounty of the Idukki district.
It offers an exotic vista that would please any nature lover, with a series of seven cascades rolling down rocky terrain, each forming its own unique pool. The seventh plunge, at a height of 40 meters, captures the might and beauty of nature at its best.
This waterfall is a spectacular slice of Kerala’s natural beauty and a sensory feast. A walk along the trail that runs parallel to the falls provides enthralling views of the cascades and the surrounding lush greenery.
This makes it a popular destination for hikers and adventure seekers. Furthermore, bird watchers frequently flock to this biodiverse region, which is home to a diverse range of avian species.
Thommankuthu Falls, the epitome of untouched natural splendour, is one of the best offbeat places in Kerala that takes you off the beaten path and deep into nature. The falls’ rhythmic cascading against the melodious chirping of birds makes it a must-see destination for anyone looking for a refreshing escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.
12. Athirapally Falls
Athirapally Falls nestled among Kerala’s lush greenery is a spectacle of nature’s magnificence and one of the most enchanting offbeat places in Kerala. This breathtaking cascade known as the ‘Niagara of India’ is located in the Thrissur district and has a height of around 80 feet.
The magnificent Athirapally Falls are part of the Chalakudy River which flows from the upper reaches of the Western Ghats. The rich and diverse ecosystem surrounding the falls is home to many endangered and endemic species of flora and fauna.
The journey to Athirapally is as enticing as the destination, with breathtaking views of the Sholayar hills and the lush greenery of the rainforest.
Monsoons lend an extra charm to the falls when the water cascades with a thunderous roar. A misty cloud of water droplets is formed due to the waterfall, lending a magical aura to the surrounding area.
Whether it’s the roar of water plummeting down the cliff or the tranquil melody of the surrounding nature, Athirapally Falls is a mesmerizing symphony of Kerala’s untamed beauty.
13. Edakkal Caves
The Edakkal Caves, one of the offbeat places in Kerala, offer a fascinating glimpse into ancient history. Located on the Ambukutty Mala a mountain range in Wayanad district, these caves are renowned for their Neolithic petroglyphs, some dating back over 8,000 years.
The term Edakkal translates to ‘a stone in between’, alluding to the natural rock bridge found at the entrance. Upon entering the caves, one can see various prehistoric carvings representing human and animal figures, tools, and symbols, all etched on the inner walls of the caves.
These petroglyphs are a testament to prehistoric human habitation, offering significant insights into the cultural evolution of the region. Apart from their historical significance, Edakkal Caves also attract visitors for their stunning natural beauty and panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.
The journey to the caves, though challenging, is an invigorating trek through dense forests and steep rocks, making it an adventurous pursuit. In conclusion, the Edakkal Caves provide an enriching experience for history enthusiasts and nature lovers, making them a must-visit destination in Kerala.
14. Soochipara Waterfall
Soochipara Waterfall, also known as Sentinel Rock Waterfall, is a captivating destination in Wayanad, Kerala, India, nestled in the dense forests of Vellarimala. This enchanting waterfall is a three-tiered cascade that falls from a height of 200 meters, creating an awe-inspiring spectacle that draws nature lovers from all over the world.
This waterfall is named Soochipara, which translates to ‘needle rock’ in Malayalam, after the sharp, needle-like rock formation from which it cascades. The trek to the waterfall is an exciting journey through verdant deciduous forests, with panoramic views of Wayanad’s tea estates and the Western Ghats, making it a nature lover’s and photographer’s paradise.
The waterfall is a popular spot for picnics, bird watching, and adventurers who enjoy rock climbing and cliff jumping. The pool beneath the falls invites visitors to cool off in the crystal-clear water. The large caves found in the surrounding areas are a unique feature of Soochipara Waterfall, adding to its natural allure.
Easily accessible, yet unspoiled by commercial tourism, Soochipara Waterfall stands as a testament to nature’s raw and enchanting beauty offering an unforgettable experience to all who visit.
15. Chembra Peak
Chembra Peak is the highest peak in the Wayanad district of Kerala, India, and a popular destination for nature lovers and adventure seekers. The peak, which stands around 2,100 meters above sea level, provides breathtaking panoramic views of the lush green Western Ghats and the low-lying clouds that blanket the hills.
The path to the summit winds through verdant forests rich in flora and fauna. The most distinguishing feature of the trek is the heart-shaped lake, ‘Hridaya Saras,’ which lies en route to the summit and is an enduring symbol of unspoiled nature. This perennial lake is thought to have never dried up, adding to the location’s mystery and allure.
The moderate difficulty level of the Chembra Peak trek attracts trekkers from all over the world. The entire ascent is an experience in and of itself, as each step reveals the beauty of nature in its purest form.
The journey to the summit is memorable, filled with the rustling of leaves, the chirping of birds, and the energising fragrance of wildflowers. Despite its popularity, Chembra Peak remains a serene and unpolluted location, making it an ideal retreat for those seeking peace and quiet in the midst of nature.
In Kerala, the path less travelled leads to a treasure trove of hidden gems. Venture beyond the traditional tourist trails and you’ll find serene backwaters of Kavvayi Kayal, the pristine beaches of Bekal, the mystical caves of Edakkal, and the unexplored hill stations of Vagamon and Ponmudi.
Each destination brings its unique flavour, steeped in culture, history, and natural beauty, presenting an immersive and enriching travel experience. From the unspoiled landscapes of Wayanad to the ancient temples of Thrissur, Kerala’s offbeat locales serve as a tranquil escape from the ordinary, promising journeys that soothe the soul, enrich the mind, and invigorate the senses.
Frequently Asked Questions About Offbeat Places In Kerala
1. Which is the most beautiful place in Kerala?
Kerala is filled with beauty, but the Backwaters of Alleppey, with their labyrinthine network of tranquil canals, lagoons, and lakes fringed by lush palm groves, stand out as the most captivating landscape.
2. What is the best time to visit Kerala?
The best time to visit Kerala is during the cooler, drier months from September to March, ideal for sightseeing, beach visits, and enjoying wildlife. However, the monsoon season (June-August) offers a unique experience, especially for Ayurvedic treatments and enjoying the lush, rain-washed landscape.
3. What is the culture of Kerala?
Kerala’s culture is a harmonious blend of Dravidian and Aryan influences, enriched by foreign contacts. Known for its literature, art forms like Kathakali and Mohiniyattam, traditional music, festivals like Onam, and unique cuisine, Kerala’s culture is incredibly diverse and vibrant.
4. How safe is Kerala for tourists?
Kerala is widely regarded as one of the safest tourist destinations in India. The locals are hospitable, and the state has a low crime rate. However, as with any trip, basic safety precautions are recommended.