Kerala is a beautiful place to explore with your kids. The culture, the tradition, the lifestyle and the destinations are all different from the rest of India, probably because of its unique geographical features.
If you are going on a vacation with your kids, then make Kerala a must on your list. Here are 8 fun-filled activities you can do with them at some of the beautiful destinations in Kerala:
- Take a Wildlife Boat Safari at Thekkady
Thekkady, one of the most noted tiger reserves in India conjures up an enticing image of Kerala with undulating hills, spice plantations and plenty of exciting wildlife.
One of the major attractions in Kerala – Thekkady, apart from a thrilling tour of the wild life within the forest reserves, is the boat safari. This is the best way to show your kids some of the indigenous flora and fauna of Kerala. If you are lucky, you can spot elephants, gaur, deer and a large number of water birds.
The boat ride is a totally different experience as you get to relish the true greenery of Kerala forests, savor the silence and peace in the area and breathe in the fresh, unpolluted air.
- Go for a Nature Trek at Munnar
Image by Rob Smith via Flickr
Nature at Munnar is a thing of divine beauty. Munnar is the most sought after tourism destination for the rest of the world and is the favorite haunt of the locals when they want a break from work. The huge vistas of tea plantations lying amongst the magical Western Ghats are a sight that will be locked in your memory forever.
Apart from visiting museums and parks in Munnar, a nature trek into the plantation and forest area makes your vacation so different and refreshing. Your kids can have plenty of fun time meandering through the tea and cardamom plantations, and watching the tea laborers at work.
Breathing in the scent of tea and cardamom while enjoying acres and acres of lush greenery, are a treat to their senses. And after a 4-5 hour nature trek, you can top it off with the swirl, sniff and a tantalizing sip of freshly made cardamom tea.
- Watching Birds at Thattekad Bird Sanctuary
Image by Ken-ichi Ueda via Flickr
Bird watching is an amazing activity that teaches you a lot about Nature. Your kids would love it when you show them the different birds and their characteristics. The perfect place to do this would be the Thattekad Bird Sanctuary in Ernakulam, renowned to be the first sanctuary in Kerala.
The bird sanctuary is also known as Salim Ali bird sanctuary, after the famous ornithologist, Salim Ali who spent a great deal of time conducting surveys and studying the birds.
The sanctuary is also fairly new as it was established in 1983, and is home to a variety of more than 300 birds, many of them migratory. Apart from the birds, you can see a number of butterflies too. You can also stay in the Thattekkad Inspection Bungalow or in any of the home stays, if you want to spend a day or two watching the birds.
- Set an Overnight Camp at Chinnar Valley
Image by Dinesh Kumar (DK) via Flickr
If your kids are slightly older, then you can set up camp at the Chinnar Wild Sanctuary to enjoy the mesmerizing beauty of the forest at night. Though located in a rain shadow area, nothing can beat the beauty of the dry Shola forest and its rich diversity of flora and fauna. It is one of the 12th protected areas in Kerala, and located close to Marayoor.
During your stay at Chinnar valley, you can visit Chinnar and Pambar, two rivers that contribute to the making of Thoovanam waterfalls. You can trek to the waterfalls, Jellimala hill and Mathini. On the way, you can spot the endangered Giant squirrel, if lucky. During the trek, you can visit the tribal villages and even stay at an ethnic hut, built in the traditional style.
- Enjoy the Backwater Stay at Alappuzha
The odes sung to praise the beauty of backwaters in Kerala and its network of canals and rivers are countless. It is not possible to go back without riding through the backwaters and enjoying the perfect beauty that nature has crafted over the years. The charm and mystic beauty of the backwaters can be enjoyed at Alappuzha through a Kumarakom backwater ride and stay package.
You can stay with your kids at a traditional houseboat, enjoy sumptuous typical Kerala style meals, watch the natives at work, and marvel at the making of coir and coir products. Cruising in a houseboat over the waters is a divine experience; don’t miss it.
- Sneak Peek into the History of Kerala at Hill Palace
The deep and mystifying corridors of Hill Palace unfold an enticing story. You can take your kids to the Hill Palace at Thripunithura, Ernakulam and treat them to the magnificent archeological artifacts that grace the walls and rooms of the museum. It is the largest archaeological museum in the state and boasts of a rich cultural and traditional legacy – a treasure-trove of information, that would help you during your Kerala tour.
Right at the entrance of the museum, you have a huge statue of Parasuram, believed to be the founder of Kerala, and as you pass through well-maintained rooms, there are majestic statues and displays with eternal art works and creations not only from Kerala, but from different parts of the world as well.
- Enjoy the Beautiful Sunset at Kovalam
Image by Katrin Lorenzen via Flickr
It is said that you can view the most magnificent sunset at Kovalam. There are certain places in which you can have a unique view, especially when the fertile coconut palms and the precipitously mounting headlands add to the enchanting beauty. Apart from indulging in the regular beach based activities, you can watch the fishermen at work.
- Visit Wonderla – India’s Best Amusement Park
Image from Wonderla.com
Wonderla is touted to be one of the best amusement parks not just in Kerala, but in India as well. It is a huge park, with more than 30 acres of area with more than 50 rides for both kids and families. Some of the most popular rides are Moonwalker, pirate ship, balloon tower, castle jet, kiddies wheel and the highly acclaimed flying Ammu (an elephant that spins)
The safety requirements followed diligently at the park makes it a favorite haunt for families, and parents can let their little ones have fun without worrying about their safety. Wonderla is environmentally responsible as well, as evidenced by the ISO 14001-2004 certification displayed there.
Traveling with kids to Kerala is a heavenly experience, especially since the climate is moderate and moving from one place to another is easy and convenient. It is also the ideal family destination as they can learn about different cultures, relationships, art and architecture and plenty more.
Sunu Philip is the Inbound Marketing and Creative Head for Paradise Holidays, Cochin – a Kerala based tour operator. She loves reading, exploring new places and trying out different cuisines!
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